It has been 20 years since Sir Ganga Ram Hospital had its first baby through in-vitro fertilisation (IVF), a technique in which egg cells are fertilised by sperm outside the body.
On his 20th birthday on Saturday, Garv Marwah — the hospital’s first IVF baby — was present at the hospital along with about 100 other babies which were born through the technique to celebrate the hospital’s successful IVF programme.
“I am a living example and an inspiration for all the childless couples who dream of having a healthy baby through IVF,” said Marwah, who finished school this year and intends to join his father’s business.
“It is such a happy experience to see so many IVF babies. I had nearly lost hope and it had taken me a lot of convincing to go for this treatment. I’m thankful to god that I did,” said Ishita Mahajan (name changed on request), who is mother to a baby girl.
With changing lifestyles, more and more women are opting for late marriage that results in difficulty in conceiving later on. In such a scenario, fertility treatment is seen as an effective way of building family.
Infertility affects about 15% of married couples in India. Given the fact that India has a population of about one billion, a conservative estimate suggests there are approximately 45 million infertile couples in the country. In 1990, there were very few centres in India and now the number has reached to more than 35 in Delhi alone.
“With a success rate of 20% in the past to the present success rate of 45%, our IVF centre has come a long way through all these years. We are at par with the best centres in the world,” said Dr Abha Majumdar, head of the IVF department, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
“IVF brings hope and joy to thousands of couples who are struggling with the emotional and social consequences of not being blessed with a child. It brings smile to the faces of the mothers who had lost all hope of ever holding a child in their arms,” said actor Deepti Naval, who was part of the celebrations.