Family Functioning and psychological well-being of 5 to 6-year-old singletons born after preimplantation gentic diagnosis: a prospective case-controlled matched study

Christiane Winter, Frederik Van Acker, Mary-Louise Bonduelle, Sonja Desmyttere, Julie Nekkebroeck, J. L. H. Evers (Editor)

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract (Journal)


P-396 Family functioning and psychological well-being of 5- to 6-yearold
singletons born after preimplantation genetic diagnosis; a prospective
case-controlled matched study
C.Winter1, F. van Acker2, M. Bonduelle1, S. Desmyttere1, J. Nekkebroeck1
1UZ Brussel, Centre for Medical Genetics, Brussels, Belgium
2Open Universiteit Heerlen, Faculty of Psychology, Heerlen, The Netherlands
Study question: As preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) is applied to
families who might have suffered traumatic family histories, questions remain
about the psychological development of their offspring. We investigated
if PGD preschoolers differ in their social-emotional development from
children born after intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) and spontaneous
conception (SC).
Summary answer: The psychological development of PGD children was not
different from those of children born after ICSI and SC, nor in the perceptions
of the children themselves neither by the reports of their parents. The amount
of parental stress concerning family life is more prominent by SC mothers than
PGD/ICSI families.
What is known already: Literature about the broad psychological development
of children at preschool age born after PGD is scarce. One study showed
that, at toddler age PGD/PGS (preimplantation genetic screening) mothers reported
less behavioral problems. Two other studies found that PGD/PGS parents
experienced lower stress levels in comparison to controls. As PGD patients
have a different indication than PGS couples, long term follow-up of their children
is needed.
Study design, size, duration: Between April 2011 and May 2013, the psychological
development of 47 5- to 6-year-old PGD singletons was assessed in
a prospective case-controlled matched follow-up study. ICSI and SC children
were matched according to age, gender, educational level of mother and birth
order. ART group assessments were mostly blinded.
Participants/materials, setting, methods: 47 PGD singletons, 50 ICSI and 55
SC children were examined with the family relations test (FRT) measuring the
perceptions of family interactions of the children themselves. PGD/ICSI children
were tested in the UZ Brussel. Both parents completed the Child Behavior
Checklist (CBCL) and the Parenting Stress Index (PSI).
Main results and the role of chance: No group differences were detected
concerning children's positive, negative and global perceptions on their mothers
and fathers using the FRT. Fathers of the three groups did not differ significantly
in their stress experience (PSI/NOSI) as opposed to mothers (p = .004;
?2 = .086). Post hoc Tukey tests (p = .001) confirmed that mothers of SC
children (M = 313.37, SD = 10.16) reported significantly more stress than
PGD (M = 265.31, SD = 10.32) and ICSI mothers (M = 275.71, SD = 9.98).
The CBCL data did not reveal any group differences regarding behavioral
Limitations, reason for caution: Given the fact that we assessed a relatively
small group of Caucasian Dutch speaking PGD singletons our data might
not be generalizable. These are the first data of a broad evaluation of PGD
preschoolers and their families; it will be interesting to report on the whole
data set.
Wider implications of the findings: Our results confirm those of the few other
studies. PGD families do not seem to differ in their daily interactions/perceptions
from SC or ICSI families. Furthermore our findings suggest that at preschool
age PGD mothers are rather more relaxed than SC mothers. On the long
term, when PGD parents might develop their own diseases or deteriorations,
it might be useful to comprehend how these families interact and how they
perceive each other.
Study funding/competing interest(s): Funding by University(ies), Funding
by hospital/clinic(s), Funding by national/international organization(s),
Funding by commercial/corporate company(ies), This study was funded by
the Onderzoeksraad (OZR) of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the FWO
(Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek) and Wetenschappelijk Fonds Willy
Gepts. The UZ Brussel and the Centre for Medical Genetics have received
many educational grants for organizing the data collection from IBSA, Ferring,
Organon, Shering-Plough, Merck, Merck Belgium. M. Bonduelle has
received consultancy and speaker's fees from Organon, Serono Symposia,
Trial registration number: No clinical trial.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)283
Number of pages1
JournalHuman Reproduction
Issue number2014, Jun
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2014
Event30th Annual Meeting European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology - Munich (Germany)
Duration: 29 Jun 20142 Jul 2014

Bibliographical note

J. L. H. Evers


  • PGD
  • Family
  • well-being
  • singletons


Dive into the research topics of 'Family Functioning and psychological well-being of 5 to 6-year-old singletons born after preimplantation gentic diagnosis: a prospective case-controlled matched study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this