babyPhoto: IStock

Ben Gurion University researchers and doctors from Soroka Hospital have revealed that children of mothers who underwent fertility treatments and in particular those born from in-vitro fertilization (IVF) are in greater danger of contracting types of cancers and tumors found in children.

According to data collected by the American Cancer Society, the most common growths among children are leukaemia, brain and spinal tumors, neuroblastomas, lymphomas including Hodgkins and Non-Hodgkins lymphomas.

The research, published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology,involved the analysis of babies born between 1991-2014 in Soroka hospital and monitored this group until they reached the age of 18.

98% of the 242,187 babies which took part in the research were born from spontaneous pregnancies, 1.1% (2,603) were born after in-vitro fertilization and 1721 were born after ovulation induction.

During the surveillance period which lasted 10.6 years, 1498 cases of neoplasia (cancerous growths) were diagnosed. The highest rate of neoplasia was found among children born from IVF treatments (1.5/1000), less among those born from ovulation induction (1/1000) but both were more common than among children born from spontaneous pregnancies (0.59/1000)

The study concluded that there is a clear correlation between IVF children and neoplasia among children. Professor Tamar Weinstock, one of the authors of the study added that "due to the growing number of births from IVF treatments, it is important to monitor the children's health, and to conduct more population-based studies to corroborate these results."