- Intralipid is a brand name for the first safe fat emulsion for human use, It is an synthetic emulsion of soy bean oil, egg phospholipids and glycerin
How do intralipids work?
Some types of infertility may be caused by a slightly overactive immune system. When this occurs the immune system can attack egg, sperm, embryo and even a developing fetus. This can result in difficulty achieving pregnancy, maintaining the pregnancy, or repeated miscarriages.
Natural killer (NK) cells are regulated by the immune system. In women who have autoimmune issues, the NK cells can react abnormally to an implanting embryo, treating it as an invading cell and signalling for the body to attack it.
Intralipids have been shown to lower the activity of the NK cells component of our immune system. Studies have found that intralipids can help to regulate the NK cells, allowing the embryo to implant on the uterine wall and grow normally.
New research has suggested that women who have experienced recurrent miscarriages or multiple failed IUI or IVF cycles as a result of NK cell activation may benefit from the use of intralipids.
How is it used?
The method of administration is an IV infusion (a drip in your vein) of around 2-3 hours’ duration and requires that you are not allergic to soy or egg products, and also do not have a history of high cholesterol or liver disease.
Intralipids is virtually free of side effects. It is administered 4-7 days before embryo transfer or insemination. Intralipids are re-administered 4-5 weeks following a positive pregnancy test, to keep the NK cells deactivated until the pregnancy can override the signals being sent by the immune system.
We now offer this treatment to help women who have had recurrent miscarriage, multiple failed IVF cycles or multiple failed IUI cycles. As mentioned before, Intralipids may deactivate natural killer cells in a woman’s body which may prevent embryos from implanting and growing properly in the uterus.
Intralipids therapy during IVF treatment
Intralipids have a suppressive action on certain components of the mother’s immune system, essentially safeguarding the embryo from the immune reactions which might otherwise result in implantation failure.
Evidence from human studies suggest that Intralipids administered intravenously may enhance implantation. We advocate aggressive treatment of immunologic implantation dysfunction in women undergoing IVF treatment. In cases where there has been NK cell activation we recommend the use of Intralipids to down regulate (deactivate) the NK cells. So far, many women who otherwise might not have achieved success with IVF have gone from infertility to family.