It is very important for prospective patients seeking fertility treatments to be confident that their chance of success at any particular clinic is optimal.
However, the interpretation of different clinics’ success rates is difficult as there are many different ways of presenting results and it is not always possible to be sure that one is “comparing like with like”.
Many factors contribute to the success of an ART procedure. Some factors relate to the training and experience of the clinic’s staff and the quality of services they provide. Other factors are
related to the patients themselves, such as their age and the cause of their infertility. Some clinics may be more willing than others to accept patients with low chances of success or may specialize in various ART treatments that attract particular types of patients.
Merrion Fertility Clinic does not pre-select patients; in other words, we do not exclude couples due to the presence of factors that may negatively impact their success rates. Our philosophy is to help couples achieve a pregnancy while promoting responsible ART through reducing the incidence of multiple pregnancy.
Another major issue in reporting IVF success rates is the importance of the “denominator”. If we report pregnancy rates “per embryo transfer”, they will be higher than those “per treatment cyclestarted” because in the former group those who have done poorly and had their cycle cancelled during treatment or who did not achieve embryos suitable to transfer will have been excluded.
The definition of pregnancy is also important. Some clinics use pregnancy rates i.e. just positive pregnancy test but a clinical pregnancy is one which has continued to the stage of being visible on ultrasound scan. Some women will sadly have a positive pregnancy test but will “miscarry” and never get to the stage of a clinical pregnancy. The best marker of success is a live birth rate because this refers to actual babies born. Live birth rates are, however, more difficult to count and are also not available until the nine months of pregnancy have been completed.