IVF services offered in La Jolla, CA


In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is the process in which oocytes (eggs) are fertilized with sperm outside of the womb in a laboratory. The resulting embryos are transferred into the uterus to establish a pregnancy. If you’re considering in vitro fertilization (IVF) on your journey to parenthood, having the most experienced infertility and IVF specialists on your side is essential. At La Jolla IVF, board-certified physician David B. Smotrich, MD, FACOG, has over 30 years of experience helping patients become parents and complete their families. Call the La Jolla, California, office or book your appointment online today.


Who is a good candidate for IVF?

In vitro fertilization (IVF) helps people become parents, including:

  • Couples with female infertility
  • Couples with male infertility
  • Couples with both female and male infertility
  • Same-sex couple
  • Single women
  • Single men
  • Women with recurrent miscarriages
  • Women/couples who need an egg donor
  • Men/couples who need a sperm donor
  • Women/couples who need a gestational surrogate 

La Jolla IVF excludes no one, so if you want to become a parent and can’t, the practice is a safe and encouraging space. Dr. Smotrich welcomes older patients that other practices might turn away.  


What are the steps of IVF?

IVF is a complex process consisting of:  

Ovarian stimulation

Treatment cycles typically consist of a regimen of fertility medications that stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple oocytes (eggs). In most cases, injectable gonadotropins are given to the patients, who are then closely monitored by blood tests and ultrasounds to assess the ovaries' response to the medication.


Egg retrieval

The eggs are collected using a needle introduced into the pelvis through the vaginal wall guided by ultrasound. The eggs are extracted from the follicles through this needle and handed to a waiting embryologist, who will immediately identify and grade the eggs. 

The egg retrieval, performed under anesthesia usually takes about 15-20 minutes. The patient will then be returned to the recovery room adjacent to our operating room to recover.



Before egg retrieval, semen is provided either by the Intended Parent or a sperm donor. A single sperm is identified and injected into the cytoplasm of the egg. This process is called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). At La Jolla IVF, ICSI is used regardless of male factor to ensure the maximum chance of fertilization and creation of as many embryos as possible. 

Within 24 hours, evidence of fertilization can be visualized through the microscope. The fertilized egg is placed in culture media and is left to grow to blastocyst stage (day five embryo).

For cases requiring PGT-A this is performed on day five.

PGT-A will tell you if there are any chromosomal abnormalities and it will tell you the sex of each embryo if sex selection is desired.


Embryo transfer

The embryo is loaded into a thin, plastic catheter passed gently through the woman’s vagina and cervix into the uterine cavity under ultrasound guidance. The embryo is deposited in the uterine cavity.

After the embryo transfer procedure, the patient rests for about an hour and then leaves the clinic. Patients may be asked to go on bed rest for three days.

Call La Jolla IVF or book your consultation using online scheduling today.