With recent publicity regarding fertility programs in Cleveland and San Francisco who have had malfunctions with the storage the frozen embryos in their care, we, at Conceptions, want to address some common concerns.
All of Conceptions’ sperm/egg/embryo storage tanks are connected to an alarm system that monitors the internal temperature in the tank. That alarm system is also connected to a phone system. If temperatures fall outside of the normal parameters, an alarm is triggered. If no one is in the lab to handle the alarm, the phone system is activated, and embryology staff members are called to manage the situation.
In regards to regular maintenance, we measure out liquid nitrogen tanks every week, and top off nitrogen levels to the optimal levels. We also keep our tanks in a common area so they are visually assessed throughout the day, every day. When tanks fail, there are typically external visual signs of failure over a period of several days. By making a regular visual assessments, we are able to see problems before they occur.
With all of these systems in place, we are able to ensure our tanks are appropriately checked and maintained. If any of our tanks doesn’t meet our rigorous standards, we keep a backup tank nearby to quickly and safely transfer embryos to, until new long-term storage can be established.
Finally, we will continue to assess our systems to confirm that we are providing the safest and most effective tank monitoring to ensure that embryo quality is strictly maintained. We will also follow any recommended changes by our governing body, ASRM.