Can Sleep Quality Affect the Results of In Vitro Fertilization?

According to a study published in Scientific Reports, women who have low sleep quality may have less success with in vitro fertilization (IVF) than women who have better sleep quality.

263 women who were receiving services from the infertility department at Fondazione IRCCS Ca’ Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico in Milan, Italy, were recruited by researchers between September and December 2019. Participants in the study responded to three surveys, including the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), the Fertility Problem Inventory (FPI), and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, at the time of oocyte collection (HADS).

In addition to a number of health indicators like body mass index and smoking, researchers also looked at age, work status, and education. Additionally, they considered the length of infertility, prior pregnancies, serum FSH (IU/mL), serum Anti-Müllerian Hormone (AMH) (ng/mL), antral follicle count (AFC), and IVF indication. The results of the questionnaires, which were administered to women who could speak Italian as a native language, were compared to this data.

Non-fluent Italian speakers and those with serious psychiatric conditions like bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or major depressive disorder were not allowed to participate in the study. Women with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome and ailments such endometrial polyps, submucosal fibroids, hydrosalpinx, and uterine forms that may hinder embryo implantation were also excluded.

The pregnancy of 31% of the ladies (n = 81) was successful. The women in these successful pregnancies were younger and had greater ovarian reserve preservation, according to researchers. The HADS and FPI scores were identical.

However, there was a statistically significant difference between pregnant and non-pregnant women’s PSQI scores, with the median [interquartile range] being 4 [3-5] and 5 [3-7], respectively (P =.004). The researchers found that the crude and adjusted odds ratios for pregnancy in women with a PSQI score greater than 5 (which indicates poor sleep quality) were 0.46 (95% CI, 0.25-0.86; P =.02) and 0.50 (95% CI, 0.26-0.94; P =.03), respectively. They said that women seeking IVF frequently had poor sleep, which could have an impact on the process.

In view of the link between sleep quality and both the success of the treatment and the women’s general psychological wellbeing, researchers decided that measuring sleep quality in women undergoing IVF is clinically relevant. Reschini and colleagues found a connection between poor sleep and psychological health, suggesting that addressing poor sleep could possibly enhance these outcomes.

Scientists believe that the advise to ask about the women’s sleep quality during the IVF procedure is the most crucial piece of advice that healthcare providers should take away from this study. It can also be used to determine whether women’s lack of sleep is related to their unhealthy lives and how specific adjustments in lifestyle affect sleep, the researcher added. The lack of a control group and the fact that sleep quality was assessed using self-reported sleep measures were both pointed out as significant limitations of this study.

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