Let there be life – Mindanao’s first IVF baby is born

LAST FEBRUARY, the first in vitro fertilization facility in Mindanao announced that it has successfully induced its first ever pregnancy from an embryo transfer.

The nine months that went by lead to one beautiful event in Brokenshire Hospital’s In-Vitro Fertilization Davao, Inc. (IVF Davao). Last Oct. 13, at 3:43 p.m. was the birth of a healthy baby boy named Muhager. He is the first take home baby of the facility.


DR. MARIA Lourdes Cabling (right), president of IVF Davao, reported that the first IVF couple delivered a healthy baby boy via caesarean section with an appearance, pulse, grimace, activity, and respiration (APGAR) score of eight and nine. The baby weighed 3.2 kilograms.

His parents, Mydean and Gamal Pagul, are from Wao, Lanao del Sur.

Doctors reported that Mydean delivered a healthy baby boy via caesarean section with an appearance, pulse, grimace, activity, and respiration (APGAR) score of eight and nine. The baby weighed 3.2 kilograms.


BABY Muhager is the first IVF Davao baby

Mydean, a 39-year-old who works as a public school teacher, previously went through ligation in 2004.

She expressed nothing but sheer delight and optimism throughout her pregnancy. Her husband, 29, helped her overcome challenges throughout her journey.

These included elaborate medical consultations, long rides from her province to Davao for regular checkups and raising money for the medical procedure.

She shared this advice to those who may have doubts about IVF technology: “never mind the fear and the expenses, God will provide.”

This couple’s IVF experience marks history for the health sector in Davao City and in Mindanao. The days ahead of them are testament to the 42% success rate of IVF Davao.

Gamal said that he has long been excited about their baby—especially when he found out on the fourth month of pregnancy that they are going to have a baby boy.

Through IVF, doctors are able to help a couple conceive a child by collecting ovum of a woman and have this fertilized by a male sperm in a lab. The fertilized egg will then be transferred back to the uterus.

IVF Davao opened on Oct. 28, 2015 with hopes to reach out to couples in the region who are part of the 10-12% in the world and in the country who are going through challenges on fertility. Since it started its embryo transfer operations in January 2016, IVF Davao has made 15 pregnancies out of 38 embryo transfers.

At the core of IVF Davao’s operations is to address fertility problems in Mindanao. The facility will be celebrating its first anniversary at the end of this month.

Dr. Maria Lourdes Cabling, president of IVF Davao, said that one of ten Filipinos suffer from infertility, a disease recognized by the World Health Organization that is defined as “ failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.”

Cabling assures couples that medical solutions give them hope and can make pregnancies possible.

“The process is easy, it’s simple, the technology is available,” she said. “The best part is that we’ve made it much more affordable for our fellow Filipinos.”

Cabling said that IVF procedures start at P285,000. IVF Davao also assists in bank financing and is crafting an in-house financing program.

These procedures may be given to couples who are suffering from blocked fallopian tubes (Mydean’s case), sever sperm deficits, unexplained infertility, mild endometriosis or ovulation disorders.

“It is our dream to help build families,” said Cabling.