What are the Risk Involved in In-vitro Fertilization

There is possibility of risk throughout the procedure of IVF (In-vitro Fertilization). Some specific steps of procedure are riskier then some steps. For example, the first step of IVF is ovarian stimulation, which may lead to ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome. Hyper stimulation syndrome may cause painful and swollen ovaries and is reported to occur in approximately 30% of women undergoing IVF procedure. The symptom may be mild, moderate of severe.

Mild cases of ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome can be easily managed with medication and rest. Moderate form may cause swelling of ovaries, accumulation of fluid and may lead to symptoms such as gas, heartburn, loss of appetite, nausea etc. In severe cases there may be severe abdominal pain of sudden onset, nausea and vomiting. In moderate and severe cases of ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome, the patients need to be hospitalized and treated.

Risks during Egg retrieval In In-vitro Fertilization:

The second step of IVF (the egg retrieval) has small but definitive chance of infection (including chest infection), bleeding and damage to surrounding structures, such as bowel and bladder, difficulty breathing and allergy to medications used. Surrounding structures are usually damaged during transvaginal ultrasound aspiration, which is the technique used to retrieve eggs after ovulation.

Risks involved during embryo transfer In In-vitro Fertilization:

During the step of embryo transfer, if more than one embryo is transferred, there is a risk of multiple pregnancy and risk factors associated with multiple pregnancies such as low birth weight babies, premature delivery and other risks.

Ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy occurring outside uterus) is another important risk factor associated with in-vitro fertilization. The commonest site of ectopic pregnancy is fallopian tubes, which lead to obstruction and rupture of fallopian tubes. Ectopic pregnancy required immediate destruction of the embryo/fetus to save the mother’s life.

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