Critical Review of Assisted Reproductive Technology and the Nigerian Invitro Fertilisation Situation
Invitro fertilisation (IVF) technique involves a process of hormonal monitoring and hormonal stimulation of a woman's ovulatory process, for the purpose of removal of an ovum or ova (egg or eggs) from the woman's ovaries. It also includes the assessment of semen quality suitable enough to fertilise the ovum or ova in a liquid medium in a laboratory. The fertilised egg (zygote) undergoes embryo culture for 2–6 days before transfer to the same or another woman's uterus. There are other complex molecular aspects of IVF known as the preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) which is carried out to rule out presence of genetic disorders, as well as egg donation or surrogacy compatibility. The IVF process is a multimillion naira/dollar medical technology. Unlike the simpler process of artificial insemination -- in which sperm is placed in the uterus and conception happens otherwise normally -- IVF involves combining eggs and sperm outside the body in a laboratory. Once an embryo or embryos form, they are then placed in the uterus. IVF is a complex and expensive procedure; only a few couples with infertility seek it out either as a result of religion, culture, ignorance, fear, cost or stigmatisation. The Nigerian IVF system is still an emerging domain, with most of the activities of the IVF technology providers still highly confidential making it difficult to ascertain the challenges, successes and failures of the Nigerian IVF system.
Invitro Fertilisation, Assisted, Reproduction, Sperm, Egg, Nigeria
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