Patient Resources

Tubal Reversal vs. IVF

Tubal Reversal is an outpatient surgery performed at NCCRM’s state-of-the-art operating room under general anesthesia through a small bikini incision. The tubes are reconstructed using microsurgery in a one to two hour procedure. The risk of the procedure is minimal and most patients can return to work five to seven days following the surgery. 

In vitro fertilization (IVF), also offered at NCCRM, has helped infertile couples conceive and bear children for nearly three decades. It was originally developed to help couples overcome tubal factor infertility such as tubal ligation, but has become useful in treating other factors, such as immunological problems, unexplained infertility, and male factor infertility.  IVF is basically a four-step process. First, the female partner takes medications to make multiple follicles (eggs) begin to develop on your ovaries. This step is referred to as ovarian stimulation. Step two involves monitoring follicular growth by ultrasound, to determine egg growth and uterine lining development. When it is determined that the follicles and the uterine lining are appropriately mature, a trigger injection of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin is then administered.

Thirty-six hours later, the third step begins with retrieval of the eggs by ultrasound-guided-needle aspiration, an in-office procedure. A sperm specimen is then washed and prepared for insemination. The washed sperm is then placed in a dish with the eggs, and they are placed in an incubator for further development into multi-cell embryos.

The fourth and final step involves transferring the embryos into the uterine cavity via a tube inserted through the cervix. Additional embryos may be frozen and stored for future use.

Tubal Reversal vs. IVF Comparison at NCCRM

                                        Tubal Reversal                                                                 IVF

Cost                                 $4550 for a limited time                                               $9,000 (varies with medication costs)
Medications                      No                                                                              Yes
3. Multiple Pregnancy       No                                                                              Yes
4. Ectopic Pregnancy        Yes                                                                             Yes
5. Additional Children        Yes                                                                              No (requires additional treatment)
6. Ethical Dilemmas           No                                                                              Yes
7. Success                        70%                                                                             35% – 50 0% per cycle
8. Length Procedure         1-2 hours                                                                    Several Weeks

Detailed Explanations:

The cost of tubal reversal surgery at NCCRM is $4,800 ($4550.00 from now until 9/30/11). Each attempt at IVF costs from $9,000 to $20,000 depending on whether the patient is undergoing a single cycle IVF treatment or is doing NCCRM’s Shared Risk Plan, a money-back guarantee program.  IVF requires subcutaneous and intramuscular injections for a period of four to six weeks. The risk of the medication may include ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome and allergic reaction. There is controversy on whether these medications may be associated with an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer. There is no increased risk of having a multiple pregnancy following successful tubal reversal surgery. However, the risk of twins following IVF is approximately 30% and that of triplets or more is 5%. There is a 5-10% risk of a tubal pregnancy following tubal reversal surgery and a 1% risk following IVF. Following successful tubal reversal surgery, a woman can have additional children at no additional expense. Following successful IVF, additional children require additional IVF cycles. Ethical and religious dilemmas are considerable with IVF. These may include doing IVF itself, the disposal of excess fresh or cryopreserved embryos and fetal reduction for high order multiple pregnancies. Tubal reversal allows natural conception to occur. Most reports state that the success of tubal reversal surgery equals or exceeds IVF. The IVF procedure requires months of preparation, and weeks of injections, blood tests, ultrasound examinations prior to oocyte retrieval and embryo transfer. The tubal reversal procedure takes 1 – 2 hours to perform and 5 – 7 days for recovery. The IVF procedure requires weeks of preparation including injections, blood tests, and serial ultrasound examinations.

Before making a decision about pursuing Tubal Reversal Surgery or IVF, see the experts at NCCRM.

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