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Paulson R.J.,University of Southern California | Fauser B.C.J.M.,University Utrecht | Vuong L.T.N.,University of Medicine and Pharmacy | Doody K.,Center for Assisted Reproduction
Fertility and Sterility | Year: 2016

One of the barriers to access to fertility care is the relative complexity of fertility treatments. If these can be simplified, more patients may be able to take advantage of these treatments. In this overview, we review the potential benefits of simplifying ovarian stimulation by the means of four distinct methods: 1) using mild stimulation for IVF cycles; 2) using in vitro maturation to allow for the retrieval of oocytes that are not yet fully mature yet have the potential to result in live births; 3) conducting IVF in modified natural cycles which use no exogenous FSH stimulation; and 4) allowing embryo culture to take place in a novel intravaginal incubation system. These methods are considered to be somewhat unconventional, yet they have all been shown to lead to live births. In the era of individualized patient care, these techniques present viable alternatives to standard treatment. As experience and outcome data accumulate, they may prove to be not just alternatives to standard treatment, but potentially first-line treatment choices. © 2016 American Society for Reproductive Medicine, Published by Elsevier Inc.

Williams R.S.,University of Florida | Doody K.J.,Center for Assisted Reproduction | Schattman G.L.,Cornell University | Adashi E.Y.,Brown University
American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology | Year: 2015

The clinic-specific public reporting of assisted reproductive technology (ART) outcomes has been mandated by Federal law since 1992. As of late, a series of scientific and medical advances have all but deconstructed ART practice patterns thereby demanding that current reporting platforms be reevaluated for their continued ability to afford the public with credible and understandable estimates of conception per initiated cycle. In this Clinical Opinion, we trace the history of the public reporting of ART, describe the recently modified (present day) reporting platform, and explore potential future improvements thereof. © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Fatemi H.M.,Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel | Doody K.,Center for Assisted Reproduction | Griesinger G.,University of Lubeck | Witjes H.,MSD | Mannaerts B.,MSD
Human Reproduction | Year: 2013

Study Question Is the ovarian response to controlled ovarian stimulation (COS) related to the ongoing pregnancy rate when taking into account the main covariates affecting the probabilities of pregnancy following fresh embryo transfer? Summary Answer In patients treated with corifollitropin alfa or daily recombinant FSH (rFSH) in a GnRH-antagonist protocol, a high ovarian response did not compromise ongoing pregnancy rates and increased cumulative pregnancy rates following fresh and frozen-thawed embryo transfer.WHAT IS KNOWN AND WHAT THIS PAPER ADDSA strong association between the number of oocytes and pregnancy rates has been described but this is the first comprehensive analysis assessing important confounders that might affect pregnancy rates. Study Design In a large, prospective, double-blind, randomized trial (Engage; n = 1506), patients were treated with either a single dose of 150 μg corifollitropin alfa or daily 200 IU rFSH for the first 7 days of COS in a GnRH-antagonist (ganirelix) protocol. In this retrospective analysis, patients were categorized into five groups according to the number of oocytes retrieved (0-5, 6-9, 10-13, 14-18 and >18 oocytes). The number of good-quality embryos obtained and transferred, as well as the ongoing pregnancy rates, live birth rates and cumulative ongoing pregnancy rates per started cycle by group were evaluated. Univariate analysis was performed to identify factors that predict the chance of ongoing pregnancy. Logistic regression analysis on the dependent variables ongoing pregnancy and cumulative ongoing pregnancy, respectively, including oocyte category as an independent factor in the model, was performed by treatment group (corifollitropin alfa and rFSH) and overall. The likelihood of ongoing pregnancy and cumulative ongoing pregnancy was then evaluated taking into account ovarian response as well as other identified significant predictors of success.PARTICIPANTS AND SETTINGIn total, 1506 patients had been randomized in a ratio of 1:1 to either of the treatment groups. Patients were aged ≤36 years and had a body weight >60 kg. Main Results and the Role of Chance The ongoing pregnancy rates per started cycle increased in the corifollitropin alfa and rFSH groups from 31.9 and 31.3%, respectively, in the lowest response group (0-5 oocytes) to 41.9 and 43.4% in the highest response group (>18 oocytes) with a significant linear trend (P = 0.04). The cumulative pregnancy rates taking frozen-thawed embryo transfers into account increased from 33.0 and 31.3% to 60.8 and 55.9% in the corifollitropin alfa and rFSH groups, respectively. Univariate logistic regression analyses of ongoing pregnancy showed significant effects for the following factors: embryo transfer (double or single, P < 0.01), region of treatment (North America or Europe, P < 0.01), progesterone level on the day of hCG (>1.5 or ≤1.5 ng/ml, P < 0.01), start day of the stimulation (cycle day 2 or 3, P = 0.02) and age (P = 0.04). Logistic regression analysis of ongoing pregnancy using 10-13 oocytes as the reference category, per treatment group and overall revealed estimated odds ratios (OR) close to 1.0 versus the reference, without statistically significant differences with and without adjustment for significant predictive factors affecting pregnancy rates. Unadjusted OR for cumulative pregnancy reflected significantly lower odds of pregnancy for the lowest response group and significantly higher odds of pregnancy for the highest response group in comparison with the reference. When adjusted for the predictive factors, the cumulative ongoing pregnancy OR (95% confidence interval) of the highest response group versus the reference group was 1.87 (1.34-2.59) when the data of both treatment groups were pooled.BIAS, CONFOUNDING AND OTHER REASONS FOR CAUTIONThe number of covariates included in the final model was limited to five major factors and not all other potentially significant predictive factors were available for evaluation.GENERALIZABILITY TO OTHER POPULATIONSThis analysis is limited to IVF patients with a regular menstrual cycle up to 36 years of age and a body weight >60 and ≤90 kg treated with a GnRH-antagonist protocol and cannot be extrapolated to other patient populations or treatment regimens. Study Funding/Competing Interest (S)Financial support for this study was provided by Merck, Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co. Inc, Whitehouse Station, NJ, USA. Medical writing and editorial assistance was provided by P. Milner, PhD, of PAREXEL, UK. This assistance was funded by Merck, Sharp & Dohme Corp., a subsidiary of Merck & Co. Inc., Whitehouse Station, NJ. Author conflicts of interest are as follows: H.F. has received honorarium for expert meeting with MSD, lectures for various companies; K.D. has received consultancy fees for Ferring and TEVA Pharmaceutical, payment for lectures and speaker bureaus for Ferring and Watson Pharmaceutical; G.G. has received honoraria as speaker, and served as advisory board member for Ferring, Merck Serono, MSD and IBSA. He has received travel grants from Merck Serono, MSD and grants from Ferring and Merck Serono; H.W. and B.M. are employees of MSD. Trial Registration Numberntc00696800. © 2012 The Author.

