6 Tips for Women to Cope with Infertility Challenges

Motherhood brings completeness to a woman’s life. Even women who don’t necessarily want to become mothers are often affected by society’s expectations to become a mother. The pressure to find an ideal partner and raise a family can be enormous, and women who are unable to or choose not to, can be made to feel alienated as though something must be deeply wrong with them. In India, be it from urban to rural societies, a girl child is raised with the assumption that they’ll become mothers someday and bring joy to their families.

From baby dolls to baby showers, girls and women are influenced by images and expectations from parents, in-laws, peers, religion, advertising and the media almost subconsciously pushing them for motherhood. Thus, once a woman is diagnosed with infertility or fertility-related problems, which pose a barrier in the way of their motherhood, stress and even psychological symptoms creep in. These factors can take a toll on her mental and physical health, causing further challenges to fertility treatment and outcomes. Stress can hinder fertility in both men and women.

Furthermore, there is some evidence that extreme stress may negatively affect outcomes of ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) in some individuals. GENOME helps in enabling couples to cope with stress due to infertility. Managing stress through reproductive counselling is in fact an indispensable aspect of GENOME’s treatment at all its Fertility Centre units spread across Eastern and Central India.

In this article our specialists have offered 6 tips to help women struggling with infertility challenges cope with their situation in a better way.

  • Acknowledging Is the Key to Coping with Infertility 

Due to the age-old perceptions prevailing in the society regarding infertility being mostly a female problem, it is often women who receive brick bats for not being able to conceive. However, today it is a known fact that men are equally responsible for infertility among couples. Woman facing infertility challenges should realize that it’s normal to feel sad and grief. It’s absolutely fine of the woman to take time to cry or express her feelings. (more…)

Genome’s Participation at ISAR Bengal Conference & Workshop – A Report

This year GENOME is celebrating 11 years of catering successful fertility services. Our Mission, since day one, has been “supporting and facilitating the process of conception through Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) for couples facing fertility-related issues and also in furthering the cause of fertility services by way of implementing extensive Research, Training and Development exercises in this field.” At GENOME, we actively participate in Fertility Congresses, Exhibitions and Workshops all over India, all around the year.

The month of February 2017 was special to us! We have been honoured to be an associate in organizing the 4th Annual Conference of ISAR (Indian Society for Assisted Reproduction), Bengal. This year’s conference was organized at The Bengal Club, Kolkata, from 10th February to 12th February. The 3-day mega event consisted of –Pre-Congress Workshop on Day 1 while the Main Congress  spanned Day 2 and Day 3, both.

The Pre-Congress Workshop kicked off on the 10th Feb with IVF Workshop conducted by GENOME -The Fertility Centre. The workshop was hosted by GENOME consultants Dr. Anuradha Sarkhel and Dr. Rutvij Dalal. While the clinical session was conducted by our revered reproductive consultants – Dr.Aindri Sanyal on ‘USG guided Egg collection technique’, Dr. Kausiki Ray on ‘USG guided embryo transfer’, Dr. Shefali Bansal Madhav on ‘Patient selection and pre-IVF investigations’ and Dr. Prasenjit Roy on ‘Stimulation protocol’. The clinical session was followed by actual video demonstration of OPU and ET.  The Embryology session of the workshop was conducted by our chief embryologist Ms. Atreyee Chatterjee on the topic ‘the IVF ICSI procedure – Present & Beyond’. As part of the workshop – the actual video demonstration of IVF-ICSI in the Embryology lab of GENOME as well as semen preparation for IVF at the Andrology lab of GENOME were shown to the attendees and received praises from the audience. Both sessions of the workshop was followed by Q&A sessions where our specialists answered the queries of the audience. GENOME’s IVF-ICSI Workshop at ISAR Bengal conference was highly appreciated by the attending dignitaries from the medical fraternity. Also other workshops on Ultrasound and Endoscopic surgery were organised as part of the Pre-Congress workshop .

The theme of the Main Congress for Day 2 and Day 3 (11 & 12 Feb) respectively was entitled “An International CME on Reproductive Health”, and rightly so, this year the conference saw the attendance of some of the most renowned dignitaries of international fame, in the field of ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) at the ISAR Bengal Conference. For the first time, an international level conference of such stature was organised in Kolkata, attended by luminaries in the field of Assisted Reproductive Technology like- Prof. Dr. Paul Devroey – The Pioneer of ICSI (Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection)  in the World from Belgium, Dr. Foad Azem – The World Famous Expert of fertility preservation from Israel, Prof. Dr. Baidyanath Chakravarty – one of the Pioneers of IVF in India, Prof. Dr. Abha Majumdar – one of the foremost practitioners of IVF in India, among several other renowned reproductive medicine specialists who attended the conference. (more…)

How Does The Egg Donation Process Work?

