Services – Thread Fertility

Thread Fertility

What is In Vitro Fertilization?

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a process where eggs and sperm are combined outside of the uterus to create fertilized embryos. These embryos are then put back into the mother’s womb to develop into a pregnancy.

IVF has been used for over thirty years. Today, it’s the most common method of medically-assisted pregnancy. IVF has the highest success rates of all assisted reproductive treatments.

IVF is ideal for:

  • Couples who have been trying to conceive for 6 months or more
  • Women who haven’t had success with other fertility treatments (like medication and insemination)
  • Individuals or couples with PCOS, endometriosis, low sperm count, and other fertility diagnoses
  • People who want to screen for hereditary disorders
  • Those who want pregnancy on-demand, including LGBTQ couples and single women
  • Couples who want to conceive proactively

IVF is a multi-part process, and the emotional, physical, and financial investments required can sometimes feel overwhelming. We’re here to answer your questions, provide resources, and help guide you through your journey to parenthood.

  1. STEP 1/8 Initial Fertility Testing & Diagnosis

    Depending on your reason for choosing IVF, you’ll go through diagnostic testing to see what the cause of your infertility is. Depending on the results, IVF may not be necessary or feasible, or the doctor might recommend alternative treatments to start.

  2. STEP 2/8 Pre-IVF Consultations

    The doctor will review your diagnosis with you and discuss your treatment options. If you decide to use IVF, our doctor and staff will go over the entire process in easy-to-understand terms. Then, a staff member will go over the financial side of the IVF process with you.

    Our goal in these consultations is to empower you with information and a feeling of trust and comfort. Once all your questions are answered, we’ll schedule each component of the process.

  3. STEP 3/8 Pre-IVF Preparation

    To prepare your body for IVF, you’ll need to take birth control pills. It might seem counterintuitive, but birth control helps:

    • Prepare your ovaries to respond better to hyperstimulation medicine (discussed in step)
    • Coordinate your cycle so you can plan your treatment around your schedule

    In addition to starting birth control, we may perform additional tests and recommend lifestyle adjustments as needed. 

  4. STEP 4/8 Controlled Ovarian hyperstimulation

    During this step, you’ll begin hormonal treatments by either taking a pill or an injectable medication. This medication causes your ovaries to produce more mature eggs than they would naturally.

    The end goal is to get at least three mature and fully-developed eggs. We’ll track your egg development with blood tests and ultrasounds. It takes time for your body to adjust to the hormones, so this stage can take several weeks.

  5. STEP 5/8 Ovulation & Egg retrieval

    Once you’ve produced enough mature eggs, you’ll receive a hormone injection that induces ovulation (releasing mature eggs).

    After about 36 hours, you’ll return to our office for the egg retrieval procedure. An anesthesiologist will place you under IV sedation and our specialists will remove the eggs. This only takes about 15 minutes, and you’ll rest comfortably afterwards in one of our recovery rooms. After about 30 minutes, you’ll be able to go home.

  6. STEP 6/8 IVF & Monitoring

    We perform the fertilization in our state-of-the-art lab with the retrieved eggs and a sperm sample provided by your partner or a sperm donor.

    The egg and sperm are typically mixed together in a standard insemination process. If the sperm is not as mobile or healthy, a single sperm is injected into each egg in a treatment called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).

    Our lab specialists closely monitor the embryos as they develop and will give you updates on their progression. During this stage, we can also screen for certain genetic disorders, ensuring only the healthiest embryos with the greatest chance of a successful pregnancy are transferred. If you’d like, we can also determine the gender of each embryo.

  7. STEP 7/8 Embryo transfer

    The doctor will meet with you to determine the best transfer plan. Our goal is to maximize the chance of a successful pregnancy while minimizing the chance of multiple births. Your age and prior history with IVF will affect your transfer plan.

    Once a decision is reached between you and the doctor, we’ll perform the transfer. This outpatient procedure doesn’t require sedation––it’s quick and often compared to the sensation of a pap smear. Any high-quality embryos left over can be frozen for use in future IVF cycles.

  8. STEP 8/8 Pregnancy testing & Monitoring

    After the transfer, you’ll take a medication that boosts the chances of successful embryo implantation and development. After about two weeks, you’ll take a pregnancy test. If the test is positive, we’ll administer another test soon after to make sure the pregnancy is progressing successfully. If everything goes well, you’ll be well on your journey to building your family.

    If your pregnancy test is negative, we’ll schedule a follow-up visit to discuss your options.

Embryo transfer

After the transfer, you’ll take a medication that boosts the chances of successful embryo implantation and development. After about two weeks, you’ll take a pregnancy test. If the test is positive, we’ll administer another test soon after to make sure the pregnancy is progressing successfully. If everything goes well, you’ll be well on your journey to building your family.

If your pregnancy test is negative, we’ll schedule a follow-up visit to discuss your options.

  1. STEP 1/4 Freezing Eggs

    Any high-quality embryos that are left after an implantation attempt can be frozen by flash-freezing. Flash-freezing is a special way to freeze your eggs and embryos that avoids trauma to the cells. Water is removed from the eggs or embryos and replaced with an “antifreeze”. Then the egg is quickly brought to a very cold temperature. By removing the water and freezing it quickly, your eggs or embryos are safe from damaging ice crystal formation.

