EmbryoClinic | Articles
At EMBRYOCLINIC we join forces to provide quality of care and fertility services customized to our patients. We are committed to effectiveness, safety and excellence. EmbryoClinic’s Medical Team was established in 1999 and its extensive experience is a guarantee for success in an ethical and safe environment. Cutting edge medical technology is used and current medical protocols applied in accordance to the latest international guidelines.
fertility, infertility, female fertility, male fertility, female infertility, male infertility, boost your fertility, Endometriosis, Pelvic infection, ovarian surgery, Irregular menstrual cycle, amenorrhoea, Chronic testicular pain, hormonal evaluation, semen analysis, Intrauterine insemination, IUI, IVF, in vitro fertilisation, Assisted Reproduction, Ovulation induction, STAGES OF IVF, Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection, ICSI, Assisted Hatching, AH, Percutaneous Epidydimal Sperm Aspiration, PESA, Testicular Sperm Extraction, TESE, Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis, PGD, Donor Eggs, ecoIVF, mini IVF, Natural cycle IVF, mild stimulation IVF, Egg Sharing, Fertility preservation, SPERM DONATION, EGG DONATION, HOLISTIC APPROACH, fertility massage, fertility nutrition, fertility acupuncture
archive,category,category-articles,category-80,cookies-not-set,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,select-child-theme-ver-4.4.1533193858,select-theme-ver-4.4,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.7,vc_responsive

Greece – Fertility destination 2021


Embryoclinic is proudly sharing the great experience of fertility care for international patients and is joining forces to highlight Greece as the perfect fertility destination. Every team member is dedicated and experienced to provide high standards of care and uninterrupted communication and support to all our international patients, irrelevant of their country of residence.
We aim at making the journey to parenthood a wonderful experience for all, while making their best of their stay in our wonderful country.

Warm Mediterranean climate, tempting blue sea, impressive beaches, amazing historical sites and great food – this is what we all know Greece for. However, not all of us may be aware of the fact that one of the most popular holiday destinations in the world plays also a very important role on the medical tourism map. It turns out that Greece has a lot to offer in terms of in vitro fertilisation and reproductive medicine in general. If you have been considering IVF treatment abroad and wondering whether Greece is a right choice for you, we’ll say: yes! Here are some reasons why.

It is in Greece where you will find some of the world’s top IVF clinics, combining high-quality services and reasonable rates. These units, mostly located in Athens, Thessaloniki and Crete, apply best practices and are staffed with both state-of-the-art technological equipment and trained specialist doctors. The clinics are certified by internationally acclaimed organisations, which assure not only innovation but also safety and quality of clinical, surgical and laboratory procedures.

What is more, all the IVF clinics in Greece operate under license from the Greek National Authority of Assisted Reproduction. It is a national body that makes controls, gives suggestions, collects data and keeps records of every single case related to assisted reproduction in the country. And finally – what’s probably most important from a patient’s point of view – first class fertility treatment is offered in Greece at a much lower cost than in other top European fertility destinations.

Greece has surely a lot of advantages over other countries in terms of infertility treatments and services – one of them is its liberal IVF legislation. Issued in 2005, it allows most IVF methods (e.g. intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), egg/sperm donation, frozen embryo transfer), surrogacy arrangements and genetic testing options (such as PGT-A and PGD). The age limit for women undergoing IVF treatment is 50 years old and there are no exceptions in terms of marital status. It means that all the procedures are available to both married and unmarried heterosexual couples, single women and women in lesbian relationships. In case of the latter, it is only required that one partner states she is going through treatment as a single woman and signs a notarial deed.

Greece is one of the countries that allow anonymous egg and sperm donation. According to the Greek IVF law, information on a patient and the child conceived via donation will not be disclosed to an anonymous donor – and vice-versa. Donor anonymity translates into a lot of advantages: the development of egg/sperm banks, large pools of donor candidates and the lack of waiting lists for donation treatments. The latter will surely be considered as a great asset by advanced-age patients who find time very precious and cannot allow themselves to wait months for the treatment to start.

