The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technologies (SART) called on the fertility care community to expand the practice of single embryo transfers (SET) when performing in vitro fertilization procedures. The societies made the announcement last week at ASRM’s 67th Annual Meeting in Orlando.
New Hope Fertility Center has been a longtime advocate of the practice of SET and continually push for its increased use in the fertility care field. As we’ve reported before, SET is essential when conducting more patient-centered care, as it decreases the health risks associated with multiple pregnancies. In addition, the practice of SET lessens the chance for unnecessary procedures, such as pregnancy reduction, and cuts back costs associated with perinatal and neonatal care often needed in the case of high risk births due to multiple embryo transfers.
The report also aligns with New Hope’s observations on single embryo transfer success rates. As the report states, “clinics promoting eSET (elective single embryo transfer) may be at a disadvantage as they appear to have lower ‘success’ rates than those utilizing DET even though the total ‘success’ rates are comparable” (source: ASRM/SART Practice Committees). This evidence only serves to strengthen the call for more SET, as it shows the practice still has healthy success rates, while also serving to promote the use of the method in an effort to popularize customized fertility care.
While the committees are understandably concerned about push back from patients desiring twins and those concerned with the potential of having to pay for additional IVF treatment if the first round of IVF fails, the ultimate goal of spreading the practice of SET is to increase the chance of a healthy pregnancy. With the right amount of patient education, fertility care experts can ensure their patients understand SET considers long-term cost effectiveness, as it reduces the chance of multiple births that eventually acquire more healthcare costs due to complications from low birth weights, premature births and other issues.