Ovarian Stimulation, Intrauterine Insemination, Multiple Pregnancy and Major Congenital Malformations: A Systematic Review and Meta- Analysis- The ART_Rev Study

Author(s): Sonia Chaabane , Odile Sheehy , Patricia Monnier , William Fraser , François Bissonnette , Jaquetta M. Trasler , Flory T. Muanda , Takoua Boukhris , Fatiha Karam , Fabiano Santos , Lucie Blais , Anick Bérard .

Journal Name: Current Drug Safety

Volume 11 , Issue 3 , 2016

Become EABM
Become Reviewer

Abstract:

Introduction: Multiple pregnancies are a recognized adverse effect of assisted reproductive technologies; nevertheless, there is no consensus on the incremental risk associated with the ovarian stimulation (OS) used alone and intrauterine insemination (IUI). The relationship between OS and IUI and the risk of major congenital malformations (MCM) is unclear.

Objective: To summarise the literature and evaluate the risk of multiple pregnancy and MCM associated with OS used alone and IUI used with or without OS compared to natural conception (spontaneously conceived infants without any type of fertility treatments).

Methods: We carried out a systematic review to identify published papers between 1966 and 2014 in MEDLINE, EMBASE and the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials. We included observational studies and randomized clinical trials related to the risk of multiple pregnancies and MCM conceived following OS alone or IUI compared to natural conception (spontaneously conceived infants without any fertility treatments). The quality of the included studies was evaluated using The Cochrane Collaboration’s tool for assessing risk of bias for RCTs and the Newcastle–Ottawa Scale for observational studies.

Results: There were 63 studies included in this review. Our systematic review suggests that the use of any OS alone was associated with an increased risk of multiple pregnancy compared to natural conception (pooled RR 8.80, 95% CI 5.09- 15.20; p= 0.000; 9 studies). Similar increases in the risk of multiple pregnancies were observed following clomiphene citrate used without assisted reproductive technologies. Compared to natural conception, the use of IUI with or without OS was associated with an increased risk of multiple pregnancy (pooled RR 9.73, 95% CI 7.52 -12.60; p= 0.000; 6 studies). Compared to natural conception, the use of any OS alone was associated with an increased risk of any MCM (RR pooled 1.18, 95%CI 1.03-1.36; 11 studies), major musculoskeletal malformations (pooled RR 1.48, 95%CI 1.21-1.81; 7 studies), and malformations of the nervous system (pooled RR 1.73, 95%CI 1.15-2.61; 6 studies). Compared to natural conception, the use of IUI was associated with an increased risk of any MCM (pooled RR 1.23, 95%CI 1.10-1.37; 10 studies), major urogenital (pooled RR 1.52, 95%CI 1.04-2.22; 7 studies), and musculoskeletal malformations (pooled RR 1.54, 95%CI 1.20-1.98; 7 studies). The overall quality of the included studies was acceptable.

Conclusions: The increased risk of multiple pregnancy and certain types of MCM associated with the use of less invasive fertility treatments, such as OS and IUI, found in this review, highlights the importance of the practice framing. Heterogeneity in OS protocols, the combination with other fertility agents, the limited number of studies and the methodological quality differences reduce our ability to draw conclusions on specific treatment. More observational studies, assessing the risk of multiple pregnancy or MCM, as a primary outcome, using standardized methodologies, in larger and better clinically defined populations are needed.

Keywords: Ovarian stimulation, intrauterine insemination, clomiphene citrate, medically assisted reproduction, multiple pregnancy, major congenital malformations, meta-analysis.

Rights & PermissionsPrintExport Cite as

Article Details

VOLUME: 11
ISSUE: 3
Year: 2016
Page: [222 - 261]
Pages: 40
DOI: 10.2174/1574886311666160627094051
Price: $58

Article Metrics

PDF: 63
HTML: 4
EPUB: 1
PRC: 1