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Hum Reprod. 2004 May;19(5):1121-6.

Demonstration of Chlamydia trachomatis IgG antibodies in the male partner of the infertile couple is correlated with a reduced likelihood of achieving pregnancy.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Science/Obstetrics and Gynecology, UmeĆ„ University, Sweden.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of Chlamydia trachomatis among both men and women seeking help at an infertility clinic, and to prospectively follow the effect of previous infection on pregnancy rates and pregnancy outcome after a long follow-up period (mean 37 months).

METHODS:

A total of 244 infertile couples was tested for C. trachomatis IgG antibodies, and IgG(+) couples were also tested for C. trachomatis DNA by PCR in a first-void urine sample. Study parameters were serology, PCR results, clinical diagnoses, treatments, pregnancy rates and pregnancy outcome. As controls, age-matched and spontaneously pregnant women were also tested with serology.

RESULTS:

The prevalence of IgG antibodies was 24.2, 20.1 and 15.6% among infertile women, infertile men and control women respectively. The prevalence of C. trachomatis DNA was 6.8 and 7.1% among tested women and men respectively. The presence of C. trachomatis IgG antibodies in women was related to tubal factor infertility (TFI) (P = 0.002). Decreased pregnancy rates were seen in couples where the man was IgG(+) (P = 0.005) with no relationship to TFI. Among women who achieved pregnancy, there was no difference in pregnancy outcome between IgG(+) or negative couples.

CONCLUSIONS:

C. trachomatis IgG antibodies in the man of the infertile couple was related to decreased pregnancy rates and to the presence of IgG antibodies in the woman. There was a high prevalence of asymptomatic persistent infections among infertile couples.

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