ProcreaWinnipeg, Manitoba

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a popular and successful infertility treatment. This procedure involves removing eggs from the ovaries and inseminating them in a culture dish. Following fertilization and early embryo development, the embryos are transferred to the uterus.

View Success Rates

The IVF Cycle

IVF treatment is a multi-step process involving ovarian stimulation, monitoring and ovulation induction, egg retrieval, and embryo development and transfer.

  • Controlled Ovarian Stimulation
    During the IVF cycle, one of several hormone preparations is administered by to stimulate the growth and maturation of a number of ovarian follicles. The follicle is the structure in the ovary which contains the egg.

  • Monitoring and Ovulation Induction
    Monitoring involves ultrasound and blood testing. When monitoring indicates that follicles have developed sufficiently, final maturation is initiated by hormone injection. Egg retrieval is scheduled approximately 34 to 36 hours later.

  • Egg Retrieval
    This procedure is performed under local anesthesia. A combination of medications is used to facilitate patient comfort and relaxation. Mature follicles are identified by vaginal ultrasound; a needle is guided through the wall of the vagina and into each of the mature follicles. The follicular fluid containing the eggs is then aspirated into culture tubes for subsequent in vitro fertilization.

  • Embryo Development and Transfer
    A semen sample is obtained shortly before or after egg retrieval. The sample is assessed, processed and inseminated into defined media containing the eggs. Approximately 20 hours later, fertilization is determined. On the day of embryo transfer (3 to 5 days after egg retrieval), continuing embryo development is assessed by confirming that embryonic cells have divided. This procedure is simple and requires no anesthesia. 1 - 3 embryos are transferred depending on the patient's age and embryo development. (day 3 embryos vs blastocyst transfer). The embryos are placed into a catheter which is then passed through the cervix into the uterus where the embryos are released. Embryos that are not transferred may be preserved for future use.

Typical IVF Treatment Cycle

   Procedure    Approximate Timing
   Suppression    Starts Approx. 21 days prior to stimulation
   Stimulation    Day 1 to 11
   Blood Monitoring    Days 1, 7, 10, 11
   Ultrasound    Days 8, 10, 11
   Hormone Injection    Day 11
   Egg Retrieval    Day 13
   Embryo Transfer    Day 16
   Pregnancy Test    Day 29


  • The potential for success may be significantly increased when IVF is used in combination with other reproductive technologies including intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) and assisted hatching.
  • Multiple births occur approximately once in every four pregnancies.

« You and your spouse will meet with your physician who will give you the diagnosis and together you will assess whether the in vitro fertilization treatment is best suited to your situation. »