Thousands of Frozen Eggs and Embryos Feared Destroyed at California Fertility Clinic

Mum's embryos destroyed at fertility clinic: 'I felt physically ill'

Dr. Kevin Doody is lab director at the Center for Assisted Reproduction in Texas and past president of the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology. Women freeze eggs in order to postpone pregnancy until a later date or to have a supply for in vitro fertilization attempts. Herbert said the problem was "immediately rectified", and he also praised the clinic's decision to replace the troubled tank with the new one. And a larger group whose tissue was unaffected. "Anger is a big part of the phone call", Herbert said of his discussions with patients. 'Our goal is to provide all the patients we see with some kind of a family.

The dilemma for those involved is that their eggs and embryos have to be completely thawed to determine whether they are still viable, but if thawed, they can not be refrozen.

According to Cleveland.com, UH officials say they've increased security at UH Ahuja Medical Center since the incident. The hospital issued an apology after the unexplained malfunction caused temperatures inside the storage tank to rise. "The medical community calls it tissue, I like to think of it as my children". One to three eggs may be stored in a unit.

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The clinic declined to specify the number of eggs and embryos affected but said that "several thousand" were in the waist-high tank. Herbert told the Post some of the eggs in the tank had been tested, and were undamaged.

"This was a bad incident", Herbert told the Post, "but I was reassured that he did everything anybody could ever want to do".

The incident was the second liquid nitrogen failure at a fertility center reported in the same week. The clinic also has brought in a multidiscplinary team to investigate the tank itself and "every aspect that involves cryopreservation", he said.

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The couple received notification of the failure on Friday and over the weekend, were told by physicians that their embryos are no longer viable. Staff members at the clinic then spent days going through patient records to verify which patients were affected. Once they are thawed, they can't be refrozen.

"We are so very sorry, we want to do all that we can to support them and we will stand by to answer questions and address them, understanding that we may not have all of those answers right now", DePompei said. He moved to San Francisco in 1990 and, with colleagues, purchased Pacific Fertility Center nine years later.

The clinic is uncertain how numerous eggs and embryos are damaged, he said, and can't be used for in-vitro fertilization.

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