Conventionele IVF behandelingen zijn erg kostbaar. Dit komt mn door twee zaken: 1/ De hoeveelheid medicijnen die worden voorgeschreven om de eierstokken te stimuleren en 2/ De kosten gerelateerd aan het laboratorium. IVF laoratoria zoals we die in het Westen kennen gebruiken zeer geavanceerde apparatuur en zijn daardoor erg duur in gebreuik. (The costs involved in IVF mainly relate to two aspects; The amount of fertility drugs used and the costs of the laboratory. Conventional IVF laboratories use very advanced equipment and are highly expensive to run.)

Met het Simplified Culture System (SCS), een klein gesloten systeem, ontwikkeld door het Walking Egg Project, kan IVF worden uitgevoerd zonder een compleet geavanceerd labortorium, waardoor de kosten aanzienlijk kunnen worden beperkt. (With the Simplified Culture System (SCS), which is an enclosed culture system in a lsmaller ‘shoe box sized ‘ environment developed by the Walking Egg project, IVF can be carried out without the need of a full laboratory, thus massively reducing the costs.)

In Milde Stimulatie IVF worden lagere doses medicijnen (FSH, fertiliteits hormonen) gebruikt dan in de conventionele IVF. Dit resulteert in een mildere, meer natuurlijke respons. Deze vorm van stimulatie is mild, veilig, geeft minder bijwerkingen en is ook minder duur. (In Mild Stimulation IVF, lower dosages of fertility drugs are used than in conventional fertility treatment. This results in a milder response, that is more natural and friendly to the body. In addition it is safer, has less side effects and is less expensive.)

Mild Stimulation IVF

Conventional IVF aims to stimulate the ovaries with such amounts of fertility drugs that they produce large numbers of follicles. This can however affect the quality of the eggs developing in these follicles. Aiming to increase stimulation and collect lots of eggs is not always a healthy approach. Apart from lower egg quality, conventional IVF can give significant side effects.

Conventional IVF stimulation regimes are associated with the risk of ovarian hyperstimmulation syndrome (OHHS). Other negative effects include emotional stress, abdominal discomfort, headache and weight gain. Moreover uncertainties remain regarding long-term health risks. The aim of Mild Stimulation IVF is to develop safer and more patient friendly protocols in which the risks of treatment are minimized.

Mild IVF is a form of IVF which is carried out within the natural menstrual cycle and which uses minimal doses of fertility drugs in order to achieve a mild response to stimulation. The approach of Mild IVF is based on a focus on quality of eggs and embryos, not quantity. A more gentle stimulation and working with your body, rather than against it, the focus is to collect a smaller number of eggs, but of a higher quality. This approach results in a number of advantages and success rates with Mild IVF are excellent.

The advantages of Mild IVF

Higher quality embryos Studies have shown that egg and embryo quality are better in Mild IVF compared with Conventional IVF.

Better implantation The lining of the womb is more favourable for implantation in Mild IVF. The high stimulating drugs and oestrogen levels in conventional IVF can adversely impact the chance of implantation and affect the future health of the baby.

A more natural and patient-friendly approach with less stress Unlike in conventional IVF treatment we do not shut down your menstrual cycle. The treatment is carried out in your own natural menstrual cycle and the associated physical and emotional stress in considerably reduced compared with conventional treatment. Women undergoing conventional, high stimulation IVF also report weight gain, whereas women undergoing milder approaches do not experience weight gain.

Shorter treatment time Mild IVF treatment is significantly shorter than conventional treatment, taking only 2 weeks. Combined with the reduction in side effects from having fewer drugs, treatment becomes much less stressful. For some patients, treatment can also be repeated in consecutive cycles if required.

Safer treatment Mild Stimulation IVF is safer than conventional IVF. The fact that it uses fewer drugs means that the risks and side effects associated with Stimulated IVF, including the risk of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS) are reduced..

More affordable Because we use fewer drugs, the cost is reduced compared with conventional IVF.

Simplified Culture System (SCS)

The Walking Egg Foundation is a charity sprung from the University of Genk, Belgium which has been working with a group of scientists with the aiming to reduce the cost of IVF while maintaining the quality. This would mean that access to IVF would increase both in the Western world and in the developing world.

The Walking Egg developed a Simplified Culture System (SCS), which is an enclosed culture system in a smaller ‘shoe box sized‘ environment. With this system, IVF can be carried out without the need of a full laboratory, thus massively reducing the costs.

A study has recently been carried out in Belgium which showed that both fertilisation and pregnancy rates were the same using the SCS as they were in traditional IVF.50 babies have, so far, been born using the SCS, and more women are currently pregnant as a result of this treatment. You can view the study in the Reproductive BioMedicine Online journal.