In September of 2017 a fertility specialist at the Marin Fertility Center located in Greenbrae,, California announced that the first babies (twins) were born in San Francisco using a new technology called the INVOcell.
What is the INVOcell
The INVOcell is a new technique that was developed to cut costs by doing away with the expensive incubators typically used for IVF. Rather than putting the fertilized egg cell in an expensive lab machine, a simple plastic capsule is used. The capsule then uses the prospective mothers own body as the incubator.
How does it work
This is achieved by first fertilizing an egg cell of the prospective mother with the sperm of the prospective father in a lab dish, the same as it has always been done for standard IVF. The fertilized egg cell(s) is/are then placed in a small capsule and inserted into the woman’s vagina near the cervical opening. This way the woman’s own body heat acts as the incubator rather than using a mechanical incubator in a lab.
After the fertilized egg cell incubates for about five days it can then be implanted into the woman’s uterus, the same as standard IVF. The entire procedure is the same as standard IVF except that the expensive middle step of using a lab based mechanical incubator is eliminated in favor of using the woman’s own body for the incubation period.
This new procedure lowers the cost of IVF substantially and so makes IVF available for people that want to have a child but were unable to do so due to the high costs or the procedure.
Because of the lowered costs of IVF thanks to INVOcell technology, this opens the door for more couples to utilize IVF for having a child. The savings offered by INVOcell could actually be put towards another IVF cycle to increase your odds of success.