1 Embryo IVF Success

IVF can be an exciting step towards having the family you dream of. Learn more about single embryo IVF success rates here.

Becoming a parent through IVF can be an exciting process, and the embryo transfer is how your surrogate will become pregnant with your child.

But what happens when you only have one embryo available?

The good news is that surrogacy can increase your chances of having a pregnancy when you have only one embryo. And the other good news is that the number of embryos that are transferred in IVF can affect the chances of pregnancy and 1 frozen embryo transfer success rates tend to be higher than transferring multiple embryos.

Read on to learn more about single embryo transfers and what to do if you only have one embryo available. You can also get personalized help and get matched with a surrogate faster.

What is a Single Embryo Transfer?

While it used to be more common to transfer multiple embryos at once, medical technology has allowed embryos to be screened and give families better outcomes with fewer embryos. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) now advises that all women under the age of 38 receive single embryo transfers. Some research has even shown that multiple embryo transfers can reduce the rate of pregnancy.

"After accounting for variables which may affect live birth rates such as age and stage of embryo transfer, the odds of achieving a live birth from double-embryo transfer was 24% lower than that from sequential single-embryo transfer..."

- Wong, Ker Yi et al.,

Women's Health (London)

In addition to the recommendations of the ASRM, some cases families choose single embryo transfer because they only have one embryo. You may also choose to use a single embryo because only one of your embryos is healthy.

Another common reason to choose a single embryo transfer is that multiple embryo transfer more often leads to twins, triplets, or more and a pregnancy with multiples can have additional complications.

1 Frozen Embryo Transfer: Success Rates

When it comes to the embryo transfer, quality matters more than quantity. The amount of embryos that are transferred to your surrogate does not increase chances of implantation and pregnancy. In fact, if more than one embryo is implanted, it could reduce pregnancy by 27%.

Single embryo transfer success rates are higher because specialists will focus on finding one high quality embryo to transfer, and save other viable embryos to be used if the first transfer doesn’t take.  

1 Frozen Embryo Transfer Success Rates and Surrogate Pregnancy

Embryo transfer is a crucial step in surrogacy—this is the moment that your surrogate can become pregnant. Before transfer, you will likely talk to your surrogate and medical professionals about the number of embryos that will be transferred—in some cases it can be multiple, while other times it can just be one embryo.

In addition to improving chances of pregnancy, a contributing factor to 1 embryo transfer success rates is reducing the likelihood of multiple pregnancies and the associated risks such as:

  • Premature labor
  • Miscarriage
  • Complications during your surrogate’s pregnancy
  • Birth defects

What to Do if You Only Have One Embryo Available

Surrogacy can be a great option if you only have one embryo available because the rates of pregnancy and live birth can often be much higher for families who are struggling to conceive. But even with surrogacy, there is still a chance that the embryo won't result in a birth, and if your first surrogacy attempt doesn't work out, it can leave you with few options. 

It can also be more difficult to find a surrogate who is willing to help families with one embryo available-- many surrogates feel additional weight when a family only has one embryo, and if the first attempt at surrogacy is unsuccessful, the surrogate will have the unfortunate news that she is unable to help you as a family--this can also affect her and her family if they have made life changes to accommodate surrogacy.

If you are open to the idea of sperm donation, egg donation, embryo donation, or another round of egg retrieval and embryo creation, this can be a great way of increasing your likelihood of having a successful surrogacy journey if you have one embryo. 


What is the success rate of single frozen embryo transfer?

Single frozen embryo transfer is roughly as successful as single fresh embryo transfer according to research and in some cases may be higher than fresh embryo transfers.

What are the odds of getting pregnant with one embryo transfer?

The likelihood of getting pregnant with one embryo transfer is dependent on the quality of the embryo and on the health status of the woman who is receiving the embryo transfer. In some studies, multiple embryo transfer has been shown to reduce the likelihood of becoming pregnant.

Is one frozen embryo enough?

One frozen embryo may be enough for one IVF transfer, but in the case that the thawing process is unsuccessful or the embryo does not become a pregnancy, having multiple embryos can mean that you have another chance at transferring an embryo and having a healthy pregnancy that results in a birth.

In many cases, surrogacy can greatly increase your chances of success if you have one embryo. Reach out here to learn more about how to find a path forward.