Stop Use of Dangerous Hormone Doses in Fertility Treatments

Target: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

Goal: Protect women from dangerous methods in fertility procedures.

Overly aggressive fertility treatments can result in many dangerous health complications for women and their babies. While fertility clinics around the world have changed to a safer, low-dose form of in vitro fertilization, U.S. clinics continue their unregulated use of dangerously high doses of hormones. The federal government must protect women by regulating these dangerous practices.

While it is known that lower doses of hormones are healthier for women, fertility clinics compete with each other’s success rates, and client safety is sacrificed as a result. Dangers that emerge from high hormone doses include ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS), which is characterized by swollen ovaries that leak fluid into the chest and abdomen. The syndrome, which can result in long-term hospitalization and even death, is experienced by 10% of U.S. fertility patients. Aggressive hormone treatments also lead to lower birth weight in infants, and may increase chances of ovarian and breast cancer. Other drugs used in conjunction with heavy hormone treatments are known to cause memory loss, liver disorders, and bone loss. These serious risks to public health are not currently monitored by law.

Many women who seek help from fertility clinics are unaware of the dangers they are about to undergo. In vitro fertilization is an invasive medical procedure that needs to be held accountable by a governing body. By singing the petition below, you can ask U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to establish federal regulations limiting hormone doses used in fertility procedures.


Dear Secretary Sebelius,

The United States is unique in that the work of fertility clinics is largely unregulated and profit-driven. Because most U.S. health care plans don’t cover this expensive procedure, clinics pander to the fiscal limitations of clients by prioritizing high levels of success over client safety. Rather than using the lower hormone levels established to be safe, we are one of the only countries that employ aggressive doses of hormones during in vitro fertilization. The consequences are serious. One-tenth of American fertility patients experience ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, a dangerous condition that can lead to long-term hospitalization and death. Other health threats associated with high hormone doses include increased risk of ovarian and breast cancer and lower birth weight in infants.

We must protect our country’s women from the irresponsible practices of fertility clinics. Please help to establish federal standards that will regulate the hormone doses used in fertility procedures.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Michiel1972 via Wikipedia.

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