Transvaginal embryo aspiration - A safe method for selective reduction in multiple pregnancies

J. Itskovitz-Eldor*, A. Drugan, J. Levron, I. Thaler, J. M. Brandes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To evaluate pregnancy outcome after transvaginal selective embryo aspiration and to compare the results with those reported previously with other techniques for selective abortion. Design: Retrospective case series. Setting: University-based in vitro fertilization (IVF) program. Patients: Nineteen women with multiple pregnancy who conceived after ovulation induction or IVF/gamete intrafallopian transfer. Intervention: Transvaginal ultrasound-guided aspiration of the embryo(s) was performed at 7 to 8 weeks of gestation. Main Outcome Measures: Early and late complications related to the procedure, outcome of pregnancy, and birth weight. Results: In 18 cases, the initial number of embryos (3 to 7) was reduced to two. In 1 case, the number of embryos was reduced from 4 to 3. None of the remaining fetuses vanished after the procedure. One patient delivered at 25 weeks and all other patients delivered healthy, viable infants (a pregnancy loss rate of 5.3%). Conclusions: Transvaginal embryo aspiration in early gestation appears to be a simple and relatively safe procedure for selective termination in patients with high-order multiple pregnancy. The cumulative loss rate of selective termination procedures previously reported by others is three times higher than the loss encountered in our series. This earlier procedure may be more acceptable to patients from emotional and religious points of view.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)351-355
Number of pages5
JournalFertility and Sterility
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes


  • Selective abortion
  • multiple pregnancy
  • ultrasound-guided procedures


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