Tuesday, May 31, 2005

IVF and Baby Blues

Moms of IVF-induced multiples often have the blues
Mon May 30,10:22 AM ET
Having twins or triplets following assisted reproductive therapy (ART) increases the risk of depression among new moms, study findings suggest.
Assisted reproductive technology has been the key contributing factor in the 49% increase in twin birth rates, and the 423% increase in higher order multiples in the U.S. over the past 30 years, Dr. Marcia A. Ellison and colleagues note in their paper, published in the May issue of Fertility and Sterility.
And while the medical risks associated with ART and multiple births have been well documented, there have been few studies looking at the psychosocial risk associated with ART that results in multiple birth children.
To investigate, Ellison's group surveyed 249 mothers whose children had been conceived by ART. The study population consisted of 128 mothers of single infants, 111 mothers of twins and 10 mothers of triplets.
The investigators found that each additional multiple birth child increased the odds of having difficulty meeting basic material needs more than 4-fold. Moreover, the risks of reduced quality of life and increased sense of social stigma, were both more than doubled.
A multiple birth, the authors say, may expose women to unwanted public speculations and intrusive questions about their fertility status and their children's conception status.
The likelihood of depression also increased significantly with each additional child.
The identification of these risks may be helpful to doctors when talking with women seeking fertility treatment, Ellison's group writes, "as patients may underestimate the difficulties involved in raising multiple birth children, or may understand the risks associated with triplets but be naive with respect to twins."
SOURCE: Fertility and Sterility May 2005.

Stacey's Comment;
With the amount of synthetic medication being administered in IVF and the lack of education for patients about how they can build their body back up, it doesn't surprise me that post natal depression would be common after IVF induced births in general. This article however points out that when there is a multiple birth, this makes for an increased risk factor for depression. Instead of simply being put on antidepressants for this situation it important to assess what the nutritional needs of the mother are after undergoing IVF and how this can predispose the mothers to depression. For example, a decrease in omega 3 essential fatty acids has been correlated with sadness and depression in many studies. Could it be that between the stress of IVF, the stress of being a new parent or adding multiples to the family, or the stress of what the articles point out as "intrusive" comments or questions from others impede the absorption of nutrients, absolutely. So make sure you are eating a proper diet and supplementing appropriately (since most of society is depleted of omega 3 essential fatty acids) before you become pregnant, keep it up through your pregnancy and after to help you cope with the increased stress that occurs inevitably after birth.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

New Research re implantation, fish oil may assist secondary to prostaglandins present read article

Scientists find molecule linked to infertility

Last Updated: 2005-05-04 15:20:40 -0400 (Reuters Health)

LONDON (Reuters) - An infertility molecule found in mice may help to improve the success rate of millions of women who have fertility treatments each year, an international team of scientists said on Wednesday.

As many as one in six couples may have an infertility problem. Although the causes are varied, the failure of an embryo to implant in the woman's womb is thought to be an important cause of unexplained infertility.

But scientists in the United States and Japan have identified a receptor molecule called LPA in mice that is linked to implantation and which could lead to new treatments for infertile couples.

"This is a receptor that wasn't on anyone's radar screen from a fertility standpoint," said Jerold Chun, of The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California.

If the molecule works the same way in humans, it could be a new target for treatments to improve implantation rates in women having fertility treatment.

Most couples having treatment are able to produce embryos thanks to advances in technology and an improved understanding of human reproduction. But only about 20 percent of them successfully implant in the womb. Chun and colleagues at the University of Tokyo in Japan and other U.S. centres who worked on the research said the LPA receptor has "a clear effect on the ability of embryos to implant and position normally."

In research reported in the science journal Nature, the scientists genetically engineered mice that lacked the LPA molecules, which normally appear on the surface of cells in the animal's womb.

The mice were able to produce normal, healthy embryos but they would not implant and grow in the womb. The loss of the LPA receptors also affected the rodents' level of prostaglandin, a fatty acid essential for normal implantation.

"Low implantation rates are common in women undergoing assisted reproduction, posing a challenge to both patients and doctors, so researchers are striving towards a deeper understanding of this process," said S.K. Dey, of Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee, in a commentary.

A healthy couple in their mid-20s having regular sex has about a one-in-four chance of conceiving in a given month. Infertility is defined as the inability to achieve a pregnancy after a year of trying.

SOURCE: Nature May 4, 2005.
Stacey's comment:
This is excellent that they are beginning to indentify the possible cause of the poor implantation rates in assisted procedures. And based on the information in this article couples dealing with infertilty secondary to difficulty with implantation have a healthy supplement to turn to:
In reference to the title of this post, fish oil contains essential omega 3 essential fatty acids that contribute to prostaglandins in our system. This article shows that prostaglandins as well as the LPA discussed above may contribute to implantation. This could explain why fish oil is so good to utilise before pregnancy and there are many positive effects such as decreased chance of having high blood pressure during pregnancy, decreased chance of Post Natal depression, decreased chance of the child developing asthma or ADD/ADHD and an increase in the intelligence of the child whose mother supplements with fish oil during pregnancy. Be careful to make sure this fish oil is pure and all the impurities such as mercury are removed. Most over the counter fish oil cannot guarantee this but the fish oil that we sell at Sharkeys Healing centre can and is available in 11 different countries. You can email us at info@sharkeyshealingcentre.com.au to ask us how you can obtain our fish oil to improve your health and fertility.