In vitro fertilization (IVF) using a natural cycle refers to a specific approach to IVF where fertility medications are not used to stimulate the ovaries as extensively as in a conventional IVF cycle. Instead, the natural menstrual cycle of the woman is monitored, and only the naturally selected dominant follicle is allowed to develop and release an egg.


Here is an overview of the IVF natural cycle procedure:

Monitoring the Natural Menstrual Cycle: The woman’s natural menstrual cycle is closely monitored using ultrasounds and blood tests. This helps determine the timing of ovulation and the development of the dominant follicle.

Egg Retrieval: Once the dominant follicle reaches an appropriate size and the woman is close to ovulation, an egg retrieval procedure is performed. This is similar to the egg retrieval in a conventional IVF cycle. A thin needle is used to aspirate the fluid and retrieve the mature egg from the dominant follicle.

Sperm Collection: On the day of the egg retrieval, a semen sample is collected from the male partner or a sperm donor. The sperm is prepared in the laboratory to separate healthy and motile sperm from the seminal fluid.

Fertilization: After egg retrieval, the retrieved egg is combined with the prepared sperm in the laboratory. Fertilization can occur naturally as the sperm penetrate the egg, or in some cases, Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) may be used if there are specific concerns about fertilization.

Embryo Culture and Development: Once fertilization occurs, the resulting embryo is cultured in the laboratory for several days, monitoring its development and quality.

Embryo Transfer: When the embryo reaches a suitable stage of development, typically at the blastocyst stage, it is transferred into the woman’s uterus. The embryo transfer procedure is similar to that of a conventional IVF cycle, where a catheter is used to deposit the embryo into the uterus.

Luteal Phase Support: Following the embryo transfer, supplemental hormones, such as progesterone, may be prescribed to support the uterine lining and increase the chances of successful implantation.

Pregnancy Testing: About two weeks after the embryo transfer, a blood test or a urine test is performed to determine if the IVF cycle has resulted in pregnancy.


IVF natural cycle is often considered for women who have few or no available eggs or for those who prefer a more minimalistic approach with fewer medications. However, it’s important to note that the success rates of natural cycle IVF may be lower compared to conventional IVF, as the number of eggs retrieved is typically limited to one. It’s recommended to consult with a fertility specialist to discuss the suitability of a natural cycle IVF based on individual circumstances and fertility evaluation.