Dr Carl Herbert, president of Pacific Fertility Clinic, told the Washington Post on Sunday that officials have informed some 400 patients of the failure that occurred March 4. Women freeze eggs in order to postpone pregnancy until a later date or to have a supply for in vitro fertilization attempts.
The same weekend, a similar problem at a different facility, Pacific Fertility Center in San Francisco.
"At this point, we do not know the viability of all of the stored eggs and embryos, although we do know some have been impacted", said University Hospital Rainbow Babies and Children's Hospital and Macdonald Women's Hospital President Patti DePompei. Another filled tank replaced it, and the tissue specimens were transferred. And a larger group whose tissue was unaffected.
"With this lawsuit, we will get answers and stop this from happening again", said Mark DiCello, an attorney for the Ashes. "Our goal is to provide all the patients we see with some kind of a family". This update by the spokesman is made when the updated about the damage of these eggs and embryos comes in front of all.
A spokesperson for the San Francisco clinic says the eggs and embryos from the troubled tank represent about 15 percent of the total stored at the facility.
The University Hospital Fertility Center in Cleveland has a long-term storage tank containing liquid nitrogen that suffered equipment failure. One to three eggs may be stored in a unit.
The lawsuits are a result of the potential loss of more than 2,000 eggs and embryos at UH's Fertility Center two weekends ago.
The clinic declined to specify the number of eggs and embryos affected but said that "several thousand" were in the waist-high tank. Herbert told the Post some of the eggs in the tank had been tested, and were undamaged. "This was a awful incident", Herbert said, "but I was reassured that.he did everything anybody could ever want to do".
The clinic is sending letters to about 500 patients "that may have been involved in this tank", Herbert said. "Everyone who has talked to their doctor has been told 'your embryos are not viable.' It appears this is far more catastrophic than what was originally reported".
The family also says the hospital did not notify them of the issue for almost a week.
According to the clinic's website, its fees for egg freezing are $8,345 for the initial cycle and $6,995 for each subsequent round. Once they are thawed, they can't be refrozen.
"They turned on the TV and saw it themselves and thought 'We have just lost our family's most valuable treasure, '" DiCello said. In 1982, he helped to develop one of the nation's earliest reproductive technology programs at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.
A California fertility clinic has reported that an equipment malfunction has put hundreds of frozen eggs and embryos at risk. UH officials say the lawsuit will not affect an ongoing independent review into the malfunction.