What is IVF? It's a Question That Many People Ask

When a couple has been trying to have a baby for more than a year without success, or with frequent miscarriages, then those are signs that the couple might need help from specialists. The specialists will examine the couple to see what exactly is stopping them from conceiving, and then present them with several treatment options.

If IVF is presented as one of the options, the couple will most likely ask the question, "What is IVF?" In order to answer the "What is IVF" question, it is first very important to understand how exactly natural conception takes place. The conception process might seem very straightforward to some people, but in understanding the technicalities of it, a couple can be more aware of how, through answering the question, "What is IVF?" they can end up conceiving.

Specifically, in order for conception to take place, the sperm must make its way up through the fallopian tubes to meet with the egg. The fertilized egg then goes down the fallopian tubes, and attaches itself to the wall of the uterus. It is at that point that actual pregnancy occurs. However, when a couple cannot conceive naturally, it could be for a number of reasons.

Much of the problems seem to have to do with the sperm count of the male. In order to successfully fertilize an egg, there have to be a lot of strong sperm moving up through the fallopian tubes. In the case of some men, they either have a very low sperm count, or their sperm is not strong enough to successfully meet the egg.

In the case of the woman, she might have a medical condition such as endometriosis, which is a hardening of the uterus. This condition is usually treated with medicine. Or, the woman's uterus is just not strong enough to support a baby naturally as of yet. One way to tell if this might be an issue is in regard to whether or not she has regular monthly periods.

Once the male and female have a thorough understanding of the conception process, as well as the medical problems they might have that are keeping them from conceiving, then it is time to finally answer the question, "What is IVF?" IVF is basically in vitro fertilization means that the egg is fertilized by the sperm in an artificial setting.

First of all, the female will need to undergo a surgical procedure to extract some eggs from her ovaries. Then, she will need to undergo several rounds of fertility treatments in order to prepare her uterus to accommodate what will be the fertilized egg.

The male will need to give some of his sperm, and once that has been done, the eggs will be fertilized with the sperm in a laboratory. A selected number of the eggs will then be implanted into the female again, in the hopes that one of them will implant itself in the uterus. After some time (it varies with each couple) the chances are quite good that the couple will finally be able to start their family.

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