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A Journal on Obstetrics and Gynecology
Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Emerging Sources Citation Index
REVIEWS REPRODUCTIVE MEDICINE: A BRIDGE TO THE FUTURE
Minerva Ginecologica 2009 August;61(4):347-55
Managing the complications associated with assisted reproductive technologies
Patchava S., Gelbaya T. A., Nardo L. G.
Department of Reproductive Medicine and IVF Unit, St Mary’s Hospital, CMFT University Hospitals, Manchester, UK
Delaying conception has increased the demand on assisted reproduction. Currently, more than 1% of children are conceived through assisted reproductive technologies (ART) worldwide and this number is likely to continue increasing. Like any other medical intervention ART is associated with both short-term and long-term complications. The major short-term complications include ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) and multiple pregnancies. OHSS is difficult to predict, but meticulous preventive strategies and protocols are being developed that may limit it. Most of the morbidities in children born after ART are related to multiple pregnancies. New laboratory methodologies may allow the transfer of fewer embryos to maintain satisfactory live birth rates while reducing the risk of multiple pregnancies. In vitro fertilization may be associated with a slight increased risk for birth defects. Analysis of possible risks from these techniques is confounded by factors of underlying parental subfertility, fertility treatments and multiple births. The long-term sequelae remain largely undetermined. All outcomes of ART, including pregnancy rates and adverse complications, need to be compared with standard non-ART when deciding the appropriate course of treatment. The importance of counselling should never be ignored in any treatment decision.