Infertility is a major problem with a prevalence around 9% in the world and a life time prevalence of about 25% in Iran. Assisted reproductive technique (ART), came into the world on 1978 with the birth of Luise Brown, but early days of ART in Iran was not clear. The aim of this study is to investigate the history of ART in Iran and its time line in this Islamic society.
Materials and methods
The pioneers in ART were recognized and recruited through snow ball sampling and introduction by Iranian Society of Reproductive Medicine (ISRM). Deep interview was arranged with each pioneer who accepted to participate in the research and written texts of the interviews were certified by them with the permission of publication. Cross referencing was used to make a perspective of launching the ART in Iran as there was not adequate published documents and papers in this regard. For the first achievements only those with a reference was accepted even if it is a newspaper or magazine
Although planning and challenges to establish ART centers was started in 1983, this plan was practically formed in 1985. Efforts were continued till the first Iranian ART baby was born in 1990. The economic ravages of the war between Iran and Iraq, followed by religiously driven mistrust of advanced fertility modalities such as IVF, were main reasons for this tardiness. Since permission for ART was issued through an Islamic edict by the Iranian supreme leader in 1984. Facilitators of progress of the ART achievements in Iran were the acceptance of clergy scholars by issuing decrees (FATWAs) which is considered as important as law in our country. Currently, more than 80 ART centers are working in Iran along with acceptable success rate.
Although the time difference between the first pregnancy via ART overseas and that in Iran is 17 years; be that as it may, the rapid development in the use of various ART methods in Iran has been remarkable.