IVF multiple birth rate drops in the Netherlands

Birth rates for IVF twins and triplets have begun to fall in the Netherlands. This is evident from the latest figures by the Dutch Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS).

The number of multiple births has been in decline in the Netherlands since 2003. In recent years, usually only 1 egg cell is replaced in the uterus during in vitro fertilisation, resulting in a considerable reduction in twin births.
Peak twin births in 2002

Approximately 3,200 multiple births were registered in the Netherlands in 2009, mainly twin births. Only 44 were triplets and higher-order multiple births. With 3.7 thousand, the number of twin births reached a record in 2002. Subsequently, the number declined. With 124, the highest number of triplets and higher-order multiple births was recorded in 1991.

The proportion of multiple births has risen substantially since the mid-1970s: from 10 per 1,000 births in 1975 to 19 per 1,000 in 2002. This is predominantly caused by in vitro fertilisation (IVF), a technique which was introduced approximately thirty years ago and has become increasingly popular. The fact that multiple births occur more commonly in older women only plays a modest role. The total number of births in 2009 was only just above the mid-1970s.

Source: CBS

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