What is gamete intrafallopian tube transfer (GIFT)?
GIFT is an assisted reproductive procedure which involves removing a woman’seggs, mixing them with sperm and immediately placing them into a fallopiantube. One of the main differences between this procedure and the in vitro fertilization (IVF) and zygote intrafallopiantransfer (ZIFT) procedures is that the fertilization process takes placeinside the fallopian tube rather than in a laboratory. However, healthytubes are necessary for GIFT to work.
How is GIFT performed?
GIFT is an assisted reproductive procedure that involves the following:
- A woman’s ovaries are stimulated withmedications to increase the probability of producing multiple eggs.
- Eggs are collected through an aspirationprocedure.
- The best quality eggs are immediately mixed withmobile sperm and placed in a special catheter.
- The mixture of eggs and sperm are transferredto the woman through a laparoscopic procedure by placing a catheter inthe fallopian tube and injecting the egg/sperm mixture.
- The last step is to watch for early pregnancysymptoms. Your fertility specialist will probably use a bloodtest to determine if pregnancy has occurred.
Who should be treated with GIFT?
GIFT is an assisted reproductive procedure that is a possible solutionfor any infertility problem except the following:
- Tubal blockage
- Significant tubal damage
- An anatomic problem with the uterus, suchas severe intrauterine adhesions.
In general, in vitro fertilization (IVF) is preferable for couples withmale factor infertility.
GIFT is commonly chosen by couples who have failed to conceive after tryingat least one year and who have failed five to six cycles of ovarian stimulationwith intrauterine insemination.
What are the differences between GIFT and in vitro fertilization(IVF)?
GIFT tends to be favored by women who have tried getting pregnantthrough other means but have not been successful, whereas IVF is preferablefor women with more severe infertility concerns.
Since GIFT does not involve embryo culture, patients are able to pursueadditional fertility treatments without having to address ethical concernsrelated to the creation or transfer of embryos.
IVF provides the physician with the opportunity to select the bestquality embryos on day 3 or day 5 for transfer. In contrast, GIFT placesunfertilized eggs and sperm in the tubes.
In the GIFT procedure, the transfer of gametes into the tuberequires an extra surgical procedure called laparoscopy.
Compiled using information from the following sources:
RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association, http://www.resolve.org
American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), http://www.asrm.org