Single-day abstinence increases IVF pregnancies

  • Borges E & al.
  • Andrology
  • 20 Dec 2018

  • curated by Craig Hicks
  • Clinical Essentials
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Takeaway

  • A single day of ejaculatory abstinence (EA) significantly improves in vitro fertilization (IVF) implantation rate and tends to increase chances of pregnancy, but abstinence >4 days negatively affects sperm DNA and intracytoplasmic sperm injection outcomes.

Why this matters

  • Guidelines from WHO and other bodies recommend inconsistent EA lengths before semen analysis.

Study design

  • Researchers studied patients undergoing conventional semen analysis at an IVF center (N=818; mean age, 38.17±6.39 years), investigating associations among EA length, semen parameters, and intracytoplasmic sperm injection outcomes.
  • Funding: None disclosed.

Key results

  • Researchers found positive correlations between (unstandardized regression coefficient [B], 95% CIs):
    • Increased EA length and semen volume: 0.097 (0.040-0.154; P=.001).
    • Sperm count/mL: 2.267 (0.308-4.226; P=.023).
    • Total sperm count: 13.813 (7.270-20.356; P<.001>
    • Total motile sperm count: 6.808 (3.130-10.486; P<.001>
  • Researchers found negative correlations between:
    • Increasing EA length and fertilization rate: −0.983 (−1.954 to −0.011; P=.047).
    • Blastocyst formation rate on day 5: −2.384 (−4.552 to −0.216; P=.031).
    • Implantation rate: −3.299 (−5.388 to −1.260; P=.002).
    • Pregnancy rate: exponentiation of the B coefficient, 0.506 (0.290-0.882; P=.016).

Limitations

  • DNA fragmentation assessment was performed by sperm chromatin dispersion.

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