HOUSTON (Feb. 2, 2011) -- For women seeking pregnancy by assisted reproductive technologies, such as in-vitro fertilization (IVF), a new study shows that the health of the uterus is more relevant than egg quality for a newborn to achieve normal birth weight and full gestation. This study, published in Fertility and Sterility, an international journal for obstetricians, offers new information for women with infertility diagnoses considering options for conceiving.
The study was conducted by Dr. William Gibbons, director of The Family Fertility Program at Texas Children's Hospital and professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Baylor College of Medicine, along with colleagues at the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technologies (SART) Marcelle Cedars, MD and Roberta Ness, MD. They reviewed three years of data that compared average birth weight and gestational time for single births born as a result of standard IVF, IVF with donor eggs and IVF with a surrogate. While the ability to achieve a pregnancy is tied to egg/embryo quality, the obstetrical outcomes of birth weight and length of pregnancy are more significantly tied to the uterine environment that is affected by the reason the woman is infertile.
There were more than 300,000 IVF cycles during the time of the study producing more than 70,000 singleton pregnancies.
"This is the first time that a study demonstrated that the health of a women's uterus is a key determinant for a fetus to obtain normal birth weight and normal length of gestation," said Dr. Gibbons. "While obvious issues of uterine fibroids or conditions that alter the shape of the uterus are suspected to affect pregnancy rates, conditions that result in poorer ovarian function to the point of needing donor eggs are not known. Further research is needed to fully understand this complex issue."
As assisted reproductive technologies (ART) in the U.S. mature, increasing attention is directed not just t
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Texas Children's Hospital