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Overweight women 'just as likely to conceive through IVF

New research has shown no difference in conception rates between women of varying sizes.
Women who are overweight or obese are just as likely to become pregnant when undergoing IVF treatment as those who are a normal weight, according to a new study.

The study was conducted on 1,700 women who underwent their first cycle of IVF between 1997 and 2006, whereby 28 per cent were overweight, eight per cent were obese and five per cent were classed as heavily obese.

Although most primary care trusts limit IVF to women who are not obese, the study found no significant difference was identified between the groups in the numbers of women who became pregnant.

There was also no difference in the cost of treatment between the various groups, indicating that overweight women seeking IVF treatment should not be discriminated against because of their size.

Nevertheless, experts advise overweight women planning on undergoing IVF treatment to lose weight due to the risk of complications.

Dr Abha Maheshwari, clinical lecturer in reproductive medicine at the University of Aberdeen, who led the study, said that age was more of a significant factor.

He told the BBC: "It shows that age is a more important factor than weight.

"Everybody should be encouraged to lose weight, but treatment shouldn't be declined on weight alone."

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