Risks involved in Vitro Fertilization (IVF)
Vitro Fertilization, commonly known as IVF, is indeed a boon for childless couples. Since its introduction, IVF has very much influenced the medical sector in a significant way by bringing back cheers on the face of couples all over the world.
Despite the positive outcomes of IVF, it is reported to have some negative effects that might affect the health of the patients, especially women. Fertility drugs are usually given or administered as injections to women, which might lead to a few complications.
Some of the risks commonly faced by patients who undergo IVF treatment are:-
1) OHSS (Ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome)
OHSS is mainly a condition that arises after administering fertility drugs to produce more eggs in women.
OHSS may lead to a serious situation where patient may develop a swollen stomach with severe stomach pains along with nausea and vomiting.
Sometimes a fluid may develop inside the ovary due to this, which may lead to Ovary’s rupture. It may be very lethal for the patient.
This condition is found to be very common among both naturally conceiving women as well as those who had undergone IVF treatment.
3) Ectopic pregnancy
Pregnancy is a unique phenomenon in which the fetus develops outside the womb, mostly in a fallopian tube. Occurrence of ectopic pregnancy is comparatively higher in the case of IVF, when compared to those with normal pregnancy. This could lead to vaginal bleeding as well as stomach pain and may also lead to the rupture of fallopian tube if the pregnancy is not terminated. Normally ectopic pregnancies undergo miscarriage.
4) Multiple births
It’s a common thing to see couple who are undergoing IVF treatment with twins or triplets or even more. This is because more than one embryo is deposited into the uterus of the woman to minimise the risk of failure of pregnancy. But most of the times, all the embryos inserted may develop into babies.
Most of IVF pregnancies result in a Cesarean section rather than natural delivery. This is mainly because of multiple births and the high cost of the treatment so as to avoid the risk of having a natural pregnancy.
6) Premature delivery or low birth weight
Studies have found that IVF treatment may lead to premature delivery.
7) Complications related to egg retrieval procedure
During the procedure of retrieving eggs from the ovaries, the aspirating needle may cause bleeding or infection or damage to the blood vessel, bowel or the bladder. There may be slight blood tinge after the procedure, mild constipation, breast tenderness and may be a slight weight gain after 3-5 days.
Stress is a common factor with patients who undergo IVF treatment. It may affect them financially, emotionally as well as physically. If, even after going through the treatment the results are negative, the couple may be in a very much stressed. They need proper counselling as well as support from their family and friends.