Feeling convinced? We suppose so! However, if you are still not sure whether your IVF treatment should be performed in Greece, we encourage you to follow the campaign Greece – Fertility Destination 2021 that commences on October 1, 2020. In the upcoming 6 months, the campaign will make you familiar with all the available treatment options in Greece and some of the most acclaimed IVF clinics that accept international patients.

The campaign’s online events will present you with a unique chance to get to know some of Greece’s leading fertility specialists and trusted IVF coordinators who will share some useful advice on fertility treatment in our country. And who knows, maybe you will find your future fertility team among them?

The campaign is organised by eggdonationfriends.com and fertilityclinicsabroad.com – two well known websites for patients seeking IVF treatment options abroad. It is also supported by more than 30 ambassadors worldwide and special Patron from Greece – ELITOUR – Greek Medical Tourism Council.

Read more about Greece – Fertility Destination 2021

Suspension of fertility treatments during COVID-19 has mental health impacts


The suspension of fertility treatments due to the COVID-19 pandemic has had a variety of psychological impacts on women whose treatments were cancelled, but there are several protective factors that can be fostered to help in the future, according to a new study by Jennifer Gordon and Ashley Balsom of University of Regina, Canada, published in September in the open-access journal PLOS ONE.

One in six reproductive-aged couples experiences infertility, and many turn to treatments such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) and in vitro fertilisation (IVF), which require many in-person appointments to complete. On March 17, 2020, the American Society of Reproductive Medicine and the Canadian Fertility and Andrology Society announced their recommendations to immediately and indefinitely suspend all in-person fertility treatments in the United States and Canada due to COVID-19.

In the new study, researchers used online social media advertising to recruit 92 women from Canada and the U.S. who reported having their fertility treatments suspended to participate in an online survey. The women, who were aged between 20 and 45, had been trying to conceive for between 5 and 180 months. More than half had had an IVF cycle cancelled and approximately one-third had been in the middle of IUI when treatments were suspended.

Overall, 86 per cent of respondents reported that treatment suspensions had a negative impact on their mental health and 52 per cent reported clinically significant depression symptoms. Neither age, education, income or number of children were correlated with the effect of treatment suspension on mental health or quality of life. However, other factors were found to positively influence these outcomes: lower levels of defensive pessimism (r=-0.25, p<0.05), greater infertility acceptance (r=0.51, p<0.0001), better social support (r=0.31, p<0.01) and less avoidance of infertility reminders (r=0.23, p=0.029) were all associated with a less significant decline in mental health.

The authors add: “This study highlights how enormously challenging the COVID-19 pandemic has been for women whose fertility treatments have been suspended. At the same time, it points to certain factors that may help women cope during this difficult time, such as having good social support.”

Source: www.sciencedaily.com.

Follicle stimulating hormone


What is follicle stimulating hormone?

Follicle stimulating hormone is one of the gonadotrophic hormones, the other being luteinising hormone. Both are released by the pituitary gland into the bloodstream. Follicle stimulating hormone is one of the hormones essential to pubertal development and the function of women’s ovaries and men’s testes. In women, this hormone stimulates the growth of ovarian follicles in the ovary before the release of an egg from one follicle at ovulation. It also increases oestradiol production. In men, follicle stimulating hormone acts on the Sertoli cells of the testes to stimulate sperm production (spermatogenesis).

How is follicle stimulating hormone controlled?

In women, when hormone levels fall towards the end of the menstrual cycle, this is sensed by nerve cells in the hypothalamus. These cells produce more gonadotrophin-releasing hormone, which in turn stimulates the pituitary gland to produce more follicle stimulating hormone. The rise in follicle stimulating hormone stimulates the growth of the follicle in the ovary. With this growth, the cells of the follicles produce increasing amounts of oestradiol and inhibin. Thus, during each menstrual cycle, there is a rise in follicle stimulating hormone secretion in the first half of the cycle that stimulates follicular growth in the ovary. After ovulation the ruptured follicle forms a corpus luteum that produces high levels of progesterone. This inhibits the release of follicle stimulating hormone. Towards the end of the cycle the corpus luteum breaks down, progesterone production decreases and the next menstrual cycle begins when follicle stimulating hormone starts to rise again. In men, the production of follicle stimulating hormone is regulated by the circulating levels of testosterone and inhibin, both produced by the testes.

