What is the quality of information on social oocyte cryopreservation provided by websites of Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology member fertility clinics

Capsule:
Oocyte cryopreservation was recently approved by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM); however, most Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) member fertility clinics do not follow the SART/ASRM guidelines for web advertising of the procedure.

Authors:
Sarit Avraham, M.D., Ronit Machtinger, M.D., Tal Cahan, M.D., Amit Sokolov, B.Sc., Catherine Racowsky, Ph.D., Daniel S. Seidman, M.D., M.M.Sc.

Volume 101, Issue 1, Pages 222-226, January 2014

Abstract:

Objective:
To evaluate adequacy and adherence to American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) guidelines of internet information provided by Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART)-affiliated clinics regarding social oocyte cryopreservation (SOC).

Design:
Systematic evaluation of websites of all SART member fertility clinics.

Setting:
The internet.

Patient(s):
None.

Intervention(s):
All websites offering SOC services were scored using a 0–13 scale, based on 10 questions designed to assess website quality and adherence to the ASRM/SART guidelines. The websites were analyzed independently by two authors. Whenever disagreement occurred, a third investigator determined the score.

Main Outcome Measure(s):
Scores defined website quality as excellent, ≥9; moderate, 5–8; or poor, ≤4 points.

Result(s):
Of the 387 clinics registered as SART members, 200 offered oocyte cryopreservation services for either medical or social reasons; 147 of these advertised SOC. The average website scores of those clinics offering SOC was 3.4 ± 2.1 (range, 2–11) points. There was no significant difference in scores between private versus academic clinics or clinics performing more or less than 500 cycles per year.

Conclusion(s):
The majority of the websites do not follow the SART/ASRM guidelines for SOC, indicating that there is a need to improve the type and quality of information provided on SOC by SART member websites.

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