LOS ANGELES — More than 1.5 percent of babies born in the United States in 2012 were conceived in a laboratory dish, thanks to in vitro fertilization — an all-time high, according to a report released Monday by the Society of Assisted Reproductive Technology.
The 379 fertility clinics that are members of the society performed a total of 165,172 procedures in 2012, resulting in the births of 61,740 babies. Both figures are new records as well, the society said.
In more than 99 percent of the cases, the reproductive technology used was in vitro fertilization.
For women under the age of 35, 40.7 percent of fertility treatment attempts resulted in a live birth. So did 31.3 percent of the attempts by women ages 35 to 37; 22.2 percent of the attempts by women ages 38 to 40; 11.8 percent of the attempts by women who were 41 or 42; and 3.9 percent of the attempts by women who were 43 or older.
The clinics also reported progress toward their goal of reducing the number of multiple births, especially higher-order multiples such as triplets and quadruplets.
The expense of in vitro fertilization prompts most couples to transfer more than one embryo in a cycle, to improve the odds that at least one will implant. But doctors have been persuading more women to transfer a single embryo.