Why does IVF fail? There are many reasons, but they are all speculative, and not one is conclusive enough to satisfy the doctor or the patient. The actual reason behind the failure of the IVF procedure is never known, and everyone is left with only speculative reasons to contend with. It is very devastating for a couple when they learn that the IVF procedure has failed. Even though the couple are advised of the risks and probability of the implantation not happening, but in their heart, they hope for the success of the procedure, and the IVF failure comes as an unexpected shock.
Failure of an IVF procedure means that the embryo that was fertilised in the lab using their egg and sperm did not survive in the uterus. Several days after fertilisation in the lab, the embryo is transferred to the uterus. This embryo has to hatch (shed its outer covering) and attach itself to the inner wall of the uterus, where it will grow into a baby. However, sometimes, the implantation does not take place, and the embryo dies.
The failure of the IVF procedure has nothing to do with the IVF procedure itself or the skill and expertise of the doctor. It has to do with a weakness in the embryo and the poor receptivity of the uterine lining. Sometimes if the conditions in the uterus are not conducive and there is a problem, then the embryo cannot attach itself to the uterus wall.
Occasionally the embryo does not hatch or could have a problem hatching, which may cause the failure of the implantation. An embryo can only attach itself to the inner uterine lining after it hatches. A technique called assisted hatching is used in some countries by a few doctors. However, this is not yet an approved technique, and hence, it is not practised by all IVF hospitals and clinics. In assisted hatching, the embryologist creates a small hole in the outer covering of the embryo to aid it in its hatching process. This gives it a better chance of implantation in the uterine lining. Some doctors feel that this could damage the embryo or weaken it. Different techniques, such as laser hatching are being tried out to see its success and outcome.
So what is the next course of action after IVF failure? If this was your first or second IVF cycle, the best course of action is to try again. There is a huge possibility of success by the third IVF cycle. Statistics show that 70% of the couples achieve success by the third IVF cycle.
The second time over the IVF procedure is a lot simpler. This is because you are already familiar with the procedure and know what is expected of you at each stage of the procedure. This time you can take a lot more precautions that you didn’t do during the first IVF cycle. This time you are prepared and know exactly what to do when. Eating a good diet and regular exercise are important during the IVF procedure and during i8pregnancy. If you didn’t adhere to it the first time, this is another chance you have been given.
It is wise to have the extra embryos frozen when you do your first IVF cycle. Doctors always have many extra eggs to spare after they have extracted the eggs. Usually, 3 or 4 embryos are prepared, and only one is used. Generally, the other embryos are discarded after the IVF procedure. You can ask for them to be frozen instead. These embryos come in handy in case the IVF procedure was not successful. Having your embryos frozen allows you to try several times without the rigmarole of going through the ovarian stimulation hormones. It not only saves time but helps to reduce the course of further IVF treatment.