After long-term follow-up, a study conducted in the Netherlands has found that there is not a link between in vitro fertilization (IVF) and an increased risk of breast cancer. In fact, among women undergoing IVF, the risk of breast cancer did not differ significantly from that in the general population.
In the past, a variety of studies suggested that in vitro fertilization (IVF) might be a risk factor for breast cancer. However, these findings were inconclusive because follow-up was limited. Therefore, the Dutch researchers chose to assess the long-term risk of breast cancer after ovarian stimulation for IVF.
Large study, long follow-up. The researchers collected information from mailed questionnaires and medical records from all 12 IVF clinics in the Netherlands. They assessed rates of breast cancer through the Netherlands Cancer Registry, looking at a median follow-up period of more than 21 years.