Developmental Characteristics of Children Conceived



Increased frequency of infertile marriages and successful correction of the couples reproductive health by using assisted reproductive technologies (ART) in recent decades led all over the world to increase in the number of children conceived by ART; so, the question of their development is a pressing question. In fact the influence of conceive method on the further child development remains poorly understood. Researches in this area are mainly aimed at the study of children′s physical health and the factors affecting it. Materials relating to the mental development of children born as a result of the application of VRT in the scientific literature are not that many. This article provides an overview of the Russian and foreign research on the characteristics of the physical and mental development of children conceived using ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE TECHNOLOGIES. Due to insufficient information on the issue and the ambiguity of the results the article pays special attention to the results of current researches and discusses the ways of in-depth studies of the psychological development of such children from birth till the reproductive age.

General Information

Keywords: assisted reproductive technologies, in vitro fertilization, natural conception, gestation time, perinatalу period, developmental disorders

Journal rubric: Developmental Psychology

Article type: scientific article

For citation: Solovyeva E.V. Developmental Characteristics of Children Conceived [Elektronnyi resurs]. Sovremennaia zarubezhnaia psikhologiia = Journal of Modern Foreign Psychology, 2014. Vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 33–48. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


  1. Barashnev Ju.I. Osobennosti zdorov'ja detej, rozhdennyh zhenshhinami s pomoshh'ju vspomogatel'nyh reproduktivnyh tehnologij [Specific of health of children born by women using assisted reproductive technologies]. Rossijskij vestnik perinatologii i pediatrii [Russian Bulletin of Perinatology and Pediatrics], 2004, no. 5, pp.12–17. (In Russ., Abstr. in Engl.).
  2. Bakhtiarova V.O. Sostoyanie zdorov'ya detei, rodivshikhsya v rezul'tate ekstrakorporal'nogo oplodotvoreniya i iskusstvennogo osemeneniya. Avt. diss. kand. psikhol. nauk. [The health status of children born as a result of in vitro fertilization and artificial insemination. Ph. D. (Psychology) diss.]. Moscow, 1993. 58 p. (In Russ.).
  3. Bitenskii V.S., Chernova T.M. Analiz issledovaniya psikhicheskogo zdorov'ya detei, rodivshikhsya s pomoshch'yu ekstrakorporal'nogo oplodotvoreniya [Analysis of the study of mental health of children born using in vitro fertilization]. Vіsnik psikhіatrії ta psikhofarmakoterapії, 2002. no. 2. pp. 54-57. (In Russ.).
  4. Evsjukova I.I., Masljanjuk N.A. Sostojanie novorozhdennyh i ih dal'nejshee razvitie pri mnogoplodnoj beremennosti posle JeKO [State of newborns and their further development in multiple pregnancies after IVF]. Problemy reprodukcii [Russian Journal of Human Reproduction], 2005. no. 2, pp. 52-54. (In Russ.).
  5. Kuznecova V.S. et al. Osobennosti adaptacii v rannem neonatal'nom periode novorozhdennyh detej, rozhdennyh u zhenshhin s besplodiem v anamneze posle ciklov jekstrakorporal'nogo oplodotvorenija [Features of adaptation in the early neonatal period of newborn infants born by women with an infertility in anamnesis after in vitro fertilization cycles]. Zhurnal teoreticheskoj i prakticheskoj mediciny [Journal of Theoretical and Practical Medicine], 2004. vol. 2. no. 1, pp. 59-62. (In Russ., Abstr. in Engl.).
  6. Lancburg M.E., Solov'eva E.V. Osobennosti poznavatel'nogo razvitija detej rannego vozrasta, zachatyh posredstvom jekstrakorporal'nogo oplodotvorenija [Features of cognitive development of toddlers conceived by in vitro fertilization]. Zhurnal akusherstva i zhenskih boleznej [Journal of Obstetrics and Women's Diseases], 2013. Vol. LXII, Specvypusk. Materialy II Nacional'nogo kongressa «Diskussionnye voprosy sovremennogo akusherstva». Sankt-Peterburg. pp. 40. (In Russ.).
