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Regardless of age, if you have had no success in trying to conceive for six months or longer, we recommend that you schedule a consultation to determine if any problems exist. During this visit, one of our fertility specialists will review your medical history, perform preliminary testing that will put your mind at ease or identify issues early enough to allow for treatment, and advise you about the best medical options for you. If you have been referred to us by your Gynecologist and have had tests done previously, please bring the medical reports with you to your first consultation.
Initial testing includes a Pelvic Ultrasound Scan which is a diagnostic procedure that assesses pelvic organs and detects abnormalities in the uterus, ovaries, or fallopian tubes, a Hormone Profile & Viral Screen which is a blood test required to check blood count, hormone levels, and whether a woman has ever been infected with certain viruses, and a Semen Analysis which is a test performed on a sample of semen to check both sperm count and motility.
While we do everything possible to create an optimal environment for conception, fertility treatment has no guarantee of success. However, if you become pregnant after treatment, your pregnancy carries no more risks than if you had conceived naturally.
The following is a list of assisted reproductive technology treatments we offer at our Center. Should you require specific information, send us an email and we will be happy to respond to your request.
Also commonly known as artificial insemination, intrauterine insemination involves placing a sperm sample that has been prepared directly into a woman’s uterus near the time of ovulation. This procedure increases the number of sperm that move through the reproductive tract to the fallopian tubes where fertilization usually occurs and therefore enhances the chance of achieving pregnancy.
Insemination is often performed with couples who have difficulties with intercourse due to male factors; such as low semen volume or concentration, or decreased sperm motility.
During an IVF treatment, eggs are removed from the ovaries, fertilized with sperm in the laboratory and allowed to grow before being inserted back in the woman’s uterus. This technique is used when sperm is prevented from reaching the egg due to blocked or damaged fallopian tubes; or if sperm quantity or quality is low which reduces the chance of fertilization.
Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, or ICSI, is a sophisticated technique which involves injecting an individual sperm directly into an egg. Once fertilized, the embryo is then transferred into the woman’s uterus. This procedure allows couples with little hope of achieving successful pregnancy to obtain fertilized embryos, especially when conventional IVF treatments are not successful.
The treatment protocols are the same as for IVF, with the only difference being that rather than allowing the egg and sperm to interact in the dish, a single sperm is injected directly into the egg.
Egg and sperm donations may be used successfully in treatment of multiple causes of infertility and is a delicate process which requires matching donors with patients. Donors are screened physically and psychologically by our multidisciplinary team of specialists. The tests include a medical, psychological and gynecological evaluation, complete blood analyses including serology for infectious diseases, and a genetic history study. Our center has no waiting lists and patients are assured of exhaustive medical and genetic testing of donations, and meticulous selection with regards to the physical characteristics of our donors to ensure similarity to the recipient parents.
Donations are anonymous by law in Spain and therefore, we guarantee complete donor confidentiality.
To implant in the womb, the embryo has to break through the outer membrane that surrounds it. This process is known as hatching. The failure of the embryo to hatch could be a reason why some couples fail to achieve pregnancy. Assisted hatching is a procedure that involves a hole being made in the outer membrane of the developing embryo to aid in the natural process of hatching. It is performed on day three following egg collection. This technique can improve the success of an IVF cycle or ICSI treatment by aiding in the implantation of the embryo into the uterine wall.
A blastocyst is an embryo that has been cultured in the laboratory up to 5 days after egg collection. During embryo development, those less capable of survival do not continue to mature to the blastocyst stage. The advantage of this non-invasive method of embryo self-selection is that by day 5, the embryologist can select which blastocysts have the best growth potential to be put in the uterus, leading to a better chance of successful pregnancy.
There are many genetic diseases that can be transferred from parents to children such as hemophilia, Tay-Sachs, cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anemia, Down’s syndrome and many others. Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis is a reproductive technology that is used to screen embryos for genetic or chromosomal disorders in order to select those that are healthy and disease-free. This technique is suitable for couples who are carriers of, have lost pregnancies due to, or already have one child with a genetic disease.
When there is no sperm contained in the ejaculate due to surgical, congenital, or infectious blockage, a surgical procedure can be performed to obtain sperm from the testicles. Once the sperm is removed, it is frozen and stored for an IVF / ICSI or egg donation cycle.
Fertility preservation is an option that should be considered if oncology treatment is required, certain surgeries that could lead to infertility are necessary, a woman is facing early menopause or does not have a long-term partner. The preservation process involves freezing eggs, sperm, or embryos with the use of liquid nitrogen for use at a later time. Once frozen, they can be stored up to 10 years. Taking steps to protect fertility provides a person or couple with more options for conceiving at a later time.
Freezing spare embryos of good quality which can be used at a later date is an option that a couple can have if they want another child in the future or if they need to try again. The process is much easier and less costly than a fresh cycle. Not all embryos survive the freezing and thawing process; however, those that do have a normal chance of implanting after transfer.
Couples having a hard time conceiving because of fertility problems can choose to adopt an embryo instead of going through an egg donation program. It is a choice that is easier, less costly and provides a source of hope for infertile couples who want to grow their family.
Assisted reproduction treatments can be stressful and may affect your relationships with others, your perspective on life, and how you feel about yourself. When considering any type of fertility treatments, it may be helpful to seek assistance of a fertility counselor to manage emotional, family, work-related and/or personal challenges associated with it.