What Is IVF?


Quick Answer

IVF stands for "in vitro fertilization." It is a medical procedure used by couples who have trouble conceiving or who cannot conceive naturally. American Pregnancy Association explains that IVF is a type of assisted reproductive technology, or ART.

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Full Answer

IVF involves collecting eggs and sperm outside the body, then fertilizing the eggs under controlled circumstances, explains APA. The eggs are then placed into a uterus for a full-term pregnancy.

IVF is completed in cycles. Each cycle takes approximately six weeks, and most couples need multiple cycles before achieving a viable pregnancy, says BabyCenter. According to BabyCenter, there is only a 35 percent chance that an IVF cycle results in a successful implantation and a slightly less than 30 percent chance that a cycle results in a baby.

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