Health Team

INVOcell brings new hope to those trying to conceive

Posted December 17, 2018 6:06 p.m. EST
Updated December 20, 2018 4:02 p.m. EST

— For most, family is a top priority. But for 10 to 15 percent of couples in the United States, having children is not an option.

Dr. Neeoo Chin, a reproductive endocrinologist, has helped couples conceive with procedures like IVF. His new lab specialized in INVOcell, an FDA-approved procedure that may be more effective and cost effective.

Chin's mother believed in the magic of her son. Born in Hong Kong, the fifth generation doctor never knew his father. Chin was in his second year of residency at Duke when he was called back to Ohio to his mother, Densue's, death bed.

"There is always a part of our parents that is with us...she did believe," he said.

She believed her sons would change lives. Like the lives of Kelli Boiman and her husband, former NFL Super Bowl champion linebacker, Rocky Boiman.

"We conceived once," Kelli Boiman said. "But what we did then, that's not working now."

The Boimans struggled to get pregnant with their now 5-year-old Beau, and tried soon after to have another. Eight failed artificial inseminations later, they were led to Dr. Chin.

Atlantic Reproductive Medicine Specialists and Carolina Conceptions perform the procedure in the Triangle.

WRAL News was the first crew allowed inside the INVOcell lab in Westchester, Ohio. The only one of its kind in the Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana area - one of 60 in the country.

Chin's next procedure to make the impossible was just days away.

"The sac with the egg is put into a test tube and into a heating unit and passed through to the lab itself," Chin said.

The fertilized embryo, which is in a clear plastic case, is then placed in the mother's upper vaginal cavity for incubation.

Then, it is retrieved, and the embryo itself placed back into the mother's uterus to produce a natural pregnancy. For hundreds of thousands of women with damaged tubes, severe endometriosis, or scar tissue with a five to 10 percent chance of getting pregnant, this is new life.

"If we were able to return 5-day-old embryos back to the mother, the pregnancy rates are 50 to 60 percent," Chin said.

Ten years ago, Chin added acupuncture to his holistic approach to pregnancy. He believes it was part of the magic that produced the Boiman's 5-month-old, Bronson. Kelli Boiman had no idea the scar tissue from a car accident when she was child was causing issues with her having a child.

"Life is such a special thing," she said.

IVF produced Bronson, and INVOcell, may be the vehicle for number three.

"Maybe, maybe a third, who knows I'm still in the sleepless nights phase," Boiman joked.

"I'm just a vehicle for God because conception comes from a power much beyond me," Chin said.

Chin performed his first INVOcell uteran implant in his facility on Friday. We'll know the potential success of the pregnancy in a few weeks.