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Reprod Biol Endocrinol. 2013 Oct 5;11:98. doi: 10.1186/1477-7827-11-98.

A retrospective study on IVF/ICSI outcome in patients with anti-nuclear antibodies: the effects of prednisone plus low-dose aspirin adjuvant treatment.

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Centre for Reproductive Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Anhui Provincial Hospital affiliated with Anhui Medical University, Hefei, Anhui 230000, China.



Anti-nuclear antibodies (ANA) are suspected of having relevance to adverse reproductive events.


This study aims to investigate the potential effect of ANA on IVF/ICSI outcome and the therapeutic role of prednisone plus low-dose aspirin (P + A) adjuvant treatment in ANA + patients. The first IVF/ICSI cycles without P + A of sixty-six ANA + women were enrolled as the ANA + group, and the 233 first IVF/ICSI cycles of matched ANA- women served as the ANA- group. The ANA + group was divided into the Titre < =1:320 subgroup and the Titre > 1:320 subgroup. Twenty-one ANA + women with adverse outcomes in their first cycles (ANA + cycles without P + A) received P + A adjuvant treatment for three months before the second IVF/ICSI cycle (ANA + cycles with P + A). The clinical characteristics and the IVF/ICSI outcomes were compared, respectively, between 1) the ANA + group and the ANA- group, 2) the Titre < =1:320 subgroup and the Titre > 1:320 subgroup, and 3) the ANA + cycles without P + A and the ANA + cycles with P + A.


No significant differences were observed between each of the two-group pairs in the clinical characteristics. The ANA + group exhibited significantly lower MII oocytes rate, normal fertilisation, pregnancy and implantation rates, as well as remarkably higher abnormal fertilisation and early miscarriage rates. The Titre < =1:320 subgroup's IVF/ICSI outcomes were as poor as those of the Titre > 1:320 subgroup. After the P + A adjuvant treatment, the number of two pro-nuclei, perfect embryos and available embryos, and the implantation rate increased significantly.


These observations suggest that ANA could exert a detrimental effect on IVF/ICSI outcome that might not be titre-dependent, and P + A adjuvant treatment could be useful for ANA + patients. This hypothesis should be verified in further prospective randomised studies.

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