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What you should know about in vitro fertilization (IVF)

IVF is a type of assisted reproductive technology (ART). With IVF, fertilization takes place in laboratory conditions outside the boundaries of the female body. Fertilization uses a woman’s or a donor’s own egg and a man’s or a donor’s sperm. The reasons for using in vitro fertilization (IVF) can be as follows: poor ovarian reserve, premature ovarian failure, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, blockage or loss of fallopian tubes, male factor infertility, genetic disorders, postmenopause, and others. On average, one IVF cycle takes six to eight weeks. The cycle includes ovarian stimulation, egg retrieval, sperm retrieval and preparation, fertilization and embryo transfer. When using one’s own eggs, IVF success rates directly depend on the woman’s age, it is 43% for women under 35 and 1% for women over 44. The uterus does not age like the ovaries, so IVF success rates with donor eggs remain stable across all age groups at around 50%.

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