#gerilenmbf: Merck’s committed to change lives of childless couples

There are only two happy instances that is happening inside every medical facility – a patient recovering from surgery and a successful childbirth.

Every womb’s fruit is a blessing from above.

I’m already blessed with two little gentlemen but when my doctors assessed that my body (my heart) won’t be able to bear the pressure of another pregnancy, they decided for me to have a ligation. I’m in between life and death, so I gave in.

I woke up on the long sleep that came after my emergency C-section heart-broken. I cried because I won’t be able to experience kicks and somersaults inside my growing belly anymore. I won’t have another 50% chance of having a girl.


Tears fell and I moved forward looking on the brighter side. At least I was able to bear two sons after every obstacle on my way – a repaired heart, defective blood and during my 2nd pregnancy, Dabibot’s head is leaning on the right making his heartbeat dropped to 60 counts per minute during crowning and hence, the emergency CS.

I still think I’m blessed and that I do not have the right to complain.

The essence of a woman is being a mother.

It’s no big deal, if being childless is your personal decision in life, but what about women who’s only wish in life is to bear a child but won’t?

Albeit explosive poos and sleepless night, when you think of babies, first thing that come to mind is the feeling of happiness – of blissful parents cuddling their adorable little one – nothing short of perfection.

Unfortunately, not all couples share the same feeling, especially for the 15% of the population who are suffering from fertility problems.

Infertility is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO), as “a disease of the reproductive system defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.”

Turning Dreams to Reality

Data from a Synovate survey in 2011 shows that one out of 10 Filipinos are suffering from infertility. There are different factors that affect a couple’s ability to procreate such as socio-cultural practices, including the marrying age, educational status, professional goals.

Aside from those, Dr. Virgilio M. Novero Jr., head of St. Luke’s flagship Center for Advanced Reproductive Medicine and Infertility (CARMI), infertility can also be traced to issues affecting both the female and male reproductive systems, and medical conditions that compromises the quality of egg and sperm cells.

Since 2013, the local arm of the world’s oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company Merck Philippines, has been proactive in their fertility awareness campaign.

The campaign, which is aptly named “Bridging Baby Steps,” aims to continue education on infertility and raise awareness about the in-vitro fertilization (IVF) methods available in the country through seminars and information dissemination.

The ART of Procreation

Infertility should not be the be-all and end-all for couples, as there are means and ways to this.

One available method for childless couples is Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). This treatment procedure enables multiplication of ovarian follicles and facilitates egg cell retrieval. During the process, embryos will be formed outside the body of a female patient and will be transferred once the “cultures” are successfully formed. Patients who are suffering from severe sperm deficits, blocked fallopian tubes, unexplained infertility, mild endometriosis, and ovulation disorders can be candidates for this treatment.

With regards to IVF being risky, Dr. Novero shared that the success rate of such procedure has grown tremendously over the past years. He said that about six million children around the world were born via IVF.

“As they say, ‘where there’s life, there’s hope.’ We, at Merck Philippines, understand the heartaches of couples who can’t conceive a child,” said Dess Cartao, Sales & Marketing Manager for Fertility, Merck Philippines. “We want to let them know that there are means and ways to combat infertility. “

In this advancement in biological science, couples are given another hope for having their own offspring.

To know more about infertility and IVF in the Philippines, visit www.facebook.com/fertilityawarenessphilippines.

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