Originally produced for BBC One, The Baby Makers is an observational 4-part documentary series about the science, pain and joy of fertility treatment as couples strive to conceive a baby.

The series presents the work of embryologists, doctors and nurses who specialize in fertility treatment, hoping to make their would be parent’s dreams come true. Viewers get to see the step-by-step process of IVF and the delicate scientific procedures which takes place in the fertility clinic laboratory.

The documentary covers every step of the journey of IVF:

  1.  Pre-treatment screening and advice to increase the chance of the treatment working
  2. Obtaining the sperm and egg
  3. Cleaning and maturing the samples for selection of the most suitable cells
  4. The actual fertilization of the egg, be it by direct fertilization, where the sperm is chosen, or putting both sets of cells in the same dish and allowing natural selection to take effect.
  5. The incubation and monitoring of the fertilized egg, to see which one should be used for the IVF
  6. Finally the actual attaching of the fertilized egg onto the wall of the uterus
  7. At the end of the program it goes to each couple and shows whether the treatment has been successful.

In program #1 of the series we meet Adrienne and Adrian, who are having fertility treatment for the fourth time. Adrienne says; “It is an emotional roller-coaster. You have very good days where you feel very upbeat, it’s going to work. You have to feel positive and then other days that you think, why are we doing this again?”

Within this first program we also meet Alison and Shean who long for a second child. Alison recalls the early days with her son; “It was probably one of the best moments of my life, bringing him home from hospital. We were so proud of him. Once we had Kyle we decided we would like to have another child or children to make a family unit… and then obviously, this time around we thought it would just happen again the same way, but after two years of trying we decided to go to the doctors again.”

Throughout the rest of the series we meet Jude and Brian who are having fertility treatment for the first time; Eilish a woman whose IVF treatment resulted in the birth of twins, a 24 year old who has made the unusual decision to donate her eggs and a woman who wants to freeze her eggs for use in the future.

Edel O’Mahony, Director says; “We are very privileged to have witnessed the real journeys of these women and men as they go through fertility treatment. While it can sometimes be a harrowing experience, with no guarantee of a successful outcome, these stories show us how scientific advances have not only given us more choice but more importantly more hope.”

1 hour, 56 minutes on 1 disc / 2013


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Watch the trailer