How compliant are in vitro fertilization member clinics in following embryo transfer guidelines? An analysis of 59,689 fresh first in vitro fertilization autologous cycles from 2011 to 2012.
OBJECTIVE: To determine whether IVF clinics are compliant with American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) (ASRM/SART) guidelines and assess the multiple pregnancy outcomes according to the number of embryos transferred. DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. SETTING: Not applicable. PATIENT(S): Data from 59,689 fresh first autologous IVF cycles from the 2011-2012 SART registry. INTERVENTION(S): None. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): Percentage of compliant cycles, multiple pregnancy rate (PR). RESULT(S): Between 2011 and 2012, a total of 59,689 fresh first autologous cycles were analyzed. Among cleavage-stage ET cycles, the noncompliance rate ranged from 10%-27.4% depending on the age group. The multiple PR was significantly increased in noncompliant cycles involving patients <35 years (38.1% vs. 28.7%) and 35-37 years (35.4% vs. 24.5%) compared with compliant cycles. Among blastocyst-stage ET cycles, the highest rate of noncompliance was seen in patients <35 years old (71%), which resulted in a statistically higher multiple PR (48.3% vs. 2.8%) compared with compliant cycles. Far fewer cycles were noncompliant in patients 35-40 years of age. In a subanalysis of compliant cycles, transferring two blastocyst embryos in patients 35-37 years and 38-40 years resulted in a higher live birth rate compared with the transfer of one embryo (50.4% vs. 40.9% and 42.1% vs. 30.0%, respectively) but the multiple PR was also significantly higher (40.5% vs. 1.7% and 34.0% vs. 2.0%, respectively). CONCLUSION(S): Most first fresh autologous IVF cycles performed from 2011-2012 were compliant with ASRM/SART guidelines, except those that involved a blastocyst ET in patients <35 years. Despite compliance, cycles that involved the transfer of >1 embryo resulted in a high multiple PR, whereas noncompliant cycles resulted in an even more remarkable multiple PR for both cleavage and blastocyst-stage embryos. Clinics need to be more compliant with ET limits and ASRM/SART need to consider revising their guidelines to limit the number of blastocyst transfer to one in patients ≤40 years of age undergoing their first IVF cycle. Furthermore, decreasing the number of cleavage-stage embryos transferred in patients ≤40 years of age should also be considered.
Keyhan, S; Acharya, KS; Acharya, CR; Yeh, JS; Provost, MP; Goldfarb, JM; Muasher, SJ
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