PGD & PGS: Genetic Testing for Informed Decisions

Genetic testing is a rapidly evolving area of reproductive medicine, beneficial to prospective parents who want to identify genetic disease and chromosomal abnormalities in the earliest stages. Today’s most advanced techniques for genetic testing, PGD and PGS, are offered at Pacific Fertility Center in Los Angeles, CA. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) and genetic screening (PGS) are available for patients of the state-of-the-art in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment program at Pacific Fertility Center. We offer a wide range of infertility treatment and assistance, including help with egg donation or surrogacy, if desired. Our internationally respected reproductive medicine practice has helped thousands of heterosexual and LGBT couples experience the dream of having a child. To learn more about your options, contact us today and schedule an appointment at one of our five L.A.-area locations.

About IVF and Genetic Testing

IVF is an effective method of helping infertile couples conceive a baby, with results that have improved substantially over the years. During IVF, eggs are harvested from the patient or donor, and then are fertilized with sperm in a laboratory. The resulting embryos are transferred into the uterus of the patient or a surrogate. In many cases, pregnancy is the outcome.

During the IVF process, we can fertilize harvested eggs before transferring them to the uterus.
During the IVF process, we can fertilize harvested eggs before transferring them to the uterus.

Over the past 20 years, vast improvements have been made in embryo biopsy techniques and genetics technologies, increasing these successes. The PGD and PGS procedures take place very early in the fertilization process of IVF, so patients are able to catch genetic diseases and other abnormalities before transplantation. Gender can also be identified through these techniques, allowing patients to choose gender selection, if desired.

The PGD and PGS Process

Once the first stage of IVF has occurred, the resulting embryo is cultured for five to six days after fertilization. When it reaches the blastocyst stage, one of our highly skilled embryologists uses a laser and a microscopic glass needle to remove a small number of cells from the pre-placenta area. PGD is used to identify a specific disease, such as cystic fibrosis, by examining the DNA within the cells. If both partners are carriers of such a recessive disease, their chances of genetic inheritance in reproduction is 25%. PGD can be extremely beneficial to these types of IVF patients. In PGS, the overall chromosomes in the embryo are examined to determine if there are a healthy, normal number. This is most often performed when patients are older than 37, since advancing age increases the risk of abnormal chromosomes in the eggs. Patients who have had numerous miscarriages or repeated IVF failures are also good candidates, and some patients simply use the technique to increase the chances of optimal results.