Saturday, January 1, 2050

IVF in Stork Fertility Center (IVF in Taiwan)

What is IVF?

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is an assisted reproductive method wherein oocyte are fertilized by sperm outside of the womb, hence the word in vitro. It involves hormonally controlling ovulation stimulating increased follicle development, transvaginal oocyte retrieval and sperm collection, laboratory incubation for fertilization and zygote implantation into the uterus to establish pregnancy. After sperm retreival and successful fertilization, the embryo is implanted to the mother’s womb. This procedure is also known as Test Tube Baby.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Across the sea, I stored my seeds (Part 2)

One of the differences between women and men is the attitude of making decisions.

Men are good at analysis, and women are good at observation.

While obtaining bountiful information,

most women encountered the mess of selection.

How to make decisions reasonably, not emotionally?

Calm down and do some calculations.

Shanghai, the city lightning all night, impressed people by the spring-up skyscrapers, population density and mortgage. At this transportation hub and financial center, people were good at calculations.

As a modern woman in Shanghai, I was always decorated myself with confidence and professional smiling, and these made me classy and fabulous. Being an independent woman (both on the financial and emotional sides) led me live better. Nonetheless, I remembered the lyrics in a Chinese song, "many people adore the beautiful and young appearances, but how many people can tolerate the changes by years?" Thus I decided to do some studies on egg-freezing (or IVF, I have heard that egg-freezing was just the first half of IVF program). Although I knew my countries has not opened it, I believed somewhere would open it for me.

About IVF, we were convinced that the first choice should be U.S., and Thailand the second. Maybe the concept was affected by the amount of online advertisements, which were mainly contributed from the centers in these two places. Initially, I tried to contact with two U.S. agencies, but was surprised by their prices—ranging from CNY 100,000 (~USD 15,200) to CNY 300,000 (~USD 45,500) per program, not including the fees for document preparation, translation, and hospitality. The price in Thai was more friendly, but I was still shocked by the recent bomb news.

Not only searching for the above two countries, I kept watching the information around the world, including Japan, Taiwan, Russia, Cambodia, Australia, EU countries...etc. Since I was working as an analyst, I would like to analyze all the faces of egg freezing—how do they calculate the success rate? Do people with different races have different success rates? Do they have enough cases and experiences in the service? Does the success rate base on per cycle or on cumulative cycles? How can I compare the cost of breakdowns while concerning the currency, distance, and daily expenses?

One of the differences between women and men is making decisions. Men are good at analysis, and women are good at observation. I had no ideas how to combine these two. Which one was the most appropriate to me? When I looked back, I would suggest you listing and scoring any items that you concerned about, such as time cost, living expenses, or success rate...etc. Then you could get both the priority and budget. One more important thing was your confidence. Do not stand back in hesitations again when you have already made a decision according to your list, no matter what you found from the new websites or others' opinions later. And, big hospitals did not equal to the better services.

I knew that the technique applied in the egg freezing was mainly "vitrification." The center should have experiences of vitrification in both egg freezing and IVF, since I would use these eggs one day (to do the IVF) in the future. I listed four key points to help myself for the selection as below,

1. Professions: good success rates in both egg freezing and IVF

2. Experiences: long enough in egg (or embryo) freezing and enough cases

3. Costs: I may need more than one cycle to harvest enough eggs, and thus the cost per cycle should not be too high.

4. Privacy and personal services: convenient, fast, and patient to help me do all things step by step

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I remembered a picture hanging on the wall of waiting zone at Stork Fertility Center, and it was a woman with tears. She looked happy, not sad. Maybe she had been longing for one thing, and finally got it with all efforts.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Across the sea, I stored my seeds (Part 1)

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both 
And be one traveler, long I stood 
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
~ Frost Robert,1920

As most traditional Chinese kids, I was always a typical "good" student—organized, concentrated, and keen to study. My life should be like this—studying with good grades, graduation with a honored prize, and marrying to a perfect Mr. Right. I met the "one" when I was 17, and I truly believed that we would be together during the rest of my life.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

The best timing of vitrification after blastocyst biopsy

What is the correlation between the vitrification timing after biopsy and the following clinical outcomes? 
Time is what we want most, but we use worst.

Through preimplantation genetic screening (PGS), couples with the indications of repeated implantation failure, recurrent miscarriage, and advanced maternal age, may select the chromosomally normal embryo to transfer (euploid embryo transfer). On the widely-used PGS platform—aCGH (now has been gradually replaced by next-generation sequencing system), the tested embryos must be vitrified after biopsy to wait for the PGS report release . When should the embryologists vitrify the biopsied embryo? Does the timing of vitrification correlate with the following clinical outcomes?