  2. STEP 2/4 Thawing Frozen Eggs

    The frozen embryos from your previous IVF cycles are thawed in the laboratory.

  3. STEP 3/4 Embryo grading

    Your embryos are graded by highly skilled embryologists for health and viability to maximize your chance of success.

  4. STEP 4/4 Transfer

    The highest graded embryo is transferred. Just like the transfer process for those doing IVF for the first time, this quick outpatient procedure requires no sedation and feels similar to a pap smear.

Egg freezing

There are many reasons to freeze your eggs.

Having children later in life.

For both personal and financial reasons, many women choose to have children later in life. As women age, egg health drops off significantly. By freezing young, healthy eggs in your 20s, you can improve your chances of a successful pregnancy later in life when you’re ready to be a mom.

Undergoing cancer treatments

Many cancer treatments like chemotherapy and radiation can injure or destroy a healthy egg supply. Certain cancers may require surgical removal of a fallopian tube, an ovary, or the entire uterus. If you’ve been diagnosed with cancer and would like to have children in the future, egg freezing is a terrific option. The procedure is essentially the same as the beginning stages of IVF.

We offer a number of cryopreservation services, and we’re happy to discuss all of your options with you to find the best path for preserving your fertility.

  1. STEP 1/4 Stimulating egg production

    During this step, you’ll begin hormonal treatments by either taking a pill or an injectable medication). This medication encourages your ovaries to produce more mature eggs than they would naturally. The end goal is to get at least three mature and fully-developed eggs. We’ll track your egg development with blood tests and ultrasounds. It takes time for your body to adjust to the hormones and nurture your new eggs, so this stage can take several weeks

  2. STEP 2/4 Controlled Ovarian Hyperstimulation

    During this step, you’ll begin hormonal treatments by either taking a pill or an injectable medication). This medication encourages your ovaries to produce more mature eggs than they would naturally. The end goal is to get at least three mature and fully-developed eggs. We’ll track your egg development with blood tests and ultrasounds. It takes time for your body to adjust to the hormones, so this stage can take several weeks.

  3. STEP 3/4 Ovulation and Egg Retrieval

    Once you’ve produced enough mature eggs, you’ll receive a hormone injection that induces ovulation (releasing the mature eggs). After about 36 hours, you’ll return to our office for the egg retrieval procedure. An anesthesiologist will place you under IV sedation and our specialists will remove the eggs. This only takes about 15 minutes, and you’ll rest comfortably afterwards in one of our recovery rooms. After about 30 minutes, you’ll be able to go home.

  4. STEP 4/4 Flash-freezing eggs

    Flash-freezing is a special way to freeze your eggs and embryos that avoids trauma to the cells. Water is removed from the eggs or embryos and replaced with an “antifreeze”. Then the egg is quickly brought to a very cold temperature. By removing the water and freezing it quickly, your eggs or embryos are safe from damaging ice crystal formation.

Egg donation

Egg donation is the most common form of third-party reproduction. Whether from age or medical conditions, some women’s eggs are unable to produce a successful pregnancy. In these cases, eggs from a thoroughly vetted egg donor allow the client to carry and deliver a baby.

Once you have found your perfect egg donor, the actual donation process begins. As with all infertility treatments, there are a lot of details that can feel overwhelming. We’ve outlined the steps below, but rest assured doctor will go over the whole process with you, making sure you are confident, comfortable, and informed.

  1. STEP 1/8 Comprehensive diagnostic testing

    Explore your fertility options and determine if egg donation is right for you.

  2. STEP 2/8 Choosing an Egg Donor

    Our donor database is filled with qualified donors from diverse backgrounds. We have comprehensive information on their health history, family history, education, and life story, so you can make the most informed decision. Our doctor and staff are here to answer your questions and to help you understand the process, choose the right donor for you, and feel at ease.

  3. STEP 3/8 Evaluation Cycle

    During the evaluation cycle, you’ll take estrogen and we’ll use blood tests and ultrasounds to observe how your uterine lining is developing. This is a process to see what levels of hormones you need to successfully prepare for the embryo transfer. This cycle usually takes four to six weeks.

  4. STEP 4/8 Medication/Egg Donor Preparation

    Once the evaluation cycle is complete, you and your egg donor will start the donation cycle. You’ll take estrogen, and your donor will essentially go through the first half of the IVF process to develop and retrieve her eggs.

  5. STEP 5/8 Egg retrieval/Sperm sample

    On the day of egg retrieval, your partner (or the sperm donor) will provide a sperm sample in our office.

  6. STEP 6/8 In Vitro Fertilization

    The donor egg and sperm are combined to fertilize the eggs.

  7. STEP 7/8 Embryo transfer

    This outpatient procedure doesn’t require sedation––it’s quick and often compared to the sensation of a pap smear. Any high-quality embryos left over can be frozen for use in future IVF cycles.

  8. STEP 8/8 Pregnancy testing

    After the transfer, our team will administer pregnancy tests and other monitoring as needed to care for your developing pregnancy.