What happens if I have too much follicle stimulating hormone?

Most often, raised levels of follicle stimulating hormone are a sign of malfunction in the ovary or testis. If the gonads fail to create enough oestrogen, testosterone and/or inhibin, the correct feedback control of follicle stimulating hormone production from the pituitary gland is lost and the levels of both follicle stimulating hormone and luteinising hormone will rise. This condition is called hypergonadotrophic-hypogonadism, and is associated with primary ovarian failure or testicular failure. This is seen in conditions such as Klinefelter’s syndrome in men and Turner syndrome in women.

What happens if I have too little follicle stimulating hormone?

In women, a lack of follicle stimulating hormone leads to incomplete development at puberty and poor ovarian function (ovarian failure). In this situation ovarian follicles do not grow properly and do not release an egg, thus leading to infertility. Since levels of follicle stimulating hormone in the bloodstream are low, this condition is called hypogonadotrophic-hypogonadism. Sufficient follicle stimulating hormone action is also needed for proper sperm production. In the case of complete absence of follicle stimulating hormone in men, lack of puberty and infertility due to lack of sperm (azoospermia) can occur. Partial follicle stimulating hormone deficiency in men can cause delayed puberty and limited sperm production (oligozoospermia), but fathering a child may still be possible.

Source: www.yourhormones.info.

4 Reasons to Go Abroad for Fertility Treatment

Fertility treatment abroad

is becoming more and more popular. The benefits of seeking options away from home include:

1. Treatment Cost
2. Donor options
3. Perception of better IVF success rates abroad
4. Seeking treatment in a less stressful environment

Specifically in Greece,

  • There are good fertility regulations
  • Fertility treatment in Greece is less expensive than in the UK.
  • There are often shorter waiting lists and access to a higher number of donors.
  • The cost of living in Greece, as well as travel and accommodation costs, is fairly low.

How does the process work at EmbryoClinic?

EmbryoClinic’s international co-ordinator will ask you to fill out a medical questionnaire on your fertility history and type of treatment desired.The initial free consultation will follow, via Skype, with the co-ordinator and a fertility doctor, who will discuss your medical case, assess your options and may ask for more tests to be carried out.If you decide to proceed, a new appointment will be arranged for an on-site consultation.

It will take place in Embryoclinic Thessaloniki, where you will meet the co-ordinator, who will be your contact person during your treatment, alongside the medical director. After all necessary examinations, you will be informed in great detail about your personal fertility treatment plan and next steps to take.

During your treatment, the co-ordinator will be available to answer your questions, manage your appointments and discuss with the doctor all your case details. They will also inform you about how many times you will need to travel to Greece and how many days you will need to stay.

Want to know more? Read the full article in Fertility Help Hub.

Fertility Treatment using Donor Sperm

Using donated sperm can help many women and couples grow their family. We might recommend donor sperm if:

  •     you’re not producing sperm
  •     your own sperm are unlikely to result in a pregnancy
  •     you have a high risk of passing on an inherited disease
  •     you’re single
Choosing a Sperm Donor

Using donor sperm is very safe. Initially the donors are selected based on a number of parameters:

  •     sperm quality
  •     age
  •     personality
  •     education
  •     4 generation family health history

Further screening includes blood and urine analysis: chemistry panel, urinalysis, complete blood count, blood typing, HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, CMV IgG/IgM, Gonorrhoea, Syphilis, Chlamydia, HTLV

Genetic tests include the following:

  • 4 generation family medical history, which is reviewed by a trained genetic specialist or a medical doctor (all donors)
  • Cystic Fibrosis screening for 32-86 mutations in the Cystic Fibrosis gene (all Caucasian donors)
  •   Chromosome analysis (all donors)
  • Thalassemia (all donors). An HPLC analysis is done to detect this indirectly. Please contact us if you would like to have your donor genetically screened for carrier status.
  •   Tay-Sachs disease (donors with Ashkenazi Jewish or French Canadian ancestry)
  •   Canavan disease (donors with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry)
  •   Familial Dysautonomia (donors with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry)
  •   Fanconi Anemia type C (donors with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry)
  •   Gaucher disease (donors with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry)
  •   Niemann-Pick type A disease (donors with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry)
  •   Sickle Cell Disease (donors with African ancestry are genetically screened). For all donors an HPLC analysis is done to detect this indirectly.

