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Influence of race and ethnicity on in vitro fertilization outcomes: systematic review

Published:September 09, 2015DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ajog.2015.09.002

      Objective

      We conducted a systematic review to evaluate the influence of race and ethnicity on clinical pregnancy and live birth outcomes after in vitro fertilization (IVF).

      Study

      We searched PubMed, EMBASE, Web of Science, CINAHL, POPLINE, and Cochrane Central, and hand-searched relevant articles published through July 22, 2015.

      Study Appraisal and Synthesis Methods

      Two reviewers independently evaluated abstracts to identify studies that compared clinical pregnancy rates and live birth rates for ≥2 racial and/or ethnic groups after nondonor IVF cycles.

      Results

      Twenty-four studies were included. All 5 US registry-based studies showed that black, Hispanic, and Asian women had lower clinical pregnancy rates and/or live birth rates after IVF, compared with white women. Similarly, most clinic-specific studies reported significant disparities in these primary outcomes, potentially attributable to differences in infertility diagnosis, spontaneous abortion, and obesity. Studies varied with respect to definitions of race/ethnicity, inclusion of first cycles vs multiple cycles for individual women, and collected covariates. Most studies were limited by sample size, inadequate adjustment for confounding, selection bias, and extensive missing data.

      Conclusions

      Although current evidence points to race and ethnicity, especially black race, as strong predictors of poorer outcomes after IVF, the utility of results is constrained by the limitations described.

      Key words

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