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Chances and risks

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Pregnancy outside the womb:  

The fertilised eggs (embryos) can attach outside the womb. Even when the fertilised egg is placed in the womb, ectopic pregnancy can occur. Thanks to the frequent tests during fertility treatment, an ectopic pregnancy will be detected and treated at an early stage.  

The risk of miscarriage is related to the age of the woman. In younger women, the risk is 10-15%, whereas in women around 40 it is around 40%. This may be because the chromosomes in the fertilised egg or the development of the foetus are not normal. But in many cases, unfortunately, we do not find an explanation. The risk of miscarriage in fertility treatment (IVF) is slightly higher than in a natural pregnancy. 

What are the risks to the baby of fertility treatment?  

For pregnancies achieved naturally, the risk of malformations is between 2% and 7%. Studies show that this risk is neither higher nor lower in an IVF pregnancy compared to a natural pregnancy. Recent research suggests that fertility treatment with microinsemination (ICSI) carries a slightly increased risk of transmission of genetic defects from the parents to the child. In 3-5% of men with severely reduced sperm quality, this condition is sometimes caused by an inherited gene, so a child born through ICSI may inherit reduced sperm quality.   

A very small proportion (1-2%) of infertile men also carry an inherited gene for cystic fibrosis, which can also be passed on to the child through ICSI. We therefore recommend genetic counselling and possibly a genetic test before fertility treatment if there is very poor sperm quality or other known risks. In our clinics, we always look at your individual situation and advise you thoroughly on the diagnostic and treatment options to increase your chances of having a child. 

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