If you search for tips about how to conceive a boy (or how to conceive a girl) naturally, you’ll hear about some dubious methods. Learn more.
If you absolutely must choose the sex of your child, adopt.
Your next best bet? Expensive technology.
With preimplantation genetic diagnosis, you’ll follow the usual procedure for in vitro fertilization. Once you and your doctors have produced a set of embryos, they’ll be analyzed with a technique that attaches fluorescent colors to DNA. A boy will show up as a green strand and a red strand, a girl as two green strands. The identification is nearly 100 percent foolproof. But implanting embryos successfully is tricky. Also, this technique is available only to couples who want to avoid passing on a hereditary disease — for example, hemophilia, which almost entirely affects boys.
You could also try flow cytometric separation. Each sperm carries either a X or Y chromosome. You’ll submit a sperm sample, which technicians stain with a dye that reveals the chromosome it carries. The clinic sorts the sperm, and the sperm carrying the desired chromosome is injected into the uterus. You’re eligible if you’re trying to prevent a hereditary disease or if you already have one child and want the other gender in your second.
With the albumin filtration method — sometimes called the “Ericsson method”— the sperm are spun in a centrifuge. Y-bearing sperm are lighter and rise to the top. Again, the woman receives an injection of the sperm. If you’re aiming at a girl, you’ll also take a fertility drug.
April 07, 2020
Janet O’Dell, RN