In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) – The ‘Big Bang’ for fertility related sciences!
United Kingdom, 25th July, 1978, the world witnessed the birth of the First Test Tube Baby – Louise Brown. 40 years since, 6.5 million healthy babies have been successfully conceived through the revolutionary process of – In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF). To commemorate the birth of the “First IVF baby”, fertility experts come together on 25th July to celebrate ‘World IVF Day’. The objective of this occasion is to acknowledge the work of Dr. Robert Edward, who is known as the father of the test tube baby (1)
Since 1978, clinicians and embryologists have taken to assisted reproduction with great dedication and vigour. Their hard work has paved the way to a more definite science and made the entire process of IVF more dependable and safe for aspiring parents.
What is infertility?
Infertility is the inability to conceive through natural means. It is a medical condition affecting almost 10% to 15% of married couples in India alone (1). Infertility is recognized as a medical condition only if the couple is unable to conceive within a period of 12 months. Contrary to general perception, especially in developing nations; Infertility can arise out of deficiencies in both male and female anatomies.
Causes of infertility
Infertility arises mainly from two key causes; lifestyle and clinical factors.(2)
Lifestyle factors include;
- Age: Studies show that the fertility and count of eggs in women decreases as they age. This occurs as the rate of follicle loss increases, increasing the risk of miscarriage.
- Excessive alcohol and tobacco consumption: Long term and constant use of alcohol & tobacco by either partner may lower the chances of conception. Smoking can also impair the efficacy of reproductive treatments.
- Rising levels of obesity: Infertility can be increased by an inactive lifestyle and by being overweight. Obesity might also have an impact on sperm count in males.
- Stress: Couples trying to conceive under extreme psychological stress may lead to a disturbed ovulation.
On the other hand, clinical factors comprise of medical conditions like;
- Poly-cystic ovarian syndrome also known as PCOS.
- Fallopian tube damage or blockage
- Impaired sperm production or function
What is IVF?
In vitro fertilisation is a series of procedures used to help with infertility and assist with conception. During IVF, mature eggs from the female, are retrieved from the ovaries and fertilised by the male sperm in a lab. The fertilised egg (embryo) is then taken and transferred to a uterus. This procedure can be carried out using one’s own eggs or a partner’s sperm or may even involve embryos or sperms from an anonymous or known donor. In some cases, a gestational carrier or a woman who has an embryo implanted in her uterus is also considered.(3)
IVF & the ‘Risks’ involved!
Multiple births: If more than one embryo is transferred to the uterus, it may result in a pregnancy with multiple fetuses which may lead to a risk of early labor and low birth weight.
Egg retrieval procedural complications: It is possible that using an aspirating needle to retrieve the eggs can result in hemorrhage, infection, or injury to the bowel, bladder, or blood vessel. If sedation and anesthesia are used, they may further expose the patient to associated risks.
Apart from the above mentioned risks, IVF also includes other rare but potential side effects like ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage and increased stress levels.
Coenzyme Q10 – a dependable supplement for inducing fertility.
A naturally occurring bio-molecule present in most cells of the human body, Coenzyme Q10 is often referred to as “Co Q10” or ubiquinone. As we age, the naturally occurring Co Q10 levels diminish, making high-energy processes like egg and sperm development more difficult. Taking oral supplements is an effective way to increase Co Q10 levels. (4)
Co Q10 operates as a part of the electron transport chain, which is mainly responsible for generating energy in our body. When Co Q10 levels are higher, the chain works more efficiently to produce energy. As a result, when more energy is created, cells operate more efficiently, which has a favourable impact on processes such as egg and sperm formation. As it is a potent antioxidant, it also helps protect the sperm and egg cells from damage and helps improve their efficacy. (4)
ANZEN – Contributing to the future of healthcare
For over three decades now, Anzen Exports has been a trusted exporter and distributor of active pharmaceutical ingredients, herbal extracts and nutraceutical extracts. It is our constant endeavour to inform our customers about various medical and health conditions, its causes and the treatments available for it. On World IVF Day we take a pledge to spread more awareness about IVF and other assisted reproductive technologies (ARTs) that are a godsend for couples who have difficulty conceiving naturally.
Anzen Export’s blog posts have been written with the information gathered from approved medical journals and websites online. Our research and technical team strive to provide relevant information through such articles. To be best informed, we advise consulting a doctor about an ingredient or medicine prior to taking it.
- India Med Today [online] Available at:https://indiamedtoday.com/world-ivf-day-and-world-embryology-day-decoding-the-infertility-burden-initiative-by-oasis-centre-for-reproductive-medicine/
- Onlymyhealth [online]
- Mayo Clinic [online]
- CNY Fertility [online]