If you’re exploring IVF clinics, you might feel confused trying to compare success rates. On this page, our fertility experts explain which numbers to focus on, so you can start your journey with confidence.
Find your nearest clinic to see our success rates at TFP Fertility.
A clinic's IVF success rate tells you the percentage of treatments performed by the clinic that had a successful result, which could be:
The patient becoming pregnant
The patient having a baby
It’s usually given as a percentage. A higher number means more treatments were successful.
Bear in mind, this number doesn’t reflect how likely you are to become pregnant.
Your individual chances of becoming pregnant depend on your age, your fertility health and embryo quality.
Success rates should help you to check if a clinic is up to the national standard, so you can make informed decisions about where to have treatment.
Find the success rates at each of our clinics to help you decide where you'd like to have your treatment. These success rates give you an idea of the percentage of IVF cycles that result in a positive outcome, and are broken down by female age and treatment type.
In the UK, the success rates for IVF clinics are reported as pregnancies or live births per cycle or embryo transferred.
The different measurements are all useful, and they mean slightly different things.
When checking the success rates, the main thing is that they are similar to national averages.
When you’re comparing them, make sure you’re looking at the same type of success rate.
There’s no need to focus on small differences in success rates, as this can be due to the age and type of patients the clinic treats.
The pregnancy rate includes IVF cycles that resulted in pregnancies, even those that miscarried.
Miscarriages are common in all pregnancies, including for IVF, affecting an average 1 in 8 pregnancies.
The live birth rate only includes IVF cycles where the pregnancy ended in a live birth.
If a clinic has a large difference in pregnancies vs live births, this is may mean that they see more older patients or patients with a higher chance of miscarriage.
The number of live births per cycle is the percentage of IVF cycles resulting in a live birth. Success rates per cycle include all people who started an IVF cycle, even if they did not continue.
Live births per embryo cycle mean the number of embryo transfers resulting in a live birth.
It only includes people who were able to have an embryo transfer.
Some people don’t make it to this stage, which can be because:
They dropped out
They became pregnant naturally
Their embryos weren’t suitable for treatment
This can mean that success rates given per embryo transferred may not reflect older people or those less likely to retrieve high-quality embryos.
100 patients started IVF.
Some patients didn’t complete IVF, and only 80 made it to the embryo transfer stage.
All patients had a single embryo transfer.
These 80 patients each had a single embryo transfer. 20 of them went on to have a baby.
The live birth success rate per IVF cycle is 20 out of 100, equal to 20%.
The live birth success rate per embryo transfer is 20 patients out of 80, equal to 25%.
In the UK, medical regulations guide whether patients can have a single embryo transfer, or a multiple embryo transfer.
The factors include:
Quality of the embryos
This means that for clinics with more patients needing double or triple embryo transfers, their success rate per embryo transferred will be lower.
If a clinic has a good live birth rate per cycle, but a lower birth rate per embryo transferred, then this suggests more of their patients need double or triple embryo transfers.
Returning to the same clinic, where 100 people started IVF and 80 had an embryo transfer.
In the first example, 80 patients had a single embryo transfer, and 20 babies were born, so the live birth rate per embryo transfer is 25%.
But say 20 of those patients had a double embryo transfer, and 5 were successful. The remaining 60 had a single embryo transfer and 15 were successful.
This would make the live birth rate per embryo transfer 20%, because 20 babies were born from 100 embryos in total.
It can be difficult to compare clinic success rates because the patient population of each clinic can vary widely in terms of age, underlying fertility issues and overall health.
For example, some clinics specialise in treating certain fertility issues or older women, so they may have lower success rates than others.
However, the experience and methods of a clinic can affect their success rates too, so it’s helpful to check that their results are in line with the national average.
Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has a useful tool that lets you dive into detailed statistics for a fertility clinic.
You can look at specific treatments and set them to your age range, so results are more relevant to you.
Here’s an example for TFP Nurture Fertility.
You can find this tool for any clinic by
Searching for the clinic you’re interested in on the HFEA website
Once on the clinic page, scroll down to the ‘clinic statistics’ section
Look for ‘detailed statistics’ button on the right-hand side
Select the data you want to see
We also provide a breakdown of our most recent IVF success rates for each TFP Fertility clinic on our website.
If you take one thing away from this article, here’s our fertility experts' advice on success rates:
Check that a clinic’s success rate is similar to the national average
Success rates are heavily affected by the age and fertility health of the patients at the clinic
When comparing clinics, make sure you look at the same type of success rates
According to data from the NHS, the average success of IVF per age group is as follows.
Live births per embryo transferred are:
1 in 3 for women under 35
1 in 4 for women aged 35-47
1 in 5 for women aged 38-39
1 in 10 for women aged 40-42
1 in 20 for women aged 43+
Clinics that only do fresh transfers may have a slightly higher success rate.
This is because the best embryo is selected for the fresh transfer.
After that, any further frozen transfers may use slightly lower-quality eggs.
There’s no evidence that freezing embryos causes damage.
Donor eggs usually come from young, healthy people to improve the chances of a successful pregnancy.
This means that IVF success rates using donor eggs are higher, especially in older women.