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Hum Reprod. 2003 Jun;18(6):1244-9.

Assisted reproduction techniques for HIV serodiscordant couples: 18 months of experience.

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Centre d'AMP de Strasbourg, Service de Gynécologie-Obstétrique, CMCO-SIHCUS, 19 rue Louis Pasteur - BP 120 - 67303 Schiltigheim, France.



Assisted reproduction techniques can minimize the risk of infection and treat possible sterility associated with serodiscordant couples.


We assessed the efficacy of these techniques in 57 couples in which at least one partner had human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) infection that was currently under control (47 men and 10 women). The semen of seropositive men was prepared and tested for viruses. Assisted reproduction techniques included intrauterine insemination (IUI), IVF and especially ICSI, with ovarian stimulation that used a long agonist protocol and recombinant FSH. Embryos were transferred on day 3 after oocyte retrieval.


For couples with seropositive men, five IUI and 49 IVF or ICSI attempts were perfomed, whilst for seropositive women these numbers were three IUI and 12 IVF or ICSI. No pregnancy occurred following the eight IUI trials. Seroconversion was not observed in any partners of seropositive men. Efficacy of treatment for these couples with ICSI was good, the clinical pregnancy rate per embryo transfer was 48.8%. The results for seropositive women were disappointing, with a clinical pregnancy rate per embryo transfer of 9.1%. Fourteen babies from 47 treated couples have so far been born and no pregnancies from IUI.


Assisted reproduction techniques and particularly ICSI provide HIV-1-seropositive men with a safe and highly effective means of fathering children. These techniques may be less effective for seropositive women.

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