IVF and Sex Selection

Selecting the sex of a baby is not as difficult as it might seem, especially with recent advances in IVF. The advanced reproductive technologies gives the chance to determine gender of an embryo (widely known as sex selection) in the earliest stages of in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment. 

During IVF treatment, the preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) tests are performed to diagnose serious or fatal disorders and illnesses that the fetus may carry a lifetime. PGD can test for over 400 different single-gene disorders. Besides, PGD tests allows to reveal the embryo’s sex which gives the option of sex selection to the couples.   

Sex selection is a fantastic opportunity that the science provides. With this opportunity the individuals will get the chance to raise a children that they were dreaming of. 

 

Sex Selection Pros vs Cons

Gender selection has several advantages for the parents and family of the new baby. However there may also be ethical concerns about selecting a baby’s gender… 

Pros

  • Sex selection for family balancing removes the uncertainty and allows parents to plan their families. 
  • Sex selection for medical reasons is the most significant reason for the couples who have sex-linked genetic disorders or are potential carriers. To avoid the risk, the individuals may choose to have children of only one sex. And this increases the chances of having a healthy baby.
  • The couples can make this decision together.
  • Gender selection gives the individuals more time to get ready for welcoming the new member to the family.

Cons; 

  • There are some ethical concerns about gender selection may cause societal imbalance and gender devaluation. 
  • The cost of sex selection is expensive.
  • There is still no guarantee that PGS will provide100 percent efficient in conceiving a baby of the desired sex.

 

How PGD is Performed? 

Preimplantation genetic testing can be done after the mother’s eggs are harvested and fertilized. PGD is performed by an embryologist in a laboratory and send to a third-party genetics lab for analysis. 

Removing a cell from the embryo is performed with using a highly specialized and focused laser that allows the embryologist to remove 3 to 6 cells from a group of cells that will become the placenta. This procedure doesn’t harm the embryo in any way. 

PGD is used to monitor if there are any certain chromosomal abnormalities and viability. PGD also reveals the gender of each embryo. 

The gender of a baby is determined by two chromosomes. Egg cells of a women always carry an X chromosome while sperms of a men carries either an X or a Y chromosome. If a sperm with an X chromosome meets the mother’s egg, then baby will be a girl. (XX) If a sperm with a Y chromosome meets the mother’s egg, then baby will be a boy (XY) 

As the PGD results completed the couple can select the healthy embryos with the desired gender they wish to have implanted. 

What is the Success Rate of Gender Selection?

The success rates of gender selection are extremely high. The fertility doctor can easily identify XX or XY chromosomes in the embryo with PGD tests and gives the couples what they wants. Couples may expect to get a high rate of success that ranges from 97 percent to 99 percent. 

How Much does Sex Selection Cost? 

The cost of sex selection varies from country to country. The factors typically effects the costs and PGD ranges may chance from hundreds to thousands of dollars. PGD costs are not included in IVF costs. But PGD has to be taken together with IVF when the individuals are planning gender selection. 

Sex selection costs may be given between $3,000 – $5,000 depending on whether microsorting or PGD sex selection is used. When the cost of IVF procedure added the total budget may be approximately about $12,000.

Does Insurance Cover Sex Selection? 

PGS costs for sex selection are not generally covered by insurance. But before starting your IVF treatment you may plan the details of your insurance with your health insurance carrier if there will be an exact coverage for IVF and PGS.