Up to 6 IVF Cycles Equal Better Opportunity for Baby
Do more IVF cycles mean a better chance for a baby? A new study says “yes.”
A new study was published in the Journal of the USA Medical Association finds couples have a better opportunity of conceiving a child with more than the typical 3 or 4 in vitro fertilization cycles. In fact, it can take up to 6 to achieve success.
To reach their end, researchers looked at more than 157,000 ladies with an average age of thirty-five who had tried to get pregnant for about 4 years. Almost 30% had a kid after a first IVF cycle; 32% of those women under forty had a child.
Couples had a child at about a 20% success rate through 4 cycles, but by the 6th cycle, the success rate jumped to 68%! Women over forty had a kid 31.5% of the time by the 6th cycle. By age forty-two, however, the rate was just 4% even after 6 cycles.
it is worth mentioning the success rates weren’t impacted by the use of donor eggs. Also, very importantly, researchers had found the number of eggs retrieved after ovarian stimulation in one cycle didn’t seem to influence the live birth success rate from later cycles.
Explains lead researcher Debbie Lawlor from the University of Bristol, “Its also not true that if there’s a small egg yield in 1 treatment cycle it’s not worth continuing with more treatments.” She adds, “IVF would be thought of as a relatively long-term treatment, with repeat treatment cycles if success isn’t immediate.”
Lawlor admits, “This can take on average 2 years. Not all couples will want this repeated treatment, and some health care systems, insurance companies, and also individuals cannot be able to afford it. But we believe couples should know what the possibilities are!”
Given the expense of IVF, only about 5% of couples in the U.S. who are experiencing infertility seek it out according to WebMD. Average cycle costs between 12,000 dolors and 15,000 dollars and many insurance plans don’t cover it.
But this study makes it seem that if you have good enough money, and the sky’s the limit when it comes to how many cycles you can undergo. Just keep trying until you get pregnant, right? But ladies would know multiple IVF cycles carry risks, from premature delivery and low birth weight to ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, where the ovaries become swollen and painful due to the hormone injections needed to stimulate egg production, to an increased risk of miscarriage, and ovarian cancer. And the older you are, the less likely it is IVF will be successful.
The right number of IVF cycles to try, and at what intervals, is a conversation to have with a fertility expert.