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Doctors root for adoption over in vitro fertilization


CHANDIGARH: Following two cases of death of women who had been undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) elsewhere and had come to the PGI later, some doctors from government and private hospitals have formed a group to make families of infertile couples aware about the limitations of IVF after 45 years of age. The group includes a psychologist, four gynaecologists and a parent who had undergone several cycles of IVF and has now adopted a girl child. The group is working towards giving such couples an alternative — adoption of children.

As Dr Lakhbir Dhaliwal, head of the gynaecology department in PGI said, "People who are in their 50s and come for IVF must not be encouraged. We had two such women who died in our hospital recently and had undergone IVF somewhere else."

When such cases come to the IVF clinics, it is seldom that doctors refuse the parents whose composite age comes to 90 or above. To curb this, likeminded city doctors and professionals have come together to counsel such parents on the adverse effects of undergoing such medical procedures after a particular age. Dr Umesh Jindal running an IVF clinic who initiated this awareness programme said, "Going by the life expectancy it is not possible for a couple who have crossed their late 40s to give birth and raise their children. I have had cases where couples who are suitable to be grandparents came to me with a desire to become parents. There are so many orphans in need of parents. I have started asking such couples to adopt rather than go for these treatments."

She informed, "The peak fertility which is before the age of 30 years starts declining at the age of 35 and even more rapidly after 35 years."

Besides Dr Dhaliwal and Dr Jindal, the group includes Dr Yash Bala and Dr Ruby Ahuja, gynaecologists.

The group includes one of the mother's who underwent six cycles of IVF and also tried surrogacy. But she finally adopted a girl child. She is now 38 years old. The woman who did not want to be named said, "I have undergone hell. But when we decided to adopt a child, I became a mother. After that I had children, but I lost them soon. The thought of adoption itself however proved to be a boon. Now I have been able to convince five such couples to adopt."

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