Frequently Asked Questions About Infertility
What are the different types of assisted reproductive technology (ART)?
Common methods of ART include:
- In vitro fertilization (IVF)means fertilization outside of the body. IVF is
the most effective ART. It is often used when a woman's fallopian tubes are
blocked or when a man produces too few sperm. Doctors treat the woman with a
drug that causes the ovaries to produce multiple eggs. Once mature, the eggs
are removed from the woman. They are put in a dish in the lab along with the
man's sperm for fertilization. After 3 to 5 days, healthy embryos are implanted
in the woman's uterus.
- Zygote intrafallopian transfer (ZIFT)or Tubal embryo transfer is similar to
IVF. Fertilization occurs in the laboratory. Then the very young embryo is
transferred to the fallopian tube instead of the uterus.
- Gamete intrafallopian transfer (GIFT)involves transferring eggs and sperm
into the woman's fallopian tube. So fertilization occurs in the woman's body.
Few practices offer GIFT as an option.
- Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is often used for couples in which
there are serious problems with the sperm. Sometimes it is also used for older
couples or for those with failed IVF attempts. In ICSI, a single sperm is
injected into a mature egg. Then the embryo is transferred to the uterus or
ART procedures sometimes involve the use of donor eggs (eggs from another
woman), donor sperm, or previously frozen embryos. Donor eggs are sometimes
used for women who can not produce eggs. Also, donor eggs or donor sperm are
sometimes used when the woman or man has a genetic disease that can be passed
on to the baby.
For More Information ...
You can find out more about infertility by contacting the National Women's
Health Information Center (NWHIC) at (800) 994-9662 or the following
Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Phone Number: (888) 463-6332
Internet Address: http://www.fda.gov
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) Resource
Phone Number: (800) 762-2264
Internet Address: http://www.acog.org
American Society for Reproductive Medicine
Phone Number: (205) 978-5000
Internet Address: http://www.asrm.org/
Resolve: The National Infertility Association
Phone Number: (888) 623-0744
Internet Address: http://www.resolve.org
InterNational Council on Infertility Information Dissemination, Inc.
Phone Number: (703) 379-9178
Internet Address: http://www.inciid.org/