A woman’s desire …… .with ART interventions to break barriers to infertility

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At the age of five, she had to undergo a colostomy operation because she was unable to release human excrement (intestinal blockage) for about three weeks.

A colostomy is an operation that creates an opening for the large intestine or large intestine through the abdomen. A colostomy can be temporary or permanent. It is usually done after a bowel surgery or injury. Most permanent colostomies are “end colostomies,” while many temporary colostomies bring the side of the colon to an opening in the abdomen.

Akua Bentsil (not her real name) is now 47 and 21 years in marriage but is struggling to get pregnant.

A medical exam revealed that she had a medical problem with her uterus and was unable to produce eggs because of the surgery and some medications she was given at a young age.

“When I was 11 years old and 21 had another operation to reverse the colostomy, but to no avail, my condition gave me several medications and injections that prevented me from menstruating. I remember we were about six children who went through the colostomy, but I was the only survivor, “she confessed

MadamBentsil’s desire to have children has failed, but all is not lost as there is an alternative through Assisted Reproduction Technologies (ART).

In 2017, after careful consideration and the advice of their doctors about alternative fertility treatment, they decided to do surrogacy to have children of their own.

According to her, the 21 years of marriage without their biological children had been frustrating as she was publicly ridiculed and rejected.

She announced that she was recommended to go to a child disinfection facility in Tema to go through the process.

Madam Bentsil said after the payment was made and the process of finding a surrogate mother was initiated, her husband withdrew from the business.

When she confronted her husband, he told her that he was no longer interested in a surrogacy and therefore would not help pay for the process.

“He told me he wasn’t interested in the process so he can’t waste his money and time on surrogacy, but I later found out that my husband gave birth to another woman,” she said.

“The news really hit me, as I speak to you, I am very sad, the man I thought was ready to take this infertility challenge with me, now he has a child and is not ready to meet me to support “, she said was crying.

Over the years, some couples have suffered from infertility problems and the stigma that comes with it.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), infertility is a disease that affects both the male and female reproductive systems, defined by the absence of pregnancy after a year or more of regular unprotected sex.

Infertility affects millions of people of childbearing age worldwide and affects their families and communities. It is estimated that between 48 million couples and 186 million people worldwide live with infertility.

In the male reproductive system, infertility is most commonly caused by problems with sperm ejection, missing or low sperm volumes, or abnormal shape (morphology) and movement (motility) of the sperm.

In the female reproductive system, infertility can be caused by a number of abnormalities in the ovaries, uterus, fallopian tubes, and the endocrine system, among other things

WHO’s Assisted Reproduction (ART) techniques have been available for more than three decades, with more than 5 million children born worldwide through ART interventions such as in vitro fertilization (IVF).

Dr. Kingsley AssahAgyei, a medical director at Pro Vita Specialist Hospital (Fertility Center), sheds more light on assisted reproductive technologies (ART), particularly surrogacy.

According to him, in vitro fertilization (IVF) is a process in which sperm are added to the egg cell or (egg cell) in order to fertilize it in the test tube. This means that the female ovary is stimulated with special drugs to mature the eggs or ovaries (induced ovulation), then the eggs are harvested or removed.

He said then the male sperm are washed and added to the eggs to be fertilized in a test tube and transferred to the uterus on the third or fifth day.

He said types of IVF include, natural IVF, intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), donor protocol, donation, donor sperm, surrogacy, and artificial insemination.

Dr. Agyei said surrogacy is an agreement, often backed by a legal agreement, where a woman agrees to give birth and give birth through an IVF (embryo transfer or artificial insemination) procedure in Ghana, for couples only , for one person or people in other parts of the world.

Surrogacy can be done through agency surrogacy, individual surrogacy (professional or voluntary).

He said Gestational or Carriers (embryo transfer) and Traditional (artificial insemination) are the types of surrogate mothers, adding that the most common of them are the gestational surrogate mothers.

“With gestational surrogates, IVF technology has made it easier to collect eggs from the mother, fertilize them with sperm from the father, and place the embryo in the uterus of a gestational surrogate.

He said that under close supervision, the surrogate mother would carry the baby until birth. He said the traditional surrogate mother was that the woman would be artificially inseminated with the father’s sperm.

Dr. Agyei said couples choose surrogacy because of infertility problems such as medical problems with their uterus, conditions that make pregnancy impossible or risky for them such as severe heart disease, low male sperm count, urethral stricture, female endometriosis, pelvis decide inflammatory disease (PGD), poor obstetric history, fibroids (uterus), no uterus / poor uterine development, uterine abnormalities, vasectomy, very short penis, age – usually over 40 years, (egg quality drops drastically at this age).

He advised couples to seek early medical treatment after a year of marriage with no evidence of successful pregnancy.

“Medically, technology has improved and there is so much that doctors can offer, especially on issues related to infertility and other health-related matters, that there is no need to go through infertility,” he said.

FROM AGNES OPOKU SARPONG

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