7 Reasons For IVF Failure – Why does my IVF fail?+[IVF Success Factors]

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A brief summary of the article:

Many couples consider in vitro fertilization (IVF) to be the one-and-only solution to their fertility problems. However, the sad truth is that the success rates of in vitro fertilization are not great—only around 40%—even for women under the age of 35. It's shocking to find out that the first cycle didn't work and you're confused about what went wrong. A low-quality egg or embryo is one of the most common causes of an unsuccessful in vitro fertilization cycle.
Modern genetic testing may detect aneuploidy and other abnormalities, but no test can detect every possible problem. To maximize your chances of success, every step of the procedure must be of the highest quality, including the protocols for ovarian stimulation, the laboratory work, and the embryo transfer itself.
There are a lot of possible dangers that may arise. Perhaps the embryo appeared ideal under the microscope but was unsuitable for implantation due to a concealed flaw. It might have been a problem with the quality of the eggs, as a woman's egg supply and quality begin to decline sharply beyond the age of 35. Problems with sperm may also contribute, such as DNA fragmentation that causes chromosomal abnormalities.

The main idea is that when in vitro fertilization fails, there is usually more than one obvious cause. A myriad of minor issues might be at play. That is why, after that unsuccessful cycle, you should talk to your doctor honestly before making any drastic adjustments. Unbeknownst to you, there may have been underlying influences. Experiencing in vitro fertilization (IVF) might take your emotions by storm.

 From the pinnacle of joy and anticipation to the depths of despair and grief, you experience it all. My sympathies are with the couples going through these tough times. Keep trying; having a miraculous baby may take time and difficult choices, but you should never give up hope.

Let’s talk about it more. 

Major Factors Contributing to IVF Failure

A. Egg Quality Issues

Infertility is only one of several medical issues that can lower egg quality. Endometriosis is one such condition; it manifests itself when tissue that is comparable to the uterine lining develops outside of the uterus. When this tissue bursts, it can produce chemicals that are toxic to oocyte development.

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal imbalance that can affect egg quality. It lowers estrogen levels and raises androgens. Another medical issue that might affect a woman’s fertility is hyperprolactinemia, which is defined as an overproduction of the hormone prolactin.

Some people’s fertility can be negatively impacted by autoimmune illnesses, in which the immune system assaults healthy cells. Medications used to treat hypertension and diabetes, for example, may also subtly affect the viability of eggs. Excessive doses of some reproductive therapies, such as ovarian stimulation, have the potential to cause chromosomal abnormalities in eggs.

When it comes to keeping eggs healthy, lifestyle factors are also important. To maintain and improve egg quality, eat a healthy, antioxidant-rich diet and exercise often. The quality of eggs may be diminished by heavy smoking and alcohol intake, on the other hand. Because chronic stress can hurt fertility, it is critical to manage stress levels. Although many aspects, like as genetics, cannot be changed, being aware of what can be changed may help us make better decisions for our reproductive health.

When battling with infertility or thinking about IVF, it’s best to talk to a doctor. They can tailor their advice and suggestions to your unique situation.

Let’s talk about what’s mentioned above in the quick overview table:

Medical Conditions Affecting Egg Quality: 

Medical Condition How it Affects Eggs
Endometriosis Tissue growth outside the uterus releases chemicals harmful to egg development.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) Hormonal imbalance (low estrogen, high androgen) reduces egg quality.
Hyperprolactinemia Overproduction of prolactin hormone can affect fertility.
Autoimmune Diseases The immune system attacks healthy cells, potentially impacting egg health.


Medications Impacting Egg Quality: 

Medications Potential Impact
Blood pressure medications May subtly affect egg viability (needs further research).
Diabetes medications May subtly affect egg viability (needs further research).
High doses of fertility drugs May increase the risk of chromosomal abnormalities in eggs.


Lifestyle Factors Influencing Egg Quality:

Lifestyle Factors Impact on Eggs
Healthy diet, exercise Improves and maintains egg quality.
Smoking, heavy alcohol intake Reduces egg quality.
Chronic stress May harm fertility.


B. Sperm Quality Issues

The genetic improprieties of sperm can be revealed by using genetic tests that discern chromosomal or gene changes. Nearly 15% of men with diminished sperm count or zero sperm in the semen were found to have a genetic disorder, the study showed.

Environmental factors including endocrine-disrupting toxins, poor dietary, and drug consumption, and adverse environmental conditions can lead to a decrease in sperm concentration, motility, and viability, show abnormal sperm morphology, and DNA fragmentation.

