When you’re undergoing treatment for infertility it can be difficult to put your fears to rest. After all, you’ve already experienced the frustration and heartache caused by roadblocks you’ve encountered along your journey to having a baby. You surely don’t want to come so far, only to find out there’s a serious threat to your future baby.
If your personal experience includes difficulties and doubt due to genetic or chromosomal conditions, you may be hesitant to pursue pregnancy because of the risks. Especially when more than 80% of all first trimester miscarriages are caused by genetic/chromosomal abnormalities. The potential loss can be too much for some individuals, or couples, to bear.
With the advances being made in reproductive health and solutions to aid in your fertility, there are ways to help ensure the health of your future baby through embryo testing. For those undergoing IVF, who have reason to be concerned about the viability of their embryos, embryo testing is a sure way to put your mind at ease.
Begin by Assessing Your Risks:
Genetic counseling is the first step in making sure a successful outcome is realized for couples and individuals who want to begin a family. Based on the genetic risks brought to a pregnancy by both parents, genetic screening can be an extremely useful tool in determining the potential for certain birth defects and genetic diseases.
There are a number of specific reasons that make pre-pregnancy genetic screening a good idea. Age may play a significant role in the health and viability of the egg, there may be sperm abnormalities, or a risk for certain genetic conditions and diseases, such as Tay-Sachs, Cystic Fibrosis, Sickle Cell Anemia, and Thalassemia. Any of these factors could increase the risk for birth defects. Many of these same reasons apply when couples, or individuals, opt to pursue IVF. To ensure a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby, and ease your concerns and fears, it’s wise to consider embryo testing.
What is Embryo Testing?
Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis/screening/testing (PGD/PGS/PGT), is a useful tool for screening embryos to check for specific genetic diseases. PGT, which is the latest terminology, is used in IVF to test the embryos, prior to implantation in the uterus. Embryo testing via PGT significantly lowers your risk of having a child with a genetic birth defect.
When an embryo is created through IVF it grows in the lab for 5-6 days, in order to reach the blastocyst stage. At that point, removal of a single cell can be done with a low risk of disrupting the development of the embryo. The cell’s DNA is analyzed and compared to standard DNA to determine the genetic health of the embryo. Once declared sound in genetic health, the embryo can then be implanted in the uterus.
Improving Your Odds for Success:
By using a combination of genetic screening you can prevent passing on any of literally hundreds of genetic conditions, far more than the ones mentioned above. Not only will you lower the risk of having a child with a birth defect, but you will encourage a much healthier pregnancy and lower your risk for miscarriage.
For those who struggle with infertility due to advanced maternal age, male factor infertility, or unsuccessful prior IVF attempts, embryo testing is extremely useful in promoting a successful outcome.
Embryo Testing Provides Peace of Mind
Testing your embryos prior to implantation means you can be assured of the health of your future child. The prognosis is excellent for a successful outcome, and for those couples, or individuals who are aware of a hereditary genetic condition, and want to avoid passing that condition onto a future child, embryo testing is invaluable. The peace of mind is priceless.