Zygote intrafallopian transfer is a relatively new procedure in the world of fertility treatments. While similar to in vitro fertilization, zygote intrafallopian transfer is unique in that it places a fertilized egg into the recipient’s fallopian tubes. This placement makes it more likely that the zygote will follow the correct path and settle into the uterine wall.
Intrafallopian transfer is actually a two-part procedure. In the first step, the eggs and sperm to be used to form the zygote are retrieved from the donor. They two are then combined to create a zygote. Typically, the zygote is then allowed to mature for a day or two.
Depending on the physician, the sperm and egg may or may not be frozen for a period of time. Freezing may be done to preserve the egg and sperm for testing that cannot be done immediately. Testing may be done to determine whether they are viable and able to turn into a zygote.
In the interim between the first and second procedures, the recipient will need to prepare her body to receive the prepared zygote. Normally, a patient must ingest hormone medications and other medications to prepare her for the zygote. Being in good general health by engaging in light exercise and getting plenty of rest is also important.
The second part of the procedure occurs when the patient and the zygote have been prepared. At this point, the patient is put under sedation in a clinic or hospital. The fertility specialist will then make a small incision into the patient’s abdomen and retrieve her fallopian tube. After making another small incision into the patient’s fallopian tube, the physician will implant several zygotes.
The hope is that after placing zygotes into the fallopian tube, the body’s natural fertility processes will be engaged and the zygote will travel down the fallopian tube and into the recipient’s uterus. The number of zygotes placed in the tube during the procedure will be determined by the physician, but in most cases more than one and fewer than four are inserted at a time.
Post-Procedure Recovery and Follow-Up
Following the second start of the procedure, the patient will need to rest and take it easy. She will still be required to ingest the medications she was taking prior to the procedure, and may also need to add additional medications to help her body heal.
Ten to fifteen days after the procedure, the patient will need to return to the physician’s office to take a blood test to determine if she has become pregnant. This test will determine whether one zygote has implanted itself into the uterine wall. The patient will be unable to determine if more zygotes have successfully implanted until as many as twelve weeks of pregnancy.
A patient that successfully becomes pregnant may need to visit the specialist and obstetrical physician more than regular to ensure that her pregnancy is progressing normally and on time. These visits will also determine whether the patient’s body is healing after the procedure.