What is the step-by-step process of an IVF cycle?

The step-by-step process of an IVF cycle involves several stages, including ovarian stimulation, egg retrieval, fertilization, embryo transfer, and the two-week wait for pregnancy testing. Each stage is crucial for the success of the treatment.

Ovarian Stimulation and Monitoring

During this phase, fertility medications are administered to stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs. Regular monitoring is done through ultrasound and blood tests.

Egg Retrieval Procedure

Once the eggs mature, they are retrieved through a minor surgical procedure called follicular aspiration.

Fertilization and Embryo Culture

The retrieved eggs are fertilized with sperm in a lab. The fertilized eggs, now embryos, are cultured for a few days.

Embryo Transfer

The best-quality embryos are selected for transfer into the uterus. This is done using a catheter in a non-surgical procedure.

The Two-Week Wait and Pregnancy Test

After the embryo transfer, there is a two-week wait before a pregnancy test can confirm the success of the IVF cycle.


Understanding the step-by-step process of an IVF cycle can help prepare couples for the emotional and physical journey of this fertility treatment.