Thousands of eggs, embryos possibly damaged at Ohio hospital

Officials say approximately 2,000 frozen eggs and embryos may have been damaged due to a storage tank malfunction at an Ohio hospital fertility clinic.

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CLEVELAND – Officials say approximately 2,000 frozen eggs and embryos may have been damaged due to a storage tank malfunction at an Ohio hospital fertility clinic.

The Plain Dealer reports Patti DePompei, president of University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital and MacDonald Women’s Hospital, calls the situation “absolutely devastating.” She says temperatures in one of the two liquid nitrogen tanks storing specimens at University Hospitals’ fertility clinic in suburban Cleveland rose above acceptable limits overnight Saturday for unknown reasons.

Hospital officials say about 700 patients are affected. Some samples date to the 1980s. The hospital began notifying patients Tuesday.

All of the samples have been moved to another storage tank.

Patients typically pay about $12,000 without insurance for in vitro fertilization. It’s not clear how the affected patients will be compensated.

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This story has been corrected to show that around 700 patients are affected, not 500 patients.

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Information from: The Plain Dealer, http://www.cleveland.com

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