What Is Natural Cycle IVF

Women who are struggling with ovulating and infertility often begin to feel anxiety, stress and sometimes even depression. With several variations of treatment available and medicals teams that may all operate just a little different than one another, it can be difficult, stressful and nerve wracking trying to figure out what the right option is for your family.  What you may want to consider is natural cycle IVF treatment, which is the latest technology used for refreshing the ovulation process in order to increase the chances of getting pregnant. The traditional IVF (in-vitro fertilization) treatment involves  taking several medications orally or via injections to stimulate the ovulation process which allows you to release more than the normal amount of eggs.  The goal here is that this optimizes your chances and ability to find what many fertility doctors call the “golden” egg (i.e. the one that will be healthy enough to get you pregnant!).  It can be a bit tough physically and monetarily but it is surely worth everything.

Natural cycle IVF is a process that relies on the production of the natural egg by the ovary of the woman. The natural IVF cycle basically depends on the natural menstrual cycle without the use of fertility medications. The traditional IVF method involves many fertility medications to harvest the eggs along with the same process of taking the egg to the laboratory for fertilization and embryo transfer.

Traditional IVF treatment is often not tolerated by women who have good natural cycle performance. Women who have regular menstrual cycles may want to consider the natural IVF cycle, assuming no other reproductive issues have been identified.  With no fertility drugs involved, you can enhance the chances of pregnancy at considerably lower costs, risks and the time. The aim of the treatment is to collect the egg produced naturally by the ovaries. In this way, the egg produced is healthier than other ways of collecting it. Therefore, this increases the chances of getting pregnant and creating a healthy embryo.

The Process

The very first thing done in this natural cycle IVF treatment is the consultation and scans. This is what usually happens in the traditional IVF treatments and also occurs when involving natural cycles. At this point, the doctor will examine your situation and suggest a treatment plan according to your condition and develop your IVF timeline. Two weeks before your period, you will come into the clinic and start your session with a nurse. The entire process will be explained to the patient and the formalities, such as paperwork, etc., will be completed that they are out of the way. A scan will be performed on the first day of your period. After this scan, two or more scan sessions will be conducted regularly.  One will be near the 12th day and the other will be when the egg collection phase occurs, which is done under sedation. Several days later, usually after three to five days depending on embryo development, the blastocyst transfer takes place, as is customary with the standard IVF timeline.

Natural Cycle IVFAdvantages of Natural Cycle IVF

The biggest advantage of the natural cycle IVF is that it involves no fertility medications or oral injections. This is better for you, both physically and monetarily. Other benefits are mentioned below:

  • It is a very positive and beneficial approach towards the health and condition of the women who cannot get pregnant or are struggling with ovarian reserve. There are many reasons that become a hurdle in conceiving, but the natural cycle method with IVF makes everything a lot easier by giving you a chance to live your dream as well.
  • As the egg production process is completely natural, the eggs produced will be a lot healthier than the egg produced through fertility medication. Higher potency drugs can damage the lining of the womb making it unreceptive to pregnancy. But with the natural process, everyone remains the way it would be through a natural cycle
  • The natural IVF cycle is conducted during your natural menstrual cycle unlike the traditional IVF treatment. This offers less risks and lessor no drugs which will lead to decreased side effects as well.
  • Not only is the IVF natural cycle a safer option for women to get pregnant but it is also more affordable, making it easier to make the investment. No daily medications are involved which means less money is required.
  • The treatment can be repeated as well. However, the patients who have been affected by the ovarian stimulation drugs need to give a two or three-month break following the treatment, which obviously extends your timeline to produce a successful pregnancy if multiple cycles are needed.

Which candidates are more eligible for the treatment?

The best patients or the ones more suitable for the natural cycle treatment are the ones having a normal ovarian reserve. The tubal-factor infertility patients are also good candidates of the treatment. The process might be a bit difficult on the patients who have faced IVF failure previously and the ones with poor ovarian reserve. The chances of getting pregnant will most likely be lower in such cases but definitely not impossible.  Doctors that I have spoken with for my own personal situation had all the confidence in the world that they could get my wife pregnant.  It was just a matter of time (for multiple traditional IVF cycles / attempts) and money, as this is a costly procedure to do multiple times.  If you are able to try via the natural IVF cycle, you are already in a better position.

Natural cycle IVF success ratesNatural Cycle IVF success rates

With the improvements to the approach of natural cycle IVF, better results have started to show without giving the patients oral medication. The usage of advanced ultrasound techniques and the constantly improving scientific expertise are the major causes of the rising natural cycle IVF success rates. Women with ovarian reserve find that this natural method is more convenient than going for the tradition IVF process. While the success rates are increasing, we must not forget that they also depend upon the woman’s age, medical history, previous treatment history, sperm issues and the ovarian reserves as well.

Chances of having a baby when over age 35 with Natural Cycle IVF

The live birth rates are lower with the natural cycle IVF as compared to the traditional IVF. This is because the natural treatment does not rely on any fertility drugs but entirely on your own individual situation. From the statistics of the year 2013, we find the following birth rates:

  • 2% for women aged 38 to 39
  • 9% for women aged 40 to 42

Due to the dependence on the natural egg retrieval from the body, the cancellation rate [of that particular IVF cycle] can be higher, around 25% to 30%. This means that during some months of egg production, the egg may not be properly retrieved or released thus moving to the embryo transfer can be difficult. 70% to 75% women do not encounter this cancellation experience and continue to their embryo transfer which lowers the miscarriage risk as well.

