Risk of death in pregnancy achieved through oocyte donation in patients with Turner syndrome: A national survey

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Fertility and Sterility








Aortic dissection; Aortic rupture; Donor oocyte; Pregnancy; Screening; Turner's syndrome


Objective: To determine the risk of death in pregnant women with Turner syndrome who were treated with oocyte donation, and to ascertain the prevalence of preconception cardiac screening in these patients. Design: Survey and literature review. Setting: Academic infertility center. Participant(s): All 258 donor-egg programs in the 1997 Assisted Reproductive Technology Success Rates publication from the Society for Artificial Reproductive Technology were surveyed by fax or telephone. Main Outcome Measure(s): Death in pregnancy conceived through oocyte donation and proportion of patients prescreened with echocardiography. Result(s): One hundred thirty-four (52%) programs reported 146 Turner patients treated, resulting in 101 pregnancies. One patient died from aortic rupture while awaiting treatment; 72 (49.3%) patients were pre-screened with echocardiography. No deaths in pregnancy were reported. A literature review identified four case reports of Turner patients who died during pregnancy in the United States during the same time period. Conclusion(s): The maternal risk of death from rupture or dissection of the aorta in pregnancy may be 2% or higher. Patients with Turner syndrome have not been adequately screened with echocardiography before treatment. Specialists who treat patients with Turner syndrome need to be aware of their cardiac risk and its potential exacerbation from the increased cardiac demands of pregnancy. © 2003 by American Society for Reproductive Medicine.