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The IVF Fertility Blog

Why Would I Elect for Single Embryo Transfers

When faced with fertility care, specifically IVF, many patients believe the best way to become pregnant is by transferring multiple embryos.  Despite this widely held belief, transferring more than one embryo increases the chances of having multiple births, which can result in health issues for both the mother and babies.

New Hope Fertility Center has a unique approach to fertility care.   We encourage our patients to transfer a single embryo during a cycle.   While this technique is relatively new in the United States, numerous studies have shown that single embryo transfer, or SET, is the best way to achieve positive outcomes.   After all, it only takes one embryo to become pregnant.


In April 2013, a clinical study that tracked 175 patients found that pregnancy rates with SET matched that of double embryo transfers.  Rather than transferring multiple embryos, researchers transferred one embryo after screening so that the healthiest embryo was implanted.  Not only were similar pregnancy rates achieved, but better results were received for both the mother and child.  Participants that had SET saw decreases in:

  • Deliveries before reaching full termsingle embryo transfers

  • Multiple birth

  • Babies born with low birth weights

  • The number of days of NICU support

The study found that the frequency of multiple births was significantly different between the group that had multiple embryos transferred and the group that had one embryo transferred.  All of the SET pregnancies resulted in singleton births while 48 percent of the multiple embryo transfers resulted in multiple births.


SET is becoming the new normal in Europe, with many countries focusing on SET.  The percentage of SET in early adapting countries include:

  • Sweden – 69 percent 

  • Finland – 50 percent

  • Belgium – 48 percent

  • Slovenia – 30 percent

While the United States currently has multiple embryo transfer rates over 90 percent, those figures are beginning to change. In 2007, 7.2 percent of transfers used SET.  This was up from 5.2 percent in 2008 and 0.7 percent in 2003.

SET at New Hope Fertility Center

At New Hope Fertility Center, we have been champions of SET for years.   When used in conjunction with our Natural IVF and Mini IVF procedures, we are able to work with your body’s natural cycle.  We focus on fully understanding the needs of your body and prescribe a regimen that enhances your body’s naturally occurring fertility.  We believe that SET allows for the best outcomes for both mother and child without decreasing success rates.

To learn more about single embryo transfers or to find out what fertility treatments may be right for you, please contact us.  Our highly trained, board certified physicians take time to understand each of our patients needs then design a personalized fertility plan and protocol.

Topics: Single Embryo Transfer, Mini-IVF

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