Native gonadotropin-releasing hormone for triggering follicular maturation in polycystic ovary syndrome patients undergoing human menopausal gonadotropin ovulation induction

Z Blumenfeld, N Lang, A Amit, L Kahana, N Yoffe
Fertility and Sterility 1994, 62 (3): 456-60

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the role of GnRH administration instead of hCG for triggering follicular maturation in patients with polycystic ovaries (PCO) undergoing hMG ovulation induction when the late follicular 17-beta-E2 levels are > 1,600 pg/mL (> 6,000 pmol/L).

DESIGN: Prospective study.

SETTING: Infertility outpatient clinic of Rambam Medical Center (general hospital), Haifa, Israel.

PATIENTS AND INTERVENTIONS: High serum E2 concentrations from 1,600 to > 3,600 pg/mL (2,800 +/- 68, mean +/- SD [6,000 to > 13,000 pmol/L, 10,279 +/- 2,500]) were experienced in 44 hMG cycles. The number of preovulatory follicles visualized by transvaginal sonography was between 8 and 25. An IV injection of 200 micrograms GnRH was administered for triggering final follicular maturation and ovulation, instead of 10,000 IU IM hCG, usually injected for this purpose, when the E2 levels are < or = 1,600 pg/mL (6,000 pmol/L). Serum E2 and P levels were monitored in the luteal phase. In cycles where E2 decreased to < or = 1,360 pg/mL (5,000 pmol/L), 2,500 IU hCG was administered once or twice at 3-day intervals for luteal support.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Pregnancy and abortion rates and the rate of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS).

RESULTS: Ten pregnancies were generated by the hMG and GnRH co-treatment in 32 patients (31.2%), in 44 cycles (23%). Two pregnancies aborted (20%), and eight generated eight healthy neonates. Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome occurred in two cycles of patients who were both pregnant. All but two of these PCO patients also have undergone 69 hMG and hCG cycles. Only 7 patients conceived (23%) 10 times (10/69, 14.5%); 5 of these pregnancies (50%) were multiple gestations (3 twins, 1 sextuplet, and 1 heptuplet gestation). The pregnancy wastage rate was 30% (3/10).

CONCLUSION: The use of native GnRH to trigger ovulation in PCO patients with late follicular E2 levels > 1,600 pg/mL (6,000 pmol/L) appears to be comparable with prior hMG and hCG cycles in terms of pregnancy rate, pregnancy wastage, risk of multiple gestation, and incidence of severe ovarian hyperstimulation. Unlike hMG and GnRH-agonist, which is associated with luteal phase dysfunction, hMG and GnRH offers a preferable alternative due to the ability of hCG luteal support and rescue, providing the E2 levels are not dangerously increased.

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