Wednesday 16 January 2019


While assisted pregnancy gives infertile couples the chance at a child, recent study has revealed that children conceived with Assisted Reproductive Technologies, such as In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) were more likely to develop high blood pressure at adolescent age. Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) place mature eggs, or oocytes, and embryos in various environmental conditions that differ from that found in the womb, while in IVF, mature eggs are collected from the ovaries and fertilized with sperm in a lab before being implanted into the uterus.Over 180 million couples suffer from infertility globally, majority of whom are in developing countries, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Meanwhile, its impact is particularly prominent in cultures where a high premium is placed on childbirth, like Nigeria and other African countries, leading to social, psychological and economic challenges. However, more than eight million babies worldwide have been born as a result of assisted pregnancies, according to preliminary data released by the International Committee for Monitoring Assisted Reproductive Technologies in Palo Alto, California, United States (U.S.)

Meanwhile, lack of regulation and ethics, which promote quackery has been the bane of all sectors in Nigeria, however, the IVF industry is not free from this treacherous act that endangers not only patients and couples in dire need of solution to their childlessness or infertile predicate, but the country in general. The WHO estimates that infertility affects up to 10.5 per cent of couples of reproductive age group globally and 20 per cent of couples of the same group in Nigeria.

Available statistics shows that there are about 12 million infertile persons in Nigeria, which is almost 10 percent of the total population. On the rising cases of infertility, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Tokyo, Japan, Yutaka Osuga, explained to newsmen that one of the major factors leading to rise in infertility as a result of failure of IVF treatment is age. He said most couples seek IVF treatment at an older age, especially when they are 40 years, adding that the success rate of the procedure is slim as the woman does not produce enough eggs.

“The average of the patients treated by IVF maybe 30 years or so, in Japan the average is about 40 years, in other Asian countries the average age who are treated with IVF could be around 35 years and 40 years, so the older a patient gets, the success rate declines, so here the patients maybe much younger than our patients in Asia so the success rate should be higher and should be an advantage,” he said.

Although, the IVF procedures have helped couples to deal with the high rate of infertility, however, lack of financial resources, poor income, high cost, complications associated with IVF treatment, low awareness regarding IVF, inadequacy of healthcare services coverage and dearth of trained healthcare professionals are other factors that hinder the growth of the IVF treatment market in the underdeveloped countries in Africa and Nigeria where the market is projected to reach N1.35 trillion.

This is compared to the Global IVF services market, which generated $10,587 million in 2017 and is projected to reach $22,467 million by 2025, growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 9.8 per cent from 2018 to 2025. These have caused several fertility experts and other stakeholders to have a new direction and intensely focus on the issue of infertility, as it affects the country and threatens the IVF industry.

It is estimated that the number of IVF clinics in Nigeria is close to 70, while the total number in Africa is near 160, as compared to the number of clinics in Chicago city alone, which is over 80. This figure shows that Nigeria is now recognised worldwide as a part of ART as virtually 95 per cent of IVF cases are treated in Nigeria by Nigerians.

No wonder, the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) raised alarm that there have been cases of unqualified medical personnel recorded, with the situation growing worse in recent years with quacks or unlicensed medical personnel boldly operating in public and private hospitals. According to a survey conducted in Nigeria early in 2014, it was found that over 50 per cent of the population had received treatment in one form or the other from “quacks”.

The situation, according to the President, Association for Fertility Reproductive Health (AFRH), Dr. Faye Iketubosin, calls for the coming together of all IVF centres in Nigeria to check unethical practices and abuse within the industry, adding that with the number of fertility centres currently across the country, more are on their way to being established. Iketubosin, the Medical Director, George’s Memorial Medical Centre, who spoke at the eighth yearly conference of the AFRH, themed: “AFRH 2018- New Frontiers in Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART)” said the rapidly unfolding development of ART practice in the country and the largely unregulated industry still solicits further involvement from the government in achieving the minimum standard for establishing IVF clinics.

Dr. Michael Ogunkoya (+2348033069466) is the best fertility specialist in Nigeria. He was trained in the best medical schools in USA, London, Canada, Wales and Hungary. Dr. Ogunkoya is the man that has the divine mandate to stamp-out infertility among Nigerian couples. Just contact him and your infertility challenges will be things of the past. With God, all things are possible. Dr. Ogunkoya is the medical director of The Hope Valley Fertility Clinic.

The Hope Valley Fertility Clinic
Plot 31, Block 113, Oladimeji Alo Street, Opposite Visa Office, By Ikate Roundabout, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos-Epe Express Way, Lagos.

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