This year marks the fortieth birthday of the first human born via Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART). Louisa Brown was born in 1978 after conception by In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)! Since then, reproductive technologies have advanced greatly and become somewhat mainstream in terms of their availability in Canada and worldwide to help individuals and couples conceive and deliver healthy babies. No matter your particular fertility challenge and whether it is male factor, female factor or unexplained, there are multiple Assisted Reproductive Technologies performed by the fertility experts at RCC. It is the goal of our specialist to help Canadian couples build the family of your dreams.
At our Mississauga fertility clinic, the course of treatment varies depending on your medical history and specific case. We have come up with a quick list of the types of Assisted Reproductive Technologies offered to patients of the Reproductive Care Centre.
Ovulation Induction: Medication Only
Ovulation Induction is often times the first course of action for female factor infertility and involves medication to stimulate the growth and development of ovarian follicles. Medications including clomiphene citrate or injectable gonadotropins (FSH/LH/HMG (which contains both FSH and LH)) may be administered along with frequent monitoring by your physician.
Natural Cycle Monitoring: Monitored Timing of Intercourse without Medication or Procedures
Natural Cycle Monitoring is available for women who need assistance in timing intercourse for the best chances of conceiving without medications or procedures. Hormone levels are monitored throughout the month along with ultrasounds to track when the egg is ready to ovulate.
Intrauterine Insemination (IUI): Artificial Insemination using Washed Sperm
IUI is a type of ART this is less invasive than other procedures such as IVF and involved washed sperm (sperm that has been washed a laboratory to rid it of seminal fluid and to concentrate it) being inserted through the woman’s cervix. IUI can be performed with your spouses/partner’s sperm or from a donor sperm.
In Vitro Fertilization (IVF): bringing the egg and the sperm together outside the body
In Vitro Fertilization is one of the more complex procedures using ART. However, for couples undergoing IVF, the reward of a successful transfer and conception outweighs the steps involved in the treatment. IVF involves the joining of the man’s sperm and the woman’s egg outside of the body. Once fertilized by the sperm, the egg develops into a mature embryo that is then ready for transfer to the woman’s uterus. More is involved in terms of monitoring of hormonal blood levels, follicle growth and administering medications both orally and via injections. The process is not insurmountable and the compassionate team at RCC breaks down each step of the IVF treatment process to make it as easy for couples as possible.
We suggest that before you decide to undergo fertility treatments in Ontario that you find out as much as you can on the subject. We urge you to research ART (like you’re doing now), as there are many books, websites, and support groups on infertility treatments. Learning as much as you can about treatments like IVF will help put your mind at ease as you embark on your unique journey. Of course, we’re here to answer any questions you have about the types of ART available. Contact the RCC clinic to speak with a fertility specialist!