Embryo Adoption: New IVF Procedures Don’t Solve Remaining Embryo Dilemma

When in vitro fertilization (IVF) was first used in 1978, it seemed like a miracle procedure to the millions of couples worldwide who struggled with fertility problems. Since then, more than 5 million babies have been born thanks to the procedure. New scientific advances are improving the success rate of IVF, too, making the often overwhelmingly expensive procedure more worth the risk for couples who are eager to conceive. This could mean fewer embryos will be needed at the time of transfer, resulting in a higher rate of single babies being born as opposed to the higher rate of multiple births seen in the field now.

Fewer embryos may need to be created in order to increase the odds of a successful transfer and pregnancy. This, in turn, could result in fewer embryos remaining in storage after family building is complete. And while that’s exciting news over the long term, that doesn’t change the fact that there are currently over 600,000 embryos in storage in the United States – a number that continues to grow annually. Many couples struggle with what to do with their embryos after they’ve completed their family, not able to bear the thought of allowing them to be destroyed and unable to pay for their storage indefinitely.

So while science has given many couples around the world the chance to be parents, it’s given birth to a new problem as well: what to do with remaining embryos? Some organizations have stepped in and offer embryo adoption services, giving other couples who cannot or choose not to go through IVF the experience and joy of giving birth to their adopted child.

If you’d like to learn more about this unique adoption opportunity, visit www.embryoadoption.org.

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