The Dark Side of Infertility Treatments

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Pregnancy is something that any woman in “good” reproductive health can theoretically experience. Many people, however, are faced with infertility, or the inability to become pregnant. Infertility is a condition that affects approximately 15% of couples worldwide, with nearly seven million infertile couples in the United States alone. With new assisted reproductive technologies many of these couples are now able to give birth to biological children. Infertility treatments are often seen as a Godsend for couples who thought they would never be able to become parents. However, both society and the medical community at large are overlooking the ethical and medical problems associated with using infertility treatments. Society sees these…show more content…
Parental fitness is not the only issue preventing alternative reproductive treatments from being a “cure-all” for couples experiencing infertility. Perhaps even more detrimental to treatment’s overall success, is the issue of cost. The costs of infertility treatments are huge, and “many couples receive little or no insurance coverage for the services and drugs they require” (Perry, 34). In today’s economic climate, money matters and many couples do not have the disposable income they require in order to receive infertility treatments. Simple fixes for known causes of infertility can range from $50-$3000, but for the 20% couples who have no known cause of infertility, treatments such as In-Vitro Fertilization have an average per cycle cost of $12,400 (Ordovensky Staniec & Webb, 974). As most couples require more than one cycle of in-vitro fertilization, the costs can reach upwards of $50,000. Many families can simply not afford these high costs. Couples with no insurance are more likely to undergo more aggressive rounds of in-vitro fertilization, choosing to have more embryos transferred in order to boost their chance of becoming pregnant. However, transferring more embryos also leads to higher rates of multiple births and high-risk pregnancies, both of which can lead to extremely high costs later in life (Feldstein, 2006). The cost of delivering twins can be

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