Fertility is not always as straightforward as it would seem; there are factors that may affect your ability to conceive. These include age, lifestyle and medical conditions such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, blocked fallopian tubes, premature menopause, insulin resistance, and thyroid and genetic problems. City Fertility offers evaluation and treatment for all female fertility problems.
Partner IVF is a type of IVF for lesbian couples that lets both partners become physically involved in the conception of their baby.
In this option, one partner provides the eggs, which are fertilised with donor sperm, and the other carries the pregnancy.
Partner IVF is a very appealing concept for many lesbian couples. Some couples may also use this type of treatment to conceive their second child, with their original sperm donor and carrier roles reversed. The beauty of it is that each partner gets to both experience childbearing and have a biological connection to a child.
The process of Partner IVF is almost identical to the standard IVF process.
The first step is to choose a sperm donor, who can be either a known or clinic-recruited (unknown) donor. Lesbian couples who are considering Partner IVF will have to decide which type of sperm donor is right for them.
Once a sperm donor is chosen and he has gone through the routine medical assessment, detailed screening, consent forms and counselling, the medical procedure can start. Here’s what happens:
Some partners begin a process of synchronizing their menstrual cycles by taking the oral contraceptive pill with a view of having a fresh embryo transfer, but in some cases the egg provider undergoes an IVF cycle and freeze all embryos for future use.
The partner who is providing the eggs will take medications to stimulate her ovaries and promote the growth of follicles, which contain the eggs.
While the ovarian stimulation process takes place, the partner who will carry the pregnancy takes medication to support the development of the endometrium (lining of the uterus) in preparation for embryo transfer.
Once the ovarian stimulation phase ends, eggs will be retrieved from one partner and fertilised with the donor sperm to create embryos.
Embryos are transferred to the partner who will carry the pregnancy. (Embryos can also be frozen for future use, if a couple decides they’re not ready to conceive just yet.)
Fourteen to sixteen days after embryo transfer, a blood test is carried out on the carrying partner to determine if pregnancy has been achieved.
Before you agree to undergo this type of treatment, you should take time to decide which partner will contribute the egg and which partner will carry the pregnancy. Carefully consider the pros and cons of each role and talk openly with each other about your expectations for the pregnancy.
You and your partner will be required to attend a consultation with a City Fertility specialist. During this appointment the medical procedures will be explained to you and all relevant medical details checked.
These tests are required as part of the routine screening process before treatment. You and your partner will need to have the blood tests completed and the results will be forwarded to your specialist.
It is mandatory for women who are considering using donated sperm to attend a counselling session with their partner. Counselling provides the opportunity to discuss treatment on a more personal level. It allows couples to raise issues that are more private, such as individual concerns, relationship difficulties, or current life situations that may affect their experience of treatment.
Before beginning your treatment, you will also be required to have a patient education presentation. This presentation may be self-directed or done by the clinic fertility nurses. Information will be provided about your treatment cycle, medications and their side effects, and any day-to-day requirements. You (and your partner) will be given consent forms to fill in and sign. Consent forms are required to be returned before commencement of the treatment.
Before treatment can begin, the specialist and fertility nurses will do a final review of the counselling reports, blood tests and consent forms to ensure everything is ready.
A healthy lifestyle is recommended before and during treatment. This includes a sensible approach to diet, exercise and alcohol. Adopt a healthy, balanced diet with adequate protein, carbohydrates and fibre. Before treatment you will be advised to stop smoking and restrict your alcohol consumption.
The first step towards accessing fertility treatment is to obtain a referral from your GP to one of our accredited fertility experts. We guarantee an appointment within 10 working days with the first available specialist.
Whether you have seen other specialists or this is your first time seeking fertility help, you will receive an individualised, comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment.
From the outset of your fertility journey, City Fertility will strive to provide clear and comprehensive information so you feel you can participate in, and make well-informed decisions about, your investigations and treatment.
To learn more, please read our fact sheet: Fertility treatment for same-sex couples or visit our Patient information booklets page and download the “In the know – what no one tells you about creating a family” PDF for same-sex couples.
We are proud to announce the opening of Rainbow Fertility, Australia’s first dedicated fertility and IVF service catering exclusively to the LGBTI community.
The dedicated Rainbow Fertility centres will offer you the choice of attending a standalone service where you can receive the same fertility care in a judgment-free setting with tailored support material to suit your individual needs.
Our Rainbow Fertility centres are located in: Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and New South Wales.