What is a gamete intrafallopian tube transfer?
A gamete intrafallopian tube transfer (GIFT) is a laparoscopic procedure where eggs are removed by laparoscopy, mixed outside the body with sperm and injected into the fallopian tube with a catheter. The procedure can be completed on one day.
What happens during the procedure?
GIFT is a procedure which involves:
- Stimulating a woman's eggs using medication
- Performing a laparoscopy to remove eggs
- Mixing the eggs with sperm outside the body inside a dish
- Placing the sperm/egg mixture immediately into the fallopian tube with a small catheter.
Today, GIFT is considered outdated because IVF has a higher success rate and does not involve laparoscopic surgery.
What are the differences between GIFT and IVF?
- GIFT has a lower success rate than IVF and requires functioning fallopian tubes.
- GIFT does not involve embryo culture. This enables some patients to try getting pregnant without addressing the ethical concern about how many embryos to create or transfer.
- IVF is more appropriate for women who have more severe infertility concerns such as low sperm count and fallopian tube problems.
- In an IVF procedure, the best quality embryos can be selected on day 3 or day 5 for transfer, whereas GIFT places unfertilized eggs and sperm in the tubes.
- In the GIFT procedure, the transfer of gametes into the tube requires an extra surgical procedure called laparoscopy.