It’s estimated that one in seven couples can struggle to get pregnant, and assisted conception can help to increase those odds. Assisted conception covers a lot of different procedures, but ultimately it is the process of helping to create a fertilized embryo.

Is AC the same as IVF?

Assisted conception doesn’t always mean surgery. None-surgical AC makes it possible for the egg and the sperm to meet under helpful conditions. While in theory, sperm are naturally programmed to swim to the egg, and the female reproductive system is designed to help this to happen, every human body is different, and it doesn’t work this way for every couple. Therefore AC can assist in the creation of an embryo, but this can still be considered a “natural” conception by some.

None-surgical AC is known as IUI or Inter-Uterine Insemination. This means that the sperm is manually placed near to the egg during the woman’s most fertile time so that it can meet the egg without having to travel too far.

IVF stands for In-Vitro Fertilisation. This is a surgical procedure, during which the egg is removed from the reproductive system and fertilized with sperm in a laboratory. Usually, more than one embryo is created, and the embryo(s) that appear to be the healthiest are selected to be implanted.

The ultimate goal of assisted conception is to end up with a fertilized embryo within the womb, where it can safely develop. No procedure is guaranteed, but all types of assisted conception considerably weigh the odds in favor of getting pregnant, compared to intercourse alone.

Ultimately, only you can determine the best course of action to increase your chances of pregnancy, and it really helps to have as much advice and support as possible.