IVF cycle Step-By-Step : Begineer’s Guide

This IVF guide will attempt to explain all the intricate steps in a simple fashion.

One round of IVF treatment is what is described as an IVF cycle.  This usually starts with first day of your period.

As part of the fertility plan, one may start medication before first day of the cycle.

Step 1: Day 1 of Period

Your fertility expert will help you identify Day 1 of your period as everybody’s body is different. First day of IVF treatment is day 1 of your period.

Step 2: Ovary Stimulation

Its starts from Day1 itself. In your natural monthly cycle, 1 egg is produced by ovaries. Medication is taken for 8-15 days to stimulate the follicles to produce more eggs.

Your IVF expert will prescribe medication usually in form of injections as per your treatment schedule. Please make sure you ask them how and where to take the injections. If possible get your partner involved also. Most common medications used ad follicle stimulating hormone and Luteinizing hormone.

The medication encourages more eggs to develop.

Transvaginal ultrasounds are done to check development of follicles. Extensive monitoring is done at the end of stimulation face to prepare for ‘trigger injection’.

This get the eggs ready for ovulation usually the period where the eggs are released and you have your period. Your expert will schedule the egg retrieval.

Step 3: Egg Retrieval

A day procedure where eggs are collected from your ovaries. This procedure takes around 30 minutes. Using modern technology, a needle is guided into the ovary and specialist removes fluid from follicles who have a high probability to contain eggs.

Average number of eggs collected is around 8-15.

Step 4 : Sperm

Fresh sperm is collected in morning by the male or retrieved from lab in-case frozen.

Sperms are graded as per quality and the best sperm are chosen under microscope. They are chosen and segregated for further procedure.

Step 5: Fertilization of Eggs

The sperm and eggs are placed together in a dish and a chance is given for them to fertilize naturally as they would within your body.

Step 6: Development of Embryo

An Embryo is formed when the sperm fertilizes the egg. The embryo if formed is put in a special incubator where the conditions are perfect for development.

The lab creates the conditions suitable for the growth and nurturing the embryo.

The embryo’s are monitored for development and well being.

Step 7 :Transfer of Embryo

If the embryo successfully develops in the lab it is then transferred to the uterus. The specialist prepares your Embryo for insertion into your uterus. Care must be taken that the embryo is disturbed as little as possible.

One embryo is transferred at one time and others are kept on standby in the lab for future treatment.

Step 8 : Confirmation Blood Test

hCG is measured in your bloodstream which gives a positive confirmation of pregnancy.




IVF guide series will explain other parts of cycle in detail to further mitigate all queries and doubts of the expecting mother.

Recommended Read:

  1. Get A Life: His & Hers Survival Guide to IVF
  2. IVF: An Emotional Companion

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