Some IVF patients suffer from practices at poorly regulated clinics

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For millions of American women who have struggled to get pregnant, fertility treatment has been the medicine of miracles…Yet even as IVF has made technological advancements, an outdated measurement system and weak consumer protections continue to obscure the differences between the best doctors in the business and those who run troubled clinics.

Patients get little help from consumer protections. The fertility industry is regulated like most fields of medicine, despite being fraught with ethical quandaries and driven by constant innovation. Government regulators focus primarily on lab practices, clinic advertising and data collection. Professional organizations issue guidelines, but they are voluntary…Medical boards offer little transparency about misbehaving doctors.

[For instance, Dr. Rifaat Salem, medical director of the Pacific Reproductive Center] oversees a multimillion-dollar fertility clinic empire in Southern California…One of the major selling points of Salem’s Pacific Reproductive Center is its success rate.

[However,] court records show that Salem’s Pacific Reproductive Center has had a mold problem in its lab in Irvine where embryos are created and stored. And inspection reports of the on-site surgical centers show that the clinics have been cited for not properly training staff and storing drugs. One patient has sued Salem’s surgical center, claiming she almost bled to death during a basic operation because it failed to stock a critical blood coagulant.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: When pregnancy dreams become IVF nightmares