Is a frozen embryo transfer in a programmed cycle really the best option?

  • Valerie L. BakerEmail author
  • Ijeoma Iko
  • James Segars
Letter to the Editor

Cryopreservation of human embryos with subsequent frozen-thawed embryo transfer (FET) increased from 7.9% of embryo transfers in 2004 to 40.7% of embryo transfers in 2013 in the United States (US), with similar increases globally [1, 2, 3]. Despite the increasing popularity of FET, emerging data have raised concern because of the observed increased risk of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy following FET [4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12]. These data are troubling due to preeclampsia’s associated severe adverse consequences on the short- as well as on the long-term health for mothers and infants.

Several questions arise. What are the reasons for this increase in the risk of preeclampsia with FET? Would the association between FET and hypertensive disorders of pregnancy be observed in a large cohort? A recent observational study from Sweden that included nearly 10,000 singleton pregnancies achieved via FET detected an increased risk of hypertensive disorders in programmed FET cycles, but...



James Segars is supported, in part, by the Howard and Georgeanna Seegar Jones Endowment.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Valerie L. Baker has received funding from the NIH for prior related research (grant number PO1 HD065647-01A1) and has applied for additional funding; Ijeoma Iko and James Segars declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Department of Gynecology and ObstetricsJohns Hopkins University School of MedicineLuthervilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Davis Medical CenterUniversity of CaliforniaSacramentoUSA
  3. 3.Division of Reproductive Sciences and Women’s Health Research, Department of Gynecology and ObstetricsJohns Hopkins University School of MedicineBaltimoreUSA

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