After patients undergo controlled ovarian hyperstimulation to produce eggs, IVF egg retrieval (sometimes referred to as IVF egg harvesting) is performed under intravenous sedation anesthesia
by physician anesthesiologist in our Surgical Center. A sterile vaginal
ultrasound probe is used to guide a needle through the vaginal wall and
into the follicle of the ovary. While long, the needle is not much
wider than a needle used to draw blood from a vein in the arm.
the needle is inside the follicle, suction is created which pulls the
egg and the fluid through the needle and into a collection tube. When
one follicle is drained, the needle is gently repositioned to collect
fluid from each adjacent follicle. This is done for both ovaries. The
follicular fluid is given to the embryologist, who examines it under a
microscope to find the eggs. The entire egg retrieval procedure takes approximately 20
minutes. After one hour of observation in the recovery room, patients
are allowed to return to their home or hotel.
After IVF egg harvesting is complete, egg fertilization
and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)
procedures can take place.