  7. Plaksina A.N., Kovtun O.P., Blohina S.I. Ocenka pokazatelej kachestva zhizni detej, rozhdennyh pri pomoshhi vspomogatel'nyh reproduktivnyh tehnologij [Elektronnyi resurs] [Evaluation of quality of life of children born using assisted reproductive technologies]. Sistemnaja integracija v zdravoohranenii [Electronic scientific journal System Integration in health care]: Elektronnyi nauchnyi zhurnal, 2011. no. 1. pp. 83–87. Available at:  (data obrashcheniya 01.11.2014). (In Russ., Abstr. in Engl.).
  8. Solov'eva E.V. Deti, zachatye posredstvom EKO: osobennosti psikhicheskogo razvitiia [Elektronnyi resurs] [Children conceived by IVF: specifics of mental development]. Psikhologicheskaya nauka i obrazovanie [Psychological Science and Education], 2014, no. 1. Available at: (Accessed 01.11.2014). (In Russ., Abstr. in Engl.).
  9. A multi-centre cohort study of the physical health of 5-year-old children conceived after intracytoplasmic sperm injection, in vitro fertilization and natural conception [Electronic resource]. M. Bonduelle., U.-B. Wennerholm, Loft A., B.C. Tarlatzis, C. Peters [et al.]. Human Reproduction, 2005. Vol. 20, № 2. Р. 413–419. URL: (дата обращения: 01.11.2014).
  10. Children: The European study of assisted reproduction families [Electronic resource]: Family functioning and child development. S. Golombok, A. Brewaeys, R. Cook, [et al.]. Human Reproduction, 1996. Vol. 11, no. 10, pp. 2324–2331. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  11. Colpin H., Soenen S. Parenting and psychosocial development of IVF children: a follow-up study [Electronic resource]. Human Reproduction, 2002. Vol. 17, no. 4, pp. 1116–1123. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  12. Families created by the new reproductive technologies [Electronic resource]: Quality of parenting and social and emotional development of the children. S. Golombok, R. Cook, A. Bish, C. Murray. Child Development, 1995. Vol. 64, no. 2, pp. 285–298. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  13. Fitzsimmons B.P., Bebbington M.W., Fluker M.R. Perinatal and neonatal outcomes in multiple gestations [Electronic resource]: Assisted reproduction versus spontaneous conception. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1998. Vol. 179, no. 5, pp. 1162–1167. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  14. Golombok S., MacCallum F. Practitioner review [Electronic resource]: Outcomes for parents and children following non-traditional conception: What do clinicians need to know? Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2003. Vol. 44, no. 3, pp. 303–315. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  15. Golombok S., MacCallum P., Goodman E. The "test-tube" generation [Electronic resource]: Parent-child relationships and the psychological well-being of in vitro fertilization children at adolescence. Child Development, 2001. Vol. 72, no. 2, pp. 599–608. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  16. Growth and development of children conceived by in vitro fertilization [Electronic resource]. Brandes J.M., Scher A., Itzkovits J., Thaler L., Sarid M. & Gershoni-Baruch R. Pediatrics, 1992. Vol. 90, no. 3, pp. 424–429. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  17. Health of children born as a result of in vitro fertilization [Electronic resource]. R. Klemetti, [et al.]. Pediatrics, 2006. Vol. 118, no. 5, pp. 1819–1827. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  18. Iatrogenic multiple pregnancy. Higher risk than a spontaneous one? [Electronic resource]. I. Nyirati, H. Orvos, G. Bartfai, L. Kovacs. Journal of Reproductive Medicine, 1997. Vol. 42, no. 11, pp. 695–698. (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  19. Impact of infertility treatments on the health of newborns [Electronic resource]. V. Addor, B. Santos-Eggimann, C.L. Fawer, R. Paccaud, A. Calame. Fertility and Sterility, 1998. Vol. 69, no. 2, pp. 210–215. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  20. Incidence of congenital malformations in children born after ICSI [Electronic resource]. U.-B. Wennerholm, [et al.]. Human reproduction, 2000. Vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 944–948. