How To Improve IVF Success?

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One in eight couples struggles to conceive during their lifetime. Women under the age of 35 should seek help if they’ve been trying to conceive for more than a year. Women over 35 should wait no more than six months.

Assisted reproduction technology (ART) offers the most advanced approach to treating infertility in both women and men. The ART techniques use superior technology to enhance fertility and improve chances for pregnancy success.

IVF in Cyprus is a type of ART technique that has the highest success rates. It is one of the most commonly used procedures in reproductive medicine that gives you the best chance of fertilization and pregnancy success. Preparing your body and mind for your next IVF journey is equally important as choosing a good fertility clinic and an adequate treatment plan.

If you are about to embark on an IVF journey, use our useful tips and medical advice as a guideline to help you increase your chances for IVF success.

What is IVF treatment in Cyprus

IVF (in vitro fertilization) is a type of assisted reproductive technology that helps in the conception of a child. IVF treatment in Cyprus involves extracting eggs from a woman’s ovaries and fertilizing them with sperm in our laboratory. If the eggs become fertilized, they will grow into embryos, which are then transferred into the uterus on day three or day five after fertilization. Twelve days later, patients wait to see if a pregnancy has occurred. IVF is an effective treatment for a number of infertility issues in both women and men.

IVF can be used to treat infertility caused by ovulation problems, premature menopause, menopause, uterine fibroids, genetic disorders, blocked, damaged or removed fallopian tubes or uterus, damaged or surgically removed reproductive organs after cancer treatment or surgery. IVF is also an option for male factor infertility, such as low sperm count or poor sperm motility.

Benefits of IVF in Cyprus

Some of the benefits of IVF in Cyprus are:

  • IVF works where other fertility treatments fail
  • It can be used by anybody
  • You can use donated eggs and/or sperm
  • You have control over the timing
  • Increase your chances of having a healthy baby
  • Decrease your chances of miscarriage
  • Increase your chances of getting pregnant

Process of IVF Treatment in Cyprus

An IVF cycle begins on the first day of a woman’s menstrual cycle and ends with the retrieval of the eggs. An IVF cycle takes about 20 days to complete, though the timeline varies from person to person. This is an overview of the step-by-step process of the IVF treatment in Cyprus:

  1. Fertility assessment. Our euroCARE IVF fertility specialist will arrange for you to have hormonal blood tests and ultrasound scans to determine what medication and treatment plan may be needed in your case.  Fertility tests are done on day 2 or 3 of your menstrual cycle.
  2. Ovarian stimulation. Our doctor will prescribe fertility drugs that help the ovaries to produce multiple eggs.
  3. Egg retrieval. Using ultrasound and blood tests, our doctor will determine when to retrieve the mature eggs from the ovaries. Sperm will also be provided from your partner or chosen sperm donor.
  4. ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection). Once the egg retrieval procedure is completed, the eggs are evaluated and selected to be fertilized with the sperm. After fertilization, egg cells start to divide and create what’s known as an embryo.
  5. Embryo transfer. Only best-looking embryos will be placed in the uterus on day 3 or day 5 after retrieval.
  6. Pregnancy Test. If IVF is successful, pregnancy will occur. Twelve days after the embryo transfer, a patient will have a beta hCG test to check the outcome of the IVF treatment.

What is IVF Success Rate

IVF success rates are the pregnancy rates after an IVF cycle. Clinical pregnancy is confirmed through a beta hCG blood test and ultrasound scan, usually at around 6-8 weeks.  

IVF Success Rates By Age

IVF with own eggs is a highly effective fertility treatment for a wide range of infertility problems. The average rate of IVF using own eggs is between 50 and 78 percent per cycle for women under the age of 35. Women aged 35-40  have approximately a 78 percent chance of achieving a pregnancy through IVF in Cyprus. For women over 40, the chances of having IVF success are up to 70 percent.

What is The Success Rate of IVF with Donor Eggs

IVF with donor eggs is an extraordinarily successful fertility treatment for women with diminished ovarian reserve or poor egg quality. Using donor eggs can elevate a patient’s likelihood of achieving a successful pregnancy up to 80 percent in just one cycle in women under 35. The pregnancy success rate for women aged 35-40 who start an IVF cycle with donor eggs is around 78 percent. Women over 40 have a 70 percent chance of conceiving through IVF using donor eggs.

IVF with donor eggs is very successful for women who have suffered premature menopause, recurrent miscarriage, and other fertility problems. Patients can choose to preserve part of the donor eggs or any extra good-quality embryos for future IVF cycles.

