Fertility issue is a serious issue that gets the attention of couples, especially those that wants kids badly. Making babies might seem like a normal biological process, but in some cases, it doesn’t come that easily. Sometimes there are medical reasons for this, but at other times its root is just idiopathic.
Infertility is the inability to conceive after 12 months of regular intercourse without protection. In some cases, it could come in the form of miscarriages.
With advancements in medical equipment and procedures, more and better solutions are being proffered for infertility. While infertility treatments in the form of Assisted Reproductive Techniques (ARTs) do not offer a 100% success rate, chances are high with some of them that the infertile couple would conceive.
What is the IMSI procedure all about?
Intracytoplasmic Morphologically-Selected Sperm Injection is a form of In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) whereby a specially selected single sperm is injected into a mature female ovum. In Vitro Fertilization is medical laboratory process by which a mature egg from a female is taken out from the body by puncture and made to fertilize with the sperm after which the now produced embryo is now transferred into the female’s uterus.
ICSI is a classical variation of IVF whereby the sperm cell is selected with the aid of a particular instrument before it is being injected into the egg. ICSI was quite useful in treating couples who have been unable to conceive as a result of the male partner having a low sperm count or motility, but its success rate was not that high.
It was not until recently that a new method of sperm selection called the IMSI was described. With IMSI, the sperms are analyzed and selected under ultra-high powered (x6000) magnification. This method showed to be much more useful than ICSI, especially for couples that have been experiencing repeated implantation failures.
A study carried out showed that for women who had a 38% chance of giving birth using the conventional ICSI, the opportunity with IMSI would be between 30 – 63%; for those with 33% chance of conceiving using ICSI, the chance with IMSI would be between 35 – 53%, and for women with 22% risk of having miscarriage using the conventional ICSI it would be between 13 – 25% with IMSI.
The reason for this higher success rate with IMSI is probably because it gives the avenue to assess and analyze the structure of the sperms using the ultra-high magnification and then removing the sperms that are suspected to be abnormal before microinjection into the egg.
What should you do in preparation for this procedure?
IMSI has proven to be an effective form of In Vitro Fertilization even though it doesn’t guarantee a 100% success. This is more reason why you and your partner should get yourselves prepared, physically mentally, and emotionally.
Understand the process involved
Before you go in or sign up for an IMSI procedure, you should first know what it is all about and the steps involved. Make sure your doctor explains this in details to you. For the female, IMSI presents as an invasive procedure. Just as it is with IVF, five significant steps are involved here: induction of ovulation, retrieval of egg, retrieval of the sperm, fertilization and finally, transfer of the embryo.
You should be aware that a single cycle of this IVF procedure would take about 14 days, and in some cases, you may need more than one period to get pregnant.
You should know that there are medical risks involved
IMSI can be stressful, time-consuming, and mentally draining, especially when conception is really hard for couples, and they have to go through a series of IVF to make it work. In fact, anxiety and stress is an indicated risk during this process; hence, the need for you to manage them.
Some of the medical risks associated with IMSI include; miscarriages, ectopic pregnancy, birth defects, ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, preterm, and multiple births. While no one prays for any of these, it would help that you know about them and brace yourself for this procedure.
Prepare for the financial obligation
IMSI might as well be one of the most expensive fertility treatments available. At the end of the day, you would receive quotes for things like fertility tests, fertility medication, ultrasound, blood tests, and then the IMSI proper. Insurance companies could cover part of these treatments, though.
Look out for your health before the procedure
There is still something you can do to boost your chances of conceiving with IMSI, and that is healthy living. You should aim at having the right body weight, limit your alcohol intake, and stop taking tobacco or its products. And, if you have a medical history of ailments like diabetes and high blood pressure, you should try to put them in check before venturing for this procedure.
Eat foods that enhance fertility
Some foods you can take to boost fertility include; eggs, seeds, royal jelly, nuts, seaweed, oyster, pollen, bone marrow, raw milk, flax seeds, oats, and nettles. You should also go for whole grains and stick with fresh, seasonal organic whole foods. Do not forget to take your vitamins.
Find a way of reducing stress
IMSI on its own is already a stressful procedure, and you do not have to add more weight to that. Research has shown that reduced physiological stress increases success with IVF procedures. You should always get enough sleep. Aside from reducing anxiety, it has a positive influence on sex hormones, ovulation, and spermatogenesis. You should also exercise regularly using, especially the breathing exercise.
There is a need for you to confide in someone. It may not be just your partner but anyone you could talk to about the roller coaster ride you are going through, it would be nice. Let it all out there and never let the situation sink you into depression.
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