Myths About Test Tube Babies, And The Technique – All Your Questions Answered | Exclusive

The world has evolved over the centuries in terms of advancements in the space of technology and medical procedures. While many believe that the procedure of in vitro fertilization is newly developed, it is interesting to know that the first reference of the term test-tube babies can be noted as early as the 1930s. Although during those times, it was referred to as artificial insemination and not IVF. Also, the early mentions of the term ‘test tube baby’ can be found in the book by Dr Hermann Rohleder which was published in 1934 by Panurge Press.

Hence, the very notion that the concept of Assistive Reproductive Technology (ART) is newly invented and has not been known for ages is a myth. Though artificial insemination was not the same as IVF and hence was in vivo fertilization — in the body — and not in vitro, in the lab, like IVF, this does outline that external ways of fertilization are not a new concept in the history of medical science.

Just like this one, there are several other myths around test-tube babies and their procedures. All individuals willing to undergo the procedure must be aware of the pros and cons. Also, as a practice, one must not believe in anything other than what your doctor recommends. To help you overcome the myths around test-tube babies, we have listed these down for you:

Myth 1: IVF can solve all your fertility-related issues

While IVF can surely resolve some of your fertility-related issues, it cannot solve all of the issues. Several other procedures help you conceive such as ovulation induction (OI) with medications, Intra-Uterine Insemination (IUI), etc. These procedures also help childless mothers to conceive.

Myth 2: IVF procedure is costly and that it can only be afforded by the rich

There is no denying the fact that IVF is a costly procedure, but that doesn’t imply that a common man cannot avail of it. Several other procedures are costlier than IVF. Also, with advancements, for several years, the cost of IVF treatments has remained unchanged.

Myth 3: IVF is only for young couples

Age does remain an important factor while undergoing the IVF procedure, but it has proven as effective in women of the post-menopausal group as in younger women. However, age can sometimes be a barrier as the fertility rate in older women is lower. Nevertheless, you must consult your doctor to know what is best for you.

Myth 4: IVF is 100% successful

The success rate of IVF procedures is high in women falling under the age group of 35. The success of the procedure is dependent on various factors such as the cause of infertility, age, and biological and hormonal situations. So, we cannot say that IVF will always be successful for everyone.

Myth 5: IVF babies have birth defects

While several people believe that IVF babies are born with malformations or defects, this is a myth. The risk of delivering an IVF baby is similar to the risks that are imposed on the general population of conceiving mothers.

It is important to consult a good IVF clinic before planning a test tube baby and also, only believe a doctor’s advice. The risk of malformation in the normal pregnant population is about 1 to 2%. In women undergoing IVF, this risk is about 2 to 3 per cent.

Myth 6: IVF is very painful

Many couples hesitate to undergo IVF thinking that it is a painful process. The process is painful and it’s usually done under anesthesia like egg pickup. The rest of the procedures involved are ultrasounds which are pain-free and injections that are subcutaneous and again do not involve pain.

— Inputs by Dr Kaberi Benerjee, IVF Specialist and Director of Advance Fertility and Gynaecology Centre, New Delhi

About Dr Kaberi Banerjee:

A seasoned Obstetrician & Gynecologist with more than a decade of experience in IVF infertility management, Dr. Kaberi Banerjee is renowned infertility and IVF specialist in Delhi & NCR. Dr Banerjee is the Medical Director of Advance Fertility & Gynecological Center, New Delhi, and has handled more than 10,000 plus pregnancy cases so far. Her expertise lies in successfully handling complicated cases of repeated IVF failures, donor, and surrogacy.

She has worked as a Senior IVF Specialist in major corporate hospitals in Delhi and is the organizing chairperson of CUPART (Current Practices and Recent Advances in ART), an International organization aimed to facilitate the right treatment and research in fertility & IVF. The foundation was founded in the year 2011 by Dr Kaberi Banerjee.

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