Experiencing failed IVF cycles can be heartbreaking, but San Antonio fertility doctors Erika Munch, MD, and Susan Hudson, MD are here to help
Our San Antonio fertility doctors know how disheartening failed IVF cycles can be for patients. They also know that many factors can cause failed IVF cycles, including maternal age, low ovarian reserve and problems with implantation. At the same time, Dr. Munch and Dr. Hudson understand how to mitigate these causes, so you’re more likely to get pregnant with IVF treatment.
Failed IVF cycles most often occur when there is a problem with the egg, sperm or uterus
In order to overcome failed IVF cycles, it’s important to understand what is required for a successful IVF cycle. As it turns out, a successful IVF cycle requires 3 key elements: (1) a chromosomally normal egg, (2) functional sperm and (3) a uterus that can support a pregnancy. If any of these building blocks are missing, a patient can experience failed IVF cycles.
Here’s a closer look at some of the most common causes of failed IVF cycles.
Chromosomally abnormal eggs often cause failed IVF cycles. As a woman ages, her ovarian reserve decreases and the number of eggs with genetic abnormalities increases. Genetically abnormal eggs result in genetically abnormal embryos, which cannot develop into healthy babies.
Nonfunctional sperm can cause failed IVF cycles through fertilization failure. This occurs when the sperm fails to penetrate and fertilize the egg. Although this is a less common cause of failed IVF cycles, it’s still important to be aware of it.
Failed implantation can also lead to failed IVF cycles, even if a genetically normal embryo is involved. The uterine lining must be ready when the eggs are released. If a woman experiences premature ovulation, her uterine lining and her eggs are out of sync. Basically, her eggs are released when her uterus isn’t ready to receive a fertilized egg (embryo) and successful implantation cannot occur.
Taking steps to prevent failed IVF cycles
It’s important to find a fertility doctor who understands the causes of IVF failure; however, it’s even more important to find one who knows how to manage them. Dr. Munch works with a team of leading fertility specialists and IVF lab professionals to proactively anticipate potential problems.
Chromosomally abnormal eggs can be detected with preimplantation genetic screening PGS, so that we only transfer embryos likely to develop into a healthy pregnancy.
Nonfunctional sperm that we identify in male fertility testing will lead Dr. Munch to suggest intracytoplasmic sperm injection, ICSI, if there are problems with fertilization.
Failed implantation can be addressed with a freeze-all IVF cycle, allowing the uterus time to recover from ovulation induction prior to embryo transfer.
Dr. Munch specializes in IVF cycle management and will recommend individualized fertility treatments to increase a patient’s likelihood of IVF success.
If you’re struggling with failed IVF cycles, please contact us for more information about how our San Antonio fertility clinic can help you.