In an egg donation process, an oocyte, commonly known as an egg, is removed from a fertile woman. This egg is then donated to another woman so that she is able to conceive. Egg donation is part of what is known as Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). Typically, donated eggs are fertilized in a lab with the sperm of the intending father, after which the resulting embryos are prepared through a procedure like IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) or ICSI and are transferred into the uterus of the recipient either intending mother or surrogate. In other cases, all or some of the embryos may also be frozen for future use.

Steps for Egg Donation Process

There are steps that need to be undertaken in the process of egg donation to ensure that you are qualified to donate your eggs.

Phase 1 of Donor Qualification – Initial Screening: If you are a first time donor or have donated before, but not cycled for some time, an initial screening visit to the infertility specialist will be scheduled. If the fertility Centre is located in another area and you need to travel for the cycle, some of your pre-testing visits may be done at a local fertility clinic that your infertility consultant will find for you. Protocol differs with each doctor, but typically, the standard testing order includes the following:

  • Your blood will be drawn for hormone tests on the second or third day of your menstrual cycle and it may be necessary for you to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound.

  • If you get optimal hormone test results, you will need to undergo a psychological screening, which will take about 3 to 4 hours.

Phase 2 of Donor Qualification – Medical Screening Process: If you get optimal pre-testing results and have cleared your psychological screening, you will meet the cycling doctor for the first time so that their own genetic and medical screening can be conducted. (more…)

5 Fertility Myths Debunked

When you are trying to conceive yet without any sunshine even after repeated remedial measures, it can be depressing and frustrating in equal measure. They may cause you to believe some of the myths that are floating around about fertility. It is important that you learn to differentiate fact from fiction so that you do not end up trying something that stymies your chances of pregnancy. So, without much ado, here are five fertility myths that you should be aware of.

Myth 1: Women cannot get pregnant while menstruating

Fact:  This is quite a widespread myth and an old wives’ tale. Most women are aware that they need to have intercourse a few days prior to and during ovulation. However, what most women do not know that it is quite possible to get pregnant while they are still in their menstrual cycle. Sperms has the ability to survive in the uterus for up to five days; if you have intercourse as your period is approaching its end, the surviving sperms can fertilize an egg that is released during ovulation. While this is rare, it can happen to women who have less than 28-day menstruation cycle. It all depends on what is the cycle duration of the woman & varies from individual to individual.

Myth 2: It will take you a long time to get pregnant after you stop taking the pill

Fact: Believing anecdotal stories and the widespread misinformation on the Internet is an egregious mistake. Sometimes, women assume that once they stop taking birth control pills, it will take them anywhere from 6 to 12 months to get pregnant as that is the time needed by their body to regularize the menstrual cycle. (more…)

3 Step Guide to Prepare for Frozen Embryo Transfer

Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET) is a boon to couples who are struggling with infertility and fertility related problems. In the last decade FET has emerged as one of the choicest means for conceiving among women who are unable to conceive naturally. Moreover, the success rate of FET is almost equal to those from fresh embryo transfer cycles.

Females are born with a definite number of eggs in their ovary. From puberty onwards during each period (menstruation cycle) the number of egg diminishes and after the age of thirty five the count of eggs drastically falls which in turn risks the chances of unsuccessful pregnancy and enhances the possibility of miscarriage and other fertility related problems. However, with our modern socio-economic outlook to marriage, most couples are in their mid-30s when they decide to have a baby. But a women’s biological clock ticks according to nature’s own terms and so she faces the crucial challenge of struggling with getting pregnant owing to fewer number of healthy eggs in her ovary and other physiological obstacles barring her from conceiving. FET or Frozen Embryo Transfer comes across as the wonderful solution.

What is FET or Frozen Embryo Transfer?

By definition, FET is a cycle in IVF process (an Assisted Reproductive Technology procedure) in which frozen embryos (cryopreserved) are transferred to the uterus of women to initiate pregnancy. Usually, during an IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) cycle patients have additional embryos which they can opt to preserve (cryopreservation) for future. These thawed embryos or frozen embryos are used to initiate pregnancy again when the incumbent wishes to have another baby sometime in the future. Moreover, at times the IVF cycle may not be successful at one go. For them, the frozen embryos act as a backup and without going through the IVF procedure again, the thawed embryos produced during the previous IVF cycle are used again. Thus FET minimizes the effort of both the patient and the doctors as well as increases the possibility of pregnancy among older couples.

