Endometriosis and ovulatory disorder

Reduced fertilisation in vitro compared with tubal and unexplained infertility

P. G. Wardle, E. A. Mclaughlin, A. Mcdermott, J. D. Mitchell, B