In a story that will make anyone think twice about submitting themselves to an in vitro fertilization procedure, a woman recently gave birth to twins who she later had to return because the hospital impregnated her with the wrong eggs.
CBS News reports that this happened to an anonymous couple from New York, who was expecting two girls, but instead gave birth to boys. Not only that, but when the babies were born in March, neither was of Asian-American decent, like their parents.
The couple sued doctors Joshua Berger and Simon Hong, owners of CHA Fertility Clinic, claiming that the hospital knew about the mix up and tried to cover it up. They sued for medical malpractice, negligence and 14 other counts. Their lawyer says that they’ve taken this matter to court in order to prevent this from happening to other people and because of the emotional and financial distress they’ve endured.
According to expert Jake Anderson, these type of IVF mistakes are not that unlikely. “It’s this agonizing process to grow embryos. And it involves almost over 200 different steps and when you assume this happens to thousands of patients every year within that laboratory, all of a sudden you’ve got a lot of moving parts,” he explains.
The anonymous couple from New York aren’t the only ones who’ve made the news because they carried babies that weren’t theirs. Carolyn and Sean Savage underwent a full term pregnancy in 2009 where they also had to return the baby to the genetic parents. “You’re so excited, and you feel like, ‘finally,’ and then to have the rug pulled out from under you in this kind of manner is – it’s so painful,” says Carolyn. “I cannot express how utterly unacceptable this situation is. It is preventable, protocols need to be followed, and they need to be taken seriously.”
Mistakes where embryos are destroyed, mixed up and implanted in the wrong uteruses have become more prevalent, making people question these treatments since there’s a lot of room for human error.