Leftovers Again?!

by Jennifer Lahl, CBC President on December 4, 2008

Too much in the news today to keep up with on the latest study on what to do with all the leftover embryos. People apparently don’t like their options. One article said “Women are Unhappy With Disposal Options“. Another article recognized the father and said, “Parents Torn Over Fate of Frozen Embryos“. And a third claimed, “The Largest Study of Fertility Patients Show Concerns About Embryo Disposition“.

Presently, what are the options that make them unhappy, torn or concerned? Briefly their options are:

1) Keep them frozen indefinitely (which requires on-going fees to pay for storage)
2) Donate them to others who can’t have children or just want to “rescue” the frozen
3) Give them to the scientists for research
4) Use them yourself for more children

I’ll be watching this space closely as we now the new administration is planning to allow more federal funding to be used to do research on these “surplus, leftover” embryos. Perhaps if the Federal government gives more funding, more couples will be inclined to give them to research?

What about this option? Since we know how we get “surplus” embryos is by hyperstimulating women’s ovaries AND we know that hyperstimulation drugs are dangerous (and sometimes life threatening), maybe we should adopt laws like in Germany and Italy which do not permit “surplus” embryos to be created. Makes good sense to me as a place to start.

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