Subscribe to the BioNews newsletter for free

Login
Advanced Search

Search for
BioNews


Print Page Follow BioNews on Twitter BioNews RSS feed

Like the Progress Educational Trust on Facebook



King's College London - Health: More than a medical matter





Obesity is not a threat to successful IVF

04 January 2009

By Sarah Guy

Appeared in BioNews 489

The results of a study in Scotland have indicated that obese and overweight women have the same chance of successful IVF treatment as normal weight women. The research was undertaken in Aberdeen between 1997 and 2006, on 1,700 women undergoing their first cycle of IVF, and included overweight women, and women who were clinically and heavily obese. No marked difference was noted in the proportion of positive pregnancy tests, ongoing pregnancies and live births between any particular weight group. In addition, no further cost was incurred by women with a body mass index (BMI) of up to 35 (individuals with a BMI of over 25 are classed as overweight, while those over 30 are classed as obese).

However, the study showed that a higher proportion of women in the overweight and obese groups had a miscarriage and needed higher doses of drugs to stimulate their ovaries during their treatment. The higher rate of miscarriage echoes the findings of a study conducted last November by scientists at the Stanford University School of Medicine in California, US, which suggested that a mother's weight can affect the outcome of an otherwise normal pregnancy.

Leader of the study Dr Abha Maheshwari, a clinical lecturer in reproductive medicine at the University of Aberdeen, said that women with a BMI over 35 should not be offered IVF until they had lost weight because of the particularly high risk of complications. Professor Adam Balen, an expert in reproductive medicine at Leeds Teaching Hospitals agreed, saying that there is no doubt that obesity has a powerful effect on fertility. Balen also recognised that the risk of complications such as miscarriage and maternal or fetal death are more readily associated with obesity.

Dr Maheshwari had expected IVF costs to be higher in overweight and obese women, but the study showed that treatment should not be declined based on weight alone and that age was a much more relevant factor. The British Fertility Society recommends that no one with a BMI over 35 should receive IVF treatment, and women with a BMI over 30 should delay treatment until they have lost weight. Professor Balen, author of the Society's guidelines, emphasised that these were put together on clinical grounds, not cost grounds.

 

SOURCES & REFERENCES
indianexpress.com | 22 December 2008
 
BBC News Online | 21 December 2008
 

RELATED ARTICLES FROM THE BIONEWS ARCHIVE

10 October 2011 - by Marianne Neary 
Being just slightly overweight can affect the chance of having a baby through IVF, according to a study at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.... [Read More]
22 August 2011 - by Dr Lux Fatimathas 
European researchers have shown a correlation between impaired embryo development and the fat levels of mother cows. Exposing eggs to high levels of saturated fatty acids affected the health of embryos produced by fertilising those eggs... [Read More]
28 June 2010 - by Dr Charlotte Maden 
Women using assisted reproductive technology (ART) to conceive have a higher rate of miscarriage if they are overweight, say a group of UK scientists.... [Read More]
30 November 2009 - by Nishat Hyder 
A central London fertility clinic is offering an IVF treatment package in return for patients signing up to a health and lifestyle improvement programme, which will require patients to stop smoking, drinking, and lose weight if necessary prior to commencing IVF treatment.... [Read More]
21 October 2009 - by Sarah Guy 
Women who are overweight or obese have lower chances of successful IVF treatment, according to researchers reporting at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) conference in Atlanta, US, this week. The researchers, from Michigan State University in the US, found that women who were defined as clinically obese were up to 35 per cent less likely to conceive and have a live baby, and twice as likely to have a stillbirth, than their lighter cou... [Read More]

17 November 2008 - by Dr Rebecca Robey 
Overweight women are at greater risk of miscarrying a genetically normal baby in the early stages of pregnancy than women who maintain a healthy weight, according to a new study by scientists at the Stanford University School of Medicine in California, US. The researchers, presenting at the... [Read More]

HAVE YOUR SAY
Be the first to have your say.

You need to Login or Register to add comments.

By posting a comment you agree to abide by the BioNews terms and conditions

 


 

- click here to enquire about using this story.

Printer Friendly Page

Published by the Progress Educational Trust
RISK ASSESSMENT:
BREAST CANCER, PREDICTION AND SCREENING
FREE public event in central London, 6.30pm on Thursday 8 May 2014 - find out more HERE

ANNIVERSARY APPEAL
Please donate HERE, so that the Progress Educational Trust can continue throughout 2014 (and beyond) while keeping BioNews FREE for you to read

The Progress Educational Trust was shortlisted for the Charity Times Awards 2011

Advertise your products and services HERE - click for further details

Good Fundraising Code

Become a Friend of PET HERE, and give the Progress Educational Trust a regular donation