University Hospitals statement concerning fertility clinic

Liquid nitrogen cryogenic tank at life sciences laboratory

University Hospitals officials have been looking into the issue. The frozen eggs and embryos play a crucial part in the whole process, but they have to be stored in certain conditions and at certain temperatures to remain viable.

University Hospitals has initiated contact with all of the affected patients to respond to their questions, according to the hospital's statement.

Temperatures unexpectedly fluctuated in the liquid nitrogen storage bank at the University Hospitals Fertility Clinic where the eggs and embryos were stored, according to a University Hospitals statement. They must be completely thawed to determine viability, but then can not be refrozen. Some of these eggs and embryos have been stored in there for decades.

Patti DePompei, president of University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital and MacDonald Women's Hospital, calls the situation "absolutely devastating". "Obviously the situation that occurred here is devastating for the families involved, and it's devastating for. our staff", DePompei tells NBC News.

All of the samples have been moved to another storage tank at the facility. The cryogenic facilities where the eggs are stored are typically monitored with video surveillance and alarm systems. The hospital is bringing in experts to assist. We are incredibly sorry this happened.

"We will work with the patient one on one to understand her needs, understand how we might be able to offer some other avenue for her to achieve fertility, it may not be the exact thing that she had planned but we as physicians will work with the patient one on one and arrive at hopefully a way to help that individual", Dr. Liu said.

A call center has also been set up to arrange personal meetings or calls with physicians. The line is staffed by nurse professionals from 7 a.m.to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday, and 8 a.m.to 1 p.m. on Saturday.

Thousands of eggs and embryos may have been destroyed after a hospital fridge malfunctioned. The only way to know if they are still viable is to implant them says the hospital.

With more women deciding on a late motherhood, freezing eggs has become increasingly popular.

This is a representational image showing a technician opening a vessel containing women's frozen egg cells in Amsterdam, April 6, 2011. The numbers since then have only risen.

On average, freezing eggs can cost between $12,000 and $14,000.

"Our hearts go out to the patients who have suffered this loss", Sean Tipton, chief policy officer at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ARSM) reportedly said.

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