IVF children health risks as they get older

In vitro fertilization has become a blessing for millions of childless parents. The IVF first
performed in 1978 has now become a sky-rocketing technology. Though miraculous
technology has helped tons of parents fulfill their dream of having a child, would-be-parents
have doubts regarding the credibility of the procedure. A common thought that hovers the
mind of couples is that babies conceived via IVF may have health risks and would face
various complications as they grow older. Medical practitioners from the best IVF hospital in India and around the globe, strictly think of it as a myth except in rare cases. This post
emphasizes IVF and whether it has any effects on the baby as they grow older.

What is IVF?
In vitro fertilization is a type of ART or artificial reproductive technology which involves
retrieval of an egg from the ovaries and fertilizing it with sperm in laboratory conditions. The
fertilized cell known as the embryo is transferred into a woman’s womb. The success rate of
IVF varies depending on a lot of factors such as the patient’s age, body condition, the clinic,
and much more. The average success rate in women under 35 is 41 to 43 percent. The success
rate falls by 13 to 17 percent above the age of 40 years.

Why consider IVF?
IVF helps people with fertility issues to conceive a baby via assisted technology. Common
infertility issues include
● reduced fertility in women above the age of 40
● blocked or damaged fallopian tubes
● reduced ovarian function
● endometriosis
● uterine fibroids
● Male infertility, including low sperm count or sperm shape abnormalities.
● unexplained infertility
What to expect?
The IVF comprises several steps such as ovarian stimulation, egg retrieval, sperm retrieval,
fertilization, and embryo transfer.
Ovarian induction

The first step of IVF is ovarian stimulation to produce multiple eggs instead of once a month.
The procedure cycle varies depending on whether the patient uses their egg or donor. The
procedure requires multiple eggs because some won’t fertilize or develop normally after
fertilization. The doctor will suggest different medications to stimulate the ovaries.
Retrieval of egg
Egg retrieval involves the collection of the egg from the ovary. The procedure is done in the
clinic around 34- 36 hours before ovulation. The doctor uses the transvaginal ultrasound
aspiration method to retrieve the eggs. The doctor inserts a probe into the vagina to analyze
the potential follicles. Then a needle, inserted into the probe through the vagina into the
follicles collects the egg. If the ovary is not accessible, the surgeon uses abdominal
ultrasound. The surgeon places the mature eggs in a medium and incubates them for further
usage.
Retrieval of sperm
The doctor retrieves sperm from the partner’s semen which he will offer through
masturbation. Testicular may also be used for the retrieval of sperm.
Fertilization
Fertilization involves the fusion of sperm and egg to produce an embryo in vitro. Fertilization
can be done using two methods:
● Conventional insemination: Involves mixing the healthy sperm and eggs in a vial
and keeping it overnight for incubation in a medium.
● Intracytoplasmic sperm injection: The healthy sperm is directly injected into a
mature egg in vitro.
Embryo transfer
Embryo transfer refers to the injection of the embryo into the uterus. Embryo transfer is done
two to five days after the retrieval of the egg. Under mild sedatives, the doctor will enter a
long and thin tube known as a catheter into the uterus via the vagina. A syringe with
suspended embryos in a fluid injects the embryos into your uterus via the catheter. The
success of the implant can be detected in 1 to 5 days of the transfer.
Long-term risk in babies
People have preconceived notions that babies via artificial methods fall into high-risk
categories as they involve artificial methods. There are cases where IVF babies are born
prematurely. The worst cases might cause neonatal death. The risk of congenital birth defects
and neurogenic disorders is high in children conceived via IVF. Therefore, there are chances
of autism and learning disability development in IVF conceived children.

According to a study conducted in 2012, the researchers discovered that children born via
IVF developed greater blood vessel rigidity at high altitudes. Following the study, a lot of
research was associated with intrauterine cardiac remodeling. People conceived via IVF also
seem to develop insulin resistance over time.
In a recent study, the researcher studies 54 children aged 16, conceived through in vitro
fertilization and compared them to children of 17. The blood vessels’ lipid and sensitivity
were normal compared to their weight and gestational period. However, the researchers found
that IVF induced premature vascular aging in healthy young adults without any
cardiovascular risk factor.
A study in Israel tried to make a deep and unique look at the young adults who were
conceived through IVF. The researcher analyzed every person’s medical and mental health
including cognitive ability. The study followed the candidates for a long period of 1983 to
1993, and 253 candidates within 16-20 were compared.
They compared several factors including blood pressure, diabetes, renal disease, obesity,
thyroid disorders, GI disorders, asthma, anxiety disorders, and also migraines. Based on the
factors, no adolescent showed negative results. It shows, IVF doesn’t cause major
complications in most people over time.
After the Israel study, such long studies became rare as it was tedious. However, with the
technology available now, the risk of complications is low in children born through IVF.
Bottom line
Parents with fertility issues can consider IVF without any doubt or confusion if they are a
perfect candidate.