Fertility Treatments in the Age of COVID-19
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Infertility is deeply personal and affects 15% of the population. Many who struggle to conceive may never access care because of cost, inertia, or embarrassment associated with having difficulty conceiving. Those with infertility endure many anxieties, uncertainties, feelings of helplessness, and fears about the future -- and now, there's the COVID-19 pandemic on top of it all.

The American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) published guidance for fertility specialists, which included five key recommendations: (1) suspend initiation of new treatment cycles; (2) strongly consider cancellation of all embryo transfers; (3) continue to care for patients who require urgent stimulation and cryopreservation (such as in cases of fertility preservation prior to impending cancer treatment); (4) suspend elective surgeries and non-urgent diagnostic procedures; and (5) minimize in-person interactions and increase utilization of telehealth.

Can COVID-19 be transmitted with fertility treatments?

Specifically, can a woman without COVID-19 acquire it using sperm of a man with COVID-19? There are no data on this question, and further studies are needed.

Regarding fertility treatments, do we need to "quarantine" frozen sperm, oocytes, or embryos of COVID-19 patients?

Most fertility laboratories keep cryopreserved sperm, oocytes, or embryos of HIV-positive individuals in separate freezing tanks to "quarantine" them with frozen genetic material of the general population. Should these labs similarly "quarantine" frozen genetic material of COVID-19 patients separately? Further studies are needed.

Are there any risks of complications for fertility treatments in COVID-19 patients?

One potential risk with in vitro fertilization (IVF) is a phenomenon called "severe ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome," which may result in respiratory and cardiovascular difficulties. Given that COVID-19 infection can similarly result in respiratory and cardiovascular difficulties, it is unknown how women with COVID-19 will handle severe ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. There are currently no reports of such complications.

Source: https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/covid19/86019
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