The diagnosis of unexplained infertility, to this day, raises a lot of controversies. In simpler terms, a patient is diagnosed with unexplained infertility when the specialist fails to find any complications preventing a successful conception.
A recently published study compared IVF/ICSI (In-vitro Fertilization/Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection) and IUI (Intrauterine Insemination) as a treatment for unexplained infertility. The results inferred that IVF/ICSI has better success rates than IUI to treat unexplained infertility cases.
A total of 855 IVF/ICSI and 804 IUI cycles were compared in the study. The study recorded differences in pregnancy and live birth per cycle in all the age groups, except for women 40 and older.
The increased chances of pregnancy with IUI were recorded in women experiencing secondary infertility. The successful conception with IUI was seen during the first two cycles, paired with a bi-follicular response to the stimulation.
In the IVF/ICSI, the pregnancy rates were high during the initial two cycles in the patients complaining about secondary infertility. However, the success rate was recorded in individuals receiving two embryos in this case.
These reports are aligned with the suggestions from The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) that recommends IVF as a primary treatment following two years of infertility in couples.
The data used in the study was collected from two ART centers. The researchers actively compared the data pertaining to the overall clinical pregnancy, ongoing pregnancy, and the live birth rates in patients that availed one of the two primary infertility treatments – IVF/ICSI and IUI. The researchers also did a comparative analysis based on the different age groups of the female patients.
1-Merviel, P., Labarre, M., James, P. et al. Should intrauterine inseminations still be proposed in cases of unexplained infertility? Retrospective study and literature review. Arch Gynecol Obstet (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00404-021-06351-w