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Is the IVF Procedure Painful? Is it Worth a Try?

Many couples turn to in vitro fertilization (IVF) for treating infertility. IVF has helped thousands of individuals and couples achieve pregnancy and start families. The procedure has a good success rate when done by a licensed, experienced fertility clinic. In the United States, IVF treatment success rates are around 42% for younger women.


in vitro fertilization IVF Procedure painfulWhat is IVF?

In vitro fertilization treatments consist of cycles. Treatment begins with suppression of the menstrual cycle so the fertility specialist can control timing and implantation of embryo outcomes. The process involves egg retrieval, fertilization with partner’s (or donor’s) sperm in the laboratory, and placement of embryo(s) into the uterus.

Couples who have not had success becoming pregnant with other fertility treatments may turn to IVF to conceive. Women with tubal issues often benefit from IVF, as IVF is a procedure that bypasses the fallopian tubes entirely. Because of this, women can get pregnant who have had tubal pregnancies that scarred the tubes. However, IVF is not for everyone. If you are 38 years of age or older, you may need to use donor eggs to increase your chances of conception.


IVF Procedure Phases


The phases of IVF include:

  • Preparation phase – To suppress the hormone release and menstrual cycle, the doctor prescribes Lupron or a similar drug. The female will inject the medication at home. This drug tells the body not to ovulate so the fertility clinic can retrieve eggs at 14 days after Lupron begins.
  • Egg retrieval – This involves retrieving eggs from the ovaries using a specific tool. Specialists use hollow needles that are easily inserted through the cervix into the uterus.
  • Fertilization – The retrieved eggs and sperm are combined in Petri dishes in a controlled setting. After embryos form, one or more are graded by a fertility specialist. The best embryos are chosen for transfer.
  • Embryo transfer – The formed embryos are placed into the uterus using a special catheter device. This process involves entering the uterus via the cervix and strategically placing the embryos.


Is IVF Procedure Painful?

What causes the pain associated with IVF? With this understanding of the IVF steps, you can see that the process involves insertion of tools into the female’s body. The most painful part of the entire process is injecting with the medication. The other sterile catheters and tools are not painful but may cause some mild cramping and discomfort.

During the egg retrieval process, small hollow needles are inserted into the uterus and ovaries, which may produce some pain. During retrieval, you may feel mild cramping, which can persist for several minutes to hours afterward. The embryo transfer process also produces some bloating, cramping, and mild pain.


IVF Treatment Success Rates

In the United States, IVF success is measured by the live birth rate. The live birth rate for each IVF cycle is:

  • 41-43% for women age 35 and younger
  • 33-36% for women ages 35 to 37
  • 23-27% for women ages 38 to 40
  • 13-18% for women ages 40 and older

Women in their late 30s and those older have a better chance of conception with IVF if they use donor eggs. Use of donor eggs increases a woman’s chances of live birth by 50%, particularly when there are implantation problems. However, older women still have a greater chance of miscarriage.


American Society for Reproductive Medicine. (2014). Gamete and embryo donation: Deciding whether to tell. Retrieved from:
Human Fertilization & Embryology Authority. (2014). IVF – What is in vitro fertilization (IVF) and how does it work? Retrieved from:
Human Fertilization & Embryology Authority. (2014). Risks of fertility treatment. Retrieved from:

Which Infertility Treatment Would Be Your Best Option?

With the modern technology of today and the ongoing advancements in the treatment of infertility, there are many options to be considered for fertility treatments. Not only do these treatments bring hope for couples who want to conceive, but they offer choices. Infertile couples can make informed decisions as to what they feel would be the best treatment to participate in.


In Vitro Fertilization is one of the most well-known infertility treatments and is considered to be highly successful. It has been estimated that over 3 million babies throughout the world have been born as a result of IVF. The IVF procedure also offers some additional options within it, which gives the infertile couple some more options.

