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    Is there a link between asthma and infertility?


    Researchers from Denmark say that the results of their small observational study point to a possible link between asthma and infertility. Writing in The European Respiratory Journal, they caution, however, that the data do not establish a causal relationship.

    The goal of the observational cohort study, performed on a prospective basis, was to look at whether time to pregnancy and number of successful pregnancies differed significantly in women with unexplained infertility who did and did not have asthma. A total of 245 women aged 23 to 45 completed questionnaires and underwent allergy testing, 96 of whom had previously been diagnosed with asthma or were diagnosed with the condition during this research. All of the participants were followed during at least 12 months of fertility treatment and until they had a successful pregnancy, stopped treatment, or the observation ended.

    More: Surgical management of endometriosis associated infertility

    The investigators found that likelihood of achieving pregnancy was lower in the women with asthma: median total time to pregnancy 55.6 months versus 32.3 months in women without asthma (hazard ratio 0.50; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.34-0.75, P<0.001). Women with asthma also had fewer successful pregnancies during fertility treatment (39.6 versus 60.4%, P=0.002). Increasing age was of negative importance for expected time to pregnancy, especially in the women with asthma (interaction between age and asthma with time to pregnancy P=0.001). Increasing age reduced the likelihood of conceiving, especially in the women with asthma. 

    NEXT: Can prenatal exercise help prevent maternal hypertension?

    Judith M. Orvos, ELS
    Judith M. Orvos, ELS, is a a BELS-certified medical writer and editor and an editorial consultant for Contemporary OB/GYN.


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