Saturday, September 05, 2015

Should you tell your obstetrician that you did IVF ?

IVF patients are very excited when they get pregnant , and once they've crossed eight weeks , they register with an obstetrician to get regular antenatal care . An IVF pregnancy is exactly like a natural pregnancy  - the only difference is that instead of it starting in the bedroom, we jump start it by providing a little bit of assistance in the IVF lab.

Once an embryo has implanted , it's just like any other pregnancy.  After all, it really doesn't matter whether the embryo spends five days in the fallopian tube , or five days in the test tube . Logically, this means IVF pregnancies should receive exactly the same routine antenatal care which every other pregnancy does. This is why it’s perfectly natural and normal to tell your OB that you had IVF treatment. After all, it’s not a good idea to hide anything from your doctor , is it ? He should know exactly what's happening , particularly given the fact that since you are pregnant after so many years of trying , and this is such a precious pregnancy .

However , in real life we find that just because it's an IVF pregnancy a lot of obstetricians automatically treat this as being a high risk pregnancy , and most of these patients end up with a cesarean section for absolutely no valid medical reason .

The poor patient is pushed into doing unnecessary interventions, in order to protect her “precious pregnancy”. Because of the VIP syndrome, a much higher proportion of IVF patients is subjected to a cervical stitch ; repeated ultrasound scans ; and hospitalization for “bed rest”.

Part of the problem is that many obstetricians do not have enough experience in dealing with IVF pregnancies , and they are very worried that if something goes wrong , the patient will never forgive them. Part of this is because of financial reasons , because it's much more profitable to do an intervention as compared to doing nothing. However, all this overtesting and overtreatment is bad advice , and a good obstetrician will treat an IVF pregnancy exactly the same way he treats any other pregnancy . This is why you may need to think carefully about whether to tell your obstetrician it's an IVF pregnancy or not. Ideally, he should be able to reassure you that you will be treated just like he treats every other pregnancy , because you're a healthy woman , who is very happy to be pregnant , and he will take the best possible care of you to make sure that you have a healthy baby.

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