Adolescents conceived using assisted reproductive technologies (ART) like in vitro fertilization (IVF) are at increased risk for cardiovascular problems, including high blood pressure, according to a small Swiss study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. More than six million people worldwide were conceived through ART, and each year, about 1.7 percent of births in the United States are achieved through assisted reproductive technology.
For this study, the researchers evaluated the heart and circulatory system in 54 healthy teens who were conceived through assisted reproduction. They measured blood pressure at regular intervals using an ambulatory blood pressure device, and evaluated arterial plaque build-up and stiffness, as well as blood vessel function. They then compared the results to 43 age- and gender-matched people conceived naturally who had similar body mass index (BMI), birth weight, gestational age profiles, and similar maternal BMI, smoking status, and cardiovascular risk profiles.
According to the researchers, adolescents conceived through ART had higher systolic (top number) and diastolic (bottom number) blood pressure readings than the controls — 119/71 mmHg versus 115/69. Eight of the ART teens met the criteria for high blood pressure (over 130/80 mmHg) while only one of the controls had hypertension.
Sourced from: Journal of the American College of Cardiology