A NEW fertility treatment is giving fresh hope to couples trying for children as it increases chances by 20pc.
The system, known as 'vitrification', can boost chances because it introduces a special freezing method.
Fertility experts have explained that the system of in vitro fertilisation (IVF) has been slightly modified.
The new technique has already yielded the first pregnancy in Ireland, according to the Rotunda Hospital's Human Assisted Reproduction Ireland (HARI) clinic.
IVF takes eggs from the mother and mixes them with sperm before they are implanted into the womb.
Then a selection of these eggs are frozen for possible later use.
But the new treatment at the Rotunda sees the eggs undergo an ultra-rapid freezing, which reduces the risk of the eggs being damaged.
The use of vitrification was only introduced in February of this year but already has shown signs of success.
"We're delighted to announce the success of this new fertility technique with the report of the first pregnancy in Ireland here at HARI," Dr Edgar Mocanu, fertility specialist at the clinic said.
"We're thrilled for our patients to get a result so quickly."
Dr Mocanu added that, although the current method of slow freezing offered very good success rates, vitrification has been shown to improve both embryo and egg survival rates by as much as 20pc.
Head of Research and Development, Gerri Emerson, said the very first embryo thawed from this method has resulted in a pregnancy.
HARI, the national fertility centre, has been in operation at the Rotunda since 1989.
At the moment, only about one third of IVF treatments result in a pregnancy
Earlier this year, researchers at UCD identified a means to measure the potential success rate of the embryo before it is transferred back into the woman's womb.
The University College Dublin doctors hope their discovery will help the selection of potentially successful eggs.
Fluid surrounding the egg holds metabolic information that can improve predictions on which embryo is more like to lead to a successful pregnancy.