Introduction to Assisted Reproductive Technology
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) has become an increasingly popular option for couples struggling with infertility in India. ART procedures have been used since 1978 when the first successful in vitro fertilisation (IVF) pregnancy was achieved. Today, various types of ART procedures are available, including IVF, gamete intrafallopian transfer, tubal embryo transfer
, zygote intrafallopian transfer, egg-freezing, and preimplantation genetic diagnosis. In India, over 500 babies are born every month in fertility clinics, making it a significant contributor to the ART industry. The reasons for the increasing popularity of ART in India include delayed marriages and childbearing, lifestyle changes, and increased awareness about infertility treatments.
Current status and future prospects of ART in India
1. Infertility is a growing problem in India, with an estimated 10-12 million people affected.
Infertility is a significant health issue in India, affecting approximately 15% of couples of reproductive age. Societal and cultural factors, such as early marriage, lack of knowledge about reproductive health, and the preference for male children, contribute to the high prevalence of infertility in the country. The growth of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) in India has been significant, with the industry estimated to be worth over $1 billion. ART methods, such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), are commonly used to address infertility. The industry has the potential for further growth in the future, with advancements in technology and increasing awareness of reproductive health. However, there are also concerns about the ethical and legal implications of ART, including the exploitation of women as egg donors and the regulation of the industry.
2. ARTs are becoming increasingly common, due to rising infertility rates and greater availability of treatments.
The ART industry in India is predominantly private and is characterised by market rhetoric, taking advantage of the prevailing ideology of patriarchy and a collapsing public health system to promote itself. With infertility rates rising steadily, ART providers argue that ARTs have become the "need of the hour". However, the industry faces challenges such as a lack of regulation and high costs. Additionally, the medicalisation and pathologisation of infertility have led to the commodification of reproduction, creating new markets for ART.
3. There are several ART procedures available, including IVF, ICSI, and gamete donation.
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) procedures available in India include In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF), Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI), and gamete donation. IVF involves fertilising an egg outside the body and then transferring the embryo to the uterus. ICSI is similar to IVF, however, instead of fertilising the egg outside the body, in ICSI a single sperm is injected directly into the egg. Gamete donation involves using either donated eggs or sperm to achieve fertilisation. These procedures offer hope to infertile couples and are safe and effective when carried out by qualified professionals.
4. There is a need for increased awareness of ARTs, particularly among the general population.
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) is a rapidly growing industry in India, with numerous clinics and providers offering a range of services to individuals and couples experiencing infertility. However, the lack of binding standards or regulations in the industry has given rise to medical malpractice and ethical concerns. Therefore, it is important to increase awareness among the general population about the need for safe and ethical practices in the ART industry. This can be achieved through various means, such as public health campaigns, educational programs, and government policies that promote ethical standards and protect patients' rights.
5. In India, ARTs are still a relatively new field, with few regulations and little oversight.
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) has experienced significant growth in India in recent years, with the country expected to become a global leader in the field. However, the lack of standardisation and regulation has given rise to concerns regarding the quality of care provided by clinics, potential medical malpractice, and ethical issues. The ART industry in India deploys common strategies to generate demand, such as aggressive advertising and inflated success rates.
Benefits of using ART for childbearing
1. Higher chances of pregnancy and birth
2. Increased chance of having a healthy baby
3. Ability to have a child with a partner or donor
4. Reduced stress and anxiety
5. Less pain and discomfort of pregnancy
Some types of assisted reproductive technologies available in India
1. In-vitro fertilisation
In-vitro fertilisation (IVF) is a type of assisted reproductive technology that involves fertilising an egg with sperm outside of the body in a laboratory dish. In India, IVF is performed by first stimulating a woman's ovaries with medications to produce multiple eggs. The eggs are then retrieved through a minimally invasive procedure and combined with sperm in a laboratory dish. The resulting embryos are monitored for several days before being transferred into the woman's uterus.
2. Donor egg cycles
Donor egg cycles are a form of assisted reproductive technology used to help couples struggling with infertility due to poor ovarian reserve. In India, donors are typically anonymous and selected based on a variety of criteria, including age, medical history, and physical characteristics. Donors undergo extensive screening to ensure that they are healthy and free of genetic disorders or infectious diseases. Once selected, the donor undergoes ovarian stimulation to produce multiple eggs, which are then extracted and fertilised with the intended father's sperm. The resulting embryos are cultured in a laboratory for several days before being transferred to the intended mother's uterus.
3. Donor sperm cycles
Donor sperm cycles in India involve the use of sperm from a healthy, screened donor to fertilise a patient's eggs through in vitro fertilisation (IVF). Sperm donors undergo rigorous screening for genetic and infectious diseases, and their medical history is thoroughly evaluated. The cost of donor sperm cycles in India varies depending on the clinic and the specific treatment plan, but it is generally more affordable than in other countries.
4. Embryo cryopreservation
Embryo cryopreservation is an assisted reproductive technology (ART) that involves freezing and storing embryos for future use. In amphibians, it is a promising technique for conservation purposes. As early embryonic cells are typically smaller and contain less liquid, cryopreservation of embryos is expected to have higher success rates than oocyte freezing.
5. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection
(ICSI) is a type of assisted reproductive technology that involves the injection of a single sperm directly into the cytoplasm of an egg using a microneedle. This procedure is typically recommended for couples who have severe male factor infertility, such as low sperm count or poor sperm motility. The process of ICSI involves several steps, including egg retrieval, sperm collection and preparation, and the actual injection of the sperm into the egg.
