Increasing age not tied to medically assisted reproduction risks in women under 40

  • Barbuscia A & al.
  • Hum Reprod
  • 22 Jan 2020

  • curated by Elisabeth Aron, MD, MPH, FACOG
  • Clinical Essentials
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Takeaway

  • In women ≤40 years, infant-related risks associated with medically assisted reproduction (MAR) are not increased with higher maternal age.

Why this matters

  • More than 7% births in Denmark and Belgium are babies who were conceived with MAR.

Key results

  • The rate of children born after conception via MAR was 4.9%.
  • Among infants resulting from MAR compared with those conceived naturally, higher incidence of:
    • Low birth weight (LBW): 12.6% vs 3.4%; and
    • Preterm birth: 14.2% vs 4.9%.
  • Among women who conceived naturally, LBW and preterm birth risk grew with increasing maternal age:
    • For age ≥40 years, predicted probability of preterm birth was 1.61 (95% CI, 0.41-2.81).
  • In women who conceived with MAR, LBW and preterm risks did not increase with age up to age 40 years.
  • For age ≥40 years, the predicted probability of preterm birth was 2.02 (95% CI, −4.30 to 8.33).

Study design

  • Retrospective cohort study.
  • Cohort was obtained from the Finnish population register.
  • Children born between 1995 and 2000 were identified (n=54,623).
  • Children conceived through MAR were identified from the National Prescription Register (n=2624).
  • Outcomes of interest included LBW (
  • Funding: European Research Council.

Limitations

  • Study did not distinguish among types of MAR.