The cost of private IVF procedures exceed £10,000 in the UK. Despite such exhaustive expenses incurred on the couple, live birth through IVF remains generally low.
Controlled stimulation of ovaries to collect eggs is not without side effects or adverse effects as far as changes in environmental milieu at the endometrial or lining of the womb level is concerned. No matter which ovarian stimulation protocol is used, the above mentioned problem will not go away.
The problem created by controlled ovarian stimulation
Because many follicles get stimulated during ovarian stimulation protocol to collect eggs in IVF, this is not risk free.
During first half of normal menstrual cycle, Estrogen stimulates contractions of uterus to facilitate sperm transport into the uterine cavity and after ovulation, the ovarian bed called as corpus luteum produces a uterine relaxing hormone called progesterone to facilitate proper placement of implantation of the embryo.
Scientific studies have shown that these numerous growing eggs will release excessive aggregate hormone called oestrogen. Such excessive oestrogen levels are not without risk free at the level of lining of the womb called endometrium. This where the embryo implants if successful in the given IVF cycle.
When women undergo ovarian stimulation to grow more eggs in order to collect numerous eggs, these eggs will produce high oestrogen and cause high aggregate levels. In some women the high level of oestrogens can be as high as fifteen fold compared to the normal cycle.
Animal studies have shown that, slow reduction in multiplying cells of embryo when the embryo gets exposed to such high levels of oestrogens at the endometrial level. Also, such high levels can cause reduced implantation of embryo.
Another potential harmful effect of high levels of circulating oestradiol levels being possible change in the uterine muscle fibre contraction pattern. In other words, when uterine muscle fibres are exposed such high levels of oestrogen, they can initiate contractions of uterus and this also can have detrimental effects on embryo implantation and early growth of embryo.
One possible alternative to overcome this situation may be to freeze all the all the embryos and delay the planned embryo implantation till the oestrogen levels are normalised, so that all the adversities associated with high levels of Estrogen have disappeared.
The other option will be to giving a second thought about timing the intercourse with natural
ovulation or undergoing intrauterine insemination procedure with simple ovarian
stimulation if tubes are not blocked and no serious sperm abnormalities.