In vitro fertilization (IVF) involves a series of steps with medical and surgical procedure. Although the process could be different for different couples, it all culminates in embryo transfer. The doctor will explain the details and risks of the procedure during the consultation and help determine the number of embryos to be transferred. After the embryo transfer, the couple has to wait for 10-12 days to check the results for pregnancy. But in the meantime, there are certain instructions and precautions that must be followed. In case, a woman is unable to get pregnant with the first IVF cycle, she can choose to have multiple cycles. IVF cost in India makes it affordable for couple to undergo multiple IVF cycles to have a successful pregnancy.
- No sexual intercourse for next 12 days after the embryo transfer, until the pregnancy is confirmed.
- Avoid public pools, saunas and other places that can lead to expose to chemicals and bacteria until it a healthy progressing pregnancy has been been established.
- Quit smoking, drugs and alcohol altogether during the IVF procedure and after embryo transfer. Once the embryos transfer is done, the chemicals from drugs, cigarettes and alcohol can have very detrimental effects on the fetus’s development.
- No strenuous activities or high impact exercise until after clinical confirmation of pregnancy. Light aerobic exercises and walking are allowed but it is important to avoid heavy lifting (greater than 10 pounds) during the pregnancy.
- Discuss the medicines you have to take and try to minimize them, other than the prescribed ones. In case, any other medication is required for treatment of a medical condition after your embryo transfer, the doctor and team will prescribe following the pregnancy.
- No coffee or caffeinated beverages for the duration of the pregnancy. Decaffeinated coffee is alright. One must take care of the tea consumption as well as it also has caffeine. Herbal teas (decaf) can be used.
- Avoid fizzy drinks for at least the first 12 days or until the pregnancy is confirmed. Also, try not to eat gassy foods as they can also upset the stomach, and it is best to avoid stomach cramps and contractions which may have negative effects on embryo implantation.
The instructions about what to do after the transfer may vary for different clinics and patient’s particular needs, so they might not be the same for everyone. A woman goes through an entire process before the transfer, and money as well emotions are invested. Many patients are willing to do anything to improve their chances of having a positive result for pregnancy test.
Pamper your body
Implantation is believed to occur on the same day or the day after the embryo transfer, so it is advisable to relax and pamper your body in the coming days. Embryo transfer is typically done in a clinic or hospital and most women go back home the same day. They can relax and rest for the time ahead.
Many women take the day or days off after the transfer, although it’s not necessary. They can work from home, if possible in their position or consider it personal day off. However, going to work won’t compromise the outcome. Just remember to stay away from restricted activities such as lifting heavy weight, twisting, or others. Take it easy and care of yourself, and do not let the anxiety of wait stress out.
During the waiting period
The wait for a result from a pregnancy test can be antagonizing, especially after all the effort it’s taken to get to the embryo transfer. There are many things a person can do during this time:
- Continue taking the medications as prescribed by the doctor.
- Plan ahead to have a relaxing time or keep yourself distracted with activities that works best for you.
- Do not look for signs and symptoms of pregnancy during this time as there are no indicatives of pregnancy or no pregnancy. Some women who are pregnant may have spotting while others don’t, or some may have cramps if they are pregnant while others don’t. Many women have also reported breast tenderness, mood swings, and more, but there are many who feel nothing. Therefore, it’s best to continue taking the medications and wait for the test to confirm.
- It is also advisable to do some planning for the outcome. The pregnancy is the goal and one can start making changes to prepare for the results. But also keep in mind that the test could be negative and keep your calm.
Embryo transfer is the last step of the IVF procedure and many people feel light that the process is over. It can seem like a huge accomplishment at that point. Although, the anticipation and waiting is difficult, one must focus on the good and hope for the best outcome. It is good to remind yourself that everything has been done, and take it all one day at a time.