Are the procedures I will undergo in the centre for assisted reproduction painful?
There is no need to be afraid of any of the procedures; however, you need to know that stimulation of ovaries before IVF is connected to the administration of injections. You administer the injections yourself, with a thin needle, subcutaneously in the abdominal region. These are hormonal injections that induce follicle growth in ovaries. This enlargement of the ovaries may be linked to a slightly painful sensation in the lower abdomen. Egg retrieval itself takes place under short-term total anaesthesia (takes approx., 5-10 minutes) and it is pain-free.
How many IVF cycles can I go through?
The number of cycles of in vitro fertilisation is not limited, which means that there is no upper threshold in the number of cycles that any female patient may undergo during her life. However, in the case of repeated failure to get pregnant with one’s own eggs and your partner’s sperm, we may suggest an alternative – using either donated eggs or sperm – naturally only after we individually evaluate the causes of failure to become pregnant. The reason may often be poor gametes or embryo quality.
Will my health insurance company reimburse the treatment in your centre?
Health insurance companies reimburse 3 IVF cycles for a woman up to the age of 39, if the cause of infertility was confirmed in the male, female or both partners simultaneously. The reimbursement of IVF cycles concerns the major part of the costs of drugs as well as interventions related to in vitro fertilisation. However, a certain portion of the interventions and procedures is not reimbursed by health insurance companies, and the patient needs to cover it on his/her own. These are micromanipulation techniques of egg fertilisation, embryo cryopreservation and pre-implantation genetic tests of embryos. Naturally, co-payments for interventions and procedures exceeding the framework of those reimbursed by a health insurance company depend on what specific assisted reproduction techniques shall be performed for the respective couple. In vitro fertilisation is not reimbursed in women who have had abortion at their own request in the past.
Can a woman undergo in vitro fertilisation (IVF) if she dos not have a partner?
No, IVF can only be undergone by a couple. The male partner needs to acknowledge parentage of the child.
What steps do I take if the first effort fails?
The next steps are to be decided by your treating physician. There are several possibilities, but they all depend on your health and the circumstances.
Is hormonal treatment safe for women?
Yes, hormonal treatment in women is safe, as long as it supervised by professionals. If any adverse effects occur, consult your treating doctor without any delay.
What is the age threshold for IVF?
In principle, there is no maximum age for IVF. However, after the age of 39, the patient pays for the whole procedure herself. Also, it should be noted that after reaching the age of 39, the chances for getting pregnant significantly diminish, and this also applies to in vitro fertilisation.
How often will I have to visit the centre?
The frequency of your visits will depend on the specific treatment procedure, but in principle, at least at the beginning of the whole process, you can expect several visits per month.
Will I be able to continue working during the treatment?
Yes, you will. None of the treatment procedures requires a long-term leave of absence. On the other hand, we recommend women to take it easy during the whole IVF process and not push themselves too hard in terms of physical stress. If your work is manually or physically demanding, during the critical periods (after fertilisation) you should consider switching to an easier regime. We also recommend a leave of absence for women who work in an infectious environment, or an environment with the presence of agents and substances detrimental to human health, toxic agents or those who may be exposed to radiation in their workplace.
Does IVF have any impact on the health of my child?
The percentage of children with congenital developmental defects after IVF is slightly higher and accounts for approximately 4% of children so conceived, in comparison to 2% among children conceived naturally. The higher percentage of congenital genetic defects and genetic abnormalities in these children is, however, caused by the fact that average age of women undergoing IVF is higher than the average of pregnant women, in general, and as we know, higher age – especially after the age of 35 – is a factor increasing the risk of such complications in pregnancy. Therefore, each woman who gets pregnant following IVF is recommended to undergo a comprehensive screening, ideally in a prenatal diagnostics centre.
How can my partner be of help during the whole process?
Your partner should be actively involved in the whole process of trying to conceive a baby. He should take interest in his partner and support her in all aspects. Providing support is the key role of your partner in the whole process.
Is the first consultation in the centre binding?
No, it isn’t. The first consultation only serves to provide you with information. We will do our best to give you all the relevant information, and you will have plenty of time to make a decision.
How do I get to your centre for a check-up? Do I need a referral from a medical specialist?
Yes, health insurance companies require an official referral from your general gynaecologist for a woman who wishes to undergo an entry check-up to get treatment in a centre for assisted reproduction. If you have no official referral from your gynaecologist, you will have to cover the full costs of treatment and procedures without any contribution or full reimbursement of your health insurance company.
What do I need to bring with me to the first consultation?
Certainly bring all the reports and results of previous examinations and check-ups that you or your partner have gone through. Equally, if you regularly see your endocrinologist, haematologist or diabetologist for any reason, bring all the reports from the above specialists. If you have undergone any laparoscopic procedure in the past or had fallopian tube patency examined, please bring all related documents to the first consultation. If you haven’t been to any of the above examinations, we will conduct all the necessary check-ups and tests ourselves.
Should I bring my partner with me?
Yes, your partner’s presence during the initial consultation is desired. Besides psychological support, it is very important that he is informed about all the processes in advance. After all, the child is a dream you two share together.