Preparing for IVF Treatment? Understanding the Process, Time & CostSubscribe

IVF is a very effective process. However, it is also fairly complicated, process-driven, and time & money-consuming. It is crucial to fully prepare yourself physically, emotionally and financially before entering an IVF cycle. It is not just about finding the best IVF centre around you; it's also about understanding the level of involvement, support, time and budget you will need, even before you conceive.

Pre IVF-Testing:

Before an IVF cycle begins, you and your partner must undergo screening. Some of the key tests you may need to undergo are

1. Semen analysis

2. Ovarian Reserve Testing

3. STIs and other infectious disease tests

4. Practice Embryo transfer, and

5. Uterus screening

Depending on the findings in the above tests, on the general health and lifestyle choices of the conceiving mother or the surrogate, additional treatments may be involved – hormonal or otherwise. There may be weight loss procedures involved, and there may be dietary restrictions, etc.

The IVF Process and Time

The actual cycle of IVF can take anywhere between 2-3 weeks. Some couples might need to undergo 2-3 cycles. The process of IVF includes the following steps:

1. Ovarian Induction (Stimulation) – This helps produce multiple eggs so that a backup is available in case the eggs don't fertilize or the embryo doesn't develop. This has various possibilities regarding which medication to use.

2. Egg and Sperm retrieval – This process is carried out for the female and the male partner, respectively, under medical supervision. In the case of egg retrieval, anesthesia might be used.

3. Fertilization of the egg with the sperm – This creates the embryo through conventional insemination, where healthy sperm and mature eggs are mixed and incubated overnight. The second alternative is ICSI (Intracytoplasmic sperm injection), or the direct injection of a healthy sperm directly into the ovum. Additional procedures like 'assisted hatching' or 'preimplantation genetic testing' may sometimes be done if needed.

4. Embryo transfer – This is carried out at the clinic and is usually done 2-5 days after fertilization. Multiple embryos may be transferred to ensure pregnancy.

Other Factors to Consider:

Apart from the procedural and pregnancy-related risks of the IVF process (that we discussed here), it would help if you also considered some critical questions before starting the IVF process:

1. How many embryos will be transferred?

2. What do you want to do with any extra/remaining embryos?

3. How will you handle multiple pregnancies?

4. Potential complications using donor eggs, sperms or gestational carriers?

Result: Usually 12 days to 2 weeks later, if you are pregnant, your blood test results will reveal it. If not, your doctor will stop your progesterone treatment so you can get your period. You may or may not choose to undergo another IVF cycle if you're not pregnant.

Cost: Generally speaking, India is one of the countries where affordable IVF services can be availed. Depending on the couple's health, lifestyle conditions, number of IVF cycles, the exact procedure or additional steps used (extra tests, assisted hatching, ICSI, etc.), or pregnancies they may or may not have undergone in the past, the expense varies.

One may have to pay anywhere between Rs. 1.2 L to 4 L per cycle (in cases considered critical). The cost also varies across different cities and from clinic to clinic. One of the things you want to ensure is that you do not compromise on your choice of clinic or doctor just for the heck of a few thousand Rupees.

Here's an approximated cost range based on the city:

Cities IVF Cost

Delhi ₹1,15,000 - ₹2,50,000

Mumbai ₹1,00,000 - ₹3,00,000

Bangalore ₹1,00,000 - ₹2,80,000

Chennai ₹1,15,000 - ₹3,00,000

Pune ₹1,40,000 - ₹1,60,000

Hyderabad ₹1,00,000 - ₹1,75,000

In short, if you're planning for IVF, ensure you're all prepared for it emotionally, financially, physically and armed with the correct information.






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