In vitro fertilisation (IVF) is a process in which the egg cell is not fertilised in the body of the woman, but rather “artificially” in a laboratory. The treatment is usually spread over several phases.

The doctors and medical experts at Hirslanden have decades of experience in the provision of IVF treatments and are specially trained to accommodate the different cultural requirements and expectations of our international patients.

When is in vitro fertilisation performed?

If there are serious complicating factors or if no pregnancy occurs despite repeated use of simpler treatment methods, the egg cell can be artificially fertilised in a test tube under strictly controlled laboratory conditions  (in vitro fertilisation, or IVF for short).

Our specialists at Hirslanden International will gladly advise you on the topic of in vitro and ICSI treatment in Switzerland.

In vitro fertilisation procedure

An IVF treatment consists of two phases:

Phase 1: Hormone treatment

The ovaries are stimulated with hormones to gain as many egg cells as possible at the same time. The doctor monitors the size and maturity of the follicles in the ovaries with two or three ultrasound examinations. As soon as the egg cells appear ready for fertilisation, ovulation is induced through an injection of a further hormone.

Phase 2: Removal of the egg cell and fertilisation in the laboratory

The fertilisable egg cells are removed through the vagina 36 hours later with the help of a long, fine needle in a procedure which can be performed under a brief anaesthetic.

On the same day, fresh semen from the partner is prepared in the laboratory, placed together with the egg cells and cultivated in an incubator. If one or more egg cells are successfully fertilised and these have developed into embryos over the course of the next few days, the doctor transfers the two-day-old embryo into the uterine cavity of the woman with the help of a thin catheter.

Two weeks after the removal of the egg cells, the result is established. The blood values will show whether the female body has accepted the pregnancy, or not.

When are ICSI treatments advisable?

If the man’s sperm demonstrates reduced quality or limited mobility, or if there is a limited number of sperm available, intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) can be performed.

Find out more about the success rates and risks of in vitro or ICSI treatment in the  overview of the topic “Artificial Insemination – Fertility Treatment in Switzerland”.