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Single embryo transfer reduces the risk of perinatal mortality in IVF
Date:7/4/2012

n births following fresh SET.

Twins accounted for half the total neonatal deaths and one-third the perinatal deaths. Twins also had significantly higher perinatal mortality rate than singletons (27.8 per 1000 births and 12.4 per 1000 births). However, twins born from SET (ie, monozygotic) had a higher risk of perinatal mortality than those born from two embryo transfers.

Professor Sullivan noted that the voluntary adoption of an IVF policy of single embryo transfer in Australia and New Zealand has been associated with a reduction in overall perinatal mortality for all babies conceived by assisted reproduction methods, which was justification in itself for recommending SET as a first line fertility treatment for non-donor cycles in women aged under 35 years.

Moreover, said Professor Sullivan, there are wider public health benefits from an SET policy. She explained: "The number of embryos transferred per procedure is the major determinant of multiple pregnancy and multiple delivery, which contribute to an elevated risk of preterm birth and low birth weight, and its sequelae. These are risks in addition to those already faced by women being treated for infertility.

"Australia and New Zealand have shown that in the right policy environment a voluntary change to SET practice is achievable," she added. The proportion of single embryo transfers in Australia/New Zealand IVF rose from 14.2% in 1999 to 67.8% in 2008, which was accompanied by a decline in multiple deliveries of 13.7 percentage points - from 22.1% in 2000 to 8.4% in 2008.

"In some other countries and regions," said Professor Sullivan, "the uptake of SET has been more dramatic, particularly where policy initiatives linked to funding have led to significant change in practice without compromising quality or safety."


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Contact: Christine Bauquis
christine@eshre.eu
32-499-258-046
European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology
Source:Eurekalert

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