Vitrified-warmed blastocyst transfer cycles yield higher pregnancy and implantation rates compared with fresh blastocyst transfer cycles--time for a new embryo transfer strategy?

Fertil Steril. 2011 Apr;95(5):1691-5. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2011.01.022.


Objective: To compare the clinical outcome of fresh versus vitrified-warmed blastocyst transfer (BT) cycles.

Design: Retrospective study.

Setting: Medical university affiliated hospital.

Patient(s): Women aged less than 40 years undergoing BT cycles.

Intervention(s): Vitrification and warming of blastocyst with the Cryotop system.

Main outcome measure(s): Clinical pregnancy rate (CPR), implantation rate (IR), and multiple pregnancy rate (MPR).

Result(s): In 110 fresh BT cycles versus 136 vitrified-warmed BT cycles performed from January 2007 to March 2010, the IR and CPR of vitrified-warmed BT cycles were 37.0% and 55.1%, respectively, which were statistically significantly higher than the corresponding values of 25.2% and 36.4% obtained for fresh BT cycles. Additionally, the MPR was not statistically significantly different between vitrified-warmed and fresh BT cycles when a similar number of blastocysts was transferred to patients.

Conclusion(s): Vitrified-warmed BT cycles resulted in statistically significantly higher CPR and IR compared with fresh BT cycles. A new embryo transfer strategy is therefore proposed whereby fresh BT would be avoided in the initial ovarian stimulation cycle. Instead, all the patient's available blastocysts would be vitrified-warmed and transferred in subsequent cycles.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Blastocyst*
  • Body Temperature / physiology
  • Cryopreservation* / methods
  • Embryo Implantation / physiology*
  • Embryo Transfer / methods*
  • Embryo Transfer / trends
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infertility / therapy*
  • Periodicity
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Rate*
  • Pregnancy, Multiple / statistics & numerical data
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Up-Regulation