If you use a donor through EmbryoClinic, our clinical team will find the best match for the specific characteristics you decide that are important to you:

  • Physical description (weight, height, eye color, hair color)
  • Ethnicity
  • Education level
Does the donor have any rights to children?

The sperm donor has no legal rights or responsibilities to any children born with their sperm. This means they won’t be named on the birth certificate, won’t be required to provide financial support and won’t have any rights over how the child will be brought up. EmbryoClinic’s legal team is happy to clarify any other legal concerns you may have on sperm donation.

EmbryoClinic collaborates with certified sperm banks abroad, which meet strict criteria regarding the safety and effectiveness of their genetic material. If you are considering sperm donation, get in touch!

Semen Analysis

Semen analysis constitutes the first examination in assessing male fertility. The sample should be collected after a minimum of 2 days and a maximum of 5 days of sexual abstinence. The whole sample should be collected in a clean, wide-mouthed container, in a private room near the laboratory. The sample may be collected at home under exceptional circumstances, must be delivered to the laboratory within 1 hour, and maintained at body temperature during transfer. Semen analysis includes macroscopic and microscopic analysis of the sample by recording the following parameters:

  • The volume of the sample,
  • The pH of the sample,
  • The number of spermatozoa in the sample (semen concentration),
  • The movement of the cells (sperm motility),
  • The morphology of the cells and
  • The presence of other round cells in the sample

The test results will be ready within one day. A normal result indicates that there is a sufficient number of spermatozoa with good motility enabling it to travel towards an egg and normal morphology to fertilize it. Nevertheless, a normal result does not guarantee fertility.  Moreover, variance from the reference values does not necessarily indicate infertility. It is worth mentioning that the volume and quality of sperm is not always the same with each ejaculation.

Semen analysis is performed in accordance with internationally accepted principles of the World Health Organization (World Health Organization. WHO Laboratory Manual for the Examination and Processing of Human Semen, in 5th ed. 2010.).

Finally, the treating physician should be informed regarding medications, illness, etc, as it may have negative effects on semen quality.

For further information or if you wish to arrange an appointment you can contact us to +30 2310-420020 or via e-mail at info@embryoclinic.eu.

Endometrial Polyps & Recurrent Miscarriage

Endometrial Polyps & Recurrent MiscarriageEndometrial polyps are benign and often asymptomatic growths of the lining of the womb, affecting between 11% and 45% of women. Polyps can alter the micro-environment of the womb and interfere with sperm/egg movement, fertilisation and implantation. Endometrial polyps are also the most commonly detected abnormality (16.7 %) in patients with recurrent implantation failures after IVF.

In this article we talk about symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of endometrial polyps to increase your chances of pregnancy.

What are endometrial polyps?

Endometrial polyps are growths that occur in the endometrium, the inner lining of the uterus. They are attached to the endometrium and extend inward into the uterus. The size ranges between a few millimetres to a few centimetres. The reason why some polyps develop is not clear, but researchers believe it may be related to hormone levels.

You are more likely to have endometrial polyps if you are overweight, obese, have high blood pressure or are taking a medicine called tamoxifen.

What are the symptoms of endometrial polyps?

If you have endometrial polyps, you may have the following symptoms:

  •     Irregular or unpredictable periods
  •     Unusually heavy periods
  •     Bleeding or spotting between periods
  •     Infertility
Diagnosing endometrial polyps

During routine investigations prior to treatment for infertility, an ultrasound scan will be able to identify if you have endometrial polyps.

