At Carolina Conceptions, the transfer of a specimen from one clinic to another is the top priority of the staff handling it. We want to assure our patients that their embryos, eggs, and sperm will reach their intended destination, whether they are coming into our clinic or being sent out to another.
A concern patients may have is how their specimen is transferred and how it stays frozen during its travel. When frozen specimens are stored at a clinic, they are stored in cryo tanks filled with liquid nitrogen that ensure the embryos, eggs, and sperm stay at the appropriate temperature to be safely stored long-term until they are ready to be used. While being transferred, the specimens are stored in similar, but smaller cryo tanks suitable for shipment. Since liquid nitrogen cannot be safely transported, these tanks are “charged” before the transportation occurs. This means that several days before shipment, they are constantly filled with liquid nitrogen until it is cold enough to sustain the liquid without needing to be refilled. This will keep the tanks at a temperature suitable for the storage of your frozen specimen long enough to reach its final destination.
Patients may, also, wonder what is done to confirm the shipment of the proper specimen. We have several protocols in place to ensure the right embryos, eggs, or sperm are being delivered. Before any shipments are accepted into our clinic, we ask that all documents regarding the specimen are sent to us so that we may thoroughly review them prior to delivery. This will allow us to adequately prepare for the receipt of the correct specimen, the correct amount, understand how to care for it once it arrives, and, when the time comes, how to thaw it. In addition, when sending out or receiving any patient specimens at Carolina Conceptions, our staff utilizes a two-person witness system. No less than two people check the shipments, making sure that each specimen reflects the correct patient and the number of specimen matches what we expect to deliver or receive.
As clinicians, we understand the stress and anxiety that may come with the handling of such precious cargo. At our clinic, there is nothing more important than the care of our patients and their specimens, and we take great measures to ensure they reach their destinations safely.