Our Services

At Fertigold, our services includes:

  • Intrauterine Insemination (IUI)
  • Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)
  • In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)
  • Donor Gamete Services
  • Surrogacy
  • Cryopreservation Services (Oocytes, Sperm and Embryo)
  • Pre-implantation Genetic Analysis

 

 

 

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is the joining of a woman’s egg and a man’s sperm in a laboratory dish. In vitro means outside the body, while fertilization means the sperm has attached to and entered the egg. Egg and sperm are fertilizes inside a woman’s body naturally.

If the fertilized egg attaches to the lining of the womb and continues to grow, a baby is born about 9 months later; this process is called natural or unassisted conception. IVF is a form of assisted reproductive technology (ART). This means special medical techniques are used to help a woman become pregnant. It is most often tried when other, less expensive fertility techniques have failed.

There are five basic steps to IVF:

Step 1: Stimulation (super ovulation)

Medicines, called fertility drugs, are given to the woman to boost egg production. Normally, a woman produces one egg per month. Fertility drugs makes the ovaries to produce several eggs.
During this step, the woman will have regular transvaginal ultrasounds to examine the ovaries and blood tests to check hormone levels.

Step 2: Egg retrieval

A minor surgery, called follicular aspiration, is done to remove the eggs from the woman’s body. The surgery is mostly carried out in the doctor’s office most of the time and the woman is given medicines so she does not feel pain during the procedure.

Using ultrasound images as a guide, the health care provider inserts a thin needle through the vagina and into the ovary and sacs (follicles) containing the eggs. The needle is connected to a suction device, which pulls the eggs and fluid out of each follicle, one at a time.

The procedure is repeated for the other ovary. There may be some cramping after the procedure, but it will go away within a day.
In rare cases, a pelvic laparoscopy may be needed to remove the eggs. Donated eggs may be used if a woman does not or cannot produce any eggs.

Step 3: Insemination and Fertilization

The man’s sperm is placed together with the best quality eggs. The mixing of the sperm and egg is called insemination. Eggs and sperm are then stored in an environmentally controlled chamber. The sperm most often enters (fertilizes) an egg a few hours after insemination.

If the doctor thinks the chance of fertilization is low, the sperm may be directly injected into the egg. This is called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Many fertility programs routinely do ICSI on some of the eggs, even if things appear normal.

Step 4: Embryo culture

When the fertilized egg divides, it becomes an embryo. Laboratory staff will regularly check the embryo to make sure it is growing properly. Within about 5 days, a normal embryo has several cells that are actively dividing. Couples who have a high risk of passing a genetic (hereditary) disorder to a child may consider pre-implantation genetic analysis.

The procedure is done about 3 to 4 days after fertilization. Laboratory scientists remove a single cell from each embryo and screen the material for specific genetic disorders.

According to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, pre-implantation genetic analysis help parents decide which embryos to implant. This decreases the chance of passing a disorder onto a child. The technique is controversial and not offered at all centers.

Step 5: Embryo transfer

Embryos are placed into the woman’s womb 3 to 5 days after egg retrieval and fertilization. The doctor inserts a thin tube (catheter) containing the embryos into the woman’s vagina, through the cervix, and up into the womb. If an embryo sticks to (implants) in the lining of the womb and grows, pregnancy results. The procedure is done in the doctor’s office while the woman is awake.

More than one embryo may be placed into the womb at the same time, which can lead to twins, triplets, or more. The exact number of embryos transferred is a complex issue that depends on many factors, especially the woman’s age. Unused embryos may be frozen and implanted or donated at a later date.

IVF can be used to treat infertility in the following patients:

  • Women with ovulation disorders, premature ovarian failure, uterine fibroids.
  • Blocked or damaged fallopian tubes.
  • Individuals with a genetic disorder.
  • Unexplained infertility.
  • Male factor infertility including decreased sperm count or sperm motility.
  • Women who have had their fallopian tubes removed.

Side effects of In vitro fertilization

Although you may need to take it easy after the procedure, most women can resume normal activities the following day.

Some side effects after IVF may include:

  • Passing a small amount of fluid (may be clear or blood-tinged) after the procedure
  • Constipation
  • Mild bloating
  • Mild cramping
  • Breast tenderness

If you experience any of the following symptoms listed below, call your doctor immediately:

  • Heavy vaginal bleeding
  • Pelvic pain
  • Blood in the urine
  • A fever over 100.5 °F (38 °C)

Some side effects of fertility medications may include:

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Hot flashes
  • Mood swings
  • Headaches
  • Abdominal pain
  • RARE: Ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome (OHSS)

What are the risks associated with in vitro fertilization?

