Natural Cycle IVF is a type of in-vitro fertilization cycle that requires very little to no medication at all. This will allow for a naturally selected, mature egg to be retrieved. A patient will return to the office for 5-6 days of monitoring to determine follicular growth and to determine when ovulation will occur, allowing the doctor to determine when the egg retrieval should take place. Once retrieved, the egg is fertilized in our laboratory and allowed to develop in culture for 3 to 5 days after the retrieval. The embryo is then transferred back into the woman.
Natural cycle IVF has emerged as a popular alternative to conventional IVF for a number of reasons:
Less medication use – Fertility drugs sometimes lead to unwanted side effects, including headache, gastrointestinal discomfort, nausea, breast tenderness, or hot flashes may occur.
No risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome – Some women taking fertility drugs to increase egg production experience a condition known as ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. Symptoms may include vomiting, diarrhea, pain in the area of the ovaries, dark urine, decreased urination, rapid weight gain, or shortness of breath.
Less monitoring – Conventional IVF requires considerable monitoring through blood tests and ultrasounds. Although there will still be some monitoring with natural cycle IVF, this may be ameliorated compared to conventional IVF.
No hyperstimulation of ovarian production – Some individuals hold certain religious beliefs that prevent them from taking medications that produce excess eggs that may be discarded. Natural cycle IVF uses only the body’s naturally produced eggs, making it a more acceptable choice for individuals with certain religious or ethical beliefs.