Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) and Pre-Implantation Genetic Screening (PGS)
Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) is a micromanipulation technique that allows us to test embryos created with IVF for certain types of genetic conditions. PGD/PGS screens for diseases such as, but not limited to, Tay-Sach’s, sickle cell anemia, and cystic fibrosis, all of which can cause severe pain, lifetime disability or even death. For couples who know that they carry the genetic predisposition for such diseases, the chance to ensure that it will not be passed on to their children can provide peace of mind.
A PGD biopsy is performed once the embryos have reached day five (or blastocyst stage). At this stage there is no specialization of cells, so the removal of one or two will not harm the embryo or result in developmental damage. Next, the testing phase of preimplantation genetic diagnosis will take place, at which time the extracted cells will be examined for indications of any genetic disease, in which the embryo is being screened. After the genetic testing, the embryo transfer procedure can be performed with the healthy embryos.
PGD/PGS allows us to check for specific conditions and is offered to couples that know that they carry a genetic disease and have a high risk of passing that condition on to their children. In addition, PGD/PGS may be performed to check embryo quality or other reasons that may be discussed with your physician. Women who undergo PGD/PGS increase the probability of having a healthy baby.