We recently came across a story in the New York Times Magazine and felt the need to respond.
Earlier this week, New Hope highlighted the benefits of single embryo transfers as expressed in an article over at the Fertility Authority. As longstanding advocates of single embryo transfers with IVF treatments, it is our belief that unwanted multiple births can be easily prevented in the fertility field by trending away from multiple embryo transfers. Not only is single embryo transfer less risky for both mother and child, but generally more healthy and cost effective in the short and long-term.
"The Two-Minus-One Pregnancy" profiles a woman pregnant with twins via donor egg IVF who plans to reduce her pregnancy to a single fetus. The decision for a pregnancy reduction was made by her and her husband to alleviate the financial weight of twins along with the potential emotional weight of balancing two newborns with other children to concentrate on already.
While we understand and take into consideration the issue of reproductive rights, pregnancy reduction as a result of IVF treatment is avoidable. The processes behind IVF, and any type of care associated with treating infertility, are already understood to be both physically and emotionally challenging for women (and couples) undergoing treatment. When the issue of pregnancy reduction comes into the equation, this additional concern unquestionably adds more stress to an already stressful situation.
It is clear that a more customized fertility plan would have been more effective in this case. Rather than implanting multiple embryos as practiced under conventional IVF protocols, this unwanted multiple pregnancy could have been avoided with the application of a single embryo transfer and an understanding between doctor and patient that a multiple pregnancy was not the desired outcome.
You can read the full story here.