Published: 2018-03-27

Preterm birth among pregnancies conceived by assisted reproduction techniques in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Anushree D. Patil, Sanjay L. Chauhan, Achhelal R. Pasi, Rahul K. Gajbhiye, Shalini Singh, Charu Sud, Rana Khan, Jatin S. Shah, Duru S. Shah, Ameet S. Patki, Nitin M. Narvekar, Sanjeev S. Khot


Background: Preterm births are an enormous global problem on families, medical system and economy. The rates of preterm birth are increasing and one of the contributors is growing use of Assisted Reproduction Techniques (ART) leading to multifetal gestations. Some risk factors for preterm birth are specific to women who conceive by ART. Since there is limited data from India, this pilot study was undertaken to assess the magnitude of preterm birth among pregnancies conceived by ART and to study the contributing factors.

Methods: Clinic based descriptive cohort study through eight ART clinics in Mumbai for one year. Data was collected using an in-depth questionnaire on socio-demographic characteristics, medical history, ART details, course and complications during pregnancy, mode of delivery, pregnancy outcome, risk factors related to preterm birth and neonatal outcome. Complete details of 113 participants who completed the study were analyzed.

Results: Study showed high incidence of preterm birth (76.23%) among women conceived with ART. Multiple gestations were observed in 45.1%. Pregnancy related complications like heterotrophic pregnancy (3%), pre eclampsia (15%) and gestational diabetes (11%) were high. Incidence of caesarean section was very high (98%). Neonatal outcome was good with 98% live births and only 2 still births.

Conclusions: Present study highlights that preterm birth, multiple pregnancies, pregnancy related complications like preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and caesarean sections are very high among women conceived by ART. With growing use of ART there is an urgent need to develop a National ART Surveillance system in India like the one in Centre for Disease Control Atlanta to get complete data on the pregnancy course and outcomes of ART conceptions. Efforts to limit the number of embryos transferred should be strengthened to prevent multiple births.


Assisted reproduction techniques, ART, Preterm birth

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