IVF "add-on" procedures to improve success are mostly unproven

An embryologist is seen at work
Photo: Ivan Couronne/AFP/Getty Images

Fertility clinics offer IVF patients a wide variety of supplementary procedures sold as ways to increase the treatment's likelihood of success, but there's not much evidence they work, STAT reports.

Between the lines: IVF can be an emotionally harrowing procedure, and women desperate to have a baby aren't likely to say no to something marketed as their last hope for doing so.

Fertility startup Progyny files to go public

A baby in a hospital in Birmingham, England.
A baby in a hospital in Birmingham, England. Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Progyny is ready to go public, and unlike a lot of other health care startups that have slid into the public markets, the fertility benefits company is already profitable.

The big picture: Employers rarely covered in vitro fertilization, egg freezing and other fertility care in the past, and those services are expensive when paying out of pocket — in vitro could cost $25,000 per try.