Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stronger regulations of in vitro fertilization may save lives, new study finds

Date:
April 15, 2011
Source:
Elsevier Health Sciences
Summary:
Couples struggling with infertility often use assisted reproductive technologies, like in vitro fertilization (IVF), to get pregnant. This can increase the risk of multiple pregnancies, which are often caused by transferring more than one embryo. Twins and triplets are likely to be born prematurely, and, as a result, many have medical complications. A new study finds a major decrease in risk, as well as cost, if single embryo transfers are mandated for IVF.

The number of couples struggling with infertility is on the rise, and these couples often use assisted reproductive technologies, like in vitro fertilization (IVF), to get pregnant. Although IVF can be successful, it can also increase the risk of multiple pregnancies (i.e., twins or triplets), which are often caused by transferring more than one embryo. Twins and triplets are likely to be born prematurely, and, as a result, many have medical complications. A new study being published in The Journal of Pediatrics finds a major decrease in risk, as well as cost, if single embryo transfers are mandated for IVF.

Dr. Keith Barrington and colleagues from the University of Montreal reviewed information from hospital records from the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Quebec, Canada. Their objective was to find out how many infants admitted to the NICU from July 2005 to July 2007 were from multiple births resulting from IVF, and how many of these infants had complications or required medical interventions.

The authors discovered that 82 infants (17%), admitted to this NICU during the two-year period were from multiple births resulting from some form of assisted reproductive technology. Of these, 75 were twins or triplets whose mothers used IVF. As Dr. Barrington notes, "Among these 75 babies, there were 6 deaths, 5 babies who developed a brain bleed, and 4 babies who developed a potentially blinding eye condition."

Using the information gleaned from the medical records, the authors calculated the estimated reduction of complications and costs if doctors administering IVF were to transfer only one embryo at a time. According to Dr. Barrington, "Across Canada, there would be as many as 840 fewer babies admitted to the NICU, 40 deaths avoided, 46 fewer brain injuries, and 42,400 fewer days of NICU hospitalization." Considering that each day an infant stays in the NICU costs roughly $1000, the savings would be considerable if single embryo transfers were mandatory. Because there were roughly 20 times as many IVF procedures performed in the United States than in Canada in 2008, the savings in the US would be even greater.

The authors strongly advocate regulations restricting the number of embryos to be transferred during IVF. However, because they recognize that IVF procedures are both costly and challenging for the mother, they advocate accompanying regulation with reimbursement of any additional costs incurred. As Dr. Barrington notes, "Since July 2010, all of the fertility centers in Quebec have adopted this approach, and preliminary results show that twin gestation rates have dropped from 30% to 3.8%."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Elsevier Health Sciences. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Annie Janvier, Bridget Spelke, Keith Barrington. The Epidemic of Multiple Gestations and NICU use: The Cost of Irresponsibility. Journal of Pediatrics, 2011; DOI: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2011.02.017

Cite This Page:

Elsevier Health Sciences. "Stronger regulations of in vitro fertilization may save lives, new study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110414065000.htm>.
Elsevier Health Sciences. (2011, April 15). Stronger regulations of in vitro fertilization may save lives, new study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110414065000.htm
Elsevier Health Sciences. "Stronger regulations of in vitro fertilization may save lives, new study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110414065000.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Since the arrival of Ebola in Ivory Coast, Ivorians have been abandoning their pets, particularly monkeys, in the fear that they may transmit the virus. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Links Male-Pattern Baldness To Prostate Cancer

Study Links Male-Pattern Baldness To Prostate Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) New findings suggest men with a certain type of baldness at age 45 are 39 percent more likely to develop aggressive prostate cancer. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

      Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins