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Embryo Morphokinetics and Blastocyst Development After GnRH Agonist versus hCG Triggering in Normo-ovulatory Women: a Secondary Analysis of a Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial

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Gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) for final oocyte maturation, along with vitrification of all usable embryos followed by transfer in a subsequent frozen-thawed cycle, is the most effective strategy to avoid ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS). However, less is known about the ovulation induction triggers effect on early embryo development and blastocyst formation. This study is a secondary analysis of a multicenter, randomized controlled trial, with the aim to compare embryo development in normo-ovulatory women, randomized to GnRHa or human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) trigger. In all, 4056 retrieved oocytes were observed, 1998 from the GnRHa group (216 women) and 2058 from the hCG group (218 women). A number of retrieved oocytes, mature and fertilized oocytes, and high-quality embryos and blastocysts were similar between the groups. A sub-analysis in 250 women enrolled at the main trial site including 2073 oocytes was conducted to compare embryo morphokinetics and cleavage patterns with EmbryoScope time-lapse system. In total, 1013 oocytes were retrieved from the GnRHa group (124 women) and 1060 oocytes were retrieved from the hCG group (126 women). Morphokinetic parameters and cleavage patterns were comparable between the groups. However, embryos derived from the GnRHa group were less likely to perform rolling during their development than the embryos from the hCG trigger group (OR = 0.41 (95%CI 0.25; 0.67), p-value 0.0003). The comparable results on embryo development and utilization rates between the GnRHa and hCG triggers is of clinical relevance to professionals and infertile patients, when GnRHa trigger and freeze-all is performed to avoid OHSS development. ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT02746562.

Original languageEnglish
JournalReproductive sciences (Thousand Oaks, Calif.)
Volume28
Issue number10
Pages (from-to)2972-2981
Number of pages10
ISSN1933-7191
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, Society for Reproductive Investigation.

Copyright:
Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

    Research areas

  • Blastocyst formation, Embryo development, GnRHa, hCG, Morphokinetiks, Ovulation trigger

ID: 64828642