Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) and Preimplantation Genetic Screening (PGS)

Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) in clear terms refers to a diagnostic method which helps intending parents avoid the risk of passing on a known genetic disease to their child/children. It is also used for family balancing by giving intending parents a chance to choose the gender of their baby.

Preimplantation Genetic Screening (PGS) on the other hand, refers to the technique of screening of embryos for abnormalities in the chromosomes. This is mostly done with the aim of increasing pregnancy rate, and reducing the risk of miscarriage for some women.

Who is this service for?

Certain couples may be needing this service. It is used for:

  1. Couples who are carriers of certain genetic disease and do not want to pass such disease to their child. Some of these diseases include:

Sickle cell

Down syndrome

Muscular dystrophies etc

  1. Couples who are interested in choosing the gender of their unborn child.
  1. Couples who have experienced frequent miscarriages due to a genetic disease.

The process involved in PGD/PGS

The Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis requires a few steps before the embryos can be tested for specific genetic conditions. Having the understanding of the steps involved could make it easier for couples who are intending to go through it.

The steps include:

  1. Ovarian Stimulation and Monitoring

A single egg is released every month from the ovary in the normal cycle. To increase the chances of achieving success with each IVF attempts, the ovaries will need to be stimulated to produce more mature eggs in record time. The growth and development of these eggs are afterwards closely monitored.

  1. Egg Retrieval

Under ultrasound guide, the oocytes (eggs) are retrieved in the theatre in a short process that lasts just about 3 to 10 minutes. The woman is usually placed on local anaesthesia during this process

  1. Fertilisation

At this stage, the collected eggs are fertilised separately in the laboratory. This is done through insemination or the intra cytoplasmic sperm injection technique – a procedure where the embryologist injects a single healthy sperm into each egg.

  1. . Biopsy

The fertilised eggs are kept and monitored in the laboratory for a few days. When these embryos develop to blastocyst stage, the embryologist then proceeds to remove cells from the embryos. These cells are then placed in a test tube and taken to the genetic lab where there are tested for specific genetic diseases.

  1. Embryo transfer

Here, the embryos are transferred in special catheters into the womb.

It is generally a simple and painless procedure. A progesterone hormone is administered 2 weeks into this to help establish the implantation.

  1. Pregnancy

After a successful transfer, implantation and pregnancy is expected. A pregnancy test is carried out to confirm this.

In 6 simple steps, couples are offered the chance to conceive and give birth to healthy babies regardless the genetic traits of either of the partners.

Indeed, Assisted Reproductive Technology not only offers the opportunity for a complete family by making conception possible, it goes beyond by helping to eliminate the possibility of inherited genetic disease which is not so in the case of spontaneous conception.

With advanced cutting edge technology, Africa’s Premier Hospitality-based Fertility Hospital, Alps Hospitals and Diagnostics, remains the best stop to not only achieve your fertility goals, but to also eliminate any chance of having offspring that will inherit any genetic disease whatsoever.

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