Friday, March 6, 2009

How much will having one ovary effect IVF success?

Now that we know we're doing IVF, it's now just a matter of when, we're wondering - with me having one ovary, will our IVF success rates be lower? If so, how much less of a chance will we have?

I asked my RE and was, truthfully, hoping for a more informative response. His reply was "If that ovary has a lot of eggs, that is what matters." I wanted to know:

1) Compared to the "average" woman with two polycystic ovaries, how many eggs would you expect to retrieve from my one ovary during a fresh cycle?

2) Assuming we'll have less eggs retrieved, should we expect that it's likely we'll not have any additional embryos left over after each fresh transfer?

Not satisfied with the answer he gave, I did some searching of my own and came up with a few insightful links. One was from a study that was done back in 1998, the treatment outcome in women with a single ovary versus patients with two ovaries undergoing in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer (IVF/ET) was "comparable to those with two ovaries." (click here for a PDF of the link).

I also googled to see if there were any other personal stories of women having one ovary and doing IVF and came up with these:

A blog by a woman who has only one ovary and one fallopian tube, has never had regular cycles and has PCOS and did IVF and got pregnant on the second transfer.

And another blog who has one ovary (has half of the other after having a laparotomy, but it doesn't' appear to work well) and was only allowed by her RE to do two IUIs and is now getting ready to move her first cycle of IVF. She also has endometriosis which is why, more than anything, they are moving more quickly.

That's all I could find during the time I looked, but I will be sure to keep this post up-dated if I find any other informative links. All in all, I'm feeling slightly better about at least being open to the idea that our chances might not be cut in half, which is nice. Still not sure how many tries we'd need though to keep the odds of IVF success in our favor. TBD...

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