The first report of results of in vitro fertilisation in Europe shows big variations between countries, with France, Germany and the UK carrying out more than half of all IVF treatments.
This was one of the conclusions to come out of the report which researchers presented today (Tuesday) at the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology conference in Bologna, Italy.
Out of 200,000 treatment cycles carried out in 18 countries in 1997, over 100,000 were in France, Germany and UK, with the other 15 countries making up the rest.
However the availability of IVF treatment was highest in the Scandinavian countries and the Netherlands, with 1,500 treatments per million of the population occurring in Finland, compared with 580 for the UK and 330 for Portugal. IVF accounted for two per cent of all children born in the north.
Europe has been leading the way on IVF but until now has lacked a central reporting system which would enable doctors and others working in the field to compare data from different countries.
"More than 50 per cent of IVF treatment cycles world wide are carried out in Europe, yet until now we have had no IVF data collection programme. Our dominant position makes it even more important that we have a valid and comprehensive programme for Europe," Dr Karl Nygren told the ESHRE conference.
The ESHRE consortium of IVF researchers collected IVF data from 18 European countries, which were all running registers on their IVF results. This first report, prepared for the consortium by Dr Nygren, of the Sofia Hospital in Stockholm, Sweden, and Dr Anders Nyboe Andersen, of the Rikshospitalet in Copenhagen, Denmark, covers IVF treatments during 1997 with pregnancy follow-up through 1998.
More than 200,000 treatment cycles in 500 clinics resulted in an estimated 50,000 children being born. France and the UK had the greatest numbers of IVF births, with 8,700 in each country. However the "take hom
Contact: Margaret Willson