What are the complications associated with IVF?
IVF does not pose many risks and there are few side effects associated with in vitro fertilization. All patients considering IVF to overcome fertility problems should consult a fertility specialist to discuss any possible complications which may arise from IVF.
Multiple pregnancy is always a risk associated with IVF, however most IVF clinics attempt to decrease this risk by transferring no more than three embryos during one cycle. Combining IVF with ICSI decreases the risk of multiple pregnancy.
Another rare complication associated with IVF is ectopic pregnancy, also known as “tubal pregnancy”, which refers to a complication in which the fertilized ovum is implanted in any other tissue besides the uterine wall. Ectopic pregnancy usually occur in the Fallopian tube, hence the name “tubal pregnancy,” but implantation can also occur in the cervix, ovaries and abdomen.
Like all normal pregnancies, the risk of birth defects are also to be factored in. The chances of having a child with a birth defect are higher in women who are over 40.
A rare side effect from the use of fertility drugs to stimulate the ovaries is Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS). OHSS can cause abdominal cramps and in severe cases, the leaking of fluid into the abdomen and lungs.
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