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09-01-2011 | Gynaecology | Article

IVF feasible after bariatric surgery


Journal abstract

MedWire News: Women who have undergone bariatric surgery are able to benefit from IVF without experiencing complications, suggest US case study findings.

"Our experience with five patients suggests that IVF is a safe and effective fertility treatment for these women, although special considerations should be made when treating patients who have undergone bariatric surgery," say Emily Jungheim (Washington University, St Louis, Missouri) and co-researchers.

Jungheim and team performed IVF in five women with a history of infertility aged 29-37 years who underwent gastric bypass 1-5 years before commencing treatment.

Four of the five women went on to have term deliveries without complications attributable to prior bariatric surgery during pregnancy or labor. Furthermore, three of the women managed to conceive within the first IVF cycle.

The patient who was unable to deliver to term experienced a mild case of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS). The researchers say that this population of women should therefore be closely monitored, and that physicians should "have a high index of suspicion for internal herniation in gastric bypass patients with OHSS, because of the possible difficulty in distinguishing between the two conditions and the morbidity associated with internal hernias."

They conclude: "Women and their care team should be aware of issues such as complications of IVF and gastric bypass surgery, the importance of delaying pregnancy after bariatric surgery, and the special nutritional requirements of bariatric surgery patients."

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2011

By Ingrid Grasmo