Air Quality and the IVF Lab

Air quality is critical to embryo development and overall success of IVF.

In addition to the high levels of outdoor pollutants such as car emissions, there are indoor pollutants, known as VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), that are detrimental to IVF processes and embryo development. VOCs are released as gases from solid and liquid materials used in laboratory construction and finishing (flooring, adhesives, paints, sealants, etc.), lab equipment, cleaning fluids, air fresheners, furnishings, cosmetics, floor waxes and cigarette smoke, to name a few. In addition, airborne particles, such as skin cells, hair, clothing fibers, are also cause for concern as microorganism may attach to the particles. 

Employing an air filtration system that can filter out both airborne particulates and VOCs is a must in the IVF laboratory. Published in June 2018, the Cairo consensus on the IVF laboratory environment and air quality: report of an expert meeting presents the outcomes from an international Expert Meeting to establish a consensus on the recommended technical and operational requirements for air quality within modern assisted reproduction technology (ART) laboratories. Click here to read the Open Access report.

 Additional articles regarding air quality in the IVF lab: