Foetal Reduction

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Cyprus Fertility Centre

Foetal Reduction

Foetal Reduction – Cyprus Fertility Centre

IVF can be expensive and exhausting. In order to maximise the chance of pregnancy, Cyprus Fertility Centre can transfer a maximum of 4 embryos. There is no guarantee that IVF will ever be successful but by transferring multiple embryos we significantly increase the chance of pregnancy.

Considering how emotional the IVF process can be, maximising the chance of pregnancy on the first attempt means that Cyprus Fertility Centre will minimise the expense and emotional turmoil that comes with needing multiple cycles of IVF treatment. In order to make the process as straightforward for our patients we want to keep the chance of pregnancy as high as possible.

However, the downside of transferring multiple embryos is that there is a higher risk of a multiple pregnancy. By implanting 4 embryos, in a healthy woman there is a 20% chance of twins and a 10% chance of triplets.

Foetal Reduction

What is the Success Rate?


91.7% after reducing to two fetuses, and 82.4% after reducing to one

Why Would a Patient Choose to have Foetal Reduction ?
There are a number of reasons that patients consider foetal reduction, both medical and non medical. Having multiple babies at once is significantly harder than it is to only have the one child that many couples intend to have. Having multiple babies raises a lot of concerns for patients. There is a greater risk of miscarriage, still birth and disability with each additional foetus. They are harder to care for financially and some parents are not ready to take on that much all at once. Maybe they do not have the space in their home. Patients sometimes already have children and do not want to add too much to their plate. Sometimes it is a personal choice that patients only want to have one child at this time.

In all of these cases, Cyprus Fertility Centre will work with patients to ensure that they get the family they want and are able to handle. We make sure that patients have complete control over what they want from their family and how many babies they want to have.

What is Foetal Reduction ?
Foetal reduction is the process of removing extra embryos to reduce the pregnancy to one or two babies. Patients have the choice to reduce from three to two, or three to one, or two to one eggs. Cyprus Fertility Centre have never had a patient give birth to quadruplets after IVF treatment in Cyprus as having four embryos implant is a very rare occurrence but of course, if it occurred, then the option of foetal reduction would be available.

When is Foetal Reduction Performed ?
Following your IVF treatment with Cyprus Fertility Centre, they will advise you to have a HCG pregnancy blood test 12 days after the embryo transfer. The result of the HCG test will give an indication of whether you are carrying a single baby, twins or triplets. If there is a chance of multiples, the Cyprus Fertility Centre patient coordinator will advise you to have an early scan between 6 and 7 weeks gestation to confirm how many embryos have implanted. It is at this stage that you would need to decide whether to return to Cyprus or not for the foetal reduction.

At Cyprus Fertility Centre, foetal reduction is done before 8 weeks gestation. Prior to 8 weeks gestation, the embryo is a ball of cells that is so small it is unable to be seen with the naked eye. Removing extra embryos at this stage of pregnancy reduces the risk to the remaining foetus and provides the greatest chance of success.

The Foetal Reduction Procedure
The procedure itself is very similar to the egg collection procedure and so if you had an IVF cycle using your own eggs then you will already know what to expect.

You will need to fast (no food or drink) from midnight the night before the reduction. When you arrive at Cyprus Fertility Centre, you will be taken to your private room to change into a sterile gown and hairnet in preparation for the operation. You will be taken to theatre and sedated so that you sleep throughout the procedure. Foetal reduction is never performed under local anaesthetic to ensure that you don’t move. A trans-vaginal ultrasound probe is inserted into the vagina to allow the doctor a clear view of the uterus. A thin needle is directed through the probe into the uterus. The needle removes the smallest or weakest embryo, or embryos, with guidance from the ultrasound. The procedure itself is carried out by our most experienced consultants and takes approximately 30 minutes in total. The doctor recommends two days of rest following the procedure before returning home.

Why Return to Cyprus Fertility Centre ?
Cyprus Fertility Centre allows patients more control over their treatment and allows them to make their own choices about what they want for their family on their own terms with the best medical and emotional support available. Our consultants and patient coordinators will be there every step of the way to ensure that you understand and are comfortable with all aspects of the procedure.

In the UK, the NHS will only reduce three to two babies after 12 weeks gestation. There is no option to reduce twins to a singleton pregnancy. After 12 weeks of pregnancy, there is a much higher risk of miscarriage with foetal reduction. It becomes more traumatic for both the mother and the baby. There is also a risk of sepsis to the mother which can be life threatening. It is much better to have the reduction earlier in the pregnancy to reduce the risks to all those involved and allow the best chance for a smooth pregnancy going forward.

Cyprus Fertility Centre are always on hand to guide you through difficult decisions. The decision to have a foetal reduction is never easy. We have the best medical staff and support staff on hand to make sure that you are happy with your pregnancy and your future in the safest and most effective way for you.