IVF death rare but real

serious face

Although rare, maternal death through IVF cannot and should not be ignored. The death of a woman during IVF is an indicator of the risk to older women, the risk of multiple birth and the aggravation or revelation of underlying disease. A research article discussing this little discussed topic is published on the British Medical Journal website.

Dr. Susan Bewley and her colleagues argue for greater reporting especially of adverse outcomes in IVF like ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. She states that it is important to examine these cases, study them and see what lessons or conclusions can be made from the occurrences.

A recent study in the Netherlands revealed that overall mortality in IVF pregnancies was higher than maternal mortality in the general population. In the last U Confidential Enquiry into Maternal Death revealed four deaths due to ovarian hyperstimulation and three deaths attributed to multiple birth. There are actually more deaths linked to IVF than to abortion. The rate may even be higher but because of confidentiality rules it's hard to know.

"More stringent attention to stimulation regimens, pre-conceptual care, and pregnancy management is needed so that maternal death and severe morbidity do not worsen further," the report concluded.

Source: BMJ, ScienceDaily


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