Gamete Intrafallopian Transfer (GIFT)

Gamete intrafallopian transfer, or GIFT, refers to the placement of oocytes and sperm into the mid-ampullary portion of the fallopian tube(s). Ovarian stimulation is identical to that of IVF supraovulation. Oocyte retrieval is done transvaginally with sonographic guidance. Selected oocytes and sperm are loaded into a GIFT catheter separated by an air bubble and injected directly into the fallopian tube(s) under laparoscopy. Historically, GIFT pregnancy rates were superior to IVF; however, with enhanced laboratory culturing techniques IVF pregnancy rates are equal to and in some centers higher than the average nationwide GIFT rate of 29.3 percent delivery per gamete transfer. In 1996, there were a total of 2,879 GIFT cycles reported resulting in 698 deliveries.

The major disadvantage of GIFT is the need for laparoscopy, which increases cost, the potential morbidity and the inability to assess fertilization. Although excess oocytes may be inseminated in vitro, the best quality oocytes are transferred so that poor fertilization in vitro may result from selection bias. GIFT procedures are the only form of ART accepted by the Catholic Church.

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