Fertility Treatment Tied to Cerebral Palsy

A new study shows that children conceived through infertility treatment may have a higher risk of cerebral palsy.  This can be explained largely by their higher rates of multiple births and preterm delivery.

The study of nearly 590,000 children found that those conceived through assisted reproduction were about twice as likely to be diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy refers to a group of conditions, usually present at birth, that permanently impair movement, balance and posture.

According to Reuters:

“In the U.S. and Europe, it's estimated that two or three of every 1,000 babies are affected by the disorder ... The precise cause of cerebral palsy is unknown, but it is believed to involve a disruption in normal fetal brain development. Premature and low-birthweight infants are known to have a higher risk than full-term, normal-weight babies.”

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