Your doctor will start by asking you about your menstrual cycles, how long they last, how heavy is the flow or any unusual symptoms you may be experiencing. The doctor may perform a transvaginal ultrasound, where a small device is inserted in the vagina to check for uterus abnormalities. The doctor may also suggest inserting sterile fluid into the uterus, which will allow for a clearer image of the uterus.

After the ultrasound, the doctor may suggest a hysteroscopy to help diagnose or treat polyps. During this procedure, a small camera is inserted through the vagina into the uterus to give an image of the inside of your uterus. The doctor may do a biopsy of the uterus lining or remove the polyp using special instruments.

Treating endometrial polyps

If you don’t have any symptoms, you may not need to treat the endometrial polyp. However, if you have heavy periods, bleeding in between periods, if the polyp is affecting your ability to get pregnant or stay pregnant, it should be removed.

Your doctor may suggest some of these treatments:

  •     Medications to help regulate the hormonal balance and help relieve symptoms.
  •     Hysteroscopy in which a camera is inserted in the vagina through to the uterus and the polyp is removed using special instruments.
Endometrial Polyps and Fertility

Up to 25% of women with unexplained infertility have endometrial polyps diagnosed on hysteroscopy.

Researchers believe polyps can cause infertility due to interference with sperm and embryo transport, embryo implantation, or altered endometrial receptivity. The size, number, or location of polyps may also contribute to the outcome.

Several research studies reported that after having polyps removed, more than 90% of women had their menstrual cycles normalised and spontaneous pregnancy increased to 61%.

If you are experiencing any of the signs and symptoms of endometrial polyps or have been diagnosed with unexplained infertility, contact our clinical team.



Understanding Luteinising Hormone

Luteinizing hormone testLuteinizing hormone (LH) is produced and released in the anterior pituitary gland. This hormone is considered a gonadotrophic hormone because of its role in controlling the female and male reproductive system.

What does Luteinising Hormone (LH) do?

LH has several functions regulating the reproductive cycle:

  • Stimulates the ovaries to produce estradiol
  • Causes the ovaries to release an egg during ovulation
  • Stimulates the corpus luteum to produce progesterone to sustain pregnancy
How is Luteinising Hormone (LH) measured?

Luteinising Hormone (LH) can be measured in blood as requested by your doctor. It can also be measured in urine, using ‘ovulation tests’ which you can buy over the counter without a prescription.

You may need several tests to notice a pattern throughout the menstrual cycle. You may notice fluctuations and a surge, which happens just before ovulation. Normal LH values are:

  • Follicular phase: 1.68 to 15 IU/L
  • Midcycle peak: 21.9 to 56.6 IU/L
  • Luteal phase: 0.61 to 16.3 IU/L
Detecting Ovulation with Luteinising Hormone (LH)

You can measure LH levels to detect ovulation. Levels will increase 36 hours before the egg is released from the ovary, giving an indication of the best time to conceive. Your fertile window includes the 5 days before ovulation and the day of ovulation.

Abnormal Luteinising Hormone (LH) values

It is normal for LH values to fluctuate throughout the cycle.
If you have very low values and don’t see a midcycle surge, you may not be ovulating. It may be related to a pituitary disorder, anorexia, malnutrition, or stress. If you have very high values, you may have PCOS, a pituitary disorder or be in menopause.

If you are concerned about your Luteinising Hormone (LH) values, contact us.

All about egg and sperm freezing

Having children later in life

If you are planning to have children later in life, you are not alone. More and more people are choosing to prioritise their careers and work life. This gives them the financial freedom to buy a house, find a partner and then have children. However, having children later in life is not always straightforward. In fact, fertility declines with age, and some people delaying parenthood may find it hard to get pregnant.
Fertility preservation is a new technique that allows people to freeze their eggs and sperm when they are young and use them later when they feel ready to build their families. In this article we talk about fertility preservation so you can decide if it’s right for you.

What is Fertility Preservation?