Some of the job-related factors include exposure to heavy metals, solvents, pesticides, estrogens, radiation, and heat, and the jobs that involve a mix of these factors including, welding and driving, give a potential for cutting fertility in workers.

C. Embryo Development Issues

Methods of embryo viability assessment involve embryo DNA fingerprinting and molecular techniques for the localization of healthy embryos that implant. Visual inspection using microscopes and time-lapse surveillance (TLT) are also used to observe the embryo’s growth and progress.

A chance factor that plays games with embryo development reaches the top as the process involves intricate genetic and molecular relations. Nevertheless, the phenomenon of natural selection is another principle to be considered to make sure that only embryos with favorable features survive and the development takes place.

The influence of natural selection on the appearance of new genes and genetic units during embryo development makes the phenotype of the organism variable and ready for the action of natural selection.

D. Implantation Issues

Embryos’ immunological rejection can take place when the cellular self-antigens of the mother are mistaken as invaders by the immune system and lead to inflammation and subsequent preterm labor.

The therapy for immune rejection coming in handy is modified adult cells that act as embryonic stem cells and prevent the body from fighting the transplantation.

Research on what makes a successful implantation is still in progress, which is why studies aim at womb preparation, receptor cooperation, and the secretion of growth factors by the blastocyst.

Here’s a quick table so you can better understand the topic.

Understanding Factors Affecting IVF Success:

Stage of IVF Potential Issues Impact on Success Methods for Evaluation/Treatment
A. Egg Quality Medical Conditions (Endometriosis, PCOS, etc.)  Medications (blood pressure, diabetes meds, high doses of fertility drugs) Lifestyle factors (diet, exercise, smoking, alcohol, stress) Reduced egg quantity  Lower quality eggs  Increased risk of chromosomal abnormalities Medical history and examination  Hormone testing Ultrasound  Limited impact of evaluation on treatment, but can guide decisions
B. Sperm Quality *Genetic abnormalities Environmental factors (toxins, diet, drugs) Occupational hazards (heavy metals, heat) Low sperm count Poor sperm motility  Abnormal sperm morphology Semen analysis  Genetic testing (for specific issues)  Lifestyle changes to improve sperm health
C. Embryo Development Chromosomal abnormalities Embryo arrest (development stops) Unsuccessful implantation Preimplantation genetic testing (PGT)  Time-lapse monitoring Evaluation helps select the healthiest embryos for transfer
D. Implantation Uterine lining problems (thin lining, polyps, fibroids)  Immune system rejection  Unknown factors Ultrasound Endometrial biopsy (for some conditions) Immunotherapy (for some cases of rejection)  Ongoing research to improve understanding of implantation factors


  • Using this table one can see the major elements that affect the success rate of IVF at each step in the process.
  • Ways Leading to Success” presents proposals to mitigate these risks.
  • Methods for Establishing/The Treatment” explains methods of establishment and the treatment of problems if they occur.
  • Not all IVF cycles apply the same technological methods (i.e., PGT).
  • From its initial inception to its current complex state, the area of reproduction is continuously changing with the appearance of new options and studies.

Up to here, we talk about the most important factor in IVF failure, however, there are some additional considerations we need to address!

Read more: The Complete Guide to IVF in Iran: From Starting Your Journey to Building Your Family [Patient guides]

Additional considerations! 

Age and IVF Success Rates

Due to a decrease in egg quality, pregnancy becomes more challenging for women after the age of 35. Men also experience a decline in fertility as they age. In vitro fertilization is more likely to be successful for younger couples.

Lifestyle Factors

To keep a healthy weight, eat healthily, and exercise regularly. Don’t drink alcohol, quit smoking, and avoid Narcotics. Enhancing your fertility is possible with these adjustments.

Psychological Impact

There’s nothing like experiencing the emotional weight of a failed cycle. Therapy, friends, or self-care may all be helpful sources of support. Maintaining healthy mental and physical health and keeping yourself well-informed will greatly improve your chances of success with in vitro fertilization (IVF). Keep hope alive and treat yourself gently. A new baby might be the result of your dedicated work and devotion.

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Doctor Mehdi Ahmadi
Body and Facial plastic surgeon Providing all beauty services of body, skin, facial cosmetic surgery, etc., specialized with more than 10 years of experience and 1,000 successful cosmetic surgeries.

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