An appeal has been placed by The Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), to well-meaning Nigerians to aid governments achieve cheaper cost of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) known as (IVF).
The appeal was made by LASUTH Chief Medical Director, Prof. Adewale Oke at the celebration of 74 live births in the hospital’s Institution of Fertility Medicine (IFM).
The event organised by LASUTH was held in Lagos on wednesday in association with the Bridge Clinic, Lagos – a fertility clinic.
Oke was represented by Dr Ayoade Adedokun, LASUTH’s Director of Clinical Services and Training.
Since inception, 74 babies have been delivered at the hospital’s in partnership with the Bridge Clinic as reported by News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
Oke stated: “We have been told what future lies ahead of the partnership, which is to bring down the cost further.
“With the help of government and well-meaning Nigerians, we can achieve this; that is, getting the drugs at a highly subsidised rate that will bring down the cost of treatment.’’
The hospital’s Chairman of IFM Board, Prof. Adetokunbo Fabamwo said that, the cost of one ART cycle is from N400,000 to N500,000.
The chairman further stated that there was the need to train more fertility experts in the hospital.
He said that only two persons had been trained as consultants on fertility matters in the hospital.
However, he noted that some resident doctors in the hospital’s Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department had undertaken routine trainings at the IFM.
“For now, only two consultants will carry on with the service in the institution,” he disclosed.
Fabamwo said that the hospital was aiming at being independent in the treatment of fertility issues.
He said, “We are only waiting for the completion of the Ayinke House, which will be the new building for the Obstetrics and Gynaecology Department before we start to operate on our own.’’
The guest speaker at the event, a Consultant Gynaecologist, Dr Tawakalita Otun, urged men and women suffering infertility to seek appropriate help to get the required assistance.
She said that religious beliefs hindered some women from seeking appropriate treatment for infertility.
She stated; “The issue of religion is a huge challenge; when women and men are infertile, they believe it is a supernatural problem, but science has gone beyond that myth.
“It is better to be investigated and the cause of the problem identified and treated.
“Not all women will have babies through Invitro Fertility Treatment (IVF); there is also room for adoption.
“There are other ways of conceiving and having children”.
According to Otun, she said that about 50 per cent of those who visited the hospital’s gynaecology clinics presented cases of infertility.
Otun further discussed that the country still records a high rate of infertility.
“The reason is that there are a lot of practices among the population that can affect fertility potential vis-a-vis the level of promiscuity within the environment.
“Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) can be a reason.
“For the female, the cause is mostly tubal factor, which is due to infection from STDs; also, men have problems with sperm counts due to infections,” she said.