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New IVF hope for parents

A fertility test has been shown to more than double the chances of pregnancy.
A new screening technique for use in IVF treatment has been shown to more than double the chances of pregnancy, according to the results of a pilot study.

The technique involves screening embryos for genetic defects in order to identify the healthiest ones for use in treatment.

This means that the embryo is more likely to implant in the mother's womb and the process, called comparative genomic hybridisation (CGH), could also help to cut the likelihood of twins or triplets, according to the study conducted by researchers from the UK and US.

In 78 per cent of the 23 women who underwent the treatment, a foetal heartbeat was detected using ultrasound.

Dr Mandy Katz-Jaffe at the Colorado Centre for Reproductive Medicine, near Denver, who is part of the team, said: "The patients who are going through this knew this was their last chance of conceiving without going for donor eggs.

"The effect on those patients who have conceived has been beyond anything I can describe."

Dr Dagan Wells at Oxford University and Reprogenetics UK, who led the study, described the pregnancy rates as "phenomenal" and said scientists were ready to begin a trial in the UK.

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