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Factors influencing the decision to use or discard cryopreserved embryos

Svanberg, Agneta Skoog, Boivin, Jacky ORCID: and Bergh, Torbjörn 2001. Factors influencing the decision to use or discard cryopreserved embryos. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica 80 (9) , pp. 849-855. 10.1034/j.1600-0412.2001.080009849.x

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Background. Couples’ reasons for discarding supernumerary fertilized cryopreserved embryos and gender differences in attitudes toward the frozen embryos were investigated among Swedish couples undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) at a private clinic. At the time of the study Swedish law stipulated that couples could keep their frozen embryos for a maximum of one year, with the possibility of an extension based on individual requests. Methods. A questionnaire with structured and unstructured questions was sent to 124 women and 124 men who had entered the IVF treatment and obtained supernumerary embryos from 1 January 1994 to 1 March 1995. Eighty-two women and 74 men completed the questionnaire. Results. After a mean storage time of 25.3 (±11.0) months 22 (26.8%) of the responding couples had their embryos discarded. The reasons were mainly practical, such as a positive outcome of IVF and a legally too short storage time. Comparisons between women and men showed that fewer women (13;17.6%) than men (20;27%) had been uncertain during the IVF treatment about using the frozen embryos at a later date and that men more often than women expressed anxieties about possible effects of the freezing procedure on the potential child (p=0.009). Conclusion. A positive outcome of the original IVF treatment and a short maximum legal time of cryopreservation were the most common reasons why couples discarded their embryos. The men more often than women expressed anxieties about possible effects on a potential child. The results emphasize the need for giving detailed information to the couples about cryopreserved embryos and children born by this method.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RG Gynecology and obstetrics
Uncontrolled Keywords: cryopreservation; discarding; gender; in vitro fertilization; psychology
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
ISSN: 0001-6349
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2022 12:53

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