To Transfer or Not to Transfer: The Case of Comprehensive Chromosome Screening of the In Vitro Embryo

K. Hens*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The screening of in vitro embryos resulting from in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment for chromosomal abnormalities (aneuploidies) has as a primary aim to help patients achieve a successful pregnancy. Most IVF centers will not transfer aneuploid embryos, as they have an enhanced risk of leading to implantation failure and miscarriage. However, some aneuploidies, such as trisomy-21, can lead to viable pregnancies and to children with a variable health prognosis, and some prospective parents may request transfer of such embryos. I present two cases where the testing for and detection of trisomy-21 can lead to conflicts between IVF professionals and patients and argue that in most such cases respect for choices of patients should prevail.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)197-206
Number of pages10
JournalHealth Care Analysis
Issue number2
Early online date2 Aug 2013
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015


  • Embryo
  • Ethics
  • Chromosomes
  • Aneuploidy
  • Trisomy-21
  • Down syndrome
  • Preimplantation genetic screening
  • Preimplantation genetic diagnosis

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