Human Exceptionalism

IVF With Donated Eggs Can be Deadly

A new study reports that women who use donated eggs in IVF have a greater likelihood of dying. From the Daily Mail story:

Women who have IVF babies using donor eggs could be much more at risk for a common but potentially dangerous complication of pregnancy, warn researchers. A new study shows a threefold higher risk of hypertension – high blood pressure – and an even higher risk of pre-eclampsia.

Pre-eclampsia is a severe disorder of high blood pressure in pregnancy that is potentially fatal for the mother and baby and the only cure is to deliver the baby surgically. The use of donor eggs in IVF (in vitro fertilisation) is increasingly common among older women trying for a baby who have no eggs of their own.

The numbers are pretty startling:

But French researchers say the pregnancies of egg donation patients are at a higher risk of disorders caused by high blood pressure, than the pregnancies of IVF patients using their own eggs. They found almost one in five pregnant women using a donated egg developed hypertension, compared with one in 20 women using their own eggs during IVF.

Altogether 11 per cent of women using donor eggs suffered pre-eclampsia, compared with less than three per cent of women using their own eggs.

These risks don’t even count the hazard faced by egg donors, which can include infertility, infection, perhaps cancer, and death.

We have rushed into IVF and surrogacy with few regulations and a lot of profit-making. Some are paying devastating consequences.

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