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IVF Success Rate Explained

IVF success rates explained

Judging fertility clinics abroad  on the basis of their success rates is the most popular way of choosing an ideal place for IVF treatment – but unfortunately not the wisest one. 

In fact, it would be the best to approach the clinics with limited trust and increased understanding of IVF procedures. Patients should be aware that the success of IVF treatment is the sum of different factors and circumstances, only few of which depend on the clinic itself. The latter are surely the experience and professionalism of the medical staff as well as offered IVF treatments that allow particular types of patients (with either lower or higher chances of a successful pregnancy).

However, in majority of cases it is a patient’s individual situation, their condition and medical history that influence the result of the treatment. A patient’s age, genetic factors or various reasons for infertility play a crucial role in determining the IVF success.

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15 articles about IVF and Donor Conception by top IVF experts worldwide!

It is highly advisable to do your own research prior to choosing the best IVF clinic. Analyse all medical and psychological aspects that the IVF treatment process entails and decide whether you’re financially ready to do it.

Misleading IVF success rates​

However, although the data comes from a public report, you should still treat it with a grain of salt. Why? Firstly, remember that clinics often use the so-called “creative” ways of measuring their success rates. They often try to show the highest numbers because they know that most patients make decisions based on these values. In this case, the numbers presented by the clinics will differ significantly from the national average – they will be much higher. There is nothing wrong with the fact that an IVF clinic calculates own success rate according to its own algorithm. The only consequence that you should be aware of is a much more expensive treatment than you would expect after the first contact with the clinic. 

Secondly, many clinics have higher success rates simply because the following data is the average of all clinics. In such a compilation, there are both clinics with worse results (which does not mean they’re worse centres!) and the ones that perform better.

Please note that IVF refund programs – that are gaining popularity – may “promise” a 100% success rate or a live birth. Such packages are “financial programs” that involve risk-sharing between the clinic and other patients. So from a medical perspective, they can’t guarantee anything (e.g success rates, pregnancy, live birth) except the money-back guarantee – “a refund” based on the expected outcome. That’s why they are often called the IVF money back guarantee programs.

IVF with own eggs – success rates​

The effectiveness of IVF treatment with own eggs will vary significantly depending on the age of a female patient. Additionally, there are many other parameters that influence the treatment effectiveness. These are, among others:

  • Age of a woman 
  • BMI, 
  • the quality and the number of oocytes collected 
  • the quality of male partner’s sperm. 

That is why it is so important to always ask about your own individual chances and not about the average treatment effectiveness in the IVF clinic. When publishing data on the treatment effectiveness, clinics, in the best case, take different patients’ age groups into account. However, this might not be enough for you when comparing the success rates between clinics.

IVF with own eggs in popular countries in Europe*<3435-39≥40
Czech Republic29.721.68.9
North Cyprus**no datano datano data

Source: ART in Europe, 2017: results generated from European registries by ESHRE*
Supplementary Table SX Aspirations, pregnancy and delivery rates by age distribution (years) of women treated with ICSI in 2017.
Pregnancies per embryo transfer.
**North Cyprus is the self–proclaimed state recognised only by Turkey and is not providing and data to ESHRE EIM Consortium.

IVF with donor eggs – success rate​

In the case of donor egg success rate, the effectiveness is independent of the patient’s age. However, remember that your own treatment history and its medical parameters may be important for the expected effect. That is why you should always ask the clinic about your own personal chances of success and not about the average effectiveness of treatment.

Egg donation success rates in popular countries in Europe*Pregnancies per fresh ET (%)Pregnancies per thawed ET (%)

Czech Republic42.223.1
North Cyprus**no datano data

Source: ART in Europe, 2017: results generated from European registries by ESHRE*
Supplementary Table SVIII Pregnancies and deliveries after ED (fresh and frozen cycles) in 2017. In Egg Donation cycles, the age of the recipient women had no influence on outcomes. Pregnancies per embryo transfer (fresh and frozen)
**North Cyprus is the self–proclaimed state recognised only by Turkey and is not providing and data to ESHRE EIM Consortium.

IVF success rate – other resources​

If you are looking for more information regarding “chances of success” when going through an IVF we highly recommend checking the resources below:

Aleksander Wiecki
Aleksander Wiecki
Aleksander is an advocate of transparency and truth about IVF treatment and patients’ experience manager. With strong expertise and background in the IVF and infertility industry including IVF clinics and genetic laboratories Aleksander strongly believes that there is a gap between IVF patients and clinics. This is a gap where patients may fall for the most common IVF treatment traps during their infertility journey. That’s why patients need help and support which they don’t necessarily get from IVF clinics. The support which comes from an objective, trustworthy and reliable source. Aleksander is a regular guest at ESHRE annual meetings, the Fertility Show in London, the Fertility Forum, the IMTJ - Medical Travel Summit, Fertility Exhibitions and conferences around the world.

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15 articles about IVF and Donor Conception by top IVF experts worldwide!