A recent British study has found that children conceived by in vitro fertilization (IVF) have more health problems and spend more time as hospital patients than naturally conceived children.
The seven-year study, published in the June 21 issue of Human Reproduction, compared the hospital costs of IVF-conceived children with naturally conceived children.
The study found that, on average, a child conceived through IVF was in the hospital significantly more times than a naturally conceived child. During the seven-year period, 61 percent of IVF children were hospitalized versus 46 percent of naturally conceived children.
Dr. Marjo-Riitta Jarvelin, a lead researcher and professor at Imperial College London, told LifeSiteNews.com that the study showed certain disease groups, such as respiratory and inflammatory diseases, are more common among children born through IVF. Some neurological disorders are slightly more common among IVF-conceived children as well, she noted.
Jarvelin said researchers do not know the reasons for the increased amount of certain diseases among IVF children. However, most children born through IVF are healthy, she said.
"But we have to be more cautious and parents should be carefully informed that there might be some dangers that we might not know," she added.
Jarvelin said this study demonstrates the need to conduct more follow-up and long-term studies on children conceived through IVF.
The study included 303 IVF-conceived children and 567 naturally conceived children born between 1990 and 1995. The findings corroborate the findings of past studies, which have indicated that IVF-conceived children have a higher risk of deformity and health problems.