IVF (In vitro fertilization) treatment is one of the advanced approaches implemented by couples who are unable to conceive naturally. Difficulty in conceiving by intercourse may be due to several genetic or physiological anomaly. However, advanced measures in medical science have made it possible to conceive a healthy baby through artificial methods. The word, in vitro, means fertilization in a laboratory. The process had first been successful in the year 1977 and has henceforth been implemented all across the world.
In the IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) treatment, ovum (eggs) from the mother and sperm from the father are collected and made to fertilize in a culture media, in the laboratory. The sperm and the ovum may also be collected from donors, in case one of the parents is unable to produce healthy gametes. After successful fertilization, the embryo is then transferred to the uterus of the mother, where it gets implanted on the endometrial lining. Multiple embryo transfer to the uterus may result in multiple pregnancies and result in the birth of more than one baby.
Spain offers competitive pricing for IVF with respect to other European countries. The cost of a single IVF with own eggs range around €4,000 – 8,000. Whereas the single IVF cycle carried with donor eggs ranges around €6,000 – 11,000.
The cost of frozen embryo transfers may cost around €1,500 – 2,000.
The cost of IVF treatment costs in Spain may vary from $10,000 to $15,000 per cycle. However, the cost thus mentioned does not include the price of medications required for the procedure. The cost of medication may vary from $1500 to $3000 and depends on the condition and requirement of the candidate. Besides, the key factors on which the cost of IVF treatment in Spain depend are:
The natural process of fertilization involves the conjugation of an egg and sperm inside the woman’s body. In-vitro-fertilization (IVF) is the procedure that involves the conception of an egg outside the body in a laboratory. IVF comes under assisted reproductive technology (ART) that involves the use of advanced medical technology to help with pregnancy in the woman.
The different types of treatments available for IVF are:
Assisted hatching is a technique used in IVF where a gap or a hole is created on the outer shell of the embryo called zona pellucida before transferring the embryo into the mother’s womb. Before the implantation of the embryo, the developing embryo should “hatch” out of its outer shell (zona pellucida).
Sometimes the embryo is thick, which decreases its ability to hatch on its own. Making a hole or thinning the outer layer may help the embryos to hatch, which increases the chances of pregnancy. Pregnancy cannot occur unless the embryo hatches. Thus, assisted hatching IVF success rates are higher than simple IVF success rates.
Because of the use of additional technology, IVF with laser assisted hatching cost is higher than just IVF cost.
IVF with laser assisted hatching is recommended when:
It is performed by using
It is performed before transferring the embryo into the mother’s womb on day 3, 5, or 6 after fertilization. An opening in the zona pellucida is created by drilling it with acidified tyrode’s solution.
The embryo is held firmly using holding pipette and a microneedle is applied
The acid is expelled over a small area of zona pellucida until it is breached. Suction is applied immediately after the breach of zona pellucida to prevent excess
This procedure Is exactly the same as the usual IVF procedure with a difference that the egg used for fertilization comes from a different candidate than the one undergoing IVF. This procedure involves a process known as female egg donation in which a suitable candidate donates an egg for successful fertilization with the retrieved sperms.
The egg donation procedure is similar to how the eggs are retrieved from the womb of the future mother. The only difference is that during
IVF with egg donation is mostly performed in the case of women who have
Intracytoplasmatic sperm injection (ICSI) is an IVF variation in which the sperm is directly injected into the egg for fertilization. The resulting fertilized egg is placed in
ICSI procedure does not require the sperm to penetrate the layers of the egg. It is highly useful to treat infertility problems in couples who suffer because the male partner’s sperms are either not able to get into the egg or are unable to fertilize the egg even when they are able to get through it.
During IVF with ICSI procedure, the eggs are extracted and held in one place with the help of a glass tool. A single sperm is injected into each egg using a small glass tube. The eggs are cultured and checked for fertilization overnight. The fully fertilized eggs are selected. A few fertilized eggs selected are placed in the uterus with the help of a catheter. The leftover embryos are preserved for future use.
While in simple IVF, the eggs and sperms are mixed together and allowed to fertilize naturally, in ICSI, a sperm is forced into the sperm for fertilization.
ICSI success rates largely
IVF with ICSI is also performed when the sperms come from a suitable donor and not from the male partner of the female undergoing IVF procedure. ICSI IVF treatment is the same when conducted with donor sperms as it is with sperms that come from the male partner.
ICSI treatment involves the injection of a single sperm directly into the egg from the female partner or a donor. In the case of ICSI with donor sperms, a semen sample from a suitable donor is retrieved. The sperm sample is processed and viable and good quality sperms are extracted from for further procedure.
