Houston Fertility Center

IVF Works for Hispanic Women, Too

By Sonja Kristiansen, MD on June 23, 2011

Many of my patients may be relieved to hear this piece of research news from a colleague in San Antonio: Hispanic women are just as successful with IVF as are non-Hispanic anglo women.

There's no particular reason to believe otherwise, but a previous nationwide study that compared IVF success rates among women of multiple ethnicities showed that Hispanics were 13 percent less likely to have a baby following the procedure. They were, however, just as likely to get pregnant via IVF as anglo women.

The newer study is smaller and included only patients at one clinic. Also, nearly all the Hispanic study subjects were Mexican-American, unlike the larger, national study. It also showed that while getting pregnant is comparable in terms of percentages, Hispanic women were more likely to miscarry, although the researcher, Dr. Robert Brzyski, says that's likely a chance occurrence.

Of particular interest is the clear difference in cause of infertility between whites and Hispanics. White women had more endometriosis and Hispanic women were more often diagnosed with tubal factor infertility.

Tubal blockages and resulting infertility were the original reason for IVF being invented. As long as other factors aren't impacting a woman's chances for pregnancy success, using IVF to work around tubal factor infertility is very effective.

Like Dr. Brzyski's practice, Houston Fertility Center is in the middle of a richly diverse metropolitan area. With Spanish-speaking staff and educational efforts within the Hispanic community, we provide every opportunity possible to bring home the message to women that infertility is treatable. I'm happy to be able to add this piece of good news to our message.

~Sonja Kristiansen, M.D.

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