Diminished ovarian reserve, premature ovarian failure, poor ovarian responder—a plea for universal definitions
- 724 Downloads
Diminished ovarian reserve (DOR) is characterized by poor fertility outcomes, and it represents a major challenge in reproductive medicine. Although consensus exists on the concept of DOR, its definition remains blurry. DOR has to be distinguished from premature ovarian failure (POF) and poor ovarian responders (POR), who are clearly defined.
We performed a PubMed search with the terms “diminished ovarian reserve” and “in vitro fertilization (IVF)” to assess the homogeneity of the definition of DOR.
Out of 121 articles, 14 gave a definition for DOR. Only one definition was used by two different teams (basal follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) value >10 IU/l) and eight teams used 11 different definitions. Among those, four definitions did not include antral follicular count (AFC) and seven studies did. Two definitions included the results from a previous cycle.
The heterogeneity in the definition of DOR used in these studies contributes to confusing results. Hence, there is a need for a clear definition of DOR. It appears that AFC and anti-Müllerian hormone (AMH) serum levels are the most relevant criteria. One option could be the use of the following definition: (i) woman with any of the risk factors for POR and/or (ii) an abnormal ovarian reserve test (i.e., antral follicular count (AFC) <5–7 follicles or AMH <0.5–1.1 ng/ml). This hypothesis requires validation.
KeywordsDiminished ovarian reserve IVF AMH AFC
- 4.Goldman MB, Thornton KL, Ryley D, Alper MM, Fung JL, Hornstein MD, et al. A randomized clinical trial to determine optimal infertility treatment in older couples: the Forty and Over Treatment Trial (FORT-T). Fertil Steril. 2014;101(6):1574.e1–2–81.e1–2.Google Scholar
- 12.Gleicher N, Kim A, Weghofer A, Shohat-Tal A, Lazzaroni E, Lee H-J, et al. Starting and resulting testosterone levels after androgen supplementation determine at all ages in vitro fertilization (IVF) pregnancy rates in women with diminished ovarian reserve (DOR). J Assist Reprod Genet. 2013;30(1):49–62.PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 18.Zhang HH, Xu PY, Wu J, Zou WW, Xu XM, Cao XY, et al. Dehydroepiandrosterone improves follicular fluid bone morphogenetic protein-15 and accumulated embryo score of infertility patients with diminished ovarian reserve undergoing in vitro fertilization: a randomized controlled trial. J Ovarian Res. 2014;7:93.PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar