Anyone going through a fertility struggle will know that no two fertility journeys are the same.
At The Ribbon Box, we understand the importance of personalised fertility treatment, in spite of infertility becoming an increasingly common problem. According to the CDC, around 19% of heterosexual women (aged 15 to 49 years) in the US are unable to get pregnant after one year of trying and in men, the rate of infertility is around 10%.
As no two people are alike, this means a personalised approach to assisted reproduction is what’s needed to tackle infertility and help intended parents build their families. Our partners, Leeaf, have created an app that provides a holistic approach to patient assessments by collecting a wide range of health and lifestyle information to support you on your fertility journey – no matter your situaion. View their website here.
Read on to find out how Leeaf identifies patterns in your TTC journey to suggest suitable fertility treatment (and communicates this with your fertility specialist).
Written by Holly Pigache with Leeaf
Maximising the chances of fertility treatment (like IVF) success
There are many reasons for male and female infertility, such as poor semen or egg quality (partly as a result of our unhealthy lifestyles), reproductive conditions affecting hormone balance and embryo implantation success, and genetic conditions… to name a few. In turn, these issues can impact the success of IVF and other fertility treatments.
Over the past 40 years (since the first IVF baby was born), there have been huge improvements in much of the fertility space. Ovarian stimulation has become more tailored, sperm selection for fertilisation more precise and embryo culture and selection more fine-tuned. Yet, on average, only about a third of all IVF cycles result in a pregnancy and even less in a live birth.
For many fertility specialists, the solution seems to be to enhance ovarian stimulation. After all, a greater number of ovarian follicles hopefully leads to a greater number of eggs released and collected for fertilisation, maximising the chances of a successful pregnancy.
In IVF, a woman’s ovaries are stimulated with FSH medication for 8-14 days to encourage the growth of follicles and prior to egg collection, a “trigger shot” induces the ovulation process. After this shot and before ovulation, fertility specialists perform egg retrieval to collect eggs from the ovaries.
But why is it that women of similar characteristics (age, BMI, ovarian reserve) don’t have a similar number of eggs harvested?
Because there are many other factors impacting IVF success.
What else impacts IVF success?
There are significant differences in IVF results between fertility clinics, individual fertility specialists, IVF treatment and medication protocols.
This leads to a wide spectrum of the number and quality of oocytes collected in egg collection. Reliable prediction of the response to ovarian stimulation in a group of women of similar age, BMI, AMH and AFC who are given the same fertility treatment is currently not accurate enough.
Does one size fit all?
There is no “one cure for all”, even though women based on basic physical assessments (age, BMI, ovarian reserve, health status) might seem “similar”, fertility treatment results differ greatly for each patient.
As we can’t reliably predict IVF success with generalised characteristics of patients or fertility clinics, we need to take into account the idiosyncrasies of the intended parents’ health and lifestyle.
There have to be other factors in the general conditions (quality of IVF treatment) and individual characteristics which substantially modify the success of fertility treatment. This is particularly prominent as it is known that women’s responses to fertility treatment change if they are treated more than once.
A personalised solution in your pocket
Leeaf is trying to move away from generalised, solely fertility-focused recommendations to improve fertility and towards hyper-personalised and concrete fertility treatment recommendations through the power of artificial intelligence and all-encompassing data analysis. When you inform the app of your TTC efforts, a fertility report is drawn up, helping your fertility specialist suggest the best course of fertility treatment for you – because the Leeaf app was designed with intended parents and fertility specialists in mind.
Leeaf was created in close cooperation with doctors, fertility clinics and fertility specialists and built on the assumption that personalised targeted treatment of infertile couples can lead to an improvement in the number and quality of embryos, as well as in pregnancy rates and take-home baby rates. (Read more about Leeaf’s current research endeavours here.)
Who would benefit from having a personalised fertility report?
If you’re a woman who’s TTC, who’s have been trying to get pregnant for years with no luck or just starting to think about having a baby, you’ll benefit from a personalised fertility report.
Having a better understanding of your health and fertility and knowing how to take care of yourself and your body early on has been proven to support efforts of trying to conceive. The Leeaf app is suitable for anybody on an assisted reproduction journey – not just those having IVF fertility treatment.
What does my fertility report contain?
The fertility report provides valuable insights into the status of your current fertility health and offers recommendations for boosting fertility through an objective and purely data-based health assessment.
The fertility report includes:
- An assessment of key fertility facts based on data provided by you
- A Leeaf fertility specialist’s expert opinion on your fertility status
- Nutrition recommendations to prepare your body for conception and pregnancy
- Tips on activities and exercises to optimise your fertility and chances of conception
Discover Leeaf’s personalised TTC recommendations.
Take control of your fertility journey by detailing and tracking all the relevant information about your health and wellbeing to inform your TTC and fertility journey. Leeaf’s capability of sharing your fertility report with your fertility specialist, helps your fertility doctor create a treatment path that’s right for you and your family building plans.
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