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The Evolution of IVF: Genetic Screening and the Path to Parenthood – ARC Summit

by | Apr 16, 2024 | ARC Summit, News

The Evolution of IVF: Genetic Screening and the Path to Parenthood – ARC Summit

In vitro fertilization techniques have evolved to improve outcomes and address specific patient needs. Instead of transferring the embryo on day five, embryos are now frozen to await biopsy results. This allows for selecting an embryo with the desired gender and a normal chromosomal count, reducing the risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, as there is no immediate pregnancy. This technique also enables the transfer of a single, genetically viable embryo, potentially increasing the live delivery rate to between 50% and 60%.

By age 35, due to decreased fertility, the likelihood of chromosomal abnormalities in embryos rises to about 50%. As women reach age 40, this increases dramatically, with 80-90% of oocytes showing abnormalities. For women over 40 who do not respond well to IVF, several options are considered: ceasing to conceive, trying with their own oocytes despite low success rates, using donor oocytes, or adoption. Using donor oocytes has been particularly successful, demonstrated by couples in their mid-fifties who achieved pregnancy this way.

Donor oocytes offer significant benefits. They increase the chances of a successful IVF, reduce emotional stress, and still allow the woman to bond with the child during pregnancy. The child will also share genetic material with the partner, ensuring some familial resemblance. Donor characteristics are matched to the recipient’s, reducing the risk of complications that might arise with adoption, such as the potential loss of an infant. This approach requires the woman to be open to using gametes from another person but has proven to be a successful and fulfilling option for many.

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