In Vitro Fertilization - Innovative Clinical, Lab. Aspects

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It also resulted in the meeting of artist Koen Vanmechelen and fertility specialist Willem Ombelet. Although they came from two very different domains, these domains both developed from a sense of amazement and a desire to understand human identity. It was a unique blend of science, art and philosophy, to name but a few of its perspectives. From the start, the concept sounded like a real program: to bridge the gap between science and art and alter traditional discourse between two disciplines believed to be in opposition with each other.

In vitro fertilization (IVF) - Mayo Clinic

The next two years were spent brainstorming, working, travelling, discussing, talking and exploring. A general concept focusing on the egg, it remains on permanent display in the fertility department. In December , a scientific-artistic project was set up in Arusha, Tanzania, in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro.

It is an environment where climatological and hygienic conditions are not the most favorable.

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Creativity and beauty are the junctions where art and science meet. Early on, Koen Vanmechelen and Willem Ombelet recognized both disciplines have a complementary relationship.


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The study of the inner world is incomplete without that of the outer. In the future they aim to organize debates between scientists, politicians, artists, philosophers, etc. Koen Vanmechelen was born in St-Truiden Belgium in He lives in Meeuwen-Gruitrode, Belgium.

This genetic diversity is a model for mixing the genome of human population groups. So far he has realized 13 generations of crossbreds. Vanmechelen uses this genetic diversity of chickens as a metaphor, to explain certain relevant social phenomena. His works range from highly expressive paintings and drawings, to photography, videos, installations, works in glass and a recurring wooden sculpture.

IVF And More: 6 Pillars of Medical Tourism in Greece

All these different modes of expression are linked by the chicken and the egg. Over the years they have become an important symbol, enabling the artist to make a connection to scientific, political, philosophical and ethical domains and issues. The intricate artistic-philosophical system he developed is the subject of debates, discussions and lectures the artist organizes or takes part in to shape his philosophical universe. They have linked themselves to other domains: the scientific, social and philosophical.

It represented the start of a focus on in fertility in developing countries. Koen Vanmechelen will be creating a series of numbered reproductions of his work, each of which is to be sold for the price of one fertility treatment. Setting up of an ideal IVF laboratory is vital to the success in ART and the critical determinants of the function of the IVF laboratory are people, procedures, equipment and the laboratory design.

An embryologist using his or her personality, knowledge and skills must be capable of taking initiatives and improving the laboratory. Skill is an absolute requirement along with the ability to collate and structure information from the laboratory and literature, so that one can analyze, foresee and solve problems that occur in the daily practice.

Also, communication skills are important to connect with staff, patients and society. The embryologist must also have good writing skills in order to author quality management documents. Furthermore, in any organization, relationship skills are important to enable honest and open discussion in the workplace. The knowledge of cell and reproductive biology must be of sufficient depth to allow the embryologist to analyze and solve problems from basic physiological principles. It is important that the embryologist is imbued with a culture of intellectual and scientific rigor that allows independent search for knowledge and solutions instead of unquestioning references to statements of authorities in the field.

Why it's done

Trust and integrity are fundamental in any workplace and it is crucial that there is comprehensive and honest reporting of all data. Good working conditions and good equipment should be provided for all staff to help them do a good job. Maintaining openness drives accountability, which in turn drives performance. All processes should be mapped, using appropriate flow chart methodology. The process map then forms the basis of descriptions of procedures and how they should be performed and what outcome is to be expected performance indictors.

These descriptions are often called standard operating procedures SOPs. The SOPs should be structured in a standardized format and their distribution must be controlled. Finally, they should be based on documented scientific evidence and require regular updating. The performance indicators should be collected in a computer database. Many comprehensive systems are available commercially and provide administrative as well as medical functionalities and allow easy report generation. Some clinics develop their own IT solutions, sometimes based on spreadsheets e.

Personalized care

Ideally, the database should provide information on demographics, medical history, investigations, treatments, observations and outcomes. Data should be analyzed regularly, both with regard to absolute levels as well trends in the data. Procedures should maximize the chance of success and minimize risk. Prior to the implementation of any new method, it needs to be validated and monitored in the current setting. Importantly, the laboratory staff members need to undergo training and prove competence for each procedure performed.

The data on the performance of the clinic as a whole, but also of the individuals should be collected and analyzed regularly. Data should be audited, assessed and structured to discern the input quality, the process quality and the output quality as appropriate. The list of data that is required for collecting and auditing is presented in Table 1. In addition, data on the functioning of equipment and technical systems, e. For laboratory functioning assessment process quality , the proportion of embryos reaching developmental milestones at pre-defined time points of embryo culture, are often used.

The most sensitive indictor of the performance of the culture system is the average cell numbers at e. The most significant measure of the output quality is the implantation rate rather than clinical pregnancy rates. Obviously, detailed records must be maintained for proper risk assessment in the clinic.

All consumables that come in contact with gametes and embryos must be validated as non-toxic to embryos and supportive of normal embryo development. All new equipment must be validated before use; it should be reliable in function, and be tolerant of non-ideal conditions. The equipment must be acquired on the characteristics of performance, but not on its price.

It is critical that the variables are measured at the point where the embryos are handled. The temperature of the heated stage then needs to be set at whatever value is needed to maintain the temperature of the medium in the dish at the desired level. Work stations should provide filtered air and a heated surface to maintain optimum temperature without any contamination. Ergonomically designed equipment is preferred to alleviate unnecessary strain on the embryologist. The laboratory design should be based on clean room technology, using low emission materials with a clearly defined air quality.

