HISTORY OF IN-VITRO FERTILIZATION
Evolution of IVF
In 1977, Patrick Steptoe and Robert Edwards successfully carried out a pioneering conception which resulted in the birth of the world’s first baby to be conceived by IVF, Louise Brown on 25 July 1978. Her conception through IVF, followed by her birth by Caesarean section at Oldham General Hospital in England, made headlines around the world. The first IVF baby boy, Alaistair Macdonald, was born the following year.
Howard W. Jones and GeorgeannaSeegar Jones at the Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia,further improved stimulated cycles by incorporating the use of a follicle-stimulating hormone (uHMG). This then became known as controlled ovarian hyper-stimulation (COH).
Another step forward was the use of gonadotrophin-releasing hormone agonists (GnRHA), thus decreasing the need for monitoring by preventing premature ovulation, and more recently gonadotrophin-releasing hormone antagonists (GnRH Ant), which have a similar function.
The additional use of the oral contraceptive pill has allowed the scheduling of IVF cycles, which has made the treatment far more convenient for both staff and patients.
Today, more than five million IVF babies have been born around the world. The treatment process is patient-friendly, where women only need to do day procedures instead of staying at the hospital. A single egg harvesting procedure can produce sufficient embryos for several pregnancies, with the availability of cryopreservation.
With constant medical advancements in the field of assisted conception, success rates have also risen and so have the hopes of many couples who desire to take up parenthood.