Oral Medication

Depending on what is determined to be the cause of your infertility there may be medication that can be prescribed to help with you become fertile. For women whose ovaries will not release the eggs a medication called Clomiphene may help. It has been indicated that about half of the women who are prescribed this medication will within about three cycles become pregnant. However, it is not usual for the pregnancy to consist of twins or even more babies. This is because the medication stimulates the ovaries to release more than one egg during each cycle.

Hormone Injections

For those women where Clomiphene has not been successful the fertility specialist may order injectable hormones. There are various drugs that can be used for this. Women who are able to ovulate often find they achieve success with this form of treatment. There is more of a chance of becoming pregnant with twins or more with this form of fertility treatment.


This is intrauterine insemination. It is a procedure that is sometimes used in conjunction with drugs that are being used to encourage ovulation. In this procedure the sperm is placed directly into the uterus during ovulation but is not injected directly into the egg. It is less expensive and not as complicated as IVF, but it is also not quite as successful.


This is a procedure called intracytoplasmic sperm injection. This is a beneficial procedure when infertility is a problem for the male who has very low or weak sperm. The egg of the woman has been extracted and once it has become fertilized the sperm will be injected with the sperm while in the lab. The woman will then go through the IVF procedure.

These are just some of the more common forms of infertility treatments. There are several others besides these, and some of the treatments are used in conjunction with each other. It can be difficult to make a choice, but listening to the advice of experts like your Los Angeles fertility Doctor will help you make the right decision. Knowing the cause of your infertility greatly helps in finding the right solution. With so many different fertility treatments being available today, it greatly increase the chances of a couple being able to go full term with the pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby.

Call Pacific Reproductive Center today for the top fertility treatment at four locations in the Los Angeles metro area!

Are IVF and Breast Cancer Linked?

According to recent statistics, a woman has a 1 in 8 lifetime chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer. This disease is the leading cause of cancer death for women. Many fertility and reproductive factors contribute to risk, such as nulligravidity (never having a child), early menopause, late menopause, and hormone use.IVF Los Angeles


Infertility affects around 10% of all couples. Infertile women are likely to be diagnosed with menstrual abnormalities. However, infertility is often managed using hormone therapy, which can have a direct negative effect on the breast tissue. Incidentally, elevated estradiol levels have an indirect effect on the breasts. Because the potential increased risk for breast cancer is a concern, many infertility therapies are being studied.


A Research Report


Infertility can be treated using assistive reproductive technologies (ARTs), such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intrauterine insemination (IUI). A recent study was conducted that include nulliparous (never had a child) women and parous (had children before) women. These women were between ages 20 and 44 years, and all had been evaluated for infertility. Of these 21,000 women, 7,381 had IVF treatment. The researchers found that the risk for breast cancer was NOT increased for infertile women who underwent IVF therapy.


In the study, controlled factors were the need for IVF treatment, single vs. multiple birth, age at first delivery, and socioeconomic status. The factors seen to be associated with an increased risk for breast cancer was older age at first delivery. However, multiple births was associated with a decreased risk for breast cancer. The different age groups were analyzed for variances. The risk for breast cancer was higher for infertility women who began treatment at age 24 years or younger.


The Role of Hormones


It is established that older age at first delivery and nulliparity are linked to more cases of breast cancer. Hormone use has also been identified as a risk factor for breast cancer. Infertility women who have IVF cycles are already at higher risk than the general population.


So, does using hormones for IVF further increase this known risk? Most studies have shown no increased risk for breast cancer for women who have undergone IVF treatment. Egg FreezingHowever, some studies only involve a low number of participants. Other studies do not properly control for all risks factors, making the conclusions questionable. The main factor involved is an inherited genetic risk, which is rarely considered in these studies.


With infertility treatment, hormone use is only short term (about 10 days), which does not have a significant effect on the induction and growth of breast cancer. The current information on this association is reassuring. Studies show that there is no real danger for increased breast cancer simply from using hormone therapy during IVF treatment. Exposure to progestin and estrogen after menopause is linked to an increased risk for breast cancer for women who are 50-70 years of age.


