Understanding your different fertility options and their advantages and disadvantages is important, to say the least.
YourEggs in San Diego and Newport Beach, California, offers two common in vitro fertilization (IVF) options: split cycle and full cycle. Both are viable methods for helping couples start or add to their families, but the options differ in several key aspects.
Take a moment as we break down three main pros and cons of split and full cycle IVF to help you make an informed decision.
Split cycle IVF is sometimes called a shared cycle, and it allows you to choose how many eggs to purchase rather than having the entire batch.
Your egg donor goes through the same donor process as they do for full cycle IVF, but with a split cycle IVF, you pay only for the number of eggs you want. The rest of the eggs are shared with another family or two who are also choosing split cycle IVF.
There are several advantages of the split cycle IVF. When you share the eggs retrieved from a single cycle with another recipient, the costs are split between the egg recipients. The lesser cost can be vital for making IVF affordable for many families.
Also, there is an opportunity for immediate treatment when using a split cycle. If you’re matched with an egg donor quickly, there is no need to wait for a specific donor to become available. Split cycle IVF provides the possibility of an expedited process.
Finally, split cycle IVF is well-suited for those who have concerns about unused embryos in the full cycle process. The split cycle procedure is less likely to have as many leftover embryos.
Despite the many advantages of split cycle IVF, there are some disadvantages, too. Because you receive fewer eggs than you would with a full cycle, there are embryos for implantation.
Split cycle IVF also has a slightly lower success rate than a full cycle due to the reduced number of eggs.
Another disadvantage of using split cycle IVF is having fewer eggs to freeze for future use. With full cycle IVF, you can freeze any extra eggs for future implantation, which increases your odds for success or enables you to continue growing your family from the same batch of eggs.
In full cycle IVF, egg recipients receive all of the eggs your donor produces.
When you proceed with full cycle IVF, you have the best chance of obtaining quality embryos ready for implantation because all of the eggs retrieved in the donor’s cycle are yours.
Having extra eggs than needed for yourself or a gestational surrogate to undergo IVF also means you can preserve the additional eggs to enlarge your family more easily in the future. We use cryopreservation (egg freezing) techniques to ensure the eggs stay viable.
Further, success rates of full cycle IVF tend to be higher than split cycle IVF because of the increased number of eggs and embryos.
The most significant disadvantage of full cycle IVF for many families is financial. It’s more expensive than split cycle IVF because the single egg recipient covers all of the costs.
Full cycle IVF is also more intensive than split cycle, as the entire process is customized specifically to your needs.
Finally, some people have ethical concerns with full cycle IVF due to the potential of unused embryos. Full cycle IVF ensures higher egg retrieval and fertilization, increasing the likelihood of unused embryos.
Split cycle and full cycle IVF obviously have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. Your decision should be based on your personal, financial, and ethical considerations and the medical advice you get by your fertility specialist at YourEggs.
The team is here to support and guide you through each step, ensuring you make the best decision for you and your family’s unique situation. To learn more, call the office nearest you or book an appointment online today.