How does in vitro fertilisation work?

Trying to get pregnant can be complicated sometimes. Thanks to assisted reproduction techniques many of the fertility problems can be solved. Almost everybody knows somebody (friends, neighbours, acquaintances) who were able to make their dream of becoming parents come true, thanks to in vitro fertilisation techniques. We know that it is necessary to undergo hormonal treatment in order to stimulate the ovary and that egg retrieval is done in surgery through ovarian puncture. But, what happens exactly in the lab?

The extracted follicular fluid that our team of gynaecologists has obtained, when aspirating during surgery, is sent to the laboratory. In this fluid, follicles are contained but we have to search with a magnifying glass and under strict sterile conditions to find them. Once the follicles are identified and washed, we rinsed in culture media.

After a certain rest time, we have to eliminate granulosa cells (cells that surround the oocyte and nourish it as long as it is in the ovary) through a mechanic and chemical mechanism. Once the follicles are clean, we can select the mature oocytes and cast aside those immature and those with abnormalities.

Meanwhile, sperm sample is prepared in order to choose the best sperm cells in terms of mobility and later in terms of morphology using a microscope. Now it is the time to inject a sperm cell individually into each mature egg. For evidence of successful fertilisation, we have to wait 16-19 hours. At this point, it will still be necessary to culture them for 2-5 days before transferring into the mother’s uterus.

embryos EN


After the transfer, the worst part begins: the ‘beta wait’. Both patients and doctors anxiously wait for a positive outcome to celebrate. Are you interested or do you need further information? Do not hesitate to contact us!

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