Infertility Treatment in COVID-19 Pandemic
The Coronavirus pandemic has had a great impact on various health sectors including pregnancy and infertility treatments like in vitro fertilization (IVF), in utero insemination (IUI), ovulation-induction, laparoscopy, hysteroscopy, and assisted reproductive techniques (ART). Due to the current situation in the COVID-19 pandemic and the relaxation permitted by the government, allowing nonessential services in a gradual manner, infertility services are being resumed according to the guidelines set by the ministry of health and family welfare. To meet the demands of current situation, the patient and the staff should be triaged. Only those patients should be undertaken who are tested or screened negative. Diagnostic evaluation is done using RT-PCR and the testing should be done at the commencement of treatment, that is, on day 2 of IVF/intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) cycle. Repeat test is done before the hCG trigger. The husband also needs testing at least once during the cycle, preferably at the start of the cycle. If the donor tests positive for COVID-19, the cycle should be cancelled. Universal good practices should be followed in laboratory also by each staff, which includes use of proper personal protective equipment (PPE) like eye protectors, FFP-2 or N-95 face masks, double gloves, shoe covers, disposable impermeable gowns, and face shields. The sanitization of the laboratory environment, equipment and devices should be done with appropriate nonembryotoxic disinfectants at the end of each procedure. COVID-19 has actually changed the way infertility treatment is being provided, keeping in view the safety of both the doctors and the patient.
14 September 2020 (online)
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