Next, the entire ICSI procedure is conducted in a similar manner. ICSI success rates are the same whether the sperm comes from a donor or the actual male partner. ICSI treatment cost is separate from the cost of IVF.
Optical spindle view is a specialized technique used at the time of IVF and ICSI. This technique helps the fertility specialists view the division of cells carefully to ensure that the entire process goes on smoothly.
The optical spindle view technique is used after the fusion of the eggs and the sperms
Sometimes during IVF and ICSI, the fertility specialist may order a testicular biopsy to assess testicular function in the male partner before using his sperms. During
Step 1: Over-stimulation of ovulation
Stimulation of the ovaries occurs with the administration of fertility drugs. The natural process involves the production of one egg per month, but the fertility drugs hyperstimulate the ovaries to produce more number of drugs.
Step 2: Retrieval of eggs
Removal of the eggs from the woman’s body is done through a minor surgery called follicular aspiration surgery. Pain medications are given to the woman and with the help of ultrasound, a thin needle attached to the suction pump is inserted into the vagina. The needle is directed towards the follicles containing eggs and suctions the fluid and the eggs.
Step 3: Insemination
The inactive cells from the semen are removed. The ovum and the sperms are incubated in the ratio of 1:75,000.
Step 4: Fertilization
The sperm enters the egg and fertilization takes place. If the sperm is found to be weak, then Intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is performed which involves direct injection of sperm into the ovum.
Step 6: Culture of the embryo
After fertilization, the egg divides forming an embryo. The embryo rapidly divides within five days after fertilization.
Genetic diagnosis is performed after 3-4 days of fertilization to rule out the genetic disorders.
Step7: Transfer of the embryo
The embryos are transferred into the mother’s womb after 3-5 days of fertilization. This transfer is done with the help of a thin tube containing embryos. The tube is inserted through the vagina, cervix, and to the womb. Pregnancy is resulted if the embryo starts growing.
If you have experience symptoms such as fever, pelvic pain, bleeding, and blood in urine, consult your physician immediately.
Following are the treatments related to Infertility offered in Spain:
IVF/ICSI/IMSI: Severe male infertility and failures with conventional IVF, leads to this approach
Intracytoplasmic morphologically selected sperm injection (IMSI) represent the modern form of ICSI
Egg donation (own donor egg bank): A woman donates eggs to enable another woman to conceive
Donor sperm: Sperm from the donor obtained by the sperm bank
Embryoscope: Uninterrupted viewing of embryos in real-time
PGD/PGS: Genetic screening technologies to reduce the risk of passing genetic diseases
MACS: Technique that enables sperm with the most superior characteristics to be selected
ROPA: Reception of Oocytes from the Partner, where one woman contributes with oocytes and the other with Uterus
TESA: Testicular Sperm Aspiration involves collecting sperm through a small needle injected directly in to the testicles
Assisted Hatching: Assisted reproductive technology, used in conjunction with conventional IVF treatment to improve the results of IVF
Embryo/sperm/egg freezing: Preserving the sperm [require special temperature conditions (-196 degree celcius)]
Embryoglue: Medium developed for the embryo transfer
Embryo monitoring: Allow embryologists to record the development of the embryos inside at timed intervals
ErMap (endometrial receptivity study): Personalised test to diagnose the receptivity status of the endometrium during the window of Implantation
ImMap (endometrial immunological study): Immunology tests identify the cause of the failed implantation or miscarriage
Advanced sperm test: Semen analysis to quantify active sperm cells and examine the motility
Preconception genetic test: Involves blood tests to check whether a woman is likely to conceive a child with a genetic disorder
NIPT (Non-Invasive Prenatal Test): a process of characterizing the threat that a fetus will be born with a definite hereditary deformity
KIR-HLA genotyping: Genetic test that allows assessing the risks of the embryo being rejected by the maternal immune system
In Spain, quite a significant variation can be observed in the treatment costs for IVF. For instance, the cost of egg donation starts around €6,500 but some clinics offer this procedure even at €15,000. Initial headline prices may not reveal the ultimate cost and hence the individual has to be scrupulously careful when looking at prices offered by some clinics.
The cost of initial consultation is around €200, and this is not part of the total treatment cost. If the patient is willing to store the sperm, the cost starts from €150 per year of storage. The Embryo vitrification cost is around €400. In this comprehensive package, up to 4 embryos can be vitrified. An additional €100/embryo represents the cost incurred by the individual to vitrify more than 4 embryos. €1800 is the cost of frozen embryo transfer.
