Growth of children conceived by IVF and ICSI up to 12 years of age

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Recent studies have given conflicting results regarding growth in children born following assisted reproductive treatments up to the age of 18 years. It has been suggested that children conceived via IVF may be taller than naturally conceived children and that this may due to subtle epigenetic alteration of imprinted genes as a result of the IVF process. A prospective match-controlled study was performed to investigate the growth of children born in the UK following standard IVF and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) up to the age of 12 years. The study assessed 143 IVF and 166 ICSI children with 173 matched naturally conceived controls. Primary end-points were height and weight at various time points: birth, 5 years, 7-9 years and 10-12 years. In addition, head circumference was assessed at birth. No significant differences were observed regarding head circumference, height and weight between the three groups at any of the time points. In conclusion, this preliminary study provides reassuring information regarding the growth of IVF and ICSI children up to 12 years. Further studies must continue to investigate the growth and other outcomes in assisted-conception children as they develop through puberty into early adulthood. © 2009, Reproductive Healthcare Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.




Basatemur, E., Shevlin, M., & Sutcliffe, A. (2010). Growth of children conceived by IVF and ICSI up to 12 years of age. Reproductive BioMedicine Online, 20(1), 144–149.

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