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Obesity has been linked to infertility and even pregnancy complications.
Therefore, women who are obese are advised to lose weight before they can start undergoing infertility treatment. In fact, some fertility clinics limit their IVF services to women who are below a particular BMI.
In many cases, fertility doctors do not give any explanation as to why weight loss before IVF is important. They just point to statistics showing that weight loss can positively affect live birth percentage.
But what exactly does research in this area show? Is there sufficient evidence to suggest that the success of IVF can improve with weight loss?
What Professionals Actually Say?
In 2015, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine gave a committee opinion on the relationship between obesity and fertility.
According to their report, there is a correlation between weight and factors such as egg quality, endometrial function, ovulation dysfunction, and maternal-fetal environment.
The report then recommended preconception weight loss through healthy ways, such as lifestyle modification, surgery, and even medical treatment. In a nutshell, the report talks of a low-weight body being necessary for successful conception and birth. However, the report points out that there is no evidence of any correlation between weight loss and IVF success.
What Research Says
Recent studies have discovered that weight does not significantly affect the success of IVF treatment. According to the research, there is no adequate evidence to prescribe preconception weight loss to obese women with unexplained infertility.
For instance, a 2016 study involving 577 obese women showed that women who underwent weight loss before IVF treatment did not have any notable advantage over those who didn't. In fact, the IVF success rate was higher among those who went straight to IVF without undergoing any lifestyle interventions to lose weight.
Another study involving a randomized sample of 379 obese women showed no significant statistical difference in IVF success between those who underwent a weight loss program and those who did not.
Therefore, although having a healthy weight is good for pregnancy and general health, there is no conclusive evidence to suggest that cutting weight will significantly improve the success of IVF.
Are You Ready for IVF?
Although some doctors continue to recommend weight loss programs before providing IVF treatment, studies have shown that there is no sufficient evidence to show that losing weight will significantly improve your chances of conceiving through IVF.
Of course, many factors can affect the success of IVF, and therefore, you need to talk to your doctor about what you need to do as you prepare for your IVF treatment, depending on your situation.
If you are looking for a dependable fertility clinic providing IVF treatment, Reproductive Fertility Center is available to answer your questions. Feel free to contact us today for more information on factors that can affect the success of IVF treatment.