You might be wondering what FET has got to do with young couples? Well, honestly speaking, even if you are in your best fertile health right now it is inevitable that your fertility window will close after a certain age. And if you choose to have a big family as you go along the myriad shades of conjugal life, you may wish to have a new family member some years from now. What then? (more…)

Understanding Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) – A Personal Account

On a rainy Monday in mid-July we received a call from a lady from our neighboring county – Bangladesh, asking for help! She wanted to talk to our reproductive specialist about her case. Also, she informed us (to our delight) that she has full faith in our treatment procedure as a close relative of hers had conceived earlier with IVF done at our Fertility Centre in Kolkata. Yes, the nature of her approach made our reproductive counselor sanguine that hers was a case to be dealt with much more cautiously. Why? Because, the lady was in her borderline (aged 35 at that time) and had already underwent two successive miscarriages and she even disclosed that she had underwent a rehab owing to the deep psychological trauma she faced. She sounded desperate over the phone, to have a baby, as soon as she could. We suggested an appointment with our senior reproductive medicine specialist at the earliest. We extended all our assistance for the couple to obtain the medical visa and in a month’s time she came over to our Fertility Clinic in Kolkata with her husband for consultation. Her past medical reports showed that the lady had problems with fibroids in her uterus which blocked smooth pregnancy earlier. Surgically removed, surprisingly she was in good shape to conceive. Yet, our reproductive medicine specialist suggested not to take any further risk.

IUIAs with all women, her biological clock was ticking faster towards menopause and she had only a handful of eggs left. So the best ways suggested for her was IUI and IVF. IUI or Intrauterine Insemination was something alien to her at first although she knew about IVF or In-Vitro Fertilization.  She was briefed amply about IUI. Our specialist made necessary tests (more…)

MAITREE 2016 : Strengthening The Pillar of Nursing

On 8th November 2016 at Kalamandir, the Neotia Academy of Nursing proudly celebrated “MAITREE” – its Annual day programme and lamp lighting ceremony with all the students, their guardians, the staff along with distinguished guests of honour and reputed healthcare leaders from various hospitals and health educators from various institutions.

Like every year Maitree is based on a well thought out theme. This year “Knowledge and Compassion” is the theme which is the pillar of nursing. Knowledge combined with compassion brings enlightenment. This enlightenment is best reflected in the positive change in health & behaviour of the students to transform them to the divine profession of Nursing.

ANNUAL LECTURE SESSION

Among the guest who have addressed the annual lecture session there was Prof. (Dr.) Bhabatosh Biswas – Vice- Chancellor, The West Bengal University of Health Sciences as chief guest, Mrs. Bandana das – Principal, Neotia Academy of Nursing, Prof. M Venkat – Principal, Career Nursing College, Bhopal as Guest of Honour, & Dr. Sudip Chakravarty, Member, Governing Council, Neotia Academy of Nursing. Mr. P.L. Mehta, Member, Governing Council, Neotia Academy of Nursing was among the dignitaries present.

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In the annual lecture session Prof. Dr. Bhabatosh Biswas praised the initiative of the Academy in taking the Nursing education forward in this region and also stressed upon the role of clinical exposure to training more than theoretical knowledge, Mrs. Bandana Das talked about the journey & achievement of the Neotia Academy of Nursing which presently has 400 students, Prof. M. Venkat highlighted the need for  Compassion is essential in nursing fraternity to promote empathetic care to the patient which further increases the interpersonal relationship and decreases hospital stay. (more…)

Understanding PCOS and Its Role in Causing Infertility in female

Saikat and Leena (names changed), both in their mid-30’s had been married for the last 4 years but were unsuccessful ever since in conceiving. Then 2 years back they started consultation with our fertility consultants and were under the treatment of GENOME’s renowned reproductive medicine specialists. Both, Saikat and Leena were tensed and clueless when they arrived at our Fertility Centre for the first time. But, upon check-up the doctors found that Leena was suffering from PCOS and after a few other tests the physicians were certain that the root cause of the infertility for the couple was PCOS or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. In the case of our patient Leena, PCOS was found to be playing a direct role in blocking her fertility and pregnancy. In fact, on detailed medical examination it was found that she had ‘fibroids’ (an abnormal mass of tissue) in her uterus as a result of PCOS, which had remained undetected for years. As it was asymptomatic or benign, we suggested surgical procedure for removal of the fibroids which the couple consented to. After the successful procedure, a gap of one year of healing and reconditioning was suggested by our fertility specialist, following which Leena went for IVF at GENOME and conceived in the very first cycle of FET or Frozen Embryo Transfer. Now a happy mom, Leena and her husband Saikat is one of our ‘proud parents’.

