Delaware IVF Center Reports Single Embryo Transfer is Their Standard for Safe & Successful Pregnancies

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Healthy babies and singleton pregnancies are best achieved from IVF following single embryo uterine transfer, whether with a fresh or frozen blastocyst. Reproductive Associates of Delaware — A Center of Excellence for IVF — reports that this high standard of IVF care has been achieved for a large percentage of their patients who struggle with infertility and miscarriage.

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RAD has been recognized by two of the largest U.S. insurance companies as a Center for Excellence in IVF care, in large part due to their success with single embryo transfer and high standards with both blastocyst culture and cryopreservation.

Reproductive Associates of Delaware (RAD) reports a successful multi-year track record with IVF single embryo uterine transfers to foster safe and low risk pregnancies. RAD's published implantation rates are significantly higher than U.S. averages while multiple gestations occur much less frequently at RAD. The Center attributes its successful IVF single embryo strategy to sophisticated clinical and laboratory protocols, along with very high patient confidence and acceptance.

Based on 5 years of compiled data RAD is advocating single embryo uterine transfer in over 95% of their IVF cases. The Center's most recently published results for 2008 indicate that for women under age 35, an average of just 1.3 embryos were transferred (national average 2.2) with an embryo implantation rate of 57.4% (national average 34.1%). The twin and triplet rate at RAD was 23.8% and zero respectively (national average for twins 33.3%, triplets 1.9%). In 2009 an average of 1.2 embryos were transferred for women under age 37.

"Large third party national insurers are taking notice of our results," stated Dr. Ronald F. Feinberg, IVF Medical Director at RAD. "Their outcomes data likely shows that IVF multiple gestations are both costly and avoidable, and contribute to unacceptably high neonatal morbidity and mortality. Even a portion of healthcare dollars spent on these preventable high risk outcomes could be better utilized to help those without infertility insurance."

Studies have shown that in the absence of insurance coverage, patients and their doctors are more likely to implant multiple embryos when trying to overcome infertility. Employers and insurers often place restrictions on fertility care, sometimes to the detriment of future maternal, neonatal, and child health.

RAD has been recognized by two of the largest U.S. insurance companies as a Center for Excellence in IVF care, in large part due to their success with single embryo transfer and high standards with both blastocyst culture and cryopreservation. "When embryos are cultured and frozen individually it allows us to also utilize single embryo transfer when a blastocyst is thawed," notes Marc Portmann, RAD's Director of Lab Technology and Innovation. "Most importantly, we have shown that when individual blastocysts have normal chromosomes prior to embryo transfer there is a 75% chance of implantation and normal pregnancy,"

RAD presented their results with preimplantation genetic testing at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine national meeting in October, 2010, and has seen a marked increase in patient requests for embryo testing prior to uterine transfer. This strategy, often called PGS or PGD, has been proposed by several leading worldwide IVF centers as a strategy to improve overall pregnancy success and safety.

In a detailed review of national data published by the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technologies ( in 2008, only 7 (2%) of the 350 SART clinics performed single embryo transfer over 20% of the time in younger patients. In addition to RAD in Delaware, the other 6 clinics were located in California, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, and New York (which had two). At RAD, 62.5% of women under age 35 had single embryo transfer in 2008, compared to the national average of 5.2%.

RAD's IVF results for 2008 were also published recently by the Centers for Disease Control (

"High implantation rates and high patient confidence in single embryo transfer require a unique combination of endeavors," stated Dr. Barbara McGuirk, RAD's Reproductive Surgery Director. "We treat many women with previously unexplored infertility problems, such as endometriosis, fibroids, polyps, and fallopian tube problems, and we are frequently impressed with how necessary this is to promote embryo implantation. A healthy, normal embryo conceived naturally or by IVF just simply can't attach and grow properly in the uterus unless these problems are corrected."

In addition to Drs. Feinberg and McGuirk, the other physicians at RAD are Drs. George Kovalevsky and Adrienne Neithardt. RAD's professional staff of 50 individuals provides general infertility, miscarriage, and IVF care to thousands of patients each year, and has offices located in Newark, Dover, and Wilmington. RAD's IVF Center is located on the campus of Christiana Care Health System in Newark, and RAD is widely considered a leading IVF and fertility care provider in the region.


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