Why Does the IVF Lab “shut down” for a Week in December?January 8, 2018
Many patients find it inconvenient to delay a cycle due to the IVF lab closing in December, and we wanted to offer an explanation for why this process is needed.
IVF laboratory instruments
The IVF lab consists of numerous highly sophisticated instruments. These include 11 very critical benchtop incubators, warmers, heated surfaces for microscopes and laminar flow hoods, and the hoods themselves. Also, pipettors, micromanipulators and the inverted microscopes used in the daily care of eggs and embryos. The heating and ventilation systems have highly sophisticated filtration and pressure requirements that also need changes and calibration on a regular basis.
Providing the highest quality fertility care
All of these instruments need to be calibrated and have preventative maintenance done. These calibrations cannot be done while we are taking care of patients eggs and embryos since they require access to the equipment by outside companies that specialize in these calibrations and adjustments and in many cases, require that the equipment is turned off or opened for maintenance. It is imperative that every aspect of the instrumentation that we use is exactly temperature precise to ensure the highest quality care for patient gametes. We would prefer not to stop performing patient procedures for the week after Christmas but, we feel it is imperative to the performance of our lab and the best care for our patients. We are not “shut down”, we are working hard to maintain our strict quality control and quality assurance standards.