Have any of you heard of IVM?

Apparently it’s new (to us and our clinic) technology….here’s a breakdown:

What is IVM treatment?
IVM stands for In Vitro Maturation. ‘In vitro’ comes from the Latin meaning ‘in glass’ and ‘maturation’ is the process of aging something from infancy to maturity. In IVM, immature eggs, or oocytes, are retrieved from the ovary, then matured in the laboratory before being fertilised and replaced to the womb.

What is the procedure for IVM?
IVM is much easier than conventional treatment and requires much less time commitment.
1. Under the guidance of ultrasound, the immature eggs are retrieved from a woman’s unstimulated ovaries.
2. The eggs are then matured in the laboratory for 24-48 hours.
3. The eggs that have matured after this time are fertilised using traditional techniques such as ICSI.
4. Two to three days after fertilisation, the embryos are transferred to the mother’s womb.

How does it differ from IVF?
There are two main differences between IVM and IVF and they are safety and cost. In standard IVF treatment the woman undergoes 2 weeks of injections to stimulate egg production prior to retrieval. As well as being time-consuming and uncomfortable, a potentially fatal side-effect of these injections is a condition known as Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS). IVM does not need these daily injections so there is no risk of OHSS.
And because the treatment is shorter than IVF, there is no need for women to have to sniff an ovary suppressing drug for 2-3 weeks prior to injections.

Who is it suitable for?
To begin with, IVM will mainly be for women with polycystic ovaries. However, it is thought the procedure will be ideally suited to women below their mid thirties as an alternative to IVF.

What are the success rates?
So far, over 400 babies have been born worldwide through IVM treatment and Danish scientists have achieved 30 per cent success rates using the procedure.
Professor Bob Edwards, who helped create the world’s first IVF baby, Louise Brown, believes that IVM could be safely used to treat most women with fertility problems and will revolutionise fertility treatments. “I see IVM as an all-round – and cheaper – solution,” he says. “This really is a new era for IVF. A revolution. I think IVM will replace IVF. It all looks very promising.”

More on it here: http://www.healthcarerepublic.com/news/GP/628065/drug-free-alternative-IVF/ & http://www.fert.org.uk/files/Information%20Sheets/IVF%20and%20ICSI/IVM/Patient%20Information%20on%20IVM.pdf

So ladies, are there any of you who have had this procedure and know more about it? If so, please leave a comment, for the rest of you….might be something to look into, I have just recently found out that Vita.lab have started using it and am busy finding out more on it and whether it would be suitable for Frank and I….will let you know what they say!

**** Update: Okay, so apparently Vita.lab are doing their first IVM at the end of this month, they are looking at just doing it for PCOS patients as they are the ones that over-stimulate and run the highest risk of OHSS. Dr V says that you will get the same amount of eggs as IVF and that the quality will be the same as when you ovaries are stimulated, he also says that IVM costs about R12 000 compared to R28 000 with IVF. However, the success rate is 15% less than normal IVF….so there you go, not suitable at this stage for Frank and I, I’m leaving this post up for those of you who could possibly benefit from such treatment.

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