6. In-vitro maturation
In vitro maturation (IVM) is an assisted reproductive technology that involves the collection of immature eggs from a woman's ovaries and their maturation in a laboratory setting. Unlike in-vitro fertilisation (IVF), which involves the fertilisation of mature eggs with sperm in a laboratory dish, IVM allows for the collection of eggs before they have fully matured. Once collected, the eggs are matured in a culture medium for 24-48 hours, after which they can be fertilised with sperm or frozen for later use.
How to choose the right ART for you?
Step 1: Understand your fertility needs
Choosing the right Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) for your fertility needs can be a daunting task. The first step towards making an informed decision is to understand your fertility needs. Factors such as age, medical history, and fertility goals should be taken into consideration when choosing an ART treatment. For instance, younger patients may opt for less invasive treatments such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) or ovulation induction
, while older patients may require more advanced treatments such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF) or intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Your medical history, including any previous fertility treatments or surgeries, may also impact which ART treatment is recommended. Finally, your fertility goals, such as the desire for multiple pregnancies or a preference for genetic testing, should also be considered. By understanding your fertility needs, you can work with your healthcare provider to choose the right ART treatment for you.
Step 2: Look for ART types that fit your needs
When choosing the right Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) in India, it is important to consider your age, medical history, and fertility goals. The most common types of ART available in India are In vitro fertilisation (IVF), Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), and Intrauterine insemination
involves fertilising eggs with sperm outside the body and transferring the resulting embryos to the uterus. ICSI is similar to IVF, but involves injecting a single sperm into an egg. IUI involves placing sperm directly into the uterus during ovulation.
Step 3: Compare cost, success rates and other factors
When considering Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART), it is important to compare various factors such as cost, success rates, and other important factors that may be relevant to your situation. To begin your research, start by researching the cost of different ART options. This includes not only the cost of the procedure itself, but also any additional expenses such as medications, consultations, and follow-up appointments. Be sure to compare costs across different clinics and locations, as prices can vary widely.
Next, evaluate success rates and what to look for. It is important to note that success rates can be reported in various ways, so be sure to look for the live birth rate as opposed to just the pregnancy rate. Additionally, success rates can vary depending on the type of procedure used, so be sure to ask about success rates for the specific procedure you are considering.
Overall, taking the time to research and compare these factors can help you make an informed decision when choosing the right ART option for you.
Step 4: Consider lifestyle choices during pregnancy
When undergoing Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART), lifestyle choices during pregnancy can have a significant impact on its success.
- Stress management
- Prenatal care
- Medications and supplements
By making healthy lifestyle choices during pregnancy, individuals can increase their chances of a successful ART outcome. It is important to consult with a healthcare provider and follow their recommendations for a healthy pregnancy and delivery.
Step 5: Ask questions during consultations
When choosing the right assisted reproductive technology (ART) for you, it is important to have a thorough consultation with your healthcare provider. Here are some questions you may want to ask during your consultation:
- What are the different types of ART available?
- Which type of ART is best suited for my individual situation?
- What are the success rates of the different types of ART?
It is important to take notes during the consultation and ask for clarification if needed. Don't be afraid to ask any additional questions that may arise during the process.
Step 6: Read reviews from previous clients
Reading reviews from previous clients is crucial when it comes to choosing the right assisted reproductive technology (ART) for you. Reviews provide valuable insights into the experiences of others who have undergone the same process. It is important to look for reviews that are specific and detailed, as they can give you a better idea of what to expect.
Step 7: Check eligibility criteria for each type of ART
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) is a widely used medical intervention in India. There are several types of ART available in India, including Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), In vitro fertilisation (IVF), Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI), Gamete Intrafallopian Transfer (GIFT), and Zygote Intrafallopian Transfer (ZIFT). The eligibility criteria for each type of ART can vary depending on various factors, including the age of the couple, medical history, and fertility status. In general, couples seeking ART must have a history of infertility, and the woman must have at least one functional fallopian tube. Age restrictions may also apply, with most clinics requiring women to be younger than 50 years old. Medical conditions such as endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and low sperm count may also affect eligibility. Overall, eligibility for ART should be determined on a case-by-case basis, with consultation with a qualified fertility specialist.
In conclusion, India's fertility industry has undergone rapid growth and development, largely due to the proliferation of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ARTs). While this industry has faced challenges such as unverified claims, inflated success rates, and the absence of standards, it has also provided crucial access to fertility treatment for many
individuals. As the market for reproductive body parts and materials continues to expand, it is important to prioritise ethical considerations and ensure that access to ARTs is equitable and affordable. Ultimately, the potential benefits of ARTs in improving reproductive health and enhancing reproductive rights cannot be overstated. To achieve these goals, continued investment in ART research and infrastructure is necessary.
If you or someone you know is struggling with infertility, it is important to seek professional guidance and support when considering Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). Milann Fertility Clinic
is a leading fertility clinic in India that offers a wide range of ART treatments and has a team of experienced professionals committed to patient care. By seeking guidance at Milann Fertility Clinic, you can benefit from their expertise and personalised treatment plans that cater to your unique needs. Join the conversation about ART and take the first step towards parenthood by contacting Milann Fertility Clinic today.
- "Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) Bill, 2020" - The official document of the proposed legislation governing ART practices in India. Link
- Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) - ART Guidelines - Guidelines provided by ICMR, the apex body for biomedical research in India, on various aspects of ART. Link
- National Registry of ART Clinics and Banks in India (NARCB) - An initiative by the Government of India to maintain a database of ART clinics and banks across the country. Link
- "Infertility and Assisted Reproductive Technology in India: Costs and Strategies" - A research article published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology of India, discussing the costs and strategies associated with ART in India. Link
- "Assisted Reproductive Technology in India: A 3-Year Retrospective Data Analysis" - A study published in the Journal of Human Reproductive Sciences, providing insights into the utilization and outcomes of ART procedures in India. Link