What is the natural cycle IVF cost?

The natural cycle IVF has different cost rates at different clinics, as anyone would logically expect. Usually, the natural cycle IVF cost is $4,000 for one treatment, compared to $9,000 – $15,000 for traditional IVF. The IVF natural cycle treatment can be conducted more than once if the ovaries are not stimulated enough for releasing the eggs. Be sure to discuss all options with your medical team and choose the one that best fits you and your situation.

The usual IVF cost for treatment

There are a few basic things that matter when you are going to choose your suitable fertility clinic, such as the qualification or expertise of the medical staff there, the reputation of the clinic, the location of the clinic and then unforgettably, the cost of IVF treatment at that clinic. Most health insurance plans still do not cover reproductive technology methods and therefore, the patient has to pay himself and bear all the costs. This could lead to added stress for the patient as well.

The best way to find out about low-cost IVF is by visiting more than 30 clinics all over the country. This way, you can distinguish between them and measure the difference between the costs as well. If you prefer to ask them through the online process or through the website, it will be difficult as most of the clinics do not have their pricing information published on their websites. It is always better to visit them in person and ask for their complete information. Some clinics also have relationships with the financial institutions who might provide financial assistance to you as well. Applying to them could be helpful too.

 

IVF Cost
IVF Cost

The standard cost of IVF treatment:

As per the regulations of the American Society of Reproductive Medicines, the average cost of IVF is approximately $12,400. The medications are part of this cost of IVF in USA. The clinics, which do not usually list this information on the cost of IVF, claim that the information is not that easy to understand whereas, in reality, they are pretty straight forward numbers that anyone can understand and comprehend. This is why it is recommended to the clinics to describe the process on their website so that their potential clients will not go to any other clinic in any misunderstanding. Without any sort of disclaimer or impedance, the breakdown for the cost of IVF treatment is:

  • The standard cost of the intrauterine insemination cycle is $865. While the average cost is $350.
  • In the in vitro fertilization process, including new embryos, the standard cost is $8,158 and the average cost is $7500.
  • The standard cost of the preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) is $3,550 and the average charges are $3,200.
  • The standard charges for the intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) are $1,544 and the average cost is $1,500.

**These figures may vary in your local area**

 

What could affect the IVF cost?

There are many additional factors, which also affect the IVF procedure cost, such as:

  • The cost of living of the people is so high that it does not get equalized with the treatment costs.
  • The prices for the ICSI vary from state to state. In some areas, the cost is in-between $1,000 to $1,500.
  • There are some areas in which the IVF treatment clinics are few and far between; therefore, their charges are higher.
  • The different areas have the varying prices for the test procedures, such as blood test, medicines, and sonogram.
  • In many places, you will find the IUI prices differing, starting from $275 to the $2,457.

 

How Much Does IVF Cost
How Much Does IVF Cost

Check a few facts:

While making the final decision towards choosing the suitable fertility clinic, you need to ask a few fact-checking questions. Certainly, here, we are concerned about the IVF cost, and then it is crucial that you have the answers of these questions, which are:

  • Is this clinic is offering any sort of psychological or financial counseling process? If it is, then will it be included in the overall cost of the treatment.
  • All the tests, consultation sittings, and medicines will be added in the total IVF cost for the treatment or not?

 

It is always better to get to know the overall cost of IVF treatment so that you will not get to face any issues later. When you ask the questions in advance, there are more chances that you will go through the process better and also be prepared to handle the IVF treatment cost with peace of mind.

Although, there are many low cost IVF treatments offered, the air of uncertainty always exists and makes us consider whether they are reliable or not. You never know about their procedure and the level of cleanliness / sterlization. You never know that low cost IVF facilities may have low profile medical staff, who may be lacking the proper experience or anything else. As long as you are unaware of the background of the low-cost fertility clinic, do not make any attempt to get your treatment from there.

The IVF cost is also different in other countries. For instance, the cost of IVF in USA is different from the cost of IVF in UK because of the availability of the medical fertility centers, medical insurances, government policies, etc. There are many reasons which affect the treatment in other countries.

Cost of IVF
Cost of IVF

You will also see that some clinics have their own fertility cost plans designed. These cost plans have various distinctive reasons and points why have they were made in such way. There are plans with the money back and no money back proposals too. The money back is often costly because when the procedure is successful, then you have to pay the additional sum of money, which is not refundable too.  Some clinics also have one standard fee that covers repeated IVF treatment until the medical team is successful.  It is hard to if this is a good option for your because this depends on whether they are successful on the first try or forth try (for example).  If successful on the first attempt, it would have been better to simply pay for that one IVF treatment.  If your biological situation required repeated attempts, it would be better to select the guaranteed program if available.

The medication cost for the IVF is usually depending upon the time period of intakes. If you are taking medicine for the normal duration, then they will cost around $1,500 and if it is for the longer period, then it will be higher, sometimes up to $5,000. If you have the insurance, then hopefully the medication will be covered without any issue but this is not always the case.  Be sure to check this with your insurance provider.

For all those couples who are looking for the fertility clinic without any insurance, they must be careful while choosing one. Go for the clinic which has trained staff and qualified fertility expert who will guide you throughout the procedure and will cover all of the treatment processes within the agreed upon IVF treatment cost.