It is commonly known, as a result of research, that Black infants are twice as likely to die before their first birthday than White infants. A new study suggests that that the disparity among those statistics is even larger when babies are conceived via reproductive technology. According to a new study, Black infants born after fertility treatments are at higher risk of death than White infants.

Photo Credit: iStock

The study was recently published in the American Academy of Pediatrics. The new research concluded that that when children are conceived by assisted reproductive technology, neonatal mortality was more than four-fold higher among babies of Black women than those of White women, even though both groups shared similar socioeconomic statuses as they were both able to afford the $12,000 to $17,000 IVF treatment price tag per cycle.


As a result of both ethnic groups being on the same level financial playing field, researchers set out to prove their hypothesis that the racial disparities among the babies of women using assisted reproductive technology would be smaller, and just what if any, the disparities would look like.

Dr. Sarka Lisonkova, an author of the study and associate professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology and the Children’s and Women’s Hospital of British Columbia in Vancouver, and colleagues discovered that their hypothesis was wrong. Their research told them that the disparities are quadruple what they expected.

Photo Credit: iStock

“It seems that there are still socioeconomic disparities, even in this particular group of relatively more affluent and educated women who usually tend to go through the fertility treatment. So there could still be residual confounding by socioeconomic status,” Lisonkova said in an interview with CNN. “The other thing is that there might be differential access to health services, particular in this case of obstetric and maternity care services, and neonatal health services.”

She continued, “I was really surprised, to be honest. The relative risks are quite high.”

Lisonkova added to her thought saying that another factor that could be driving the disparities, is actual medical care itself. She encouraged mothers to speak up and out if that sixth sense is telling them that something is wrong.

“Do not hesitate if you feel uncomfortable or if you feel something is not going right, consult with your physician.”

Photo Credit: Freepik

Reaction to the study has been eye-opening for many. Many health care professionals said that the results are, “simply unacceptable.”

“This study should send shock waves through fertility centers, ob-gyn clinics and high risk ob-gyn clinics everywhere,” Dr. Aimee Eyvazzadeh, a San Francisco-based reproductive endocrinologist who was not involved in the new study, said in an email to CNN.

She continued, “Anyone who uses medically assisted reproduction to get pregnant should be designated as a high-risk pregnancy and get additional monitoring during pregnancy and especially after. The complications this study describes are simply unacceptable and interventions need to be put in place even before treatment is initiated. This study tells me that our work is not over. We need to work even harder to improve maternal and neonatal outcomes and even more disturbing is this trend seen in women of color seeking fertility treatment.”

The healthcare system unquestionably has a lot more work to do in protecting the lives of Black mothers and infants on all levels.

Tiffany Silva

Tiffany Silva

Writer and Editor

Related Posts

Next Post


Don’t miss out on BCK’s newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!

Subscribe To Our Newsletter