The uterus will shed it’s lining monthly when a women has a regular cycle. Sometimes the lining does not pass as menstrual flow but it moves into the fallopian tubes and can attach in the tube or on the ovaries, bladder, intestines or other areas in the pelvis. This can create a situation where there will be a mini menstrual period wherever the lining has landed and subsequently developed. The development of the lining outside the normal location is called endometriosis.
When areas of endometriosis develop, they can create areas of “stickiness” which may create tissue “gluing” to other tissues causing adhesions or scarring. This process could distort the tubes shape or create mini blocks inside the fallopian tubes making it more difficult for the sperm and the egg to meet, or it could impede the fertilized egg’s path into the uterus.
Mild endometriosis may have little to no affect on a women’s fertility potential, where moderate and severe forms could completely keep a pregnancy from happening.
IVF can help with conception by bypassing the fallopian tubes.
Estrogen is the hormone that fuels the growth of endometriosis. Pregnancy is a state that is very suppressive for endometriosis. For some patients who have been trying to conceive for awhile and have evidence of worsening endometriosis they may benefit by immediately proceeding to the IVF treatment. This will maximize their chance of pregnancy and with a pregnancy any further growth of the endometriosis will be minimized.
To minimize the growth of the endometriosis in the IVF treatment, Nova uses a unique stimulation approach that keeps the circulating estrogen level very low. This prevents a flare in the endometriosis that is so commonly seen with fertility treatments. There is no compromise in the success rates with this unique protocol, in fact, the chance of success is higher than the traditional IVF stimulation protocol.