As with most medical procedures, there are potential risks. More severe symptoms, typically from OHSS, include the following:

  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Decreased urinary frequency.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Faintness.
  • Severe stomach pains and bloating.
  • Weight gain up to Ten-pounds within three to five days.

If you experience any of these symptoms above, contact your doctor right away.

Intrauterine Insemination – IUI

Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a fertility treatment that involving placement of sperm inside a womans uterus to facilitate fertilization. IUI provides the sperm an advantage by giving it a head start, but still requires sperm to reach and fertilize the egg on its own.

The main goal of IUI is to increase the number of sperm that reaches the fallopian tubes and subsequently increase the chance of fertilization. It is a less invasive and less expensive option compared to in vitro fertilization.

IUI Procedure

If you are considering the intrauterine insemination (IUI), the procedure straight-forward and may help you get pregnant and take home a baby, particularly if you are dealing with infertility.

When you undergo the IUI procedure, you can expect to go through the following three steps:
You may begin taking fertility drugs and your ovulation cycle will be monitored. Your partner will provide a sperm sample (or you will obtain donor sperm) that will be specially washed and prepared for the insemination. The doctor will inject the prepared sperm into your uterus.

How does IUI works?

Before intrauterine insemination, ovulation-stimulating medications may be used, in which case careful monitoring will be necessary to determine when the eggs are mature. The IUI procedure will then be carried out around the time of ovulation, typically about 24-36 hours after the surge in LH hormone that indicates ovulation will occur soon.

A semen sample will be washed by a specialist to separate the semen from the seminal fluid after which a catheter will then be used to insert the sperm directly into the uterus. This process increases the number of sperm cells that are placed in the uterus, thus increasing the possibility of conception.

The IUI procedure takes only a few minutes and involves minimal discomfort. The next step is to be on the lookout for signs and symptoms of pregnancy.

Side Effects of IUI

All medical procedures usually have some side effects or the other. Intrauterine insemination also can have certain side effects though most of the side effects are known to be minor.

In some cases, the doctor may prescribe fertility drugs to enhance the rate of success of the procedure. The fertility drugs tend to stimulate hyper ovulation wherein the ovaries release multiple eggs. Many of the side effects of IUI treatment may arise due to these fertility drugs rather than from the procedure itself.

However, the side effects triggered by taking the fertility drugs are generally minimal and vanishes after medication has been stopped.

Some of the IUI fertility treatment side effects can be:

  • Slight abdominal pain or mild cramping
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Light spotting for a couple of days
  • Bloating
  • Nausea
  • Hot flashes
  • Depression or mood swings
  • Headaches
  • Visual disturbances
  • Painful and swollen ovaries
  • A rash or slight swelling about the injection spot
  • Slight abdominal pain or mild cramping
  • Tender breasts
  • Some pelvic discomfort
  • A rash or slight swelling about the injection spot

Likely IUI side effects on baby can include multiple births. In some rare cases, the side effects of IUI treatment can show up in severe forms like difficulty in breathing, severe cramps, a sudden increase in weight, darkened urine. Should in case any of these occurs, please Contact your doctor immediately.

Surrogacy

Surrogacy is an arrangement, often supported by a legal agreement, whereby a woman agrees to become pregnant, carry the pregnancy to due term, and give birth to a child or children, all of this for another person or persons, who are or will ultimately become the parent(s) of the child or children. Surrogacy is a method of assisted reproduction that helps intended parents start or grow families when they can’t do so on their own.

People may seek a surrogacy arrangement when pregnancy is medically impossible, when pregnancy risks present an unacceptable danger to the mother’s health, or when a man alone or a male couple wishes to have a child.

Surrogate mothers are women who have a selfless passion for helping others and bringing joy to intended parents. Surrogates help intended parents from a wide variety of backgrounds:

  • Heterosexual couples who have struggled with infertility.
  • Intended mothers who are unable to carry a child.
  • Intended parents who have a genetic defect or health condition they don’t want to pass onto the child.

