Our ART program is over twenty-five years old. At IFER we perform over 1,000 cycles/year and our pregnancy rates are comparable to those reported by the best programs in the world. Our five-story building and large staff of physicians make IFER one of the largest fertility institutes in South America www.ifer.com.ar
Egg donation has become widely utilized throughout the world after it became clear and common knowledge that the chances of live birth (take-home-baby-rate) decrease with increasing female age. Poor ovarian reserve (proven by ovarian stimulation), ovarian insufficiency secondary to chemotherapy for cancer or secondary to genetic reasons, multiple IVF failures or advanced female age are some of the conditions that can be treated with donor eggs.
In our program we use one donor for two recipients (“split-donor cycles”) maintaining a good pregnancy rate (50 %), reducing waiting periods and diminishing costs. Argentine peso currency exchange rate is also very favorable to the foreign patient.
Dr. Jacqueline Buzzi is in charge of coordinating egg donor cycles with recipients and she provides affectionate and excellent medical care throughout treatment. Over 200 donor cycles are performed yearly in our institute, representing 20 % of the total cycles of ART every year. Our patients come from all over the world.
Our egg donors are screened according to guidelines suggested by the Ethics Committee of the Argentine Society of Reproductive Medicine (SAMeR), adapted from the ASRM (American Society of Reproductive Medicine) guidelines. This includes infectious and genetic (karyotype) screening. Our donors are young (21 to 30 years old) and with proven fertility. They are mostly of European extraction.
Screening checklist is similar to the IVF patient
Download Recipient Screening Checklist - IFER PDF III >>
The average waiting period for a recipient is around two to three months. If special or unusual donor characteristics are requested, it may be longer.
Download Recipient Medication List - IFER PDF IV >>
Our clinical pregnancy rate is close to 50 %. This is similar to pregnancy rates reported in large centers in the world, including most US programs. It is important to emphasize that the age of the recipients (up to 50 years of age) does not affect these rates since the oocytes utilized are obtained from young and fertile donors.
Either in-vitro-fertilization (IVF) or intracytoplasmic-sperm-injection (ICSI) are undertaken after failure to conceive naturally or by means of less sophisticated treatments such as intrauterine insemination. In certain situations IVF or ICSI represent the sole alternative for having a child (e.g. blocked tubes or severe sperm defects).
An ART cycle consists of several stages:
We offer IVF to foreign patients requesting donor sperm since the pregnancy rates (50 %) far exceed those of artificial insemination (15 %) and allows us to cryopreserve embryos for a second IVF transfer (frozen embryos) at a smaller cost (40 % pregnancy rate).
Our sperm donors are screened according to guidelines suggested by the Ethics Committee of the Argentinian Society of Reproductive Medicine (SAMeR), adapted from the ASRM (American Society of Reproductive Medicine) guidelines. They are 21 to 40 years old, mostly of European extraction, and with proven fertility www.cryobank.com.ar
Egg freezing is a breakthrough technology that allows women to freeze and store their eggs until a pregnancy is desired. This new technology is possible thanks to a novel freezing method called ‘vitrification’, by which the oocytes are flash-frozen avoiding the formation of ice crystals inside the cells and providing a very high survival rate.
Even though the main reason for this technique started off as preservation of fertility in women facing cancer treatment, it is actually being undertaken to postpone childbearing for social matters. It has become common knowledge that female fertility decreases with age and many women are resorting to this new technology when they feel their biological clock is ticking away. The ideal age to undergo egg freezing is between 30 and 38 years, and reasonable in most cases between 39 and 41 years.
It takes approximately four to six weeks to complete the egg freezing cycle, which follows the same protocol as IVF: one cycle of birth control pills followed by ten to twelve days of self-administered hormone injections. Once the eggs have matured (according to follicle size and serum estradiol levels), they are removed through the vagina using an ultrasound-guided needle. This procedure is done under intravenous sedation and is not painful. Immediately following retrieval, the eggs are initially evaluated for health and then frozen. When embryo transfer is desired, the eggs are thawed, injected each with a single sperm (ICSI) to achieve fertilization, and transferred to the uterus as embryos.
These are usually performed under local anesthesia and mild sedation. Our group has great experience in dealing with azoospermia and has helped hundreds of patients accomplish their goal of having biological children. The sperm retrieval rate is around 50 % in non-obstructive cases and almost 100 % in patients with obstruction (e.g. vasectomy). The ICSI cycle can be done at the same time of sperm retrieval or planned after the procedure is performed, the sperm cells are found, and are frozen for later use.