Bed rest after in vitro fertilization (IVF) not necessary
I hear it all the time. My patients correspond with in vitro fertilization (IVF) patients at another program. "Their doctor says they have to go on bed rest after the embryo transfer or it won’t work." I have always thought this was baloney. Now more proof that it is baloney.
A recent study of 378 women who were undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF) were randomly assigned to rest for either 1 or 24 hours following an in vitro fertilization (IVF) embryo transfer. The 1-hour rest group had a rate of 21.5 percent, whereas the 24-hour rest group had a rate of 18.2 percent. Actually, the implantation rate per embryo in the 1-hour rest group was 14.4 percent, which was higher than the 9 percent rate seen in the 24-hour rest group.
Previous studies have all reached the same conclusion. Resting after an in vitro fertilization (IVF) embryo transfer does nothing to improve the pregnancy rate. This makes good sense since women who achieve pregnancy spontaneously do not rest so why would it be necessary after in in vitro fertilization (IVF).
Also, since implantation does not occur until day 7 or 8, a day or two of rest after a day 3 embryo transfer would seem to be ridiculous. Now I couldn’t argue if someone was recommending five days of rest, that study has never been done but programs that stick by this do not recommend rest for that long.
Bottom line? Rest if you want to but if you don’t it won’t hurt your chances.