€5000-€6000 is the cost for a single treatment of IVF using its own eggs. The several diagnostic tests recommended by the healthcare professional necessary for the treatment are not part of the comprehensive package. The patient has to settle this cost separately. The cost of these tests on the average ranges around €900-€1200. Quite often the medication cost is additionally unincluded in the overall treatment cost.
IVF is not a single treatment as it seems, but a series of procedures that involve many doctors, nurses, and technicians at each stage of the process. Most of the providers charge a single base fee per IVF cycle which is inclusive of the major costs as charging every particular step separately is quite tedious and confusing. Broadly these costs include Lab tests, ultrasounds, egg retrieval, sperm prep, embryo culture, and embryo transfer.
There are some common costs associated with IVF but are not included in the base per cycle fees are medication, anesthesia, and embryo storage. As each case is unique and the exact procedures necessary for an individual can vary. Apart from the basic IVF protocol, there are a number of supplementary services, procedures, and technologies employed to achieve pregnancy. Few factors that can change the net cost of the IVF cycle are egg/sperm donation, embryo donation, surrogate, assisted hatching, Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), Preimplantation genetic screening and diagnosis (PGS and PGD), Testicular sperm extraction (TESE), a success rate of every individual clinic and the non-medical expenses.
According to 2018 data published by SEF, the IVF clinical pregnancy rate for IVF for patients with own eggs: under 38 years of age was 55% those with fresh embryos and those with frozen embryos the success rate was 48%
For patients above 38 years of age – 13% (fresh embryos) and 53% (frozen embryos). The success rate data is submitted to the SEF (Spanish Fertility Society).
The egg donation pregnancy success rate for the fresh embryo per embryo transfer is 67% and 54% for frozen embryo transfer. The egg donation clinical pregnancy rate for fresh embryo per embryo transfer is 62% and 46% for the frozen embryo transfer.
Age remains the most crucial factor influencing the outcome of an IVF cycle. The maximum legal age limit to carry out the IVF procedure is 50. However, age restrictions for IVF treatment vary from clinic to clinic, considering the expertise and treatment options available with them. Generally, women above 40 years of age have markedly lower chances of live birth compared to women less than age 40. Most of the clinics hesitate from treating the patients above 42.
Measurement of a woman’s FSH and Oestradiol levels on cycle day 3 can predict the chances for successful IVF treatment. Elevation in either hormone can lead to failure and hence more elderly women with elevated hormone levels on day 3 are suggested for donor eggs or adoption.
Initially, the IVF doctor or the fertility specialist will evaluate the hormone levels and menstrual cycle. An individual may be sought to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound to ensure the healthiness of the ovaries and the general reproductive system. The doctor may recommend medication or a plan of action if needed.
Once the body reaction to specific medications mapping is done, the doctor may switch on to fertility medications. Fertility medications help the follicles in the ovaries to produce eggs.
Post this, the doctor may proceed with the retrieval of eggs from the follicles of the ovaries. If the individual has decided to advance with the donor eggs the process is carried out with the donor or the frozen eggs are collected. The donor’s/partner’s sperm is also collected.
Post egg retrieval the fertility lab is all set for insemination of egg and sperm. Fertilized eggs become the embryo, and those embryos which are unplanned to be transferred will be frozen. Embryos developed from fertilization, are placed in the uterus normally after 3 to 5 days after retrieval.
If the process is successful, pregnancy will occur and the IVF process will be considered as a success. If this cycle fails, the doctor may use another frozen embryo.
The amount of time consumed at the individual stage is completely dependent on how the body responds to the treatment. Age plays a crucial role in IVF treatments. Supplementary and advanced procedures may be employed at various stages as suggested by the specialists.
The most prominent cities for IVF treatments in Spain are Madrid, Barcelona, Alicante, and Valencia.
Juaneda Fertility Center:
A part of the large healthcare provider network, Juaneda fertility center adopts the most advanced techniques. Healthcare professionals are highly experienced and provide comprehensive service to patients.
Manzanera Medical Center:
40+ years of experience in assisted reproductive treatments and Gynaecology, the clinic is ISO 9001 certified.
The clinic reports a higher success rate for pregnancy than the national average. 25+ years of experience in assisted reproductive treatments and gynecology, the clinic has the modern-day infrastructure and exploits the most recent trends and technologies
One of the most premier clinics in Spain, the facility has the most advanced instruments. Modern infrastructure is comprehensively suitable to host international medical tourists.
HC Marabella International Hospital:
Equipped with pioneering laboratory techniques, the clinic is at the forefront of disposing of most advanced care. The clinic employs individual treatment plans that provide comprehensive care to the patients.
