How in vitro fertilization (IVF) works - Nassim Assefi and Brian A. Levine
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It is important to recognize that while IVF is vital for some patients, in vitro fertilization and similar treatments account for less than 3% of infertility services. Those technologies include in vitro fertilization (IVF), gamete intra-fallopian transfer (GIFT), zygote intra-fallopian transfer (ZIFT), embryo cryopreservation, egg or embryo donation, and gestational carriers. Visit the National Infertility Association for a description of all the technologies available to patients.
The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) has created a robust patient-oriented overview of infertility that reviews what to expect during the first visit with a doctor, some of the common causes of infertility, and some of the most common treatments. For a complete infertility overview, visit this site.
One of the most exciting uses of ART and IVF is in helping patients with cancer preserve their fertility prior to being treated with chemotherapy. The Livestrong Foundation has excellent online resources that describe the treatments and therapies, which can be quite successful. In addition, for those want a more technical review, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine has published a set of recommended guidelines on how to treat patients undergoing chemotherapy or who have to have their reproductive organs removed because of cancer or other diseases.
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