Under normal circumstances, each month, one of a woman’s eggs mature in her body. When fertility is an issue, immature eggs can be collected from the body and matured in the laboratory. This procedure can be a step in the in vitro fertilization (IVF) process or it can be an alternative.
Normally, one or sometimes two, eggs are released and matured each month. If the egg is not fertilized, it is shed in the monthly menses. Conventional IVF procedures require a woman to take high doses of hormones to mature several eggs at the same time inside her body. The IVM procedure removes immature eggs from the body and develops them in the laboratory. The matured eggs are then fertilized and healthy embryos can be introduced back into her body.
IVM creates multiple viable embryos without using high doses of injectable hormones. This procedure minimizes side effects and reduces the risk of overstimulation from the hormones. It also eliminates the inconvenience of needing multiple injections.
Neway Fertility does not discard immature eggs in contrast to many IVF centers. If there are immature oocytes obtained when the eggs are retrieved, our embryologists mature them in our labs. This process allows our patients to improve their chances of getting pregnant.
How Does IVM Work?
One of our doctors will surgically collect immature or underdeveloped eggs from the patient. Little or no ovarian stimulation is used in the process. After placement in a cell culture, the immature eggs are delivered to our lab where they are stimulated with hormones until they reach maturity. In most cases, intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is used to manually fertilize the mature egg. When the eggs are fertilized, a minor surgical procedure is performed to insert the embryos into the patient.
Who Benefits From IVM?
This method is beneficial for women:
- who want to avoid high doses of hormones to complete the IVF process
- with polycystic ovarian syndrome
- in remission or recovery from hormone-sensitive cancers
- with a high risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome
- who have had severe side effects from hormonal medications
IVM can be advantageous for certain patients who prefer to avoid frequent monitoring and hormone injections.
Contact Neway Fertility, and schedule a consultation for more information about IVM and our other options to help you begin your journey for starting or expanding your family.