Baker V.L.,Stanford University | Jones C.A.,IBSA U.S. Operations | Doody K.,Center for Assisted Reproduction | Foulk R.,Idaho Center for Reproductive Medicine | And 9 more authors.
Human reproduction (Oxford, England) | Year: 2014

STUDY QUESTION: Is the ongoing pregnancy rate with a new aqueous formulation of subcutaneous progesterone (Prolutex(®)) non-inferior to vaginal progesterone (Endometrin(®)) when used for luteal phase support of in vitro fertilization?SUMMARY ANSWER: In the per-protocol (PP) population, the ongoing pregnancy rates per oocyte retrieval at 12 weeks of gestation were comparable between Prolutex and Endometrin (41.6 versus 44.4%), with a difference between groups of -2.8% (95% confidence interval (CI) -9.7, 4.2), consistent with the non-inferiority of subcutaneous progesterone for luteal phase support.WHAT IS KNOWN ALREADY: Luteal phase support has been clearly demonstrated to improve pregnancy rates in women undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF). Because of the increased risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome associated with the use of hCG, progesterone has become the treatment of choice for luteal phase support.STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION: This prospective, open-label, randomized, controlled, parallel-group, multicentre, two-arm, non-inferiority study was performed at eight fertility clinics. A total of 800 women, aged 18-42 years, with a BMI of ≤ 30 kg/m(2), with <3 prior completed assisted reproductive technology (ART) cycles, exhibiting baseline (Days 2-3) FSH of ≤ 15 IU/L and undergoing IVF at 8 centres (seven private, one academic) in the USA, were enrolled from January 2009 through June 2011.PARTICIPANTS/MATERIALS, SETTING, METHODS: In total, 800 women undergoing IVF were randomized after retrieval of at least three oocytes to an aqueous preparation of progesterone administered subcutaneously (25 mg daily) or vaginal progesterone (100 mg bid daily). Randomization was performed to enrol 100 patients at each site using a randomization list that was generated with Statistical Analysis Software (SAS(®)). If a viable pregnancy occurred, progesterone treatment was continued up to 12 weeks of gestation.MAIN RESULTS AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE: Using a PP analysis, which included all patients who received an embryo transfer (Prolutex = 392; Endometrin = 390), the ongoing pregnancy rate per retrieval for subcutaneous versus vaginal progesterone was 41.6 versus 44.4%, with a difference between groups of -2.8% (95% CI -9.7, 4.2), consistent with the non-inferiority of subcutaneous progesterone for luteal phase support. In addition, rates of initial positive β-hCG (56.4% subcutaneous versus 59.0% vaginal; 95% CI -9.5, 4.3), clinical intrauterine pregnancy with fetal cardiac activity (42.6 versus 46.4%; 95% CI -10.8, 3.2), implantation defined as number of gestational sacs divided by number of embryos transferred (33.2 versus 35.1%; 95% CI -7.6, 4.0), live birth (41.1 versus 43.1%; 95% CI -8.9, 4.9) and take-home baby (41.1 versus 42.6%; 95% CI -8.4, 5.4) were comparable. Both formulations were well-tolerated, with no difference in serious adverse events. Analysis with the intention-to-treat population also demonstrated no difference for any outcomes between the treatment groups.LIMITATIONS, REASONS FOR CAUTION: The conclusions are limited to the progesterone dosing regimen studied and duration of treatment for the patient population examined in this study.WIDER IMPLICATIONS OF THE FINDINGS: Subcutaneous progesterone represents a novel option for luteal phase support in women undergoing IVF who for personal reasons prefer not to use a vaginal preparation or who wish to avoid the side effects of vaginal or i.m. routes of administration.STUDY FUNDING/COMPETING INTERESTS: The study was funded by Institut Biochimique SA (IBSA). CAJ, BC, ST and CJ are employees of IBSA. FH currently consults for IBSA.TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: NCT00828191. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology.

