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Understanding the Success Rate of IVF Treatment


In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is a ray of hope for countless couples struggling with infertility. As an IVF specialist with over 15 years of experience, I understand the concerns and questions when considering this treatment.

One of the most frequent queries is about the success rate of IVF treatment. In this article, we provide a detailed understanding of what influences the success of IVF treatments.

Understanding IVF

IVF is a complex process involving several stages. It begins with ovarian stimulation, where medications encourage the ovaries to produce multiple eggs. These eggs are then retrieved and fertilised in a laboratory with sperm.

The resulting embryos are then transferred into the woman’s uterus, where they may implant and develop into a pregnancy.

Factors Affecting the Success Rate of IVF:

  • Age: Age plays a pivotal role in IVF success rates. Women under 35 usually have higher success rates, due to the quality and quantity of their eggs. As age increases, the chances of successful IVF decrease. This is essential to consider when discussing your prospects with your IVF specialist.
  • Cause of Infertility: The underlying cause of infertility can significantly influence the success rate of IVF. Certain conditions, such as tubal or male factor infertility, may require specialised treatment approaches, impacting success rates.
  • Previous IVF Attempts: If you’ve had previous unsuccessful IVF attempts, it might affect the success rate of subsequent cycles. However, it’s important to remember that each IVF cycle is unique, and past failures do not necessarily predict future outcomes.
  • Lifestyle Factors: Lifestyle choices, such as smoking, alcohol consumption, obesity, and high-stress levels, can affect IVF success rates. Adopting a healthier lifestyle can increase your chances of a successful outcome.

In vitro fertilization (IVF)

Being an complex fertility procedure, it as important to understand the process, possible risks and complications and tips for Success before going for the procedure. 

What is the success rate of IVF on the first try?

The success rate of IVF on the first try varies significantly, primarily depending on factors such as age, cause of infertility, and lifestyle. However, statistical data can provide a general understanding of the average outcomes.

Women younger than 35 have the highest chance of becoming pregnant on their first IVF cycle, with a national average success rate of about 55%. This high rate is mainly due to the better quality and quantity of their eggs than older women.

As the age increases, the success rate of IVF decreases. For women aged between 35 to 37, the success rate when using their eggs is approximately 40.8%, with the live birth rate based on the first embryo transfer being around 31.6%

Women over 40’s success rate dropped significantly to 8.2% on their first IVF cycle. This decrease is primarily due to the diminished quality and quantity of eggs available for fertilisation.

The number of embryos transferred also plays a crucial role in the success rate of IVF treatment. Transferring more than one embryo may increase the chance of pregnancy, but it also raises the risk of multiple pregnancies, causing risks to both the mother and babies.

It’s important to note that while IVF offers a promising solution to infertility, it does not guarantee 100% success on the first cycle.

The overall global average success rate for women starting their first cycle of IVF is around 35%, increasing to 50-75% by their sixth or eighth cycle.

Hence, managing expectations and understanding the multifaceted nature of IVF success rates is essential for couples considering this treatment. In India, the average success rate of IVF is around 30-35%, aligning with global averages.

However, these rates can vary widely between clinics and regions due to differences in technology, expertise, and patient populations.

IVF Success Rate by Number of Embryos

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is a significant advancement in reproductive technology, offering hope to couples struggling with infertility. A critical aspect influencing the success of IVF treatment is the number of embryos transferred during the procedure.

An embryo in IVF is created by fertilising an egg with sperm in a laboratory setting. Once the embryos have developed, one or more are transferred into the woman’s uterus, hoping that at least one will implant and result in a successful pregnancy.

The decision on the number of embryos to transfer is based on several factors, including the woman’s age, the quality of the embryos, and the couple’s comfort level with the possibility of multiple pregnancies.

The goal is to maximise the chance of a successful pregnancy while minimising the risk of multiple pregnancies, which can pose health risks to both the mother and babies.

For women under 35, single embryo transfer (SET) is often recommended because of their generally higher success rates. According to the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART), the live birth rate for women under 35 who undergo SET is around 40%.

However, as the woman’s age increases, the quality and quantity of the eggs decrease, leading to lower success rates. For women over 40, transferring two or more embryos may be considered to increase the chances of a successful pregnancy.

However, this approach also increases the likelihood of multiple pregnancies.

It’s important to note that transferring more embryos does not guarantee a successful pregnancy.

Ultimately, the decision on the number of embryos to transfer should be made after a thorough discussion with your fertility specialist, considering your unique circumstances and comfort level.

Improving Success Rates

Advancements in IVF technology and techniques have contributed to improved success rates. Preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) allows for the selection of genetically healthy embryos, increasing the chances of a successful pregnancy.

Additionally, choosing an experienced and reputable fertility clinic in Pune is crucial in optimising your chances of success.

Managing Expectations

While IVF offers a promising solution to infertility, setting realistic expectations is essential. Understanding the multifaceted nature of IVF success rates and being prepared for potential challenges can help manage the emotional journey of IVF.

Remember, every couple’s IVF journey is unique, and what works for one may not work for another.

In conclusion, Understanding the IVF success rate is critical to your fertility journey. As an experienced IVF specialist, I am committed to providing you with comprehensive, empathetic care to navigate this path.

While statistics can provide a general overview, your journey is unique. Together, we can strive for the best possible outcome.

  • About Author

    Dr. Supriya Puranik

    Gynaecologist & IVF Specialist

Often known as the last glimmer of hope for people who have lost all hope for conceiving a child, Dr. Supriya Puranik is a leading gynaecologist, high risk obstetrician and Head of IVF & Gynaecology department at Ankura Hospital for Women & Children.

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