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What do in Vitro Fertilization Costs Cover?

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  • Written By: A. Garrett
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 28 November 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Costs associated with in vitro fertilization (IVF) cover pre-IVF screenings and associated treatments or injections, the procurement of the egg and sperm specimens, and the actual impregnation of the female patient. The average in vitro fertilization costs are based on one cycle of treatment. If more than one cycle is required for fertilization, the price of the IVF procedure will be higher. Typically, people seeking to conceive in vitro should expect to pay more due to the sensitive nature of IVF treatments. Also, in vitro fertilization costs are usually paid directly by the patient, although some insurance companies are beginning to include IVF as part of their coverage, and IVF financing is available for some.

In vitro fertilization joins the female’s egg with the male’s sperm in a laboratory setting. Due to the precision required for IVF, one aspect of in vitro fertilization costs is the controlling of ovulation. A set of hormones called gonadotropins are administered to the woman to inhibit the pituitary gland from serving its reproductive function; this allows the administrators of the IVF treatment to determine when eggs are released. Next, follicle stimulating hormones are introduced in order to force the reproductive organs to yield more eggs than usual. Also contributing to the in vitro fertilization expense are the ultrasounds required to monitor the development of the eggs inside the fallopian tubes.

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The collection of eggs and sperm also contribute to in vitro fertilization costs. Eggs are acquired via needle through the guidance of an ultrasound machine. Pain medication and sedatives are typically required because of the pain associated with the extraction process. Clinics performing IVF also charge for the collection and preservation of the semen that will be used to fertilize the egg.

Once the egg and sperm are collected, they are placed in a sterilized petri dish where they are incubated for a week. After a week, the egg samples are fertilized. One egg is subsequently selected for emplacement in the female and the rest are frozen for future treatments in case the first cycle fails to result in a pregnancy. The fertilized egg is then implanted in the woman’s uterus and pregnancy is usually the subsequent result. The IVF treatments and fertilization of the egg are typically the most expensive aspects of in vitro fertilization costs.

In vitro fertilization has become a more common and accepted manner of conception and has prompted some insurers to cover some or all aspects of the procedure. Also, clinics and financing companies have emerged to cover in vitro fertilization costs that are not paid for by insurers or to allow someone seeking IVF treatments to pay for them over a prolonged period of time. The availability of those financing options is dependent upon the creditworthiness of the borrower, however.

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