Doody K.J.,Center for Assisted Reproduction | Devroey P.,Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel | Leader A.,University of Ottawa | Witjes H.,Biostatistics and Research Decision science | Mannaerts B.M.,Global Clinical Research
Reproductive BioMedicine Online | Year: 2011

The relationship between endogenous LH concentrations and ongoing pregnancy rates among normogonadotrophic patients undergoing ovarian stimulation in a gonadotrophin-releasing hormone antagonist protocol were examined. In the Engage trial, 1506 patients received corifollitropin alfa (150 μg) or daily recombinant FSH (rFSH) (200 IU) for the first 7 days of stimulation with 0.25 mg ganirelix from stimulation day 5. Patients were retrospectively stratified by serum LH percentiles (<25th, 25th-75th and >75th) on stimulation day 8 and day of human chorionic gonadotrophin administration. Odds ratios (OR) with and without adjustment for predictive factors for ongoing pregnancy were estimated. LH concentration was not associated with pregnancy rates in either treatment arm, in contrast to ovarian response and serum progesterone. With adjustment for these predictors and age, OR (95% confidence interval) for ongoing pregnancy on stimulation day 8 for LH categories P75 versus ≤P75 and P75 were 0.75 (0.53-1.06), 1.26 (0.87-1.83) and 0.70 (0.46-1.09) in the corifollitropin alfa arm and 0.80 (0.54-1.17), 1.28 (0.87-1.87) and 0.73 (0.46-1.16) in the rFSH arm respectively. There was also no significant difference in pregnancy rates between LH categories on day of human chorionic gonadotrophin administration with either treatment. During ovarian stimulation for IVF/intracytoplasmic sperm injection, circulating concentrations of LH should not become too high or too low as the development of mature eggs and the likelihood of ongoing pregnancy may be negatively affected. Gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) analogues are applied to prevent premature LH rises but certain regimens may result in relatively low circulating LH concentrations. To examine the relationship between circulating LH concentrations and ongoing pregnancy rates in a GnRH antagonist protocol, data from a large randomized trial, Engage, were retrospectively analysed. In this trial, 1506 patients received corifollitropin alfa or daily recombinant FSH for the first 7 days of stimulation and ganirelix (a GnRH antagonist) from stimulation day 5 onwards. Patients were grouped by their LH concentration (low, normal or high) on stimulation day 8 and the day of human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG) administration to trigger final egg maturation. The chance of ongoing pregnancy by LH category, with or without adjustment for other factors affecting pregnancy was calculated. There was no significant difference in the chance of pregnancy between patients in the different LH categories, regardless of the day of assessment or the treatment group. In contrast, circulating progesterone (another hormone produced by mature follicles) and the number of eggs retrieved clearly affected the chance of pregnancy. These analyses showed that ongoing pregnancy rates are not influenced by either low or high circulating LH concentrations when using a GnRH antagonist protocol. © 2011, Reproductive Healthcare Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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