Pregnancy loss and assisted reproduction: Preliminary results after the law 40/2004 in Italy

Giovanni Battista La Sala, Andrea Gallinelli, Alessia Nicoli, Maria Teresa Villani, Giuseppe Nucera

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The new Italian law on assisted reproduction technology rules that no more than three oocytes can be fertilized at one time, and that all embryos obtained must be transferred to the maternal uterus simultaneously. The aim of the present study was to investigate the influence of the new law on spontaneous embryonic/fetal losses through comparison of data collected over an identical period of time: the first year of application of the new law compared with the same time period 1 year before (March 10, 2004 to March 9, 2005 versus March 10, 2003 to March 9, 2004). A total of 271 clinical pregnancies were analysed. In the post-law period, a significantly lower percentage of total spontaneous embryonic losses compared with the pre-law period, and a higher percentage of surviving embryos in singletons and twins was observed. In conclusion, the impact of the limitations imposed by the new legislation regulating assisted reproduction in Italy seems to exert positive effects on spontaneous embryonic loss both in singletons and multiple pregnancies. These findings are in contrast to international predictions on this issue and, in general, are counter-intuitive. This suggests that further investigations on a larger cohort of women are required to confirm these preliminary results.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2272
Pages (from-to)65-70
Number of pages6
JournalReproductive BioMedicine Online
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2006


  • Assisted reproduction
  • ICSI
  • Italian law
  • IVF
  • Recurrent miscarriage
  • Spontaneous abortion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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