IVF - In vitro fertilisation

Our founder, Simon Fishel, was part of the team that made the very first IVF baby. 

More than 5 million babies have been born with IVF treatment since Simon helped to innovate the procedure in the 70s. It’s one of the most effective and well-known fertility treatments, where an embryo is formed outside of the body and then placed back into the womb.    

Could IVF treatment be right for me?

Most of our patients come to us for IVF treatment, and there can be lots of reasons why we’ll recommend IVF as part of your treatment plan.

Here are some of the most common reasons why people need IVF:

  • Fallopian tube damage
  • Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Issues with sperm quality or number
  • Endometriosis
  • Advanced maternal age
  • Unexplained infertility

What does IVF treatment involve?

Simply, in IVF treatment we fertilise eggs with sperm in our lab. When the embryo or embryos are ready we then transfer them back into the womb of you or your partner to develop.

Getting started

Talking to us is the very first step on any IVF journey. We realise it's not always easy to take that first step but once you've been in touch we can help you to get started and book your initial consultation. All of our doctors and nurses are very dedicated and experienced - they'll make you feel supported and reassured.

Consultation

At your first consultation, we'll talk through your medical and surgical history and discuss your options.

Ovarian stimulation

When you start treatment we'll use drugs to stimulate your ovaries and increase the number of eggs you produce. In general, you'll need to administer the stimulation drugs daily by injection - we'll teach you how to do this properly.

Monitoring

Once we’ve stimulated your ovaries, we monitor your progress closely to see when your eggs are ready to be collected.

Egg collection

This simple procedure takes around 30 minutes, and is performed with sedation or local anaesthetic and pain relief. To collect the eggs, we pass a scan probe into the vagina and use ultrasound to guide a needle into one of the ovaries. We then extract eggs from the ovarian follicles; we can usually collect from nearly all of the larger follicles. It’s normal to feel a few twinges during collection, but it isn’t painful. After collection, we’d recommend you or your partner have a short rest before going home.

Sperm collection

We'll usually ask for the sperm sample to be given around the time of the egg collection. Some patients may have frozen sperm while others may need surgical sperm recovery. Alternatively, you might be using donor sperm.

Fertilisation and embryo development

Next, we fertilise the eggs with sperm to form embryos. We then grow the embryos in carefully controlled lab conditions until they’re ready to be transferred, at which point we thoroughly assess each one to decide which are most likely to succeed. At this stage, we’ll arrange a time to give you your fertilisation result and let you know when we need to see you again for embryo transfer. If you’re having any additional procedures, such as CAREmaps, pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) or pre-implantation genetic screening (PGS), these will take place before transfer.

Embryo transfer

When you come in for transfer, we’ll place your embryo(s) into culture medium and then use a fine catheter to transfer it into the womb of you or your partner. It’s a really short, simple procedure that only takes around 15 minutes, and there’s usually no need for sedation.

Pregnancy test

Around 14 to 16 days after your embryo transfer it’ll be time to take a pregnancy test. If your pregnancy test is negative or we don't find an ongoing pregnancy during your scan, we'll book you a follow up appointment with your consultant to discuss your next step. If the test is positive, we’ll invite you to come into the clinic 2 to 4 weeks later for an ultrasound scan to check for a heartbeat. If everything’s okay, we’ll discharge you into the care of your GP for antenatal care.

Some typical IVF costs

IVF treatments
Prices are indicative only but include monitoring, egg collection, embryo culture and transfer. Prices do not include drugs or other optional costs - costs typically range from £500–£1,000.
Natural IVF £2,980–£3,660
IVF £2,980–£3,660
Elective freeze of embryos  (excluding transfer) £2,950–£3,700

 

IVF using donated gametes

IVF using donor eggs £5,665–£9,400
IVF using donor sperm £3,765–£4,450

Our group pregnancy results

This is the CARE Fertility Group success rate - average of all CARE clinics.

Lisa and Damien's journey

Because of CARE we have a new life. And a new family.