Blast grading for everyone?
1 Replies
laura - October 2

Dear Dr. Smith,
I just finished a DE(31 yrs old) fresh day 3 transfer (two 8 cell grade 4); BFN. I was told 14 days later that three blasts were frozen. I have asked what grade and what day the blasts were frozen. I was told they only freeze the best and that they don't grade blasts. I found out, by loocking at my chart, that they were frozen on day 6 and that they froze 3 blasts per straw. So my question is, do some labs not grade blasts? or dose the lab grade the blasts but that information dose not get transfered the the chart? and what are the chances of a FET when a fresh cycle didn't work?

Thank you so much!
I wish your were located in NC!



Dr Smith - October 3

Blastocyst stage embryos frozen on Day 6 are not quite as good as those frozen on Day 5, but they're still O.K. We've had many pregnancies from Day 6 FET's.

It is true that we have learned the hard way that all blastocysts are not created equal. Blastocysts with a low number of stem cells do not survive the freeze/thaw process. Accordingly, programs now only freeze the "best" blastocyst stage embryos. The were being honest.

There are complex grading systems for blastocysts. I use one in my lab. However, when it all boils down, an experienced embryologist will look at a blastocyst and decide which of two groups it falls into: "baby grade" or "non baby grade". So, it is no surprise that they said they don't bother to grade the blastocysts they freeze. They were "baby grade" and that's all they needed to know. The rest is scientific, OCD, technobabble, overkill.

They froze 3 embryos in a single straw. That means they are intending to thaw all three and transfer them. If they were all "baby grade" going into the freeze, I'd say your chances are about 40% take home baby on the FET. However, don't cross that bridge until you get to it.



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