Very often in IVF programs we do not administer drugs to stimulate the ovaries but proceed in a natural cycle, in which we monitor the normal oocyte maturation process that takes place in every menstrual cycle.
The natural cycle is an alternative for many occasions such as:
- Women who do not wish or are not allowed to take medication for ovarian stimulation
- Women with secondary infertility (ie they already have a child) and do not wish to create several embryos.
- The ovaries have not responded properly in previous IVF attempts following medication
- Women with a history of multiple IVF failures or miscarriages
- Women with advanced age or with a history of poor quality embryos in prior attempts, after stimulation of multiple follicles.
Although IVF in a natural cycle has often proved valuable, however, we should note that it is actually the development of a single egg and consequently the development of a single embryo, thereby reducing the chances of pregnancy if the fertilized egg is not divided properly.
For that reason, in the IVF Center Athens, we proceed in two directions when performing IVF in natural cycle. If the conditions are very encouraging (endometrial thickness, morphological assessment of fetus, medical history etc) we proceed to the embryo transfer.