Intended parents and surrogacy

Prospective parents interested in growing their families through surrogacy are encouraged to work with an agency like Circle Surrogacy to ensure a safe, legal and organized arrangement.
Begin with a complimentary consultation that lasts approximately 2-3 hours, where they can share their story, what brought them to surrogacy and learn about our process.​

Each journey is unique, and our programs and process is customizable and flexible to fit your needs.

Donor Gamete Service

The availability of sperm and eggs for use in treatments such as In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) and artificial insemination is a big boost when it comes to assisted reproduction. For male donors (sperm donation), the actual act of donation is fairly straightforward. The gentleman is given a cup and a room in which to provide the material. Female donors, on the other hand, must accept that they are about to undergo an invasive procedure.

Egg donation is the process by which a woman donates eggs to enable another woman to conceive as part of an assisted reproduction treatment or for biomedical research. For assisted reproduction purposes, egg donation typically involves in vitro fertilization technology, with the eggs being fertilized in the laboratory; more rarely, unfertilized eggs may be frozen and stored for later use. Egg donation is a third party reproduction as part of assisted reproductive technology.

Pre-Implantation Genetic Analysis

Pre-implantation genetic analysis (PGA or PIGD) is the genetic profiling of embryos prior to implantation (as a form of embryo profiling), and sometimes even of oocytes prior to fertilization. PGA is considered in a similar fashion to prenatal diagnosis.

When used to screen for a specific genetic disease, its main advantage is that it avoids selective abortion, as the method makes it highly likely that the baby will be free of the disease under consideration. PGA thus is an adjunct to assisted reproductive technology, and requires in vitro fertilization (IVF) to obtain oocytes or embryos for evaluation.

PGA Procedures

Pre-implantation genetic analysis starts with the normal process of In vitro fertilization that includes egg retrieval and fertilization in a laboratory. Over the next three to five days, the embryos will divide into multiple cells.

Who can benefit from PGA?

Pre-implantation genetic analysis can benefit any couple at risk for passing on a genetic disease or condition.

The following is a list of the type of individuals who are possible candidates for PGA:

  • Carriers of sex-linked genetic disorders.
  • Those with chromosomal disorders.
  • Carriers of single gene disorders.
  • Women with more than one failed fertility treatment.
  • Women age 35 and over.
  • Women experiencing recurrent pregnancy loss.

PGA has also been used for the purpose of gender selection. However, discarding embryos based only on gender considerations is an ethical concern for many people.

What are the benefits of PGA?

The following are considered benefits of PGA:
PGA can test for more than 100 different genetic conditions. The procedure is performed before implantation thus allowing the couple to decide if they wish to continue with the pregnancy. The procedure enables couples to pursue biological children who might not have done so otherwise.

Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI)

ICSI refers to the laboratory procedure where a single sperm is picked up with a fine glass needle and is injected directly into each egg. This is carried out by experienced embryologists using specialized equipment. Very few sperm are required and the ability of the sperm to penetrate the egg is no longer important as this has been assisted by the ICSI technique.

ICSI does not guarantee that fertilization will occur as the normal cellular events of fertilization still need to occur once the sperm has been placed in the egg. ICSI is very similar to conventional IVF in that gametes (eggs and sperm) are collected from each partner. The difference between the two procedures is the method of achieving fertilization. In conventional IVF, the eggs and sperm are mixed together in a dish and the sperm fertilizes the egg naturally.

However to have a chance that this will occur, large numbers of actively swimming normal sperm are required. For many couples, the number of suitable sperm available may be very limited or there may be other factors preventing fertilization, so conventional IVF is not an option. ICSI has provided a hope for these couples.

Who is ICSI suitable for?

From a patient perspective, undergoing an ICSI treatment cycle is exactly the same as a conventional IVF cycle, and the same steps are involved.

Circumstances in which ICSI may be appropriate include:

  • When there has been a previous fertilization failure using conventional IVF.
  • When the sperm cannot move properly or are in other ways abnormal.
  • When there is very low sperm count.
  • (TESE/TESA), from urine or following electro-ejaculation.
  • When there are high levels of antibodies in the semen.

What does ICSI involve?

From a patient perspective, undergoing an ICSI treatment cycle is exactly the same as a conventional IVF cycle. Patients should however be aware of the ICSI procedure which involves:

  • Stimulation of the ovaries to encourage development and maturation of the eggs.
  • Retrieval of the eggs.
  • Fertilisation of the eggs and culture of the embryos.
  • Transfer of the embryos back into the uterus.
  • These steps are described more fully under IVF.