Kids conceived through IVF are said to be academically bright

Kids conceived through IVF are said to be academically bright

According to a new study, children conceived through in vitro fertilisation (IVF) outperform their age- and gender-matched classmates on academic assessments.

Our findings reassure clinicians and patients by indicating that being conceived through IVF has no negative impact on a child's IQ or cognitive development.

Van Voorhis compared the academic achievement of 423 Iowa children, ages 8 to 17, who were conceived through IVF at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics to 372 age- and gender-matched peers from the same Iowa schools.

Researchers also looked into whether different qualities of the children, parents or IVF methods had an impact on the test results of the offspring.

The study discovered that children conceived through IVF outperformed their peers on standardised tests and that a number of factors were associated with higher test scores, including the mother's age, both parents' educational levels, and reduced divorce rates.

Importantly, the study found that varied IVF processes, such as using fresh vs frozen embryos, and different insemination methods had no effect on the test scores of offspring.

Although the study was unable to fully explain why IVF-conceived children outperformed their contemporaries, Van Voorhis speculates that IVF-conceived children's parents are older and have a greater degree of education than the general population.

We attempted to adjust for any socioeconomic or environmental differences between the children born through IVF and their peers by utilising age- and gender-matched children from the same classrooms as a control group to compare to our study participants.

However, we couldn't rule out the possibility that there were some differences between the IVF children and the controls that we couldn't find in our data.

The researchers discovered a potentially worrying tendency toward lower test scores for multiple births among infants delivered by IVF—single babies fared better than twins, who performed better than triplets.

However, this trend was not statistically significant, and the triplets still outperformed non-IVF children on average.

This tendency supports our belief that singleton births are healthier than multiple births, but further research is needed to determine whether this trend is real.

IVF is usually thought to be safe, but because the technology has only been around for 30 years, there is little information on the long-term health effects of children conceived this way. 

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