A recent study from Down Under has found that the best time to collect eggs for in vitro fertilization (IVF) might be during the summer. But the question that scientists can't seem to answer is: why?
According to the researchers, there's a higher chance of a live birth when eggs are collected in the sun-drenched days of summer. The live birth rate is 31 percent for summer-collected eggs, which is a bit higher than the 26 percent rate for those collected in autumn. This discovery is a bit surprising because earlier studies didn't really show a clear link between the seasons and IVF success rates. But this time, the scientists decided to focus on the timing of egg collection rather than other factors. To figure this out, they looked at data from eight years and 3,657 frozen embryo transfers. What they found was pretty amazing: eggs collected on days with more than 10 hours of sunshine were 28 percent more likely to result in a live birth. And it didn't matter how hot or cold it was outside – temperature didn't seem to affect the results.
Interestingly, another study done in the Northern Hemisphere found similar results. It showed that the season and temperature at the time of egg retrieval also had a big impact on the live birth rate. However, there's a bit of a disagreement between the two studies. They can't seem to agree on whether the temperature or the amount of sunshine is more important. The researchers also think that other factors could play a part. Things like how active people are, what they eat, and their lifestyle could all make a difference. Even environmental factors, like pollution, might have an impact.
So, what does this all mean? Well, based on these results, it might be a good idea for patients to consider collecting eggs in the summer months when there are more hours of daylight. Keep in mind though, this is just one piece of the puzzle. There's still a lot we don't know about how seasons affect IVF success rates. But every little bit of information helps, right? So here's to sunny days and successful egg collections!