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Octuplets' mom identifies her fertility clinic in Beverly Hills

February 9, 2009 |  9:20 am

Whittier mom Nadya Suleman told NBC in an interview that aired this morning that she sought treatment at a Beverly Hills clinic for all her in vitro fertilization procedures, including the one that resulted in the birth of octuplets.

The 33-year-old said she went to West Coast Infertility Medical Clinic -- now named West Coast IVF Clinic -- headed by Michael M. Kamrava. He describes himself on his website as "an internationally recognized leader in the field of in vitro fertilization" who has helped pioneer "breakthrough technology that revolutionized IVF, reducing risks to both the mother and child." That procedure also helped reduce costs, according to the website.

According to statistics collected by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, his clinics performed 20 in vitro procedures in 2006 on women under 35. Of those procedures, four resulted in pregnancies and only two of those resulted in birth. One of those women delivered twins. His pregnancy rate and live birth rate are far below the national average, according to the statistics.

At the same time, the average number of embryos that he transferred per procedure -- 3.5 -- was among the highest in the country for women under 35. Fertility specialists say that a high number of embryo transfers usually reflects either a patient population with an especially poor prognosis or problems with the laboratory.

Medical guidelines established by the American Society of Reproductive Medicine recommend transferring no more than two embryos per procedure in women under 35 except in "extraordinary circumstances."

Suleman told NBC's Ann Curry that her treatment was "very appropriate." He implanted six embryos, which she had remaining from previous procedures because of her medical history, which include miscarriages and scarred fallopian tubes.

"At the time I was so focused, so fixated on wanting so many that I just kept going," Suleman said. Because the success rates are low, Suleman said, "the most I would have ever anticipated would have been twins. It wasn't twins times four."

She said implanting that many embryos, even after having six young children at home, was "nothing different" from before.

"He did nothing different," she said.

Kamrava could not be reached for comment this morning.

Since the birth, Suleman has come under fire for going ahead with all the pregnancies when she already had six children at home. She is a single mother and a graduate student who lives with her mother.

She denied getting pregnant to make a lot of money and told Curry that money is "paper." She said she is not on government assistance.

She said that with six children, she was struggling financially to support them and likely would not have been able to make it without the support of her mother, who allowed the family to stay with her in her three-bedroom Whittier home.

"I will feed them; I will do the best I possibly can," Suleman said in the interview. "In my own way, in my own faith, I do believe wholeheartedly that God will provide in his own way."

KTLA released video today showing Suleman at the clinic in 2006 talking about the in vitro process.

"I was slightly pessimistic, then I realized, yeah, it worked," she said in the interview, which also showed two of her children.

The video shows a doctor, which KTLA identified as Michael Kamrava, describing the medical process.

-- Alan Zarembo and Kimi Yoshino

Are you a patient or former patient of Dr. Michael Kamrava? Contact Kimi Yoshino at this link.

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