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Families in flux as thousands of embryos compromised at OH hospital

12 March, 2018, 09:03 | Author: Melinda Barton
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A fridge malfunction at a hospital in Cleveland has left over 700 patients wondering if the eggs and embryos they froze at a fertility clinic are still usable.

The womb-wrenching flub was caused when heat levels unexpectedly rose inside a liquid nitrogen tank at the fertility center, "compromising" up to 2,000 eggs and embryos, DePompei admitted in a Facebook post. At this time, we don't yet know the viability of these eggs and embryos. "But we do know that the temperature that was measured at a portion of the tank was higher than our acceptable limits". We are incredibly sorry this happened.

The storage tank had off-site monitoring and an audible alarm that would alert staff to such a temperature change. The hospital doesn't know yet if there was a mechanical failure or human error.

"There was a gradient between the top of the cryo tank and the bottom and the bottom stayed at the proper levels so we are now looking at what specimens existed in that gradient, but obviously our concern is that there is potentially compromised embryos and our fear is a significant number of embryos and eggs have been compromised", Dr. Liu said. That means one patient could have several vials in her name.

The facility has set up a call center for patients to arrange and appointment or calls to speak with their physicians.

Patients are encouraged to call the hotline at 216-286-9740, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m.to 8 p.m., and Saturday from 8 a.m. though 1 p.m. "Right now, our patients and families are our first priority".

In comments underneath the video message, people expressed frustration and heartbreak at the potential loss of the embryos and eggs, which represented not only a significant financial and medical commitment, but the hope of expanding families.

How numerous eggs and embryos are no longer viable. "We are committed to getting answers and working with our patients individually to address their concerns". The hospital said in order to tell if they can still be used, they must be completely thawed.



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