Effect of pretreatment with combined oral contraceptives on outcomes of assisted reproductive technology for women with polycystic ovary syndrome: a meta-analysis
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To evaluate the effect of pretreatment with combined oral contraceptives (COC) on outcomes in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) who underwent assisted reproductive technology for subfertility.
Two authors independently searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochran Library to identify and review articles published from October 1995 until December 2018 according to selection criteria. Outcomes are expressed as mean difference and odds ratio (OR) in a meta-analysis model.
A total of seven studies were included in this meta-analysis: one randomized controlled study and two prospective and four retrospective cohort studies. Meta-analysis showed that the COC pretreatment did not affect rate of clinical pregnancy (OR = 0.93, 95% confidence interval CI 0.65–1.34, I2 = 76%) or ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OR = 0.90, 95% CI 0.57–1.44, I2 = 0%). However, the rate of miscarriage in the COC group was significantly higher (OR = 1.33, 95% CI 1.02–1.72, I2 = 9%) and the rate of cumulative live birth was significantly lower compared with the control group (OR = 0.72, 95% CI 0.54–0.98, I2 = 55%). Subgroup analysis showed higher rates of miscarriage and lower rates of cumulative live birth in studies with a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) antagonist protocol (OR = 1.69, 95% CI 1.17–2.44, I2 = 0% and OR = 0.38, 95% CI 0.29–0.50, respectively).
Pretreatment with COC in women with PCOS before assisted reproductive technology may have an adverse effect on clinical outcomes, especially with a GnRH antagonist protocol.
KeywordsCombined oral contraceptives Assisted reproductive technology Polycystic ovary syndrome
This work was supported by a research fund of KMI (Korea Medical Institute).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflicts of interest
The authors have no financial disclosures to declare and no conflicts of interest to report.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Patient anonymity was completely preserved and the unique nature of identifying patients was not included in this manuscript.
This study was based on retrospective review of published studies, it was not necessary to obtain informed consent from individual participants.
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