Most people, who consider PGD/PGS within fertility program, want it for gender selection. Indeed, this convenient possibility to choose the gender of your future child is fabulous! No wonder it’s growing in popularity. But gender selection is not the only reason for doing this procedure. What are the things you have to know about PGD? 5 chromosomes PGD or 24 chromosomes PGD, what is the difference? Are there any risks, is it dangerous? Do you still need it if you don’t require sex selection? We’ll try to cover all these questions in our article.
What is PGD/PGS?
PGD stands for “Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis”. It is also often called PGS – “Preimplantation Genetic Screening”. As the name suggests, this procedure is conducted before an embryo is transferred into the woman’s womb in order to test it for genetic diseases. During this procedure the specialist can also determine the sex of the developing embryos, that’s why it is often used for the purpose of gender selection. The gender selection may be used in order to prevent the inheriting of genetic diseases and for family balancing.
PGD makes success rate higher!
The first thing you have to know is that including PGD will improve the IVF success rates of your fertility program. PGD testing makes it possible to transfer only healthy biological material by checking the number and the look of chromosomes, which helps to prevent still pregnancies, miscarriages, malformations in the fetus, organ pathologies, Down syndrome, Patau syndrome etc. By transferring only healthful and strong embryos it makes the chance of successful, normal and non-problematic gestational period much higher, which is proven by the fertility programs statistics. So even if you don’t think about gender selection, you really should consider PGD as it will make your program more efficient. The PGD cost is rather high, but it is definitely recommended because it makes the number of attempts less and the way to success shorter. That can’t be bad for a budget!
Is PGD safe?
The short answer is yes! But we know that nothing is 100% safe in our world, so how safe is it? It is safe enough for our Dr. Ruslan Sobolev to recommend it to all the intended parents!
But one doctor’s opinion can’t be enough, so it’s good to know that according to the latest researches on this topic, conducted by Dr Sonja Desmyttere, involving the data of hundreds of PGD procedures, it can be called completely safe!
That’s why, taking into consideration all the benefits it offers, we are happy to recommend this option to all our clients.
5 chromosome PGD or 24 chromosome PGD/PGS?
Technically there are two methods of PGD:
The 5 chromosome PGD method performs analysis of 5-10 chromosome pairs. This is sufficient for gender selection and general genetic testing, but the researches show that this method does not really improve the outcomes. Generally, we don’t recommend this method, though it can be an option if you only need gender selection.
The 24 chromosome PGD performs analysis of all 24 pairs of chromosomes, which can greatly improve the chance of successful implantation and live birth of a healthy child. According to studies, the success rates can be twice higher with 24 chromosome PGD. And, of course, gender selection is also available.
Big brother and little sister
Which is the best PGD method to choose?
The 24 chromosomes genetic testing is definitely better, because it allows to discover the healthiest and potentially successful embryos for transfer. When our intended parents ask about the possibility to do the PGD within a surrogacy program in Ukraine, I always offer this test as a fast way to a successful pregnancy. The combination of a healthy young proven egg donor, experienced Ukrainian surrogate mother, specialists in reproductive treatment, best embryologists and such testing, which is done in Ukraine or abroad makes the success possible from 1-3 tries.
Though I can fully understand future parents when they want to skip this test giving the chance to all embryos to naturally go into development. In some cases, even PGD is not a guarantee of a result, there are a lot of factors that play a big role in the success of a fertility program. If a couple does genetic screening to an embryo only to find out the gender of the future baby, 5 chromosomes PGD screening is enough and this test is not so expensive as the 24 one.
There are a lot of possibilities to increase chances. PGD is one of them
95% of our couples do the pre-implantation diagnosis for the embryo and I see the obvious difference in success rates. With PGD it goes up to 70% for a transfer of 2 tested embryos and chances to get twins are higher as well. This advice can be inspiring for IPs that are dreaming about twins. It is very popular to transfer 2 embryos, one boy and one girl together at the same time. PGD for a planned twin pregnancy is more than recommended, because if one embryo is good and another will have problems in development, so the risk for a miscarriage is higher and the twin pregnancy might be problematic.
I hope this information and my thoughts on this topic will help you decide and think on “do I need PGD testing in IVF treatment?”. It always a choice of Intended Parents but having such a powerful science technique in your disposal and not use it, is a loosing of a chance.