Selective single transfer
The embryo transfer is a decisive event during an IVF treatment. This process sees the injection of one or more embryo into the uterus. There is a clear connection between: two or more embryos - increased chance of success - but increased risk of a multiple pregnancy and one embryo - equally reduced chance of success - much reduced risk of a monozygotic multiple pregnancy.
What kind of risks does a multiple pregnancy carry?
On average, twins are born three weeks earlier and triplets about six weeks earlier. These babies have a lower birth weight, are often born by means of a caesarean section, and require a longer stay in intensive care. As well a multiple birth carries risks of permanent disability. This is even more so for triplets.Pregnancy and birth carry minimal yet inevitable risks. Twin or triplet pregnancies mean an increased strain on the mother. As a result, she must therefore discontinue her professional responsibilities earlier and exercise more caution during the pregnancy.
What information is important to make this decision?
We urge you to carefully consider whether you would like one or two embryos to be transferred. We will inform you how many egg cells were fertilized, how many developed and of what quality they are. In certain cases, the patient may choose to have three or more embryos transferred. This can be beneficial after one or more previous unsuccessful attempts or if the patient is of an advanced age (>40). The couple must be aware, however, that even with a poor prognosis for IVF treatment, a multiple pregnancy with all its associated risks cannot be ruled out.
In some countries, the law permits the transfer of only a single embryo (selective single embryo transfer) and many other countries also have laws regarding this issue.
Special consideration for the transfer of embryos should be applied if:
- this is the first attempt
- the woman is older than 34
- the embryos are well developed
- a further 3 or more embryos can be frozen
- the patient already has a child
- the patient already gave birth to twins
- an increased risk for over-stimulation exists
- operations have already been carried out on the uterus (ie. Myoma removal), or
- an underlying disease exists (ie. Diabetes mellitus)
The wish for one's own child is an intimate wish and completely understandable. At the embryo transfer stage it is necessary to make the right decision: on the one hand the desire for a child should be fulfilled, on the other hand it is our hope and that of the couple that the pregnancy is successful and problem-free and that the birth does not result in any permanent damage to the mother or child. We try to convey this message and therefore maintain regular contact with fetal specialists, obstetricians, pediatricians, and gynecologists.