How to Prepare for a Successful IVF Cycle
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How to Prepare for a Successful IVF Cycle

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is the most widely practiced form of assisted reproductive technique. It is also the most effective form of it. The procedure can be done with the sex gametes of the couple involved (sperm and eggs), or it can be carried out with eggs and sperm from either known or anonymous donors. In some cases, after fertilization, a gestational carrier may be used to carry the pregnancy to term.

IVF, in the actual sense, is a complex series of procedures aimed at helping a couple or an individual that is having issues with fertility and conception. It can also be done to prevent the passing of genetic issues to an offspring from the parents. An individual’s chances of conceiving and having children with IVF can be impacted by many factors like the age of the couple and the actual cause of their infertility. The treatment is also expensive, emotional, time-consuming, invasive, and legally complicated, so it is beneficial to the couple to only go through the treatment once and not suffer any failure.

How does a clinic prepare a couple for an IVF treatment success?

The success of an IVF treatment depends on a lot of factors like the age and body condition of the couple, medical issues, the treatment approach chosen, and so on. Before treatment is started with the gametes of the couple, the screening that is done to prepare them includes:

  • Semen analysis – This is usually carried out as part of the initial fertility evaluation. If it is not done then, it must be done shortly before the start of the IVF treatment.
  • Ovarian reserve testing – This is done to determine the quantity and quality of the eggs of the woman. The healthcare provider will usually test for the level of estradiol and anti-mullerian hormone in the blood during the first few days of the menstrual cycle. They may also test the concentration of follicle-stimulating hormone in the same period. The test results, usually combined with an ultrasound examination of the ovaries can help predict the response of the woman to the fertility medication that will be administered to her.
  • Uterine examination – This is done before the start of the IVF treatment; the doctor examines the inside lining of the uterus. The examination can be done through hysteroscopy or by sonohysterography.
  • Infectious disease screening – This involves screening the couple for any infectious diseases that may be present, both sexually transmitted and non-sexually transmitted infections.
  • Mock embryo transfer – The doctor may conduct a mock embryo transfer to determine the depth of the uterine cavity and the technique that will most likely place the embryo successfully into the uterus.

What are the ways to maximize the chances of IVF treatment success?

What are the ways to maximize the chances of IVF treatment success?
Picture courtesy: Arpanu Medical

In order to create the best chances for a successful IVF treatment cycle, individuals need to be very particular about their lifestyle choices. It is crucial that they carefully examine their habits, drop the harmful ones, keep the beneficial ones, and add extra helpful habits that will optimize their body for IVF treatment. The examination is appropriate in all the departments like feeding, exercise, etc. some of these changes include:


A healthy and balanced diet is the first step to ensuring the success of an IVF treatment cycle. It is also very important not to make any drastic changes to the diet throughout the treatment time. Some experts say that to improve the clinical outcomes of an IVF treatment, a Mediterranean diet for six months before the treatment should be adopted. A Mediterranean diet is made up of fresh vegetables, very little red meat, fish, whole grains, and legumes. Individuals should also avoid overly processed meals and cut down on coffee drinking as it can reduce the chances of a successful IVF cycle by up to 50%.

Mediterranean diet
Picture courtesy: Dietitian Catherine Chong


Abstaining from alcohol drinking before and during an IVF treatment can increase the chances of successful implantation. Excessive alcohol consumption massively reduces the chances of successful treatment. However, a glass of wine or a random bottle of beer may not have an adverse impact on the treatment chances. But it is important to follow the recommendations of the doctor, as some types of alcohol may interact negatively with some prescribed medication. This may lead to them completely prohibiting all types of alcohol consumption. After the embryo transplant, alcohol intake is completely forbidden as consumption of alcohol while pregnant has been linked to fetal alcohol syndrome and other serious hazards to the baby.


Smoking in all its forms is bad for the chances of success of an IVF treatment. Continuing to smoke during an IVF cycle can reduce the success of an IVF treatment and even affect a pregnancy. Quitting smoking before an IVF cycle is strongly advised as it can lead to a lot of problems.


Stress should be reduced as it reduces the chances of success of an IVF procedure. It is recommended that individuals maintain their normal light exercise routine and their meditation time. They should however not engage in more than 20km per week run. They should also avoid high-impact exercises like jumping etc.


It is recommended that a minimum of 6-8 hours of sleep should be observed every night as it has been proven to increase the chances of success of the IVF treatment. Sleeping time is the period where the body repairs and refreshes itself, and this can contribute to the success of an IVF treatment procedure. In cases of insomnia, melatonin may be prescribed by the doctor, as it helps improve sleeping conditions. It may also increase the chances of successful implantation.


A male partner is advised not to engage in any sexual activity 3-4 days before his sperm is collected. The female is also advised to abstain from any penetrative sex as it may lead to bruising or damage to the cervix. Sexual intercourse may continue 24-48 hours after the treatment.


Various recommended supplements may be taken before and during the IVF treatment. Prenatal vitamins can be taken about four weeks before the treatment. They will help increase folic acid levels which are beneficial to the mother and the fetus. All supplements taken should still be prescribed by the doctors. They will determine the beneficial and the harmful ones.

The information provided in this blog is for educational purposes only and should not be considered as medical advice. It is not intended to replace professional medical consultation, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult with a qualified healthcare provider before making any decisions regarding your health. Read more

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