Mini IVF or minimum stimulation IVF is a breakthrough concept in assisted reproductive technology. One of the reasons for its increasing popularity is, that it comes very close to nature’s way of helping a woman get pregnant. Mini IVF abroad is much cheaper than what it is in the USA and is practiced by our partner fertility clinic in Mexico.
The principal idea of mini IVF treatment is to not over-stimulate the body to produce many average-quality eggs, but, to mildly stimulate the ovaries and come up with a few, high-quality eggs. This is what the human body naturally does, that is, with one mature egg discharged every month, the woman’s body also produces a few more equally good eggs that are ready to be fertilized. Minimum stimulation IVF prods the body to do this more efficiently, but with minimum hormonal medicines.
Though many couples/persons suffering from infertility or other reproduction-related problems like blocked fallopian tubes, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) do resort to standard IVF or hyper-stimulation IVF, not everyone is comfortable with the idea of being injected with so much medication. Nor can everyone afford the high cost of the standard IVF.
The mini IVF protocol, on the other hand, involves no painful injections and comes at about half the cost, or even lower, if you choose to go overseas for the procedure. The mini IVF procedure is thus: A low dose of FDA-approved fertility drug Clomid (clomiphene citrate) is administered from day 3 of the menstrual cycle and is continued untill sufficient follicular growth is observed through ultrasonography. On Day 8, 10, and 12 of the IVF cycle, a low dose of gonadotropin is also given. A single injection or nasal sniff of Lupron, is then administered to induce ovulation.
Not more than 3-4 eggs are retrieved and fertilized. This may result in only 2-3 embryos being transferred, but if they are of high quality, it is sufficient for most patients.
Clomid works by blocking estrogen. While this is good to prevent premature ovulation, it can affect the uterine lining and the embryos may not implant. Some mini IVF experts resolve this issue by freezing the embryos in a process known as ‘vitrification’, and then transferring them during a later cycle without administering any fertility medications.
But others fertility doctors feel that this may deny the aspiring parents, a chance of conceiving during the same IVF cycle. Also, there is the possibility, that some embryos might get damaged by vitrification or cryopreservation, although it is a very safe and accepted method of freezing the embryos. These experts say, that if the endometrium (uterine lining) looks healthy enough from the USG scans, embryo transfer can be made in the same cycle.
|Standard IVF||Mini IVF|
|Procedure||Daily hormonal (gonadotropin) injections from day 3 of the menstrual cycle are given to stimulate the ovaries to produce many mature follicles. The injections are given for a period of 10 days.||Only a mild dose of Clomid has to be taken with low booster doses of gonadotropin towards the end of the IVF cycle. (Hence, it is also known as clomid stimulation-only IVF.)|
|Comfort||he fertility medication can be very expensive and its after-effects may be uncomfortable or even painful, causing what is known as the ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. Side-effects of conventional IVF drugs may include a feeling of bloatedness, nausea, abdominal pain, and slight weight gain.||Negligible discomfort, thanks to very low doses of Clomid.|
|Cost||About $15,000 in the US.||About $5,500 in the US. And about $3,000 in Mexico.|
|Success Rate||40% on an average||28% on an average|
Because of the lower number of eggs, the success rates of mini IVF can be affected, especially when tried on older women or those who have low ovarian reserve. But, such women may have similar outcomes even with standard IVF. Increased gonadotropin stimulation does not improve IVF outcomes in patients with predicted poor ovarian reserve. Hence, they would still be at an advantage if they used mini IVF because of the low cost and simplicity of the method.
Mexico fertility experts, from Medical Tourism Corporation’s network, have the required expertise in the mini IVF procedure, and have been practicing it with good results for a considerable period of time. A large part of their clientele is from the U.S. and U.K. These overseas fertility doctors are accessible, friendly, and will discuss what ART options are best suited for you, depending on your budget and your expectations, even before starting you onto a particular type of fertility treatment.
Choosing between standard and mini IVF is really more of a personal decision. Some of the factors to consider while making your decision are:
In natural cycle IVF, no fertility drugs or very few fertility drugs are given. This is beneficial to women who do not tolerate fertility drugs well or couples who are on a strict budget. The idea behind natural cycle IVF or NIVF or NC-IVF is pretty similar to that of minimum stimulation IVF, except that in the case of the former, we go a step further towards the natural ways of conception. Though natural IVF has several advantages like being low cost, low-risk (no multiple births), and patient-friendly, its biggest drawback is that its success rate is significantly low: between 6-7%.
Mini IVF expert Mexico Dr Alejandro Chavez Badiola: Trained in the UK, Dr Badiola runs his own fertility clinic in Guadalajara, Mexico, where mini IVF is offered.
India fertility expert Dr Gautam Allahbadia: Video interview with Dr Allahbadia where he talks about the different services like IVF and surrogacy offered by his fertility clinic in India.
Low cost Surrogacy in India: Surrogacy in India is safe, cheap, and rewarding. Read more on how to go about it.
IVF cost abroad: This page contains quotes for IVF and related costs in India, Mexico, and Turkey.
Donor egg IVF in India: This page contains information related to the egg donation process in India, the costs involved, and other relevant information you should have.
Medical Tourism Corporation facilitates affordable mini IVF at various world-class medical tourism destinations. Fill out the free estimate request form for a free quote & more information.