IVF And Test Tube Baby – What’s The Difference?

IVF And Test Tube Baby – What’s The Difference?


By Indira Ivf, IVF Speciality

The first test tube baby was born in India in 1978. Since then, thousands of test tube babies have been born. However, the term test tube baby is no longer heard. In fact,
nowadays doctors refer to it as IVF.

So, are IVF and test tube baby different? The fact is that there is no difference between IVF and test tube baby. They are just two names of the same procedure. The process just came to be known as a test tube baby since the fertilization of the egg with the sperm took place inside a tube. In fact, it is a petri dish where this process of fertilization takes place. This is why it is named as In Vitro Fertilization or IVF. The opposite of In Vitro is In Vivo which means that inside a living being. This essentially means that fertilization is carried out inside a glass container and not the fallopian tubes of the mother. So, the IVF specialty is just a synonym for test tube procedure and notsomething different.

Why IVF Specialty?

Not every woman is born with a healthy reproductive system. There are many women who suffer from one or the other reproductive shortcomings. While some women may have blocked fallopian tubes, others may have failed cycles of infertility treatment or something else. The procedure of having a test tube baby or IVF treatment becomes necessary when the woman is suffering from such and other shortcomings resulting in infertility.

Steps in IVF Specialty

The IVF procedure is divided into several steps:

1. Stimulation
If a woman is unable to conceive naturally, gynecologists prescribe fertility drugs to stimulate hormones that nudge the ovaries to produce more eggs for fertilization.

2. Egg removal
Ultrasound procedures are carried out to see if eggs are ready. When the time is ripe, eggs are retrieved through laparoscopic surgery and taken for fertilization.

3. Fertilization and embryo selection
For fertilization, the man has to deliver fresh sperm just on the day of fertilization. If the man is unable to do so, donor sperm are taken. These are washed and
fertilized with the retrieved eggs. This process is called insemination. After insemination, the resulting zygote is cultured for 5 days to see if cell division occurs. As soon as the cell division starts to occur, the embryo is transferred into the uterus. But before doing that an endometrial receptivity analysis is carried out.

4. Endometrial Receptivity Analysis and Transplantation
Through this procedure, the doctor ascertains whether the inner lining of the uterus is ready to receive the embryo or not. If the uterus is found to be receptive, the embryo is transferred into the uterus through a catheter inserted into the vagina of the woman.


While IVF specialty and test tube baby are the same, the former name is a more refined term since it describes the type of fertilization.