Archive for the ‘Ethical Issues’ Category

Future Therapies: Eggs from stem cells

October 5, 2012Carole 7 Comments »

Many years ago, I had a conversation with a patient that stuck with me. One of our IVF patients wistfully asked me, “Can’t you just knock two eggs together to make a baby?” She was in a lesbian relationship and like most people in love, wanted to share a genetic link with her partner via […]

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Future Therapies: Uterus Transplant

September 21, 2012Carole 1 Comment »

There’s been a lot of “firsts” in reproductive technology recently and I will cover another one of them today.  Last weekend, at Sweden’s University of Gothenburg, two moms donated their uteri to their daughters in uterine transplant procedures. In each case, the hope is that by surgically transplanting the mother’s uterus into her daughter, the […]

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Genetic Testing: Do you really want to know your genome?

September 19, 2012Carole 1 Comment »

If you could know the DNA sequence of your entire genome- the instructions that make you who you are–would you want to know it? What if knowing that sequence could help your doctor identify drugs that will work best for you and avoid drugs that are unlikely to work or cause severe side effects for […]

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Ethics Question: What age is old enough to donate gametes?

July 13, 2012Carole 15 Comments »

Craig Sweet, MD, a reproductive endocrinologist, recently published a thought provoking article which argues for reducing the minimum recommended age for egg donation from 21 (as ASRM Guidelines recommend) to 18. You can read his entire piece here. He argues persuasively that women of 18 years (and younger) are able to make decisions about their […]

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Can ovarian stem cell technology replenish ovarian reserve?

July 3, 2012Carole 17 Comments »

The short answer to the title question is, that Yes!, we are getting considerably closer to achieving therapeutic applications of stem cell technology to replenish ovarian reserve. Dr. Jonathan Tilly and his colleague Dr. Dori Woods recently summarized the dramatic advances in ovarian stem cell technology in their paper “The next  (re) generation of ovarian […]

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Future Therapies?: Endometrial reconstruction from stem cells.

July 2, 2012Carole 5 Comments »

In my last Q from U post, I answered a patient’s question about how significant a factor “thin” endometrium was in hindering embryo implantation. As a rule of thumb, the endometrium must regenerate after menses to at least 7mm thickness (in excess of 9 mm is preferred) in order to provide an optimal implantation site […]

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Are IVF patients research guinea pigs?

May 23, 2012Carole No Comments »

Just the other day, the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail published  the article, Expert warns of IVF timebomb, ” Lord Winston, head of fertility services at Hammersmith Hospital and a professor at Imperial College, London, was speaking at the prestigious British Association Festival of Science in Salford, the year’s biggest gathering of UK scientists. He said […]

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Meta-analysis: Increased Risk for Birth Defects from IVF/ICSI vs Spontaneous Conception

April 23, 2012Carole 2 Comments »

The on-line version of Fertility and Sterility published a review of 56 previous studies; “Birth defects in children Conceived by in vitro fertilization and intracytoplasmic sperm injection: a meta-analysis”on April 3, 2012, epub ahead of print. This study found an increased relative risk (RR) of congenital birth defects reported in children conceived with either IVF […]

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Superpower wishful thinking or there oughta be a law….

April 18, 2012Carole 2 Comments »

Maybe it’s just the 24/7 political news cycle in an election year making me cranky, but the current drive to repeal women’s rights on various issues and reproductive rights specifically makes me want more protective regulation for infertility patients, not less. The US Healthcare system is one of the most contentious areas of debate in […]

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Q from U: When the IVF cycle fails; follow-up questions

April 13, 2012Carole 2 Comments »

Today I had this  question from a patient,  “How much info should you expect to get in terms of follow-up from your RE and lab after a failed cycle?”  She was expressing her frustration that all the follow-up she had was that they would try ICSI next time because she had zero percent fertilization in […]

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