Sunday, January 11, 2015

How can I check if my IVF Pregnancy is Healthy?

For most women, a pregnancy is something they look forward to with a lot of excitement. This is truer in the case of infertile women who have waited for a long time and worked hard to have that baby. When they finally do get pregnant, they are in seventh heaven and start dreaming about the time that their little wonder will be in their arms.

The one thing I would like to say here is, it’s important to understand that not all pregnancies will have successful outcomes. Approximately 10% of all pregnancies (both IVF and those made in the bedroom), will be unsuccessful. These may end up in a miscarriage or an ectopic.
The Crucial Phase

The first 4 weeks of a pregnancy are the most crucial ones and the risk is higher in this period. This is also why patients tend to be on edge and heave a sigh of relief only after they are 8-weeks pregnant; which is when they see their baby's beating heart on the ultrasound scan. 

IVF patients are at higher risk of suffering a failed pregnancy. This is primarily because they are older. There are higher chances of genetic defects in an older egg, which ups the risk of a miscarriage. Some older patients may also have pre-existing medical conditions such as damaged fallopian tubes that increase ectopic pregnancy-risk.  And so we monitor IVF pregnancies scrupulously to ensure that they are progressing well. The one stumbling block is that certain doctors do not carry out the monitoring properly and patients end up bearing the brunt of their lapses.

When Early Diagnosis is Important

This commonly occurs in the case of medical tourists that travel to another city for their IVF treatment. If the patient has an ectopic pregnancy that is not diagnosed in a timely manner (because the doctor did not think it was a possibility), the patients may then end up losing a lot of blood if the tubal pregnancy ruptures.

In case the pregnancy is not viable, it's important that the doctor make the diagnosis of a failing pregnancy as early as possible. The situation will have to be managed appropriately, and the patient can be counseled and given enough emotional support during this stressful time.

The Waiting Period

The silver lining is that most IVF pregnancies are healthy; and the monitoring is one way of reassuring the patient that all is well. But this waiting period can make IVF patients anxious and it’s natural for their minds to play games. Doctors have to take ultrasound scans and check hCG levels to make the right diagnosis. Often, the sonographer who does the scan does not have the knowledge to make sense of HCG levels which can result in false alarms.

Empowering Patients

This is exactly why we created the free website- The intelligent algorithms it uses, helps patients make sense of their hCG levels, in conjunction with their ultrasound scan results. hCG expert is a very user-friendly site for patients. It’s also a good source of medical data for us and speeds-up the diagnosis of an abnormal pregnancy. Doctors can refer their patients to this site and patients can source and understand this information themselves.

It helps empower the patients, proves to be a time-saver for doctors and the latter find it easier to counsel patients who are actively-engaged. HCG expert will allow you to monitor and track your early pregnancy, so you can reassure yourself that all is well, and this will allow you to enjoy your pregnancy!

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