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Avoid five mistakes to enjoy IVF success: Expert

IVF is a procedure that requires extracting eggs from a female’s ovary, fertilizing them with fresh sperm in a laboratory, and placing them back in the uterus.

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Kolkata: Avoid five mistakes to enjoy IVF success, according to Dr Souren Bhattacharjee, Consultant and Centre Head, Birla Fertility and IVF Centre, Kolkata.

“The joy of becoming a parent is one of the greatest feelings in the world. Natural conception is difficult for many people due to numerous health complications. Conditions which earlier made couples helpless have become treatable now. With the advent of various methods, medical science has come up with numerous ways to help couples who want their own child. One such method is In vitro fertilization (IVF),” Bhattacharjee said.

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IVF is a procedure that requires extracting eggs from a female’s ovary, fertilizing them with fresh sperm in a laboratory, and placing them back in the uterus. Though it appears to be simple, IVF involves several steps from the beginning to the end of the pregnancy, ranging from medications to help the eggs mature to creating embryos and replanting them in the uterus.

While opting for an IVF treatment, it is important that a couple should avoid 5 common mistakes that can hamper the procedure.

Do not believe everything you read on the internet. Have faith in your fertility specialist and yourself: We all know that online search engines are both a blessing and a curse. The amount of information available online is both incredible and infuriating. However, it is advised to resist the urge to use Google to predict or diagnose. Instead, consult an IVF specialist if you have a question or want to learn more about IVF precautions.

Resting throughout the process- The general perception of the general patient population is that post IVF bed rest is extremely important to ensure its success. But scientifically it is to the contrary. According to studies when patients were allowed to get up soon after Embryo transfer, their pregnancy rates were comparable to those who were asked to rest for an hour or so. The blood clots impede blood flow to the developing foetus. Whereas light exercises like aerobic exercises reduces inflammation, lowers stress hormone levels and promotes healthy blood flow to the developing foetus.

Being Stressed: Experiencing feelings of despair while undergoing treatment is perfectly normal. Going through hormonal injections, blood tests and scans can be physically demanding and mentally draining. This journey needs patience, generosity and a positive attitude. Whether you’re about to begin your fertility journey or are currently in the middle of a fertility cycle, self-care can provide a great way to cope with, what can be, an emotionally-draining experience. Keeping a positive outlook can help the couple handle the situation in a better manner. There is a strong correlation between mind and body. A good diet, positive frame of mind, and stress-free environment can possibly improve the chances of getting pregnant.

Not following doctor’s orders: It is imperative to go for routine check-ups and not skip your doctor’s appointments. Trusting your doctor is of utmost importance. It is essential to have proper medications as prescribed by the doctor and follow a healthy routine for your healthy baby.

Being inconsistent with IVF routines can be divided into 3 parts of discussion.

A. Pre- IVF preparation: If lifestyle modifications such as weight loss, minimizing intake of alcohol and smoking suggested by experts is not obeyed. Healthy diet should be followed. All medications for metabolic problems, multivitamins and antioxidants should be taken regularly. Readying yourself and family for the treatment journey mentally and economically.

B. During the treatment cycle of IVF: Strict adherence to above points should continue. Proper and timely intake of all medications and injections related to IVF. Ensure that exhaustive exercise schedule is avoided though light exercises should be followed. Avoid unhealthy food like processed food, food high on glycaemic index, etc. Abstinence from sexual activity during the treatment cycle.

C. Post Embryo transfer: No need for absolute bed rest, In fact it is not at all advisable. Mild exercises increase blood flow, reduces inflammation and positively impacts implantation. Prevent anxiety build up by indulging in hobbies and low-key activities to occupy yourself constructively. Do not keep looking for signs and symptoms of pregnancy such as bloating, soreness of breasts or increased discharge per vaginally, as these could also be due to hormones being administered post IVF. Avoid sexual intercourse as it may cause uterine contractions which may be counterproductive. Continue taking all medications, folic acid tablets. Avoid food fads. Take nutritious diet rich in protein, multivitamins, minerals and fibre. Avoid alcohol, smoking.

In-vitro fertilisation does not come with a guarantee card. It works differently for every couple depending on their circumstances, infertility issues, overall health, and much more. However, avoiding the above-mentioned IVF mistakes during the process can boost your chances of conceiving a baby.

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