Thankful Parents
17092019

Does female weekly alcohol intake and binge drinking impact the chance of a successful fertility treatment?

Low-to-moderate weekly alcohol drinking and binge drinking were not associated with the chance of achieving a clinical pregnancy or a live birth among women and couples undergoing medically assisted reproduction (MAR) treatments, a recent study published in ESHRE’s Human Reproduction magazine concluded.

The study involved 1708 women and potential partners undergoing fertility treatment at the public fertility clinic, Aarhus University Hospital, 1 January 2010 to 31 August 2015. Exposure to weekly average alcohol intake was assessed from questionnaires completed by participants before the start of treatment. Outcome measures are the achievement of a clinical pregnancy and live birth in consecutive treatment cycles in the Danish national health registries, enabling complete follow-up.

Results indicated that low-to-moderate average weekly alcohol intake was not statistically significantly associated with the chance of achieving a clinical pregnancy or a live birth following IUI or IVF/ICSI treatment cycles. Compared to women abstaining from alcohol, the adjusted relative risks for achieving a live birth among those reporting 1–2, 3–7, and >7 drinks per week were 1.00, 1.20 and 1.48, respectively, among women initiating IUI treatments. Among those initiating IVF/ICSI treatments, the chance for achieving a live birth among those reporting 1–2, 3–7, and >7 drinks per week were 1.00, 0.95 and 0.89 respectively. The chance of achieving a live birth in the first IUI or IVF/ICSI treatment cycle was unrelated to the number of binge drinking episodes in the month preceding baseline.

However, due to the low number of women reporting an intake of >7 drinks/week, the potential effect of high alcohol consumption should be interpreted with caution. Although it remains unsettled if and how alcohol affects female reproduction, the results indicate that is not necessary to abstain from alcohol when striving for a successful outcome following fertility treatment.

Read the full abstract here



a