polycystic ovarian syndrome - genome the fertility centreThis sounds like an inspiring success story, right? In fact, it is just one of the several others that we would be sharing with you in due course. But the crux of the matter is that – PCOS remains as one of the most common causes of female infertility and most often a timely medical intervention (early detection, treatment and counseling) can effectively control PCOS, enabling the person to conceive and enjoy parenthood. Let’s understand what PCOS is and how to get rid of it. (more…)

When Should You See A Fertility Consultant?

Possibly you may have been a bit stressful of late. It may be due to the fact that your partner happens to be travelling during ‘your right time’ or something else like a previous miscarriage or any other ‘deep seated’ physiological or psychological issue that’s responsible for your seemingly unexplained infertility, month after month! If you’re not able to figure out what’s going wrong, it’s time to sit down with a fertility consultant and uncover the real cause of your problem.

“Many men and women do not realize the grave situation they’re putting themselves in if they don’t opt for an early diagnosis of their infertility problem.” according to one of our renowned consultants in reproductive medicine at Genome – the Fertility Centre. Once infertility is diagnosed, it can take up some time to counsel and the treatment procedures vary depending on the issue in hand. So if you’re in your mid 30’s chances are that you’re already in the borderline, so you cannot wait much further to have a baby. If you have the slightest anomaly in getting pregnant ‘naturally’, don’t waste time by going through it all over again. Get an appointment with a reproductive consultant at the forefront. But “how do I know the tell-tale signs that it’s time to visit a fertility consultant?” Here, we have discussed the four common signs which will tell you that it is time to pick up the telephone or browse online and get an appointment with a fertility consultant at the earliest.

fertility centre kolkata#1 “We’ve been trying for months without success, is something wrong with me?”

While trying to conceive and not being able to is quite frustrating, stats show that only 1 in 8 couples actually struggle with infertility. The reason for not being successful can stem from various source and may even be psychological rather than being physiological at all. So don’t be judgmental about your partner’s or even your own incapability. Successful pregnancy occurs only when several biological conditions are fulfilled. Infertility specialists opine that women over 35 years should not wait for more than 6 months of trying without success and see a reproductive specialist right away. For the under 35 crowd, that wait should not be more than 1 year. Infertility stats have shown that male infertility account for 40% of all infertility issues among couples. Thus it might not be you at all but your partner who might need the help of the reproductive consultant.

#2 “I have a pre-existing condition, will I get pregnant at all?”

There exists a number of women’s health related conditions which may impact her fertility and pregnancy. Some of these conditions may be diagnosed during her early childhood but most others remain dormant and hence completely undetected till the time it starts acting as a hindrance to fertility and pregnancy. Common anomalies include – abnormalities in the uterus, imbalance in hormones leading to underdeveloped reproductive system as well as endometriosis, PCOS or polycystic ovarian syndrome etc. Make sure that these issues are detected as soon as possible and treated properly at the earliest. The sooner these medical conditions are treated the better your chances of starting off with a healthy and happy parenthood. (more…)

5 Things You Didn’t Knew About Sperm Donation

What instantly comes to your mind when you spell or hear the word ‘sperm donation’? This is one of the foremost questions that reproductive counsellors ask interested candidates who call up or visit our Fertility Clinic in Kolkata for sperm donation!

 #1 What is Sperm Donation?

Sperm donation indicates the process of donating, collecting and preserving sperms (from professional and screened sperm donors) which thereafter can be used in artificial insemination procedures like IUI (IntraUterine Insemination), IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) etc.

Most couples dream of becoming proud parents. Infertility strikes a cruel blow shattering their dreams of enjoying the bliss of parenthood. Assisted Reproductive Technology (ARTs) like IVF, ICSI, IUI, LZH etc. procedures have emerged as soul-savers to couples diagnosed with infertility, in the last few decades, helping them to have their own child.

 #2 Why Donor Sperms are needed?

GENOME“In humans 40 million to 1.2 billion sperms are released in a single ejaculation event.” But only a single sperm fertilizes the egg during fertilization which ultimately forms the embryo and ushers in pregnancy. When sperm count is less or sperms are almost absent in the ejaculate, artificial insemination through use of donor sperms comes across as the preferred choice for the couple. (more…)