A Review of The Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology Embryo Grading System and Proposed Modification
International Journal of Fertility and Sterility
The Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) method of embryo grad- ing is unique, simple, and widely practiced, and its use has been mandatory for SART membership programs since 2010. Developed by SART in 2006, the current embryo grading system categories, "good, fair, and poor," are limited because they do not describe the best 1-2 embryos in the interest of keeping pace with the shift in clinical practice to be more selective and to transfer fewer embryos. This inspired us to
... ct a review on the SART embryo grading system. In this retrospective study, the literature on evaluation of human embryo quality in gen- eral, and the SART method of evaluation in particular, were reviewed for the period of 2000 to 2014. A multifaceted search pertaining to methods of embryo grading and trans- fer using a combination of relevant terms [embryo, mammalian, embryo transfer, grade, grading, morphology, biomarkers, SART, and in vitro fertilization (IVF)] was performed. The inclusion and exclusion in this review were dictated by the aim and scope of the study. Two investigators independently assessed the studies and extracted information. A total of 61 articles were reviewed. Very few studies have evaluated the efficacy of the SART embryo grading method. The present study suggests the necessity for revision of the current SART grading system. The system, as it is now, lacks criteria for describing the cohort specific best embryo and thus is of limited use in single embryo transfer. The study foresees heightened descriptive efficiency of the SART system by implementing the proposed changes. Strengths and weaknesses of the SART embryo grading were identified. Ideas for selecting the best cohort-specific embryo have been discussed, which may trigger methodological improvement in SART and other embryo grading systems.