IVF Success Blastocyst Transfer

A blastocyst transfer is an embryo transfer which involves transferring embryos at the blastocyst stage.  Embryos reach an advanced stage of development on the fifth day after egg retrieval. Chances of getting pregnant with blastocyst embryos are increased by around 7%. But not everybody will benefit from blastocyst transfer. Patients with a small number of eggs retrieved can sometimes have a day-3 transfer. Our fertility specialist will work together with you to determine the date of embryo transfer.

Estrogen Levels and IVF Success

Estrogen prepares the uterus (endometrium) for a pregnancy. It also maintains the function of the placenta, increases blood flow to the uterus and prepares the body for breastfeeding. Estrogen supplements help increase pregnancy success. It is especially needed during IVF cycles with fresh donor eggs and donor embryos. The uterine lining should be at least seven mm thick, and ideally 8 mm, by your or your donor’s egg retrieval day. You will start progesterone supplementation following the egg retrieval procedure to maintain a favorable environment for the transferred embryos to grow.

Success After Cancelled IVF Cycle

Some of the reasons for canceling an IVF cycle may be:

  • Poor response. The ovaries may not respond well to fertility drugs. An altered or different protocol may help next time.
  • Hyperstimulation. This happens when you over-respond to the fertility drugs. The solution is to lower the dosage or use a different medication protocol next time.
  • No embryos. If none of the eggs fertilize, or fertilized eggs fail to grow, the cycle may be canceled.

It’s important to know that women who had a poor response in one IVF cycle can respond normally in the next. It is definitely worthwhile trying another round of IVF. However, there are cases when a poor response may suggest trying IVF with donor eggs, IVF with donor sperm or IVF with donor embryo instead.

Advances in IVF Technology

A number of technological advances have made IVF successful more than ever. Screening technologies such as preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) and preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) are used to avoid chromosomal and genetic abnormalities. Another advancement in the field of assisted reproduction is intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), which is the most effective method of fertilization in IVF treatments. Cryopreservation using vitrification (or flash-freezing) enables women and men to preserve their fertility and start a family at their convenience. In addition, there are some other techniques that improve the implantation success in patients such as assisted hatching and embryo glue.

IVF Success Factors

IVF success depends upon a number of factors such as maternal age, cause(s) of infertility, using donor eggs, lifestyle factors, fertility clinic.

  • Age: Fertility is affected by age. However, you should never stop exploring IVF treatment options. The results of comprehensive fertility testing are a better indicator of your suitability for IVF than age alone.
  • Cause(s) of infertility: IVF is an excellent choice for patients with a wide range of fertility problems including endometriosis, blocked fallopian tubes, ovulation disorders, or sperm-related problems
  • Using donor eggs: For patients with a low ovarian reserve and/or poor egg quality can choose to use donor eggs to increase their chances of pregnancy success.
  • Lifestyle factors: Factors that negatively affect IVF success rates are smoking, obesity and alcohol consumption. Smoking has been found to reduce fertility in both women and men. Moreover, embryos of smokers have lower rates of implantation.  Obesity can affect ovulation and the way your body processes fertility drugs. Alcohol is another factor that lowers the chances of IVF success.
  • Fertility clinic: Choosing a fertility clinic is one of the most important factors in IVF treatments. Success rates are a good indicator of a clinic’s overall performance. At euroCARE IVF, 8 out of 10 patients have positive results.

How to Prepare for IVF Success

Preparing your body and mind is essential for IVF success. Here is a three-step plan to consider when preparing for IVF:

  • Detoxification. Toxins affect the quality of the eggs and sperm being produced. Detoxification before conception encourages the liver to cleanse itself, which will have a positive impact on uterine health and circulation.
  • Nutrition. The second part of the plan focuses on improving egg quality through nutrition, exercise, supplements, and stress management.
  • Relaxation and support. This includes de-stressing and relaxation of the body and mind and seeking help from a professional or support groups to help you navigate the IVF process.

IVF Success Tips

  • Detoxification

Getting rid of toxins that were built up over the years is important for making your body healthier and stronger. Here are some of the things you can do to detox your body before conception:

  1. Avoid alcohol
  2. Get enough sleep
  3. Drink plenty of water
  4. Take folic acid. Consider taking a prenatal vitamin, which contains folic acid and other vitamins and minerals such as vitamin D and iron.
  5. Eat fruits and vegetables.
  6. Balance your diet. Avoid processed foods. Incorporate more whole foods in your diet.
  7. If you’re diabetic, get your blood sugar under control.
  8. Reduce stress.
  9. Reduce salt intake
  10. Get active
  • Get enough sleep

Your reproductive health is affected by the quantity and quality of sleep you get. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. Keep entertainment electronics out of reach. Eliminate alcohol and caffeine. Do some workout. Relax before going to bed.

  • Try Acupuncture

Acupuncture improves blood flow to the uterus and ovaries. It also improves the chances of pregnancy.

  • Eat Plenty of Good Fats

Monounsaturated fats have been found to improve fertility. Some of the foods rich in monounsaturated fats are avocados, nuts and seeds, sunflower oil and olive oil.

  • De-stress

It’s normal to feel anxious and stressed about your IVF treatment. But it’s also important to find time every day to de-stress yourself. Meditation, yoga, walking, or listening to soothing music can reduce stress.

  • Avoid Low Glycemic Index Foods, Alcohol and Caffeine

Avoid processed foods and sugars as they all have a high glycemic index and are bad for the body. Instead eat legumes, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, broccoli, sweet potatoes, and mushrooms.

Alcohol causes malformations in the fetus. Smoking is another thing you should avoid. Caffeine can also have a negative impact on the fetus.

  • Exercise

Exercise is essential during the IVF Cycle. Do light and moderate exercise such as walking, light jogging, Tai Chi, dancing. Avoid strenuous activities including pilates, cardiovascular activities, or push-ups.

  • Breathing exercise

Breathing deeply instantly eliminates stress. You can do it anytime, anywhere.

Best Diet For IVF Success

  • Mediterranean diet

Studies showed that there is a 40% increase in positive IVF outcomes with a Mediterranean diet before conception. This diet is rich in good fats, vegetables, fish, and legumes.

  • Avocados

Another study showed that foods rich in monounsaturated fat increase the likelihood of conception for 3.4 times. Avocados contain a large number of monounsaturated fats and are highly recommended before and during IVF cycles.

  • Warm foods

Avoid foods that are cold and difficult to digest because they require more energy from the body. These include raw vegetables, ice cream, and frozen smoothies.

  • Low-fat dairy

Some low-fat dairy products include skim or fat-free milk and low-fat yogurt and cottage cheese.  if you are sensitive to dairy, then you should avoid consuming dairy products altogether.

  • Food intolerance

Avoid foods that create an immune response in your body after embryo transfer.

  • Pineapple

Pineapples contain bromelain, which may have a positive effect on implantation. However, having too much of this may actually have a negative effect.

Can Acupuncture Help IVF Success Rates

  • Acupuncture minimizes tension and stress

Acupuncture reduces stress and brings relaxation. This is because the body releases endorphins (pain relief) when the needles are inserted into the skin. IVF patients can certainly benefit from this technique as it helps them feel more relaxed during their fertility treatment.

  • Acupuncture improves circulation

Acupuncture can improve blood flow by causing the blood vessels to dilate, which in turn improves the flood of blood to the ovaries and uterus. Improved circulation can help women respond better to fertility drugs. It also ensures a thick uterine lining for the transfer.

  • Acupuncture improves IVF success

For acupuncture to improve your chances of IVF success, The dose of acupuncture is important. In research, women who added more acupuncture sessions were twice as likely to conceive compared to women who did not have acupuncture.

IVF Implantation Success Tips

  • Avoid strenuous activities because they may decrease fertility success. They may cause implantation failure and pregnancy loss. Do low-intensity exercises instead such as walking, yoga, Tai Chi, or swimming.
  • Get a rest. Eight hours of sleep a day is ideal for improving your physical and emotional well being. It also influences egg development. Having enough sleep can boost your chances of a successful pregnancy.
  • Pregnancy diet. The best diet to improve implantation is the same diet you would be eating if you were pregnant. Eat foods rich in protein and fiber, fruits and vegetables. Avoid high-mercury fish and soft cheeses. Consult with our euroCARE IVF doctor about any vitamin supplements you consider taking.
  • Avoid extreme temperatures. Avoid hot tubs, saunas, and activities that raise body temperature. Additionally, it’s not recommended to have a bath in pools or baths during this time, as it may lead to infection.
  • Post-transfer bleeding. Light spotting and mild cramping may be a good sign that the transfer was successful. At this point, you should not stop taking the prescribed fertility drugs. Twelve days after the embryo transfer you’ll have a beta hCG test for pregnancy.
  • Have a support system. Find support in your partner, friends, family, therapist, fertility clinic. Spending time with others and seeking help and advice will reinforce the feeling of connectedness and calmness.

IVF Treatment at euroCARE IVF in North Cyprus

At euroCARE IVF, we understand that IVF success rates are an important aspect when considering undergoing IVF. However, patients should keep in mind that IVF success is very individual, and personal circumstances affect each person’s likelihood of success. The best way to understand your chances of pregnancy success is to have a consultation with our fertility specialist. Together you can discuss your treatment options and develop the most suitable treatment plan to give you the best possible chance of starting a family.

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