(HealthDay News) — In an academic practice, a training model using ultrasound-guided embryo transfer results in similar live birth rates for reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellows and attending physicians, according to research published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Jennifer L. Eaton, MD, of the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina, and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study of women who underwent their first day-3, fresh, non-donor embryo transfer between Oct. 1, 2005, and April 1, 2011, by an attending physician (n=760) or a reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellow (n=104). 

Embryo transfer was performed with the afterload method under ultrasound guidance.

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The researchers found that, following embryo transfer, the live birth rate was 31% for the attending physician group and 34% for the reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellow group (P=.65).

After adjustment for potential confounding variables, no significant association was found between the type of physician performing embryo transfer and live birth rate.

“Our findings suggest that with appropriate supervision and consistent technique, [reproductive endocrinology and infertility] fellows may obtain hands-on experience in [embryo transfer] without compromising a program’s success rates,” the researchers wrote.


  1. Eaton JL et al. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2014;doi:10.1016/j.ajog.2014.05.042.