IVF Down Under

22 May 2013

According to the latest report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, there were 70,000 cycles of IVF used by Australian and New Zealand women in 2009.

The live birth rate was almost 27 per cent for women aged 30-40, but decreased to less than 1 per cent for women aged over 44. Despite this, one in four women going through IVF is over 40. There is no cut-off age for IVF, but experts encourage women not to wait until they turn 40.

When natural conception happens, the sperm fertilises the egg inside the woman's body. However in the IVF procedure, fertilisation of the egg with the sperm and the first few days of embryo development occur outside the body in a Petri dish, in controlled conditions in a laboratory. In Vitro is actually Latin and it means 'in glass' referring to the original Petri dish where the sperm and egg were put together. Nowadays the dishes are high quality non toxic plastic.

After fertilisation, early embryo development is checked in the laboratory by a scientist called an embryologist. When the embryo is 3 or 5 days old it is transferred into the uterus in the hope that the woman will become pregnant.

IVF is only one type of fertility treatment; however it is the most complex and well known. Not all people who have fertility treatment require IVF, sometimes simpler treatments involving drugs, surgery or intrauterine insemination (IUI) can help.

By visiting with our well known Clinical Director, Dr Paul Stokes at Coastal IVF Sunshine Coast you will be ensuring you are getting not only the best treatment but the right treatment for your needs.