What is the difference between IVF and PGD?

IVF or In vitro fertilization is a process of fertilizing an egg with a sperm outside the uterus in a laboratory. The process also includes the development of an embryo and implantation to make a woman pregnant. The doctor gives several medicines to form several eggs in the female ovaries until they get mature. Then, the eggs are taken out and kept in a lab to fuse with the sperms.

The doctor then chooses one or more fertilized eggs or embryos to implant into the uterus. A woman becomes pregnant if an embryo gets implanted in the lining of the womb. IVF is a long process and it includes different steps. It may take many months for the whole process. The doctor also orders several tests and scans during the process to ensure the birth of a healthy child.

PGD or Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis is a process through which an embryo is tested for the presence of any genetic disease or number of chromosomes before transferring them into the uterus.

Couples who choose IVF must know about PGD or Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis. The test is done as a part of the IVF embryo transfer. The embryos are screened 5-6 days before transferring into the uterus and they are frozen until the results are received. A small piece of an embryo is used for screening. The outer cell mass of an embryo that forms the placenta is used for screening. The results are obtained in 7-10 days and the doctor can transfer the frozen embryo in the next month.


When is the PGD test ordered?

The doctor will order a PGD test if the couple has the following:

  • If they are at risk of transferring defective genes to the child
  • Women who suffer from repeated miscarriages
  • Couples who had tried the process of IVF several times
  • If anyone is having a chromosome abnormality
  • If the age of the female is more than 35 years of age

PGD testing helps in the diagnosis of specific genetic diseases. The test is recommended if there is a family history of any disease or if the couple has a risk of carrying defective genes. PGD testing can be done for diagnosing the following genetic diseases:

  • Marfan’s Syndrome
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Beta-Thalassemia
  • Haemophilia
  • Spinal Muscular Atrophy


Benefits of the PGD Test

There are many benefits of the PGD test:

  • It increases the chances of pregnancy
  • It reduces the chances of multiple pregnancies
  • It helps in avoiding undesirable genetic diseases
  • It also reduces the chances of abortion
  • The test helps in choosing healthy embryos which are then transferred into the womb of a woman


IVF is an artificial method to make a woman pregnant. It is a complicated process and involves several medications and tests. PGD is also an advanced test done during the process of IVF for diagnosing the genetic diseases in the prepared embryos. It is a useful test as it helps in screening the embryos for genetic diseases which can be prevented easily by avoiding the transfer of unhealthy embryos into the uterus.

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