Commenting on the Assisted reproductive technology in Australia and New Zealand 2012 Report (ANZARD) released today by The University of New South Wales (UNSW) Prof Michael Chapman reinforced the message that Australia is a world leader in safe IVF as fertility specialists focus on single embryo transfers for patients undergoing IVF fertility treatment to reduce the risk of multiple births.
"At IVFAustralia 82% of all patients undergoing IVF treatment have a single embryo transfer, compared with 76.3% of the treatment cycles undertaken nationally, and the chance of having a multiple birth through treatment at IVFAustralia is only 5.3% which is significantly lower than the national average of 6.5%.
"The other key advancement driving our high success rates is the significant improvement in our fertilisation, embryo development and freezing methods which ultimately reduce the number of cycles patients need to undertake to achieve a baby’” he explained.
"At IVFAustralia a fresh blastocyst embryo transfer has the same pregnancy and implantation potential as a vitrified frozen blastocyst transfer. The overall number of cycles patients are undertaking at IVFAustralia is fewer as the combination of fresh embryo and the frozen embryos created in the first treatment cycle is achieving high success rates at IVFAustralia.
The ANZARD Report also notes particular technological and clinical practice advances have resulted in a 25% increase in the success of frozen/thaw embryo transfers across the country in the last 4 years, rising from 18.0% to 22.0%. The ANZARD Report shows nationally where a woman used her own eggs, 22.8% of fresh embryo transfer cycles resulted in a live birth and 22.2% of frozen/thawed embryo transfer cycles resulted in a live birth. Birth rates were much higher for younger women. Among those aged 30–34, the birth rate was 32.3% for fresh cycles and 26.4% for frozen/thaw cycles. For women aged over 44, it was less than 1.6% and around 5.4% respectively.
The most important factor affecting the chance of pregnancy success, whether spontaneous or via IVF, is the age of the woman. A woman’s fertility starts to decline slowly from the early thirties onwards but declines rapidly after the age of 40. The average age of a woman undergoing a fresh IVF cycle is 36*. If you’re 40 you simply cannot compare your chance of success with a 30 year old.
Here’s an example of IVF Australia’s Success Rates, which shows the variation between age bands:
The following graph shows the fresh embryo transfer clinical pregnancy outcomes achieved by the teamwork of IVFAustralia’s fertility specialists and scientists for patients during 2013 (note the pregnancy rates are for the previous year as the 2013 conceived babies have not all been born yet).
It does not include any additional frozen embryo transfers that may have eventuated from these first fresh cycles (which would provide an unnaturally inflated representation of the results). We measure our success in our ability to help patients conceive as quickly and simply as possible.