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Embryo testing may reduce IVF miscarriages

For women 35 years of age or older who have had recurrent miscarriages, in vitro fertilization followed by genetic testing of embryos before they’re implanted reduces the risk of pregnancy loss, according to a new study.
/ Source: Reuters

For women 35 years of age or older who have had recurrent miscarriages, in vitro fertilization followed by genetic testing of embryos before they’re implanted reduces the risk of pregnancy loss, according to a new study.

Most early pregnancy losses show chromosomal abnormalities, so transfer of only embryos with normal chromosomes should reduce the chances of miscarriage.

Dr. Santiago Munne from Reprogenetics, LLC, in Hoboken, N.J., and associates studied the benefits of preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), as the strategy is called, in 58 women who had had several previous miscarriages. Thirty-seven of the women were 35 years or older.

The observed loss rate after PGD was 17 percent, the investigators report in the medical journal Fertility and Sterility, compared with an expected loss rate of 36 percent.

In the older age group, the loss rate was 12 percent, compared with 44 percent expected, the researchers note. For women younger than 35 years, PGD didn’t affect the miscarriage rate significantly.

“Our findings indicate that PGD can be recommended to recurrent miscarriage patients who are 35 years and older and show no clear (cause) of recurrent miscarriage,” the authors conclude.

The add that clinical trials are “desirable” to show that “liveborn rates are increased, and to identify the subset of patients most likely to benefit from PGD.”