Immature eggs are collected from unstimulated or minimally stimulated ovaries under ultrasound scan guidance. The immature eggs are then matured in the laboratory for 24-48 hours using culture medium with added small quantities of hormones. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is used for fertilization of the matured eggs. The resulting embryos are transferred to the women’s wombs.
A number of people may benefit from IVM treatment:
Stimulated IVF is associated with the risk of developing ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) which is a potentially fatal condition and IVM eliminates this risk because it does not involve ovarian stimulation. Also, IVM is less expensive than IVF because it does not involve taking costly gonadotropin injections and involve less monitoring. Moreover, IVM is a shorter treatment regimen compared with in vitro fertilization.
About 400 babies have been born worldwide through IVM treatment; so far IVM seems to be safe. However, long-term safety records are lacking. Over a million children have already been born after IVF treatment and over 100,000 children have been born after ICSI and long-term data on safety and efficacy are available. Clinical pregnancy rates of 38% for women aged 35 years or under having IVM has been reported which compares favourably with that of conventional IVF. Bucket and colleagues (2007) reported an increased risk of miscarriage after IVM compared with IVF and ICSI