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In-Vitro Fertilization Do Not Increase Risk of Breast Cancer, Study Shows

Jul 25, 2016 02:00 AM EDT
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In-vitro fertilization
A new study showed that women who underwent in-vitro fertilization has no inreased risk of developing breast cancer, compared to those women having other fertility treatments and the general population.
(Photo : Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images)

A recent study from the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam has confirmed that women who underwent in-vitro fertilization do not have increased risk in developing breast cancer.

In-vitro fertilization is a complex series of procedures used to treat fertility and genetic problems to aid women conceive a child. During the procedure, mature eggs (embryo) were taken out of the ovaries and fertilized by a sperm in a lab. The fertilized egg is then implanted in the uterus.

The study, published in the Journal of American Medical Association, found no increased risk of breast cancer among women who have in-vitro fertilization treatment compared to women who underwent other fertility treatments and the general population.

For the study, the researchers analyzed the data of 19,158 women who underwent in-vitro fertilization treatment from 1983 and 1995 (IVF group), in addition to 5950 women who started other fertility treatments between 1980 and 1995 (non-IVF group). Both the IVF and non-IVF group were came from 12 IVF clinics in the Netherlands. The median age of the IVF group by the completion of the study in December 2013 was 53.8 years, while the median age of the non-IVF group was 55.3 years.

After a follow-up of 21 years, the researchers recorded a total of 839 cases of invasive breast cancer and 109 cases of non-invasive breast cancer in both groups. The researchers noted that IVF treatment was not associated with increased risk of breast cancer compared to the non-IVF group. At the same time, the breast cancer risk of women in the IVF group is not significantly different from that in the general population.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 230,815 women and 2,109 men in the United States were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013, with a total of 41,324 attributed to the disease. CDC estimates an approximately 246,660 new cases of breast cancer in the country by the end of 2016.

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