IVF SGRHs latest success rates: Jan 2019 – Dec 2019
These are our cumulative live birth data (fresh + frozen embryo transfers) for patients who underwent an IVF-ICSI cycle in 2019.
Since more than two-thirds of all of SGRH’s IVF cycles are now performed as frozen single embryo transfers following culture to the blastocyst stage, we present our success rates as cumulative live birth rates i.e. fresh plus frozen embryo transfer success rates in different age groups to help you understand your true chance for success and having a baby here at SGRH IVF. Our cumulative pregnancy and live birth rates per cycle are one of the highest in India. Rather, our results rival the best IVF centers in the world and are roughly 1.5-fold higher than the UK and US national averages.
Different ways of Measuring Success
Success rates can be measured and reported in many different ways. Most centers report their success rates in terms of positive beta hCG results per embryo transfer. However, this is not the most robust form of reporting and can be quite misleading in most instances. It is important to know that achieving a positive beta hCG report is important to begin with, but it cannot be considered equivalent to achieving a live birth. This is because roughly 20 – 30% of all initial positive pregnancies may be lost subsequently, with majority losses occurring in the first trimester, and a small % in the following 2nd and 3rd trimesters, depending on patient characteristics as well as individual laboratories. Therefore, the true success rate for any IVF laboratory can only be determined by the measure of the number of eventual live births of healthy babies, a number which can be substantially lower than the projected positive beta hCG results. Additionally, most success rates are reported per embryo transfer. However, this can also lead to a discrepancy since those patients who never reach the stage of embryo transfer are not accounted for when success is measured in terms of only embryo transfers performed. It should be noted that there will always be some patients (advanced age and very low ovarian reserves) who may not have embryos available at the end of their cycle and hence may never have an embryo transfer.
What Factors to Consider while Choosing an IVF Clinic
Our team of IVF clinicians led by our medical director Dr. Abha Majumdar, are leading infertility specialists in the field of reproductive medicine and have many years of clinical IVF experience. Our embryologists are highly regarded in their field and our nurses have many years of experience in IVF and associated treatments. Our laboratories are manned by a team of 4 full-time embryologists. Laboratories which are manned only by visiting embryologists, are generally never high performing labs since optimal performance of any IVF lab is a 24×7 annual job and can never be done by embryologists visiting merely for a couple of days in a month.
Access to Latest Technology and Culture of Innovation
SGRH IVF has always been at the forefront of all technological advancements in the field of IVF. Be it techniques like Preimplantation Genetic Testing or Oocyte freezing in the lab or adopting new clinical protocols like Duo-stimulation for poor responders or application of techniques like Endometrial Receptivity Array (ERA) for the management of repeated implantation failures. We are constantly pursuing new techniques in the embryology laboratory and new treatment protocols on the clinical side to improve your chances of achieving a pregnancy.
The Embryology Laboratory: The Real Key to Success
A lot of you who have had multiple IVF failures and coming to us for the first time, want to know what new can we offer. Most of you have heard of or even already used numerous modalities like embryo glue, assisted hatching, sequential transfer of multiple embryos in the same cycle, use of PRP, IV immunoglobulins or GSF in a bid to improve your chances, but have somehow not succeeded. The simply answer to your question is that it is only and only the laboratory, which makes the real difference between success and failure in IVF. It is, simply a high-quality embryology laboratory, which can make embryos of the highest possible quality, that really works, rather than any of the above modalities. The laboratory perhaps constitutes the main difference between IVF centers and is thus one of the most crucial factors that needs to be considered while choosing an IVF center as it will be the difference between your chances of having a success or not.
A highly successful Single Embryo Transfer Program
The average number of embryos that any laboratory transfers is a good reflection of the lab’s quality. Generally, IVF labs tend to transfer multiple embryos (3 or more) together in order to boost the chances of pregnancy. However, the flip side of doing so are a lot of twin and triplet pregnancies which unfortunately, for many, can create lot of complications. Often these multiple pregnancies may result in preterm deliveries, low birth weights, neonatal ICU admissions etc which can be extremely undesirable for the couple.
Only few laboratories in the world, that are really very good, are able to transfer single embryos and still achieve high success rates. At SGRH IVF, 70% of our transfers are single embryo transfers, a feat which is unparalleled in the country. Also, as a rule, we never transfer 3 embryos together. This has dramatically reduced our number of twin pregnancies and related complications. Another huge advantage of transferring fewer or single embryos per cycle is that majority of our patients who have multiple embryos, get multiple embryo transfer attempts at pregnancy without having to repeat their IVF stimulation cycles.
Average or poor labs which are not confident about the embryo quality and have poor implantation rates per embryos, tend to transfer 3 or 4 embryos. It is important for you to know that in all top laboratories around the world, it is a normal to transfer 1 embryo at the blastocyst stage on day 5 or day 6 embryo or a maximum of two embryos on day 3. When multiple embryos are transferred (like 3 or even 4), it can be inferred that either the embryo quality is poor, or implantation rates of that particular lab are not very high.
An Excellent Frozen Embryo Transfer program
Since frozen embryo transfers have emerged as a new standard of care in IVF, resulting in much higher pregnancy rates as compared to fresh transfers for some patients, it is now imperative for every laboratory to have an excellent embryo freezing program as a necessary adjunct to their IVF program. SGRH IVF’s expertise as pioneers of embryo cryopreservation using vitrification technology, spans almost a decade. Our highly successful single embryo transfer program is testament to the fact that our embryo freezing program is exceptionally robust which guarantees embryo survival rates in excess of 95%. In simple words, when our embryologists’ vitrify an embryo, they do so with more than 95% confidence that the embryo will survive and be viable for transfer.
Also, at SRGH IVF, when we freeze embryos individually in multiple straws for a couple, not only does it give them multiple attempts at a pregnancy, it also allows approximately 30 percent of our patients to try for the second child a few years later, from the same set of embryos generated during the first IVF stimulation. This happens more often in young patients with good ovarian reserve as they may have enough frozen embryos from a single IVF stimulation.
Unfortunately, majority laboratories which have ordinary cryo-survival rates continue to freeze multiple embryos together, which is not an ideal situation. It suggests that survival rates of those labs are below par, and multiple embryos are frozen together to ensure that at least some embryos survive. You should know that all good labs have survival rates of more than 95% and rarely does an embryo undergo damage after freezing in good labs.
Honest reporting of Success Rates
With regards to success rates, it is important to look at live birth rates per cycle since positive beta hCG rates per embryo transfer can be misleading. Again, it is important for an IVF lab to report live birth rates according to age, which gives you a realistic idea about your chances of having a success.
A detailed description of stimulation protocols and embryo quality in the discharge summaries is another indication that the IVF laboratory is transparent and honest. Steer clear of labs which do not provide a complete embryology discharge summary.
Availability, Support and Counselling
At SGRH IVF, we are aware that going through fertility treatment can be exhausting and, at times, stressful. This is why, at any stage of treatment, we are always available to offer information and counselling to all our patients. Especially for patients who have failed a cycle with us, we hold failure counselling sessions where our team of clinicians and embryologists sit together and analyse every aspect of the failure and try and design the best possible course of future treatment to achieve a pregnancy. Also, our counsellors are always there to provide all the support you need at every stage of your journey and this goes a long way in making your stay with us as comfortable as possible.