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Enhancing Fertility: The Role of Bariatric Surgery in Overcoming Obesity-Related Infertility – ARC Summit

by | Apr 6, 2024 | ARC Summit, News

Enhancing Fertility: The Role of Bariatric Surgery in Overcoming Obesity-Related Infertility – ARC Summit

In conclusion, women with obesity face an elevated risk of infertility and may experience significant maternal and fetal complications during pregnancy. Comprehensive pre-pregnancy counseling is crucial for addressing these risks. Obesity is often linked with ovulatory dysfunction, and both men and women with obesity can suffer from impaired reproductive functions.

Bariatric surgery has proven to be a valuable intervention for individuals struggling with obesity, particularly for women with PCOS, demonstrating noticeable improvements in fertility outcomes. For anovulatory women, weight loss interventions not only enhance the probability of natural conception but also improve their response to ovulation-inducing medications.

There remains much to learn about the intersection of assisted reproductive techniques and bariatric surgery. Current discussions revolve around whether there should be a defined BMI cutoff for offering IVF treatments to obese patients. However, based on the evidence at hand, there is no medical or ethical justification for establishing a society-wide BMI threshold for offering infertility treatments. Rather, evidence strongly suggests that excluding patients based solely on a high BMI from IVF treatments may be inappropriate.

Bariatric surgery is recognized as a safe and effective method for resolving weight-related medical issues, including improving fertility in PCOS patients. Should complications arise with bariatric patients, it is essential to engage a specialized bariatric team, as these issues may be beyond the scope of general or trauma surgeons.

Our experience in coordinating care with gynecological colleagues in our bariatric program has been rewarding, contributing to the successful growth of healthy babies. I am eager to address any questions about integrating bariatric care with fertility treatments to optimize outcomes for our patients.

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