A new clinical study presented to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine shows that three-dimensional (3-D) automated ultrasound follicle measurement using GE's SonoAVC software during an in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle is effective and more efficient than traditional manual measurement of the follicles.
Gurnee, IL (PRWEB) December 1, 2009 -- The Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago has just completed research on a new computerized 3-D ultrasound system that automatically identifies and measures the developing egg-containing follicles in the ovaries of women undergoing IVF treatment for fertility problems.
"Our clinical study reveals that 3-D ultrasound with the SonoAVC computerized measurement system results in a faster ultrasound procedure which minimizes time in the office and discomfort for the patient," says Richard Sherbahn, MD, who presented the research findings at the annual meeting of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.
"We were also able to maintain our high IVF success rates when using this technique," Dr. Sherbahn adds. "3-D ultrasound technology has the potential to give us more accurate follicle measurements and can increase the efficiency of the ultrasound monitoring process."
Ovarian follicles have traditionally been measured manually with two-dimensional, or 2-D ultrasound. "Because the egg-containing follicles are often quite irregular in shape, measuring them manually can result in significant inaccuracy," notes Dr. Sherbahn. "Manual measurement of ovarian follicles is also time-consuming for patients and medical staff. This new method is faster, so patients spend less time on the examination table with a vaginal probe."
"The SonoAVC, or automated volume count, software for 3-D ultrasound systems gives a more precise and accurate measurement of the ovarian follicles," explains Todd Deutch, MD, of the Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago, who worked with GE to develop the software.
"A crucial and underappreciated aspect of successful IVF involves determination of ideal timing for the egg retrieval," says Dr. Sherbahn. "Measuring the ovarian follicles accurately is really important during IVF because the number of follicles and their sizes (along with blood hormone levels) are used to determine when we're likely to get the best number of eggs of the highest quality."
"Expertly utilizing the data from those measurements allows us to determine when we should proceed with the 'trigger' injection of hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) which causes final maturation of the eggs," Dr. Sherbahn explains. "If you trigger too soon, you get fewer mature and more immature eggs. If you trigger too late, you get post-mature eggs of lower quality."
The Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago is one of the only U.S. fertility clinics using 3-D ultrasound with the new SonoAVC technology. "It is expensive ultrasound equipment, but we believe in investing in technology that can improve our patients' chances for a successful pregnancy," says Dr. Sherbahn.
For more information on ovarian stimulation for in vitro fertilization and the use of 3-D ultrasound in IVF, visit: http://www.advancedfertility.com/ivfstim.htm.
The Center specializes in individualized care, and enjoys IVF success rates consistently higher than the national average. Its highly successful egg donation program has egg donors available immediately, with no third-party egg donor agency needed.
The Center's web site, www.advancedfertility.com, offers more than 200 articles on fertility issues and IVF. To schedule an appointment at the Gurnee office, call 847.662.1818. For an appointment at the Crystal Lake office, call 815.356.1818.
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