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More Adverse Outcomes in In Vitro Fertilization Pregnancies

Outcome may be determined by endometrium rather than the embryo

TUESDAY, Dec. 26 (HealthDay News) -- Pregnancies that result from in vitro fertilization are associated with more adverse outcomes compared with natural fertilization, according to a report published in the December issue of Fertility and Sterility.

Karine Chung, M.D., of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues analyzed data from 435 pregnancies achieved with in vitro fertilization to assess the risk of adverse outcomes. In multiple pregnancies, the risk of adverse outcome was 12 times that of singleton gestations.

There was a threefold increase in risk for women with ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, while there was an inverse relation between endometrial thickness and adverse outcomes. However, the outcome of pregnancies was not affected by techniques to manipulate the embryo, the cause of infertility or the medications used in the fertility treatment process.

"Our findings suggest that the influence of the endometrium on fetal growth in pregnancies achieved through assisted reproductive technology may be greater than the influence of the embryo," the authors conclude. "Indeed, impaired placentation due to dysfunctional communication between the endometrium and developing trophoblasts could explain the spectrum of adverse obstetrical outcomes observed after the use of assisted reproductive technology."

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