Fertility problems are far more common than most people realize. In fact, the majority of couples who have decided to attempt conception find that the process takes much longer than they had imagined. For some, the process does eventually happen on its own, but many find themselves seeking fertility treatment. There are several fertility treatments available to help couples increase their chances of pregnancy, with the most well-known being IVF, an assisted fertility treatment that involves placing a fertilized egg directly into a woman’s uterus. While this is one of the most popular fertility treatments, it is not the only one for patients to explore. Some patients may be suitable candidates for zygote intra-fallopian transfer. Dr. Janelle Dorsett and her team are happy to discuss zygote intra-fallopian transfer (ZIFT) with her Lubbock, TX patients to determine if this is the right fertility treatment for them.
What Is ZIFT?
Zygote intra-fallopian transfer, which is commonly referred to as ZIFT is a fertility treatment that has a lot in common with IVF, or in vitro fertilization. As with IVF, ZIFT treatment begins with ovarian stimulation, followed by egg retrieval, and then egg fertilization. Again, just as with IVF treatment, ZIFT involves combining a woman’s egg with her partner’s sperm in a laboratory setting where it is monitored to confirm fertilization. Once an egg has successfully been fertilized and a zygote has formed, it is ready for transfer. This is where ZIFT treatment differs from IVF. During IVF treatment, the fertilized egg is transferred directly to the woman’s uterus. ZIFT instead places the zygote in the woman’s fallopian tubes. This does require minor surgery, which makes ZIFT one of the most invasive fertility treatments. Ideally, if treatment is a success, the transferred zygote will travel through the fallopian tubes and implant itself into the woman’s uterus, thus resulting in pregnancy.
Benefits of ZIFT Treatment
One of the benefits of ZIFT treatment is that it is able to help patients with a variety of infertility problems. Even in cases where infertility is unexplained, ZIFT may be successful. As long as a woman has at least one open fallopian tube, ZIFT treatment has about the same success rate as IVF. One reason that some patients prefer ZIFT over IVF is that they view it as a more natural implantation. The fact that the zygote is able to naturally travel to the uterus on its own appeals to some patients, although, medically, there is no advantage to this implantation versus direct implantation into the uterus.
Drawbacks of ZIFT Treatment
The invasive nature of ZIFT is the biggest drawback of this fertility treatment, and the primary reason that many fertility clinics do not even offer this technique. IVF offers virtually the same success rates and can be done less invasively (without surgery). ZIFT is also more expensive than IVF treatment, which is another factor to consider when deciding on the most appropriate fertility treatment.
Schedule an Appointment
At The Center for Reproductive Medicine, Dr. Janelle Dorsett and her team of fertility specialists offer a number of treatments to help patients overcome fertility problems. If you’d like to learn more about these treatment options and how they may benefit your unique situation, schedule an appointment with Dr. Dorsett at your earliest convenience.