New IVF technique to reduce risk and cost of fertility treatment

Multiple pregnancies caused by IVF treatment could be dramatically reduced by a new technique, new research has found

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The new IVF method, which sees a single embryo rather than two implanted in the womb, is less painful, expensive and time consuming than conventional treatment – and has as good a chance of resulting in pregnancy.

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Currently, a woman undergoing conventional IVF treatment has a 1 in 4 chance of conceiving twins, as two embryos are placed in the womb to increase the chances of pregnancy, but the study found that there was just as much chance of success if only one embryo was implanted and lower doses of hormone injections were used.

The study, published in the Lancet, found that the new technique was 26 times less likely to result in multiple births – reducing the risks of miscarriage, premature delivery, stillbirth and caesarean section associated with multiple pregnancies – and was also a quarter less expensive.

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Currently, a woman under 38 undergoing IVF has a 25% chance of conceiving, and each cycle of treatment costs at least £3,000.

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