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More complex forms of treatment have evolved from the 'original' IVF treatment, some of which you may need in your quest to start a family:

i Third-party reproduction: Today, some 10 per cent of IVF treatment cycles involve using donor gametes (eggs and sperm) or embryos to have a baby. The big question that arises in such cases is whether a child born as a result of the donation should be able to find out who the donor is. I discuss the arguments for and against in Chapter 13.

1 Use of a surrogate: Less common than using donor material, but perhaps more controversial, is the use of a surrogate to carry the pregnancy and give birth. If the female partner doesn't have a uterus or is unable to carry a pregnancy, the embryo can be transferred to another woman's uterus. After the birth the baby is given to the infertile couple, who raise the child. I explore the complex issues involved with surrogacy in Chapter 14.

i Freezing sperm and embryos: Freezing techniques have come a long way and there are now very efficient ways of preserving sperm and embryos. Eggs can also be frozen, but this has proven more difficult and less successful. In Chapter 15 I discuss gamete and embryo freezing and some of the tricky decisions you sometimes have to make when you have frozen embryos.

1 Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis: We all carry good and not so good genes but some of the really bad genes can cause severe conditions such as haemophilia and cystic fibrosis. If you know that members of your family suffer from an inheritable life-threatening condition, you can check whether the genes that cause the condition are present in an embryo before it's transferred. This technique, known as pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, can help you to have a healthy child if you're at risk of passing on a genetic disease. I explain the ins and outs of this very high-tech process in Chapter 16.

Pregnancy Guide

Pregnancy Guide

A Beginner's Guide to Healthy Pregnancy. If you suspect, or know, that you are pregnant, we ho pe you have already visited your doctor. Presuming that you have confirmed your suspicions and that this is your first child, or that you wish to take better care of yourself d uring pregnancy than you did during your other pregnancies; you have come to the right place.

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