What is PGT-A?

PGT-A is pre-implantation genetic testing for aneuploidy. It is believed that it may help in reducing the risk of miscarriage in some women, by identifying any embryos that show chromosomal abnormalities, prior to transfer and discarding them. It is a treatment add-on, so it’s not part of regular IVF treatment.

What is aneuploidy?

Aneuploidy is the term used for when there are additional or missing chromosomes, which can then go on to cause complications. The most common aneuploidy consists of an extra copy of chromosome 21, resulting in Down Syndrome. Other aneuploidies are Turner Syndrome, Klinefelter Syndrome, Patau Syndrome and Edwards Syndrome.

What is involved with PGT-A?

It is usually carried out at the blastocyst stage and it involves checking embryos created in the lab by IVF, for chromosomal abnormalities.

A single cell, or several cells, are removed from the embryo. The DNA is tested to see if there are any abnormal chromosomes. Those without abnormalities are placed back into the womb.

Why isn’t it available to everyone?

‘PGT-A is traditionally offered to women over 37 with a history of miscarriage or failed IVF cycles or people with a family history of chromosome problems. However, to date, there is little evidence showing it improves the chances of having a baby for most fertility patients and therefore it is considered a treatment add-on.’ (HFEA)

As an add-on, it is not funded as part of NHS-funded IVF treatment.

Can I pay for PGT-A at a private clinic?

Yes, however, here is what guidance from the HFEA says:

‘It is important to keep in mind that for most patients, having a routine cycle of proven fertility treatment is effective without using any treatment add-ons. If you are paying directly for your own treatment, you may want to think about whether it might be more effective and/or affordable to pay for multiple routine proven treatment cycles, rather than spending large sums of money on a single treatment cycle with treatment add-ons that haven’t been proven to be effective at increasing the likelihood of you having a baby.’

Is the treatment safe?

The PGT-A procedure does carry risks.

The embryo could get damaged by the procedure and therefore not develop inside the womb.

A damaged embryo may develop in the womb, but create further complications later.

A risk of misdiagnosis may result in healthy embryos not being used, which reduces the patient’s chances of having a healthy baby.

Here at the IVF Network, we provide a range of information, through our dedicated channel of experts, our website and our blog posts, to help you to make informed choices on your personal fertility journey.

Your fertility consultant will be able to talk you through the benefits and risks of any treatment that they consider to be appropriate for you, based on your medical history.


‘Frequently asked questions about Pre-implantation genetic testing for aneuploidy (PGT-A),’ Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA)


‘Pre-implantation genetic testing for aneuploidy (PGT-A),’ Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA)


‘IVF with PGT-A (PGS) explained,’ Fertility Road