In a nutshell
This study investigated if cardiovascular function (CVF) is altered by in vitro fertilization (IVF).
They found that IVF may cause short-term changes to CVF in women.
In vitro fertilization (IVF) is used to treat infertility. The first step of IVF involves harvesting eggs. Women inject hormones to stimulate the release of eggs. This is called controlled ovarian stimulation (COS). There are two different COS protocols. One involves drugs that activate certain hormones (agonist protocol, AP). An antagonist protocol (ATP) blocks other receptors. Both protocols lead to egg release. Hormones will also be taken to prepare the uterus before embryo transfer. IVF is associated with some complications. Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) is one condition. Cardiovascular (CV) complications have also been associated with IVF.
Some studies suggest that CV function (CVF) is affected by IVF. There could be an increased risk of stroke. Some of these studies were limited because some patients could be predisposed to CV complications. It remains unclear if CVF is affected by IVF.
Methods & findings
This study included 9 clinical reports of IVF. Both COS protocols were used in these studies. Maternal CVF was assessed. 5 studies measured heart rate (HR). 7 studies measured blood pressure (BP). The authors performed an analysis of the findings on CVF.
HR was significantly increased during COS. The average BP was significantly reduced. Other CVF changes were noted in studies with the AP-COS protocol.
The bottom line
The authors concluded that IVF may cause short-term changes to CVF in women.
The fine print
The changes in CVF were assessed during IVF. It is unclear if these changes persisted. Long-term studies are needed.
Published By :
European journal of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive biology
May 01, 2020