An embryo transfer is an exciting and nerve-wracking moment in your fertility treatment. After weeks of medication, careful monitoring, egg retrieval, and the anticipation of seeing how your embryos develop, this is the final step towards a possible pregnancy. Once your embryo is placed in your uterus, the final stage of pregnancy is implantation. Implantation is when an embryo burrows into the endometrium or the uterus lining. This stage will confirm your pregnancy and successful IVF cycle. Here, we run you through some after-embryo transfer precautions to help improve your chances of falling pregnant.
What Influences Implantation Success Rates?
Successful implantation depends on two factors: embryo quality and the receptiveness of the endometrium. Most implantation failures happen because an embryo is aneuploid or “chromosomally abnormal.” This is why implantation rates reduce as women age because the proportion of chromosomally normal eggs reduces with age. Uterine receptivity is affected by several factors, including hormonal imbalances, anatomical issues with the uterus, or problems with the endometrial lining. Proper diagnosis early in your treatment should identify any issues; usually, there are ways of treating these problems before embryo transfer.
After Embryo Transfer Precautions
Many women wonder what they can do to encourage successful implantation. While it is largely down to nature taking its course, there are some things you can do to help improve your chances. Below are some after-embryo transfer precautions to take after the procedure.
OK, this phrase is overused and can come off as dismissive of true infertility issues, but in this case, relaxing is crucial. Although it might seem not easy after so much anticipation. More than anything, it is important not to worry too much about implantation and cause unnecessary anxiety. Make sure you get plenty of sleep and listen to your body; if you feel like taking a day off work, go for it. Go for a gentle walk if you need to get out of the house: either way, one of the most important embryo transfer precautions is to stay calm.
Stick to Low Impact Exercise
Gentle exercise like walking or yoga is fine, but you should avoid high-impact exercise. The reasons for this are twofold: vigorous exercise can stimulate uterine contractions and raise body temperature, which can compromise implantation. Therefore, you should abstain from intense workouts like running, cycling, or heavy weights during this period.
Take a Pause on Shaking those Sheets
While there are differing opinions on this issue, vigorous exercise or sexual intercourse can trigger uterine contractions. So, to be safe, you might want to abstain for a couple of weeks until your pregnancy is confirmed.
Keep Your Cool
A raised internal temperature can compromise implantation. Therefore, you should avoid hot tubs, saunas, or steam rooms – no matter how relaxing they may be. Some doctors also recommend avoiding being submerged in water after embryo transfer, as it can cause infection.
Eat Like You’re Pregnant
Although the evidence about how diet affects implantation is unreliable, a good policy is to eat like you’re already pregnant. Consume a balanced diet with plenty of protein and fiber and avoid high-mercury fish and soft cheese. In addition, of course, you should avoid all toxins like alcohol, caffeine, and smoking.
Remember Your Doctor is There to Support You
Waiting to find out whether or not you’re pregnant is an exciting time. However, it can also be fraught with anxiety. Remember, during this period, your provider is here to help you every step of the way. If you have any worries or questions about after embryo transfer precautions, consult with your fertility specialist.