Discomfort associated with IVF treatments vary according to each patient’s individual pain threshold. Compared to other routine invasive outpatient surgical procedures, the overall IVF process involves minimal pain. As can be expected, most women do report a high level of discomfort throughout the treatment process. The pain of childbirth is reported to far surpass all pain and discomfort during an IVF cycle. The reward for your pain and discomfort during IVF is a baby!
The In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) treatment process is comprised of five basic steps.
Step 1: Administration of fertility drugs to stimulate the growth of multiple eggs
Step 2: Surgical removal of the eggs – egg retrieval
Step 3: Fertilization of the eggs in vitro – in a laboratory setting
Step 4: Embryo culture – growth of the embryos in vitro
Step 5: Transfer of a quality embryo – or embryos – into the woman’s uterus
At IVF1, Dr. Randy S. Morris uses a evidence-based approach through thorough diagnostic testing to determine every patient’s individual protocol for the IVF process.
Sources of Pain During IVF Treatment
- Injectable fertility medications
- Growth and development of multiple eggs causes ovaries to enlarge, resulting in tenderness and bloating
- Surgical egg retrieval procedure performed under anesthesia
Injectable Fertility Medications
Most women self-administer injectable fertility medications to help stimulate their egg production during a fresh IVF cycle. These injections are administered with small needles and modern injection pen devices. Most patients initially dread this step of the IVF cycle out of fear of the unknown. When patients overcome their initial anxiety about self-administration of injections, most report no pain. The needles are tiny and the actual injection process is fast and easy to perform.
Egg Follicle Growth and Development
Fertility medications cause the woman’s ovaries to enlarge and become tender. Most women report amplified bloating and tenderness compared to their natural ovulation cycle. The reward for discomfort in this stage of the IVF process is offset by the reward of multiple eggs retrieved for fertilization resulting in high quality embryos. Surplus embryos can be frozen for future transfers in lieu of undergoing another fresh IVF cycle. Although a well-controlled egg follicle stimulation cycle will not cause substantial pain, discomfort and bloating can last up to a week after egg retrieval.
Surgical Egg Retrieval Procedure
Minimal pain and discomfort can be expected after the egg retrieval procedure. Eggs are removed by piercing a thin, long needle through the walls of the vagina into the ovaries. Pain is zero during the egg retrieval procedure because it is performed under anesthesia.
Preeminent IVF Fertility Specialist
Click the icon below to download a recently published eBook by Dr. Randy Morris – Guide to Fertility Treatment – and discover your fertility treatment options. Long distance patients can consult with Dr. Morris via a secured Online Video Consultation. Call IVF1 today for a consultation with Dr. Morris at 630.357.6540.