LONDON, May 12, 2003 ( – A leading British artificial conception expert says women using IVF are at increased risk of contracting HIV. Dr. Carole Gilling-Smith, who conducts IVF at a major London hospital, cited “appalling safety lapses” that she has witnessed in the IVF process, in a presentation to an IVF conference under the auspices of the Royal Society of Medicine.  For example, clinics are creating embryos for HIV-infected couples in the same laboratories as those used by healthy parents, reports said. Equipment exposed to the HIV virus is also not being properly sterilized before it is used for IVF.  Dr. Gilling-Smith referred to the “potential risk of cross-contamination of noninfected patient’s embryos. If you are non infected, there is potential risk of infection from the follicular fluid of someone who is.”  For local coverage: