How Effective is Preconceptive Care?

The Natural Fertility Healthcare programme results in the improved general health and well-being of the participants. It is an empowering way of allowing couples to feel they have some control and are participating in overcoming their fertility problems or just preparing for a healthy and contented baby.

A recent study by Foresight Organisation for Preconception Health Care (in UK) showed an 81% success rate in treating infertility by natural methods.

1. Foresight Study 1995

Foresight, the Association for the Promotion of Preconception Care, was established in the UK in 1978. A Foresight study conducted in conjunction with Surrey University (published in the Journal of Nutritional & Environmental Medicine 1995) clearly shows the effectiveness of preconception health care.

Results: The women participating in the study ranged in age from 22 – 45 years, the men from 25 – 59 years. 41% of the couples had no previous adverse reproductive history, but among these were the older couples.

Study involved:
• 367 couples and lasted 2 years
• Age of females: 22-45 yrs
• Age of males: 25-59 yrs

Presenting with a Previous History Percentage in Sample
Infertility 37%
Miscarriage 38%
Therapeutic abortion 11%
Still birth 3%
‘Small for dates’ or low birth weight babies 15%
Malformations 2%
SIDS 1%

Results:
• No miscarriages, perinatal deaths, malformations
• No baby admitted to intensive care
• Normal expectation – 70 miscarriages, 6 malformations

Outcome Percentage in Sample
Live births 89%
Live births to those previously infertile 81%
Average gestational age 38.5 weeks
Earliest gestational age 36 weeks
Average weight of males 7lb 4oz (3303g)
Average weight of females 7lb 2oz (3232g)
Lightest baby 5lb 3oz (2367g)

2. Foresight (current)

Foresight is currently completing a further, larger study with 1061 couples. The unpublished statistics from this already show similar excellent outcomes, with a preliminary conception rate of approximately 78% (leading to a healthy baby) within two years of following the programme. This is despite some problems encountered with providing full preconception health care service during the study. This study also suggests a more than doubled conception success rate for IVF following preconception health care.

3. University of New England (current)

The University of New England (UNE) is conducting an independent study of 67 patients on the Natural Fertility Management conception programme. Pilot research is being carried out by Susan Arentz, BHSc (Hons), ND, Dip Hom. A high proportion of the couples in this study had serious fertility problems, all of them diagnosed infertile, and 25% of them were over 40yrs old. Preliminary results have already shown that 52% of previously infertile couples can conceive within the first four months following their participation in the programme.