Are in vitro fertilization children healthy?

In vitro fertilization treatment is an important treatment method for couples who have infertility problems and want to have children. However, some couples may have some concerns about whether their in vitro fertilization child is healthy or not. It is possible to say that in vitro fertilization children are as healthy as children born as a result of natural pregnancy. However, factors such as the age of the parents and health problems that cause infertility can affect the health of the baby in in vitro fertilization pregnancy, as in natural pregnancy. Therefore, regular doctor checks during and after pregnancy are very important.

Nowadays, many couples experiencing infertility problems resort to in vitro fertilization treatment. Although in vitro fertilization is a frequently used treatment, there may be a prejudice that babies born as a result of in vitro fertilization are different from babies born as a result of natural pregnancy. Therefore, it is important to understand exactly how in vitro fertilization treatment occurs.

In vitro fertilization is a treatment that helps couples with infertility problems to have a baby. The only difference between natural pregnancy and in vitro fertilization pregnancy is that in in vitro fertilization, eggs are removed from the woman’s ovaries, eggs and sperm are brought together, and after fertilization, the embryo or embryos are transferred to the uterus.

In natural pregnancy, the egg is fertilized by sperm accumulated in the vagina. The fertilized egg then divides, allowing the embryo to form in the fallopian tube. The resulting embryo then returns to the uterus to implant.

During the first two weeks of in vitro fertilization treatment, it is important to monitor the expectant mother’s response to the medications she uses. During this process, regular doctor appointments must be made. After the eggs are collected and the suitable embryos are transferred, approximately two weeks should be waited. Once it becomes clear that pregnancy has occurred at the end of two weeks, the remaining process will proceed as in a natural pregnancy. 

Women who become pregnant through in vitro fertilization should relax and enjoy pregnancy as much as possible after overcoming the difficulties of treatment. It is important for pregnant women to pay attention to both their physical and mental health during this period, to maintain their healthy habits and to attend doctor visits regularly in order for the pregnancy to go smoothly.

Children born as a result of in vitro fertilization treatment are generally healthy and do not encounter any health problems due to the treatment in the short or long term. However, it should not be forgotten that single-born babies have more positive outcomes than twin or triplet babies.

Factors that can affect the health of children born as a result of in vitro fertilization are generally as follows:

Multiple pregnancy

Multiple pregnancy is more common in in vitro fertilization. Multiple pregnancies are riskier for both the mother and the babies than single pregnancies. The biggest risk of multiple pregnancy is premature birth. Other risks may include problems such as bleeding during pregnancy, high blood pressure or preeclampsia.

Babies born as a result of multiple pregnancies have a higher risk of health problems due to the higher risk of premature birth. It can be said that the risk is especially higher in triplet or quadruplet pregnancies compared to singleton or twin pregnancies.

It is possible to reduce the risk of multiple pregnancy in in vitro fertilization with a single embryo transfer. In the treatment, after the ovaries are collected and embryo formation occurs, one of the healthy embryos obtained is transferred while the rest can be frozen and stored. If the first transfer is not successful, previously frozen embryos can be thawed and transferred. In this way, the risk of multiple pregnancy can be greatly reduced.

Early birth

The risk of premature birth is a complication that depends on various factors, regardless of whether pregnancy is achieved through in vitro fertilization or naturally. Place of residence, number of babies carried during pregnancy, general health and socioeconomic factors; It may increase or decrease the risk of premature birth.

However, the risk of premature birth may be slightly higher in in vitro fertilization. The reason for this is generally thought to be due to multiple pregnancy. Carrying two or more babies in both natural pregnancies and in vitro fertilization pregnancies increases the risk of premature birth.

Transferring two or more embryos in in vitro fertilization may lead to an increased risk of multiple pregnancy and therefore premature birth. This risk can be reduced with a single embryo transfer.

birth defects

When comparing in vitro fertilization children with children born as a result of natural pregnancy, it can be said that the risk of birth defects is slightly higher in in vitro fertilization babies. Although most of these defects are minor, serious birth defects occur in the early stages of fetal development and are often detected during ultrasound checks.

It is thought that the slightly higher risk of birth defects in in vitro fertilization compared to natural pregnancy may be related to factors such as age or infertility rather than the formation of embryos in a laboratory environment. If the reason for difficulty in getting pregnant is due to a genetic or chromosomal disorder, the same disorder may be seen in the baby.

For example, some men with serious defects in sperm production and low sperm count are missing parts of the Y chromosome, where the genes responsible for sperm production are located. Men with Y chromosome microdeletions, that is, deficiencies in the Y chromosome, can become fathers with the help of microinjection, but their sons may also have the same genetic problem. To prevent such problems, chromosome testing can be performed and genetic counseling can be sought when necessary.

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