Tips to maximize success during your embryo transfer recovery
The embryo transfer is the final step in the roller coaster of fertility treatment, and many patients ask what to do after their embryo transfer. We understand the wish for a magic solution to guarantee pregnancy. However, we’ve learned in our decades of experience that maximizing success comes down to taking care of yourself, in whatever way that means to you. Truly, that’s it! Here are some self-care examples that may help you as you think about what to do after your embryo transfer.
You Can Take a Moment Post-Embryo Transfer to Reflect
At PNWF, we review medications and instructions with you after your transfer, then give you some time alone or with your partner to reflect on the transfer. While it’s easy to immediately shift focus to the outcome, it’s meaningful to pause and celebrate making it to this special step in your journey.
After Your Embryo Transfer, It’s Okay to Pee!
We promise you, the embryo can’t fall out of your uterus once it has been transferred. Studies show that lying down or not lying down immediately after your transfer has no effect on success rates. So, if you need to empty your bladder after the procedure, it’s perfectly okay.
Don’t Forget to Take Your Medications
In all the excitement after your embryo transfer, it’s easy to forget your medications. However, it’s very important to continue all medications as directed to maximize your chances of pregnancy. Some patients time their meds with meals, set alarms, or ask their partner to help remember to take them consistently.
Practice Self-Care Where Possible During Your Embryo Transfer Recovery
We like to think of the days after the embryo transfer as an opportunity for self care. Despite what the internet may tell you, there are no hard and fast rules about what you should or shouldn’t do after your transfer. Doing the laundry won’t ruin your chances of success – but if you don’t feel like doing it, by all means give yourself a pass to relax for a few days!
If possible, it’s nice to plan to not have deadlines or urgent obligations for a day or two after your transfer, so you can rest and reflect. But, if you need to work or take care of family the next day, don’t worry. You aren’t compromising your results.
Have a Plan for What to Do After Embryo Transfer
Planning is important for two reasons. First, you may need to plan ahead if you’d like to free your schedule for rest and relaxation. Second, having a plan for either outcome after your embryo transfer may help you feel more confident and secure. Talk to your fertility team about next steps for medications or follow-up visits for either result.
Take Your Pregnancy Test When Directed, Not Before
The two week wait between your transfer and your pregnancy test can feel like an eternity. However, it’s important to wait to take the test until your clinic recommends it. Taking the test too early can give inaccurate or misleading results. The two-week wait is already emotional enough, without adding in extra confusion from an early test.
While you wait, try to use your favorite distraction or relaxing techniques to help stay present and hopeful. Picking up a new hobby, working on a DIY project at home, walking with friends or by yourself can help to pass the time and care for your mental health. Watching your favorite comedy can help distract you, and may even improve chances of success! Studies show humor can improve transfer results.
And lastly, during these two weeks, remember that there is no single experience of pregnancy. Spotting, cramps, tenderness, mood swings – some pregnant people experience these symptoms, while others don’t feel any different, but still get a positive test result.
At PNWF, we’re here to help as you prepare for what to do after your embryo transfer. It is an exciting and meaningful finish to your fertility journey. We want you to feel comfortable and confident in the process. We will make sure you are prepared before, during, and after your transfer.