For IVF success, think twice before toasting the New Year

wine glass

While most people can probably guess that alcohol could have a negative effect on fertility, a study from Harvard Medical School shows that drinking too much could have even more far-reaching effects, significantly reducing chances of becoming pregnant through IVF. Furthermore, the effects are on women and men individually. Consuming more than four drinks per week can reduce the chance of conception by 18% for women and 14% for men, the study found. In couples where both the man and woman regularly drink alcohol, chances of conception can be reduced by 26%.

For women, white wine will cause the most damage to IVF chances while for men, it’s beer. As few as four beers a week will reduce the man’s chance of creating an embryo in the laboratory.

More than 2500 couples attempting to have a baby through IVF were studied. They were asked how often they drank alcohol and what types of alcohol they drank most frequently. Researchers compared survey results from those couples to ones who did not drink alcohol at all. The Boston based researchers concluded the increased alcohol consumption in both men and women strongly decreased the likelihood of a woman’s egg being successfully fertilized via IVF.

Alcohol consumption, even in relatively small amounts, is another factor that is increasingly being recognized as having a significant negative effect on fertility levels. Mohamed Menabawey, Medical Director at a London-based IVF clinic said, “There are other factors to take into account as well, weight and diet being just two, but our advice to women of all ages is that drinking at any level is unlikely to be compatible with IVF success.”

Source: SkyNews, The Independent


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