Friday February 28, 2020

One million babies born in US using in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) and other assisted reproductive technologies: Report

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A baby (representational image), wikimedia

Washington, May 1, 2017: At least one million babies have been born in the US using in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) and other assisted reproductive technologies, a report has said.

The latest report was released this week by the US Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART), which started to collect data on assisted reproductive technologies (ART) in 1985, Xinhua news agency reported.

For 2015, SART’s 371 clinics, which represent more than 90 per cent of the infertility clinics in the US, reported that they performed 213,004 treatment cycles, resulting in the birth of 67,818 babies. Positive trends in treatment and outcomes continued in 2015, with 34.5 per cent of procedures transferring a single embryo, compared to 27.2 per cent in 2014, the report said.

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“Fewer embryos transferred leads to lower incidence of multiple birth: 80.5 per cent of babies born from 2015 cycles were singletons, 19.1 per cent twins and fewer than one-half of one per cent were triplets (or higher order),” the report said.

With improvements in egg cryo-preservation techniques, the use of frozen donor eggs has also increased. At least 2,886 recipient cycle started using frozen donor eggs in 2014, and this number rose to 3,215 in 2015.

IVF was introduced in the US in 1981, and according to SART, about one in every 100 babies born in the country was conceived using IVF and related treatments. The world’s first IVF baby, Louise Brown, was born in Britain in 1978. (IANS)

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Applying Moisturisers on Babies Cannot Prevent Eczema

Using daily moisturisers cannot prevent eczema in newborn babies or infants

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Babies skin
Using daily moisturisers on newborn babies cannot prevent eczema as previously thought. (Representational Image). Pixabay

Researchers have found that using daily moisturisers on newborn babies cannot prevent eczema as previously thought according to health news.

Eczema is a very common skin problem affecting around one in five children in the UK. It usually starts in infancy, and a generally dry skin is often one of the first symptoms in babies who go on to develop the condition.

“Much progress has been made in recent years on the treatment of severe eczema, but the goal of preventing eczema from developing in the first place remains elusive,” said study lead author Hywel Williams from University of Nottingham in the UK.

Some healthcare workers recommend that parents regularly use moisturisers to prevent eczema in newborn babies.

According to the researchers, it is thought that a faulty skin barrier could be the first step in the development of eczema. Moisturisers improve skin barrier function by providing a covering to the outermost layer of skin and trapping in water.

Babies skin
Some healthcare workers recommend that parents regularly use moisturisers to prevent eczema in newborn babies. (Representational Image). Pixabay

The aim of the Barrier Enhancement for Eczema Prevention (BEEP) study was to determine whether such advice had any impact on preventing the development of eczema. For the findings, published in the journal The Lancet, the research team looked at 1394 newborn babies who were born to families with eczema, asthma or hayfever.

The babies were randomly split into two groups. One group was advised to apply moisturiser all over their babies every day until their first birthday. The other group was asked not to use moisturiser. Both the groups were given general skin care guidance.

The study found no evidence that the daily use of moisturiser during the first year of life could prevent eczema in the studied children. There was however, a small increase in the risk of skin infections. The results also showed early indications that daily use of these creams may increase the risk of food allergy.

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“Whilst this is disappointing for sufferers who thought that was an option for their children, we can now recommend that this advice is not given to parents and begin looking at what other possible preventative options there may be,” Williams said.

“It is important not to confuse our study on moisturisers for eczema prevention with the use of moisturisers for people who have eczema, where the evidence of benefit is much greater,” Williams added. (IANS)