The rise of the IVF single mom; The coming COVID baby bust; And what Trump’s Supreme Court nominee means for women’s health.

Your newsletter on reproductive health.

As we slide towards a new season, here’s today’s reflective download. This is ELANZINE, a newsletter featuring must-read curated content by patients, clinicians and reproductive health industry experts. We bring both sides of the coin together in one place to help you become the most informed patient, clinician or women’s health leader you can be! If you enjoy this issue, please forward to a friend or colleague and hit the subscribe button to keep learning from peers and experts.

Here’s what we’re covering in today’s newsletter:

  • The rise of the IVF single mother

  • Half a million fewer children? The coming COVID baby bust

  • What surrogacy really feels like

  • The effects of smoking cannabis during pregnancy

  • A writer reveals why she’s risking a pregnancy at 48 after losing twins with Down’s syndrome.

What’s New:

What will Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett mean for women's rights? Campaigners fear setbacks on abortion, healthcare and more.

Economists predict that COVID-19 will likely lead to a large, lasting baby bust, with a decline in births to the order of 300,000 to 500,000 fewer births next year.

Fertility treatments for women without a partner treble in a decade and the average age of a woman seeking to start a family without a partner is 39. Meanwhile, clinics are carrying out almost seven times the number of IVF cycles for women in same-sex relationships that they performed a decade ago. 

Modern Fertility, a direct-to-consumer hormone, pregnancy, and ovulation test company will now sell its pregnancy and ovulation tests at Walmart

A widow in Scotland has won a legal fight to have IVF with her dead husband's sperm. 

The healthcare system has long failed female patients: how female-backed health ventures focused on women's health can help bridge this gap.

And… we’re proud to say that ELANZA Wellness was named one of five home health start-ups to watch at MedCity’s digital health virtual conference. 

From The Clinicians

  • This peer-reviewed article by Yale professors discusses the main causes of infertility, including tubal disease, uterine factor, cervical factor, and ovulatory dysfunction and anovulation. Dr. Amanda Kallen & Dr. Sandra Carson / Contemporary OBGYN

  • The suspension of fertility treatments due to the COVID-19 pandemic has had a variety of psychological impacts, but there are several protective factors that can be fostered to help in the future, suggest the findings of a new study. Jennifer L. Gordon / PLOS One Journal

  • As many as a quarter of children and young people with cancer will later experience infertility or reduced fertility as a result of harsh treatments, according to new research from Children with Cancer UK and Edinburgh University. Elsa Maishman / Edinburgh Evening News

  • These Everyday Toxins May Be Hurting Pregnant Women and Their Babies: PFAS, industrial chemicals used to waterproof jackets and grease-proof fast-food containers, may disrupt pregnancy with lasting effects. Lisa Gross / New York Times

  • Sexually transmitted infections may be why you are not pregnant. Dr. Abayomi Ajayi / Punch

From The Patients

  • “I have been a surrogate 3 times, this is what it's like.” One mother gives an honest and compelling account of what it’s really like to carry a baby knowing you’re going to be handing it over to its parents. Eloise Drane / Newsweek

  • A writer reveals why she’s risking a pregnancy at 48 after losing twins with Down’s syndrome. Olivia Buxton / Daily Mail

    “I shall be almost 60 by the time my son leaves junior school, and my partner, now 59, will be 70. Plenty of people think that’s too old, of course, and some have told us so to our faces.

    But for us this baby is nothing short of a miracle. When I run my hands over my growing bump I honestly feel like the luckiest woman in the world to be pregnant at all.”

  • Singer Paloma Faith has written a brutally honest post on Instagram to announce news she is pregnant after undergoing six rounds of IVF. Jenni McKnight / Hello

  • “Learning that a fertility doctor was my biological father was painful – but on the upside I have hundreds of new siblings. A joke in the tearoom at work led to a shocking discovery that challenged my entire identity, but slowly I have made peace with it.” Fiona Darroch / The Guardian

Science & Ethics

  • A study undertaken by researchers in the US found smoking cannabis during pregnancy was linked to psychotic-like behaviours in children. Isobel Frodsham / The Independent

  • A report from the UK’s fertility regulator, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) shines a light on the disparity in access to NHS-funded IVF. Lesbians turning to IVF to start families are much less likely to have access to NHS funding than straight couples seeking the same treatment, it says.

  • Scientists have identified a key process in the very early stages of embryo development that they believe could pave the way for improved fertility treatments and help those struggling to conceive. The Irish News

  • Man sues IVF clinic after his sperm is used to help gay couples and single mums. Neil Gaskell took legal action after his sperm was given to same-sex couples and single women against his direct wishes - but claims it's "not about bigotry." Phil Cardy / Mirror

In case you missed it

  • Reproductive concerns among transgender adolescents may manifest as ‘disinterest’ in future parenthood. Regina Schaffer / Endocrine Today

  • Women receiving fertility-sparing surgery (FFS) for borderline ovarian tumors were still able to conceive, according to the findings of a study published in Fertility & Sterility. Robert Dillard / DocWire News


🗓️ September 30
The Royal Society of Medicine: In Conversation Live with Dr Donald Berwick MD, MPP, FRCP, KBE, President Emeritus and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)

🗓️ October 17
ASRM Virtual Scientific Congress and Expo

🗓️ October 25
Reproductive Immunology by The Endometriosis Summit

🗓️ October 28
Women of Wearables - Sex, Fertility & Contraception: What’s Next?

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Written by ELANZA Wellness. All things reproductive health, healthtech and patient experience. You can find us elsewhere on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.