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ST. LOUIS – The pandemic has couples rethinking what is important in life. For many, that means having a baby. New technology is dramatically increasing a woman’s chances of getting pregnant through in-vitro fertilization.

Infertility treatments have come a long way since the first IVF in Missouri 35 years ago at Barnes Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine. 

The chances of IVF working back then was 20 percent. Now it is more than 60 percent. 

Washington University doctors are using what is called an AI machine. The tool tells them which patient on day three has embryos that should be grown out to day five so they can increase the chances of survival. 

Dr. Kenan Omurtag says the key is to be able to transfer one single embryo on day five and increase the chances of taking home a healthy baby. The machine uses an algorithm—a complex statistical model—trained to identify certain factors that determine better implantation of an embryo.

Dr. Omurtag says the holy grail of infertility is how to know which embryo to implant.  

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