Fertility preservation involves freezing and storing sperm, eggs or embryos with the intent of using them to have children later in life. This is an option for people who don’t want children right now, or to those who become infertile due to illness or treatment (like cancer and chemotherapy).

What is the best age to freeze eggs or sperm?

Research shows the highest live birth rates from own frozen eggs are from women who have frozen eggs before they were 30. These eggs are likely of better quality, improving chances when you decide to use them.
However, HFEA data shows most women freeze their eggs around 37. This is a concern because this is the age when fertility starts declining. If you want to guarantee better quality eggs and higher chance of live birth rates, it is better to freeze before you reach 36.
As sperm quality also declines with age, it is recommended you freeze sperm before you reach 36.

What does fertility preservation involve?

Freezing sperm is relatively easy. The process involves masturbation and collecting semen. If there is a condition where masturbation is not possible, sperm can also be collected surgically. Sperm collected is frozen in liquid nitrogen and stored for future use in a process known as cryopreservation.

The egg freezing process is a bit more complex than sperm, as it involves a surgery to remove the eggs from the ovaries. Each month, a woman produces a single mature egg. However, for egg freezing, a woman needs to stimulate her ovaries to produce several eggs. This is achieved with daily injections of FSH over a period of 10 to 14 days. Once the follicles have reached an adequate size, the woman injects GnRHa to prevent ovarian hyperstimulation and encourage the eggs to mature. These eggs will be collected 36 to 40 hours later, via a surgical procedure and under guidance of an ultrasound. You will be under sedation or general anaesthetic for this procedure. After the procedure, you may notice some vaginal bleeding and abdominal cramps. This is a minimally invasive procedure and the risks are less than 1 in 1000, but include bleeding, bowel or bladder perforation and possible infection. The eggs collected will be frozen for future use.

How many sperm and eggs should I freeze?

Man produce a lot of sperm in each ejaculate. Sperm counts vary from about 20 million to 100 million sperm cells per ml of ejaculate. Healthy men produce from 1.5 ml to 5 ml of semen each time they ejaculate. So, a healthy sperm sample or two will be enough to freeze.

When it comes to eggs, it’s a bit more challenging. Research shows, that a 34-year-old woman needs to freeze 10 eggs for a 75% chance of having a baby. If the woman is 37, she needs to freeze 20 eggs for that same chance. And when she reaches 42, she needs to freeze 61 eggs for those 75% chance of having a baby.
This increase accounts for the egg quality that reduces as women age and the fact that not all eggs retrieved will survive the process of being frozen, thawed, fertilized, develop into an embryo and implant in the uterus.
The number of eggs collected in each stimulation cycle also varies. This is affected by the woman’s age, the ovarian reserve and how her body responds to the stimulation. Some women may produce 15 eggs in one cycle whist other may need several cycles to reach that number.

What are the chances of success?

Once collected, not all eggs, sperm and embryos survive the freezing and thawing process. One of the reasons is related to the freezing methods: Slow freezing or Flash freezing.
The process of slow freezing takes a couple of hours, until the final storing temperature is reached. On the other hand, the most recent method of flash freezing (or vitrification) is much quicker, preventing ice crystals and avoiding trauma to the egg, embryo or blastocyst.
Flash freezing seems to have better chances of success once the eggs, sperm and embryos are thawed to be used. Embryos have a 95% freeze-thaw survival rate (compared to 50% survival with slow freezing). This is also a better technique for egg freezing which have an over 90% freeze-thaw survival rate (compared to the approximately 66% survival rate of eggs during slow freezing).

Having children later in life

If you are young and not ready to have children right now, but want to have them later, it may be worth it to consider fertility preservation. It’s not an absolute guarantee but it gives you more options to plan for a family. Speak with your doctor about your situation. You may also speak with a counsellor who can help you reflect on the procedure and implications, so you can make an informed choice.

Staying Positive Throughout Your Fertility Journey

Staying Positive Throughout Your Fertility JourneyInfertility is a physically and emotionally draining struggle for many couples. However focusing on positivity in the face of fertility challenges can provide major benefits.

