If you have been trying to conceive (TTC) for a year, it is timely to think of IUI or IVF (test tube baby). For most couples, getting pregnant is luckily smooth and easy. Unfortunately, for 1 in 10 couples, they may experience stress in conceiving.
What is Assisted Conception?
Couples who have been trying for over a year but can’t conceive, should see a gynae to check the cause of their subfertility. Polycystic ovaries syndrome (PCOS) is a common cause of subfertility in some women. PCOS causes hormonal imbalance and ovulation problem.
The problem could also lie in your partner due to poor sperm quality or number. There are effective sperm supplements to improve sperm quality and number. Unfortunately, some partners may have azoospermia, ie no sperms and need help to retrieve their sperms through surgery.
What is IVF and IUI?
2 most common reproductive treatments are intrauterine insemination (IUI), when sperms are injected into the womb at ovulation, and in vitro fertilisation (IVF), when the egg and sperm are fertilised in IVF lab and the fertilised embryos are replaced into the womb.
When is IUI needed?
IUI works best for couples with difficulty in sex, ovulation or poor sperm quality. Ovulation is first triggered with medications. The sperm washing helps to eliminate poor sperms and chemicals to improve pregnancy rate. Only the best “commando” fast-swimming sperms are injected into the womb. Success rate is 25% per try.
Do I need IVF?
IVF may be needed for some couples, especially for blocked fallopian tubes, or if the sperms are very poor quality. Failing to conceive through IUI is another indication. IVF works best if you are younger (less than 40 years old). So, do not procrastinate and seek help early. In Singapore, women over 40 are not eligible for the Ministry of Health’s subsidy grant in public IVF centres like KKH, SGH or NUH.
Stay positive and we hope that you will be a parent soon!