Exclusive Tour: Inside the IVF Laboratory at RMA of New York

Work-flow should be planned to ensure a minimal distance between the incubator, the work station and the microscope. This will also to minimize the risk of collisions between laboratory staff members. Before starting operations, the reliability of the laboratory equipment and processes must be checked in dry runs and all problems should be corrected before treatment of patients is commenced.

There are several quality management standards like International Organization for Standardization ISO for certification of QMS ascertaining that conditions will allow quality targets to be achieved and ISO for accreditation of clinical laboratories ensuring that the lab is doing what it says it does. However, the average improvement rates in the UK and in Sweden were between 0. Microfluidics is an emerging concept, embedded on a chip to provide a stable environment. It allows for better control of conditions, continuous supply of nutrients and removal of waste products.

A broader use of databases will also help in the development of the IVF laboratory. Issues surrounding pregnancy, childbirth and motherhood are complex in all societies but particularly so in patriarchal settings such as India where infertility is a life crisis, and its consequences can be manifold. The Indian public health system does not provide access to adequate preventive and curative services or counseling for infertility.

Hence services are available predominantly in the private sector, but the quality and the costs of these services vary considerably. A major concern in the present context of ART services in India is the quality of care.

Diagnostics and Laboratory Services

Services are not regulated and the quality of treatment is variable, ranging from clinics that offer professional, high-quality services to those that are run by unqualified practitioners. The guidelines provides minimum requirement regarding Staff in infertility clinics as well as physical requirements for an ART clinic [ Table 2 ]. Categorization of in vitro fertilization clinics adapted from schedule-1, Indian council of medical research draft guidelines for assisted reproductive technology clinics The fact that medicines in Greece are among the least expensive in Europe also helps contain costs.

While most clinics are located in Athens and Thessaloniki, there are pioneering units on islands and in smaller cities like Larissa. A large unit in Crete, for example, has received roughly couples from European, African and North American countries, as well as from places as distant as Australia and Sri Lanka. The couples remain on the island for 7 to 45 days in order to complete their treatment, combining their stay with a holiday. The diagnostic method developed by the Greek company Locus Medicus has revealed an important cause of male infertility, which prevents many couples from having children.

The pioneering method examines sperm specimens for infectious microorganisms which are likely to either prevent conception or infect the fetus, resulting in miscarriage. However, both of these possibilities can be prevented by appropriate treatment, if the infection is detected. The examination is becoming increasingly popular abroad, particularly in the UK, Ireland and the US, and Locus Medicus is about to announce a partnership with another European company to promote it further around the world. Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation is that field of medicine which aims to restore and enhance the functional ability and quality of life of those who have suffered strokes, traumatic injuries and acute illness, or are suffering from various chronic diseases, disorders, or post-operative conditions.

Such rehabilitation entails interdisciplinary care to achieve improved health and deliver the higher quality of life that comes with that improvement. Thanks to state subsidies, Greece has experienced a surge of growth in this field since , with many private rehabilitation and recovery centers being established around the country, most of them in the regions of Macedonia and Thessaly. They offer top-notch facilities staffed with highly competent and experienced doctors, therapists and nurses, implementing well-established techniques, as well as new clinical innovations, all supported by cutting-edge medical and rehabilitation equipment.

Greek rehabilitation centers also stand out for their competitive prices. There are currently 19 major private rehabilitation centers in Greece , all following internationally recognized protocols. State-of the art facilities, exceptional services and outstanding medical experience, powered by great prices and assisted by the Mediterranean climate and diet as well as the famed Greek hospitality, make Greece an ideal recovery spot for natives and foreigners alike.

Ophthalmology is the field of medicine that deals with the anatomy, physiology and diseases of the eye. It is one of the major specialties on offer in the context of medical tourism. Technological progress in this field, along with new advanced surgical techniques, have made it possible for almost all surgical procedures in ophthalmology approx. This means it is even easier nowadays for patients to seek medical services in countries other than their own and to combine an opthalmological procedure with a vacation.


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  6. They boast cutting-edge equipment alongside expert ophthalmologists, opticians, optometrists and nurses, and can perform surgical procedures that require only a few hours of post-operative hospitalization. Their rates are quite competitive compared to those in other countries, making Greece one of the top destinations for ophthalmic treatments.

    Among the standard procedures on offer in Greek day clinics are excimer laser refractive surgery for the correction of myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism ; cataract and glaucoma surgery; and treatment for age-related macular degeneration and for diabetic retinopathy. Some medical tourists may also seek out oculoplastic interventions, performed to correct an injury or done simply for esthetic purposes.

    According to a recent study, Greece could attract at least , medical tourists, in particular from the EU, southeastern Europe, Russia, the Middle East, the US and China within the next five years, and up to , patients within a decade. In recent years, a number of Greek dental clinics have become part of a dynamic branch of medical tourism, attracting not only Greeks living overseas who return for treatment but also patients from other countries, chiefly the UK, Belgium and Russia. Equipped with the very latest infrastructure including advanced laser technology, robotic dentistry devices and dental microscopes and enjoying both international recognition and quality-of-service certification to ISO standards, these centers offer the highest quality dental care at an affordable cost.



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