Objective: To examine the relationship between endometriosis and preclinical abortions and to evaluate the effect of gonadotropin-releasing hormone analogue (GnRH-a) therapy on these pregnancies. Design and Patients: Of 67 women with severe endometriosis referred to us for in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer (IVF-ET), 32 underwent ovarian stimulation for oocyte retrieval with menotropins (protocol A), whereas the other 35 were admitted for the procedure after a 6-month period of hormonal suppression with a GnRH agonist (protocol B). The clinical impact of the preclinical and clinical pregnancies in both treatment protocols were evaluated on the basis of oocyte classification and embryo quality score. Setting: All patients were treated in our IVF Unit. Main Outcome Measure: Clinical pregnancy was used as our main outcome measure of success. Results: A significantly higher number of preclinical pregnancies (P < 0.0001) occurred in patients treated by protocol A. After GnRH-a treatment, the preclinical pregnancy rate declined significantly (P < 0.0001), whereas the clinical pregnancy rate per cycle and per transfer rose significantly (P < 0.0001 and P < 0.0001, respectively). Furthermore, clinical pregnancies had a significantly better mean embryo quality score in comparison with preclinical pregnancies (P < 0.0001). Conclusions: It is concluded that combining GnRH-a therapy before IVF-ET provides an improved treatment modality for preclinical abortions and infertility associated with severe endometriosis.
- Preclinical abortions
- gonadotropin-releasing hormone
- in vitro fertilization