Accessing and Interpreting IVF Success Rates Using SART: 7 Essential Considerations

Understanding your options for reproductive care is crucial when it comes to making informed decisions about your IVF fertility journey. That’s why we’re shedding light on a crucial resource in the reproductive health community—the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART)—and its pivotal role in making IVF success rates accessible. 

What Is SART?

Closely affiliated with the esteemed American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), SART is a collective of reproductive experts and fertility specialists who work together to develop and maintain standards of treatment that reflect the latest advancements in reproductive medicine. 

As a part of their commitment to ensuring high-quality reproductive care across the country, SART collects and thoughtfully reports the IVF success rates of their member clinics in a comprehensive database that enables individuals and couples to find qualified fertility treatment clinics and make informed family-building decisions.

What Are IVF Success Rates?

IVF success rates refer to clinical reports of fertility treatment outcomes that reflect the probability of achieving a successful pregnancy through in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer

When reporting, SART dictates various fertility clinic success rate factors, such as infertility diagnoses, IVF cycle type, and number of embryo transfer attempts, to provide comprehensive information on each clinic’s pregnancy outcomes. 

With this publicly available data, patients are able to better understand the potential risks and outcomes associated with different IVF scenarios and ultimately make more informed treatment decisions and fertility clinic selections.

Considerations for Using the SART Database

Because they are so detailed and comprehensive, interpreting SART reports can be overwhelming—especially for individuals and couples who are just beginning their fertility journey. Here are a few helpful considerations to help you contextualize IVF success rates and maximize SART resources as you seek fertility care.

1. Of nearly 490 IVF clinics across the country, approximately 450 belong to SART. 

This makes for an easy way to identify the clinics that adhere to strict guidelines for high-quality care. And because most US fertility clinics are SART members, this state-by-state database offers the best way for patients all across the country to begin their search for a qualified fertility clinic in their area.

2. It’s important to refer to a baseline when considering SART IVF success rates. 

Patient demographics can significantly influence a fertility clinic’s IVF success rates. For example, some clinics work primarily with LGBTQ+ patients who require IVF cycles for the fertilization of healthy donor eggs or sperm, while other clinics provide IVF cycles primarily as infertility treatment, meaning their success rates are more heavily impacted by their patients’ reproductive health barriers. For a general comparison of clinics like these, don’t just look at their overall success rates. Start with a baseline: look at each clinic’s success rates for gestational carriers with egg donors. Because egg donors and gestational carriers typically have to meet a variety of health and fertility requirements, these cycles are usually performed under ideal circumstances—providing an unaffected reflection of the clinic’s success rates. 

3. The SART database offers filtering options for tailored searches.

To accommodate the varying fertility concerns and goals of patients, the SART database enables searches based on specific criteria, such as the type of cycle (fresh or frozen), the use of parent vs. donor eggs, the involvement of genetic testing, and the number of transfer attempts (for a better picture of cumulative treatment success). A clinic’s occurrence of multiple gestations can also be viewed, enabling patients to explore clinics who focus on achieving singleton pregnancies, which often lead to better maternal and fetal outcomes.

4. SART success rate totals include incomplete cycles. 

SART refers to a clinic’s total number of IVF cycles as “cycle starts” to include any patients who initiated the IVF process at all. This includes patients who completed one or more embryo transfers, patients who only completed egg retrieval but didn’t progress to embryo transfer, and patients who didn’t begin egg retrieval or transfer due to a complication like poor response to ovulation induction medication. With this, filtering data based on the number of completed embryo transfers can illuminate some of a clinic’s success patterns at different stages of treatment.

5. Most clinics in the top 20% have very similar success rates.

Among clinics in the top 20%, success rates generally vary by only a couple of percentage points, so once you’re looking at the top clinics, these differences in success rates are often insignificant.

6. SART IVF success rates are delayed by two years.

SART waits to release data until pregnancies have been fully completed in order to provide comprehensive and accurate reports on cycles and births. Because of this, the available data is typically about two years behind.

7. SART offers resources that extend far beyond data reports. 

In addition to providing important data, SART offers various resources for both patients and reproductive specialists, including educational videos, current IVF statistics, reproductive news, and a podcast featuring reproductive experts, like ICRM Medical Director Dr. Cristin Slater, on complex issues of fertility such as the role of genetic testing in IVF.

ICRM’s IVF Success Rates

At the Idaho Center for Reproductive Medicine, we prioritize the safety and wellbeing of our patients and their newborns, and we are constantly striving to improve. We are proud to be a member of the highly trusted SART organization, and as one of the top clinics in the country when it comes to IVF success rates, we take immense pride in our achievements—particularly in the realm of live, singleton births. 

We strongly believe in empowering our patients with knowledge and resources to make informed decisions about their fertility journeys. We invite you to review our clinic’s preliminary IVF success report for 2021, as well as the national SART report, and to reach out to us with any questions you may have about data reports, the meaning of IVF success rates, and the fertility treatment options available to you.

Attention Patients