Infertility takes a toll, especially if it’s been a lifelong struggle.
It is generally accepted that infertility can worsen stress, anxiety and depression as well as cause anger, sadness and social isolation.

Infertility can put a damper on romance when partners adhere to a strict intimacy schedule to increase their chances of getting pregnant. This routineness and lack of spontaneity may lead to a decrease in desire for your partner or sexual problems like erectile dysfunction.
Additionally, one partner may blame the other for infertility or the relationship may suffer from increased stress levels. Remaining positive may alleviate some of these relationship issues.

Reducing stress, anxiety and depression won’t necessarily make you pregnant, nor is there a clear-cut cause and effect between poor mental health and infertility.
Fertility problems are much more likely caused by a complex mixture of biological, genetic, environmental and mental factors. However, poor mental health may negatively affect fertility in ways we don’t yet understand, and there is no harm in thinking positively.


Many times, infertile couples will be overly pessimistic about their situation to avoid getting their hopes up each time they get one step closer to pregnancy. This may be especially true for couples who have been through one or more miscarriages.

While it may seem prudent to remind yourself of success rates and the possibility that you won’t get pregnant, this may be doing more harm than good. After all, in 2015 “the chance of having a live birth per ART cycle” ranged from 5.8 to 46 percent according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, depending on factors like age, source of the egg and whether the embryo was fresh or frozen. Those aren’t insignificant numbers! Allowing yourself to envision the possibility of a family can be a positive experience if you don’t shame yourself for your optimism. 


One of the biggest mistakes people make when struggling with fertility is succumbing to negative self-talk. You may recognize some of your own thoughts in the following phrases:

    • It’s my fault I can’t conceive.
    • If I wasn’t so irresponsible with my health, I could get pregnant.
    • I am letting my partner down.
    • My body is a bad body.
    • I am a failure as a man/woman.
    • Maybe I’m just not meant to have kids.
    • I will never have a child.

If a friend or even a stranger shared these feelings with you, would you blame them for infertility or console them? Almost certainly the latter. Now consider this: what’s the difference between that friend or stranger and yourself?

Nothing at all!

Next time you talk negatively to yourself, imagine you are saying the same thing to a friend, stranger or even yourself as a young child. It will be much harder to insult yourself and you might start thinking more positively as a result


At times, negative thoughts about infertility will surface suddenly. The key to positivity is stopping your negative thoughts before they affect your emotions.

Redirect your attention from these thoughts by introducing a distraction. This could be a physical reminder, like gently snapping a hairband on your wrist, or a mental process, like grounding yourself by focusing your full attention on your five senses. Other tactics include letting your thoughts “float by” without dwelling on them or diving into another activity, such as a chore you’ve been putting off.

That being said, it’s unnecessary (and often unhealthy) to repress your feelings in the long-term. Try setting these feelings aside for a private moment of reflection, perhaps when you’re taking a shower or bath, or a conversation with your partner. This way, you are still processing your emotions without letting them control your life.


Maybe you cannot help but feel sad, angry or resentful. That’s okay – people have natural variations in their mental states, and for some, their brain chemistry can make it more challenging to be positive during the hard times. If you find yourself struggling with your emotions, these solutions may help:

  • Exercise – Even a small amount of regular exercise, like walking, can improve your mood.
  • Practicing mindfulness – Meditation and stress-reducing exercises like yoga and tai chi can help you let go of tension.
  • Journaling – Writing down your feelings is an effective way to get worrying thoughts out of your head and onto paper. This exercise may make it easier to process and come to terms with confusing emotions.
  • Psychotherapy – A mental health professional can help guide you through any negative emotions or mental health issues you may have and give you the tools to manage your mental health.
  • Group therapy – Knowing others are going through the same struggle can help you feel less isolated and build your sense of community.


You are not alone in your struggle with fertility. One in six couples will experience some degree of infertility.

Get in touch with us to arrange an appointment with our Fertility Specialist.

You may also want to attend a Fertility Information Evening held at EmbryoClinic and especially designed for couples considering starting a family and having problems falling pregnant.


source: ccrmivf.com