Recommendations for Women undergoing Fertility Treatment


The standards and recommendations for women undergoing fertility treatment is the same for women who have breast cancer risk factors. There is no evidence that IVF will increase your risk for breast cancer, and it is not contraindicated unless the woman has active breast cancer. This applies even to women who have a family history of the disease or who carry the BRCA (breast cancer) gene.


Any woman who is trying to conceive should follow the regular guidelines for health maintenance, and make sure routine screenings and Pap smears are up to date. For women without significant risk factors, a routine mammogram is recommended at age 40.

3 Unique Advantages of IVF Treatment

IVF Treatment

Getting pregnant can be an uphill task for many couples. Even younger couples with normal health may find it difficult to conceive. Fortunately, fertility medicine has evolved and great advancements have been made in fertility treatments, such as the IVF treatment at the best fertility clinics, Pacific Reproductive Center, Los Angeles. The IVF or In Vitro Fertilization process is a fertility treatment where a couple’s egg and sperm are fertilized outside of the uterus, and then transferred back into the woman’s uterus. If you’re planning to consider IVF treatment, experts at Los Angeles IVF clinic share the advantages for you to consider.


The biggest advantage of IVF treatment is the fact that you can have a biological child of your own, as compared to surrogacy or adoption. The child is conceived from your own egg and sperm and grows inside your own body as in any other pregnancy. A baby born through the IVF treatment at Los Angeles IVF Clinic is no different from a baby conceived through natural means.


Many times it may be difficult to figure out exactly what is causing your infertility problems. IVF treatment at the leading fertility clinic in Los Angeles is a great way to combat infertility issues without the need for major surgery or extensive procedures.


IVF treatment is a unique fertility treatment. It allows the screening of the embryo for chromosomal abnormalities and genetic disorders before its implantation into the mother’s uterus. This process is known as Preimplantation genetic diagnosis. The top infertility treatment clinic in Los Angeles and Glendale, Pacific Reproductive Center is proud to be the first IVF treatment center to offer in-house Array Comparative Genomic Hybridization (aCGH) in addition to our in-house Pre-implantation Genetic (PGD) lab, where the most advanced techniques are utilized to screen for genetic abnormalities.

To know more about IVF and infertility treatment at Los Angeles and Glendale, visit

IUI or IVF – Which Is The Best Fertility Treatment For You


Fertility treatments may sound confusing and complicated to couples struggling to get pregnant. Luckily, the biggest advantage of seeking treatment at the best fertility centers is that you have multiple options and the benefit of choosing one that is right for you. Two very successful fertility treatments are in-vitro fertilization (IVF) and intrauterine insemination (IUI). Here’s a quick guide about the two procedures so that you can choose which one to opt for.


Intrauterine insemination or IUI uses a concentrated selection of sperm which are inserted directly into a woman’s uterus. Using IUI at a specific time and having a trained specialist perform the procedure will ensure the greatest chance of a sperm and an egg meeting.

On the other hand, IVF is the process of the removal of eggs from the woman’s ovaries, fertilization of the eggs, and replacement of the fertilized eggs in the uterus. IVF is generally considered a more successful method of increasing fertility compared to IUI.


No one can guarantee that a particular fertility procedure is going to be successful.Nevertheless, IVF treatments are more likely to be precise than artificial insemination because the eggs are already fertilized once they are placed into the uterus. Fertility is a complex issue and it depends on multiple factors. But most infertility cases are treated successfully through drug treatments or modern medical procedures at Pacific Reproductive Center.

Which One to Choose

Artificial insemination is typically cheaper than an IVF treatment, but IVF success rates tend to be higher. You along with the best fertility treatment center in Los Angeles, Pacific Reproductive Center, can together decide which treatment is best for you.