Preserving the excellence in the IVF treatments, the clinic has its own laboratories.
30+ years’ experience in the assisted reproductive treatment domain, the clinic exploits cutting-edge technology and equipment.
The top IVF Specialists:
Dr. Hugo Benito:
Founder medical director of CERAM hospital, Dr. Hugo Benito has 35+ years of experience in obstetrics and Gynaecology.
Dr. Raúl Olivares:
23+ years’ experience of working in assisted reproductive treatments, Dr. Raul Olivares is currently associated with Barcelona IVF.
Dr. Juan Manuel Marín:
Specialist in andrology and assisted reproductive treatments, Dr. Juan Manuel Marin is currently associated with HC Marabella International Hospital.
Dr. Natalia Szlarb
The medical director of the IVF Spain clinic, Dr. Natalia Szlarb has worked across several parts of the globe.
The healthcare accredition in Spain is streamlined to maintain strict quality control over the hospital functions. There are many healthcare parameters on which hospitals in Spain have proven their mettle time and time again. Joint Commission International is an international accrediting agency which is giving the quality stamp of approval to hospitals in Spain. The final evaluation done by the experienced and skilled healthcare professionals working in the accredition body can be vouched for owing to their high competence.
Spain has a high footfall of patients who are drawn to the hospitals inspite of belonging to varied backgrounds and nationalities. A large of number of specialties are covered under the term multispecialty when it comes to hospitals in Spain. We list here some of the best multispecialty hospitals in Spain.
Their is a good range of specialties covered by the multispecialty hospital groups in Spain that ensure that all your medical and surgical needs are taken care of.
The healthcare in Spain is at par with the best in the world and is continuously upgraded with the technologies of today. The skills and competence of doctors in Spain in treating different kinds of conditions is vouched for by the topmost healthcare professionals of the world. The universal cost coverage (excluding prescription drugs) or uni payer system gives an advantage to those wanting to get their treatment done in Spain. Their is symbiotic relationship of wonderful tourist towns and cities with exceptional healthcare facilities, making Spain a natural choice as a medical tourism destination.
In Spanish hospitals, the doctors are an alumni of the best of the medical schools. It is no wonder that the doctors have enriched their knowledge base and refined their skills by hands on experience. The doctors in Spain have a zest for learning and application of new medical and surgical techniques as well as technologies.Whether it is learning new techniques or practical application of the new technologies, the doctors in Spain are adept at it all. Getting your treatment done in Spain should be a seamless affair as there is not even a language barrier with english the second language for many doctors.
When planning your medical travel to Spain please do create a checklist of the documents you need to carry. The medical and travel documents must aid your treatment and journey to Spain as easy and effortless. The important travel documents are travel medical insurance, accomodation proof, civil status proof, financial means proof like bank statement, sponsorship letter, treatment payment proof or proof of your government covering the costs, employment documents (as per status) and passport, visa and roundtrip ticket. Medical documents that you need to carry are medical reports, letter from the doctor/hospital referring you for treatment, correspondence between the doctor/hospital that referred you and the one where you are going to get treated and test reports.
A premier medical tourism destination, Spain is frequented by medical travelers all year round. Spain is synonymous with sporting culture which means that certain fields like sports medicine and orthopaedics are a natural consequence. With an advanced health ecosystem, all kinds of procedures are done in Spain but we are listing some of the focus areas here. Sports medicine related procedures, fertility treatments, plastic surgery, eye care, bariatric surgery, orthopaedic procedures and spine surgery.
As you head to Spain as a medical traveler, please understand that it is mandatory to get yourself vaccinated before you start your journey. There are conditions such as Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis, Flu (Influenza), Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR), Polio and Chickenpox (Varicella) for which vaccinations are taken on a routine basis. Then there are vaccines that are considered for certain specific set of travellers such as for Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B and Measles only. Other conditions for which you must take vaccinations before heading to Spain are Meningitis, Shingles, Pneumonia, Covid19 and Rabies.
In Spain, hospitals provide additional facilities that make the treatment procedures seamless for travellers. In line with this endeavour, international patient services are available in major hospitals in Spain. If you are visiting Spain as a medical tourist, it helps if you can avail of private health insurance and this is a facility available in hospitals in Spain. Hospitals in Spain provide many additional facilities as well such as:
Spain is well known for its various medical tourism destinations such as
Madrid is well known for general healthcare and reproductive health services whereas Barcelona has really good child healthcare hospitals. Medical tourism is one of the key industries in Spain and there is an increased investment drive to further enhance the capabilities of this sector. Medical infrastructure in Spain is highly developed and is being regularly upgraded with the latest technologies.
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