Wrong sperm may have fertilized eggs of 26 Dutch women in IVF mix-up

A Dutch IVF lab has launched an investigation after discovering that up to 26 women may have been fertilized by sperm cells from the wrong man.

The University Medical Centre (UMC) in Utrecht, Netherlands said a “procedural error” between mid-April 2015 and mid-November 2016 was to blame.

Half of the women who underwent fertility treatment have become pregnant or already had their babies.

The couples have been informed and the UMC said it  “will do everything within its powers to give clarity on the issue as soon as possible."

In a statement, the center explained: “During fertilization, sperm cells from one treatment couple may have ended up with the egg cells of 26 other couples.

“Therefore, there’s a chance that the egg cells have been fertilized by sperm other than that of the intended father.”

Although the chance of that happening was small, the possibility “could not be excluded”, the center added.

“For some of the 26 couples, frozen embryos are still available but the chance remains that they (too) have been fertilised by the sperm from a man other than the intended father,” the UMC said.

In 2012, a mother sued a clinic in Singapore after it mixed up her husband’s sperm with that of a stranger.

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