Today, with numerous technological advancements, improved drugs, better lab equipment and an acceptance towards the technology of assisted reproduction, IVF has become well-known and has been accepted to be a safe technology. However, there are many times when unfortunately, IVF fails for quite a number of couples. In this article, we will be looking at some IVF failure reasons.
Egg abnormalities happen because of chromosomal abnormalities in the eggs of a woman. These abnormalities can be numerical or structural. Numerical abnormality accounts for a missing chromosome or an extra chromosome. While structural abnormality happens where there is a structural problem with the chromosome. Many recent studies have shown that between 25% and 40% of all oocytes (immature eggs) are chromosomally abnormal.
Abnormal sperm is another cause of IVF failure. Abnormal sperm have head or tail defects, which means that either the head of the sperm is large, or the sperm has a crooked or double tail. This restricts the sperm from reaching and penetrating the egg. This, however, isn’t uncommon. Generally, about 4% to 10% of the sperm in a semen sample is normal. Abnormal sperm can be caused due to lifestyle factors, medical or genetic conditions.
Embryo Selection Methods is one of the many reasons for IVF failure. Once the embryos are selected by the embryologist, they are then transferred into the woman’s uterus. Unfortunately, even with all the technological advancements that we have, our ability to differentiate chromosomally normal from chromosomally abnormal embryos is still limited. Sometimes, the viability of these embryos is subject to biological variation and hence, there is always a risk.
The IVF lab is a tightly controlled environment. Every element in the lab is constantly under surveillance and control. Even the smallest of alterations inside the lab with any factors like oxygen, light, carbon dioxide, temperature or even the PH factor can kill the embryo. Thus, the environment inside a lab is very important and if altered can become one of the reasons for IVF failure.
One of the most important procedures for a successful IVF cycle is egg retrieval and embryo transfer. This is a very critical procedure, and any mistake can lead to IVF failure. Retrieving fewer eggs, or failing to retrieve any egg or even worse, placing the embryo in an incorrect location are just some of the examples through which the cycle of IVF can be unsuccessful.
We hope you gained a bit more clarity on the reasons for IVF failure after reading this article.
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