Ovulation patterns affect the offspring sex ratios and change with the women's age

Misao Fukuda*, Kiyomi Fukuda, Shawn Mason, Kenichi Tatsumi, Takashi Shimizu, Taiichiro Akahori, Tsunekazu Matsumoto, Masahiro Tahara, Claus Yding Andersen

*Corresponding author for this work


BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to evaluate whether women's ages at conception and the ratio of male to female infants are associated with various ovulation patterns.

METHODS: An observational clinical study was conducted in private OB/GYN clinics. Infertile women with regular menstrual cycles receiving intrauterine insemination (IUI) and/or in-vitro fertilization (IVF) had their ovulation patterns monitored in three consecutive spontaneous cycles receiving infertility treatment in the third cycle. Ovulation patterns were also observed in women with slight ovulation disorders during IUI and/or IVF in clomiphene citrate stimulated cycles. All the pregnant women's ages at conception and their respective offspring sex ratios were compared to various ovulation patterns. Statistical evaluation was performed using ANOVA, unpaired t test, χ2 test or Fisher's exact test, heterogeneity χ2 test, odds ratios at 95% confidence intervals and logistic regression.

RESULTS: Contralateral ovulation (i.e. ovulation jumping from ovary to the other) was more often observed in relatively younger women, who showed a higher probability of having a boy than after ipsilateral ovulation. There was a significantly higher frequency of boys being conceived following three consecutive ovulations with a left-left-right (LLR) ovulation pattern, while three ovulations from the left ovary (LLL) were associated with a higher frequency of girls. We also found two consecutive menstrual cycles the left-right (LR) ovulation pattern showed a similar significant difference compared to the left-left (LL) ovulation. Both the infertile and infertile + fertile women groups showing right-sided ovulation, regardless of age, showed significantly higher offspring sex ratio compared to left-sided ovulation, which was not observed in the group of fertile women alone.

CONCLUSIONS: LLR, LR and contralateral ovulation happens more often in younger women and favors male offspring in infertile women. Right-sided ovulation favors male offspring in infertile and infertile + fertile women, which was not observed in the group of fertile women.

Original languageEnglish
Article number159
JournalReproductive Health
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jul 2022


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