Security increased at UH Ahuja Fertility Center after egg, embryo freezer malfunction

10 March, 2018, 01:15 | Author: Darrell Lopez
  • UH Fertility Clinic investigating failure involving eggs and embryos

Accordingly, huge numbers of the eggs and embryos - some of which have been put away for a considerable length of time - may never again be feasible, Patti DePompei, president, UH MacDonald Women's Hospital and UH Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital revealed to NBC News.

The sudden thaw dashed the dreams of couples who had hoped to start families - including some who froze eggs in the 1980s or paid $10,000 for the painful procedure, the Washington Post reported. They do not know yet if it was a mechanical malfunction or human error.

There appears to have been an equipment failure at a long-term storage tank containing liquid nitrogen at the University Hospitals Fertility Center, NBC News reported.

The tank was plugged into the hospital's emergency power supply and was therefore hooked up to a generator, so it did not lose power, De Pompei said, per the Plain Dealer.

One round of in vitro fertilization can cost patients without medical insurance around $12,000.

"We are incredibly sorry this happened", the hospital said in a statement.

"It's devastating", DePompei told WKYC.

The incident happened between Saturday night and Sunday morning, after staff had left for the evening.




"We are now looking at what specimens existed in that gradient", Liu told WKYC. The only way to know if they are still viable is to implant them says the hospital.

Each vile contained two to three eggs or embryos from each patient.

All of the samples have been moved to another storage tank that's being monitored by staff around the clock. These are still preserved and would not be destroyed, the hospital said in a statement.

"Some of the eggs and embryos that were stored date back decades", DePompei told WKYC.

The hospital may waive the cost of future procedures and treatments for the patients affected, according to WKYC. We are committed to getting answers and working with patients individually to address their concerns.

DePompei said the temperature fluctuation had occurred "due to reasons unknown" and that the hospital had launched a major investigation to find out what happened.

"Our hearts go out to the patients who have suffered this loss", Sean Tipton, chief policy officer at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ARSM) reportedly said.

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