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  21. Kelly-Vance L., Anthis K., Needelman H. Assisted Reproduction Versus Spontaneous Conception [Electronic resource]: A Comparison of the Developmental Outcomes in Twins. The Journal of Genetic Psychology, 2004. Vol. 165, no. 2, pp. 157–167. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  22. Lower risks of adverse outcome in twins conceived by artificial reproductive techniques compared with spontaneously conceived twins [Electronic resource]. H. Minakami, Y. Honma, S. Matsubara, T. Koike, L. Sato, A. Uchida, [et al.]. Human Reproduction, 1998. Vol. 13, no. 7, pp. 2005–2008. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  23. Medical, cognitive, emotional and behavioral outcomes in school-age children conceived by in vitro fertilization [Electronic resource]. R. Levy-Shiff, E. Vakil, L. Dimitrovsky, [et al.]. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 1998. Vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 320–329. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  24. Neurological sequelae in children born after in-vitro fertilization [Electronic resource]: A population-based study. B. Stromberg, G. Dahlquist, A. Ericson, O. Finnstrom, [et al.]. The Lancet, 2002. Vol. 359, no. 9305, pp. 461-465. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  25. Paneth N.S. The problem of low birth weight [Electronic resource]. The Future of Children, 1995. Vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 19–34. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  26. Perinatal outcome of pregnancies after assisted reproduction [Electronic resource]: A case-control study. M. Dhont, P. De Sutler, G. Ruyssinck, G. Martens, A. Bekaert. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1999. Vol. 181, no. 3, pp. 688–695. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  27. Pregnancies, growth and development of children conceived by subzonal injection of spermatozoa [Electronic resource]. C. Patrat, [et al.]. Human reproduction, 1999. Vol. 14, no. 9, pp. 2404–2410. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  28. Psychological follow-up study of 5-year-old ICSI children [Electronic resource]. I. Ponjaert-Kristoffersen, T. Tjus, J. Nekkebroeck, J. Squires, D. Verteґ, M. Heimann, [et al.]. Human Reproduction, 2004. Vol. 19, no. 12, pp. 2791–2797. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  29. Squires J., Kaplan P. Developmental Outcomes of Children Born After Assisted Reproductive Technologies [Electronic resource]. Infants & Young Children, 2007. Vol. 20, no. 1, pp. 2–10. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  30. Sutcliffe A.G., Ludwig M. Outcome of assisted reproduction [Electronic resource]. The Lancet, 2007. Vol. 370, no. 9584, pp. 351–359. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  31. The Mother–Child Relationship Following In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) [Electronic resource]: Infant Attachment, Responsivity and Maternal Sensitivity. F.L. Gibson, J.A. Ungerer, C.A. McMahon, G.I. Leslie, D.M. Saunders. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 2000. Vol. 41, no. 8, pp. 1015–1023. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  32. The psychological status at school age of children conceived by in vitro fertilization [Electronic resource]. T.R. Montgomery, F. Aiello, Adelman R.D., Wasylyshyn N., Andrews M.C., [et al.]. Human Reproduction, 1999. Vol. 14, no. 8, pp. 2162–2167. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).
  33. The risk of major birth defects after intracytoplasmatic sperm injection and in vitro fertilization [Electronic resource]. M. Hansen, [et al.]. The New England Journal of Medicine, 2002. Vol. 346, no. 10, pp. 725–730. Available at: (Accessed: 01.11.2014).

Information About the Authors

Elena V. Solovyeva, PhD in Psychology, Applicant, Chair of Age Psychology, Department of Psychology of Education, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education (MSUPE), Moscow, Russian Federation, Moscow, Russia, e-mail:



Total: 2340
Previous month: 4
Current month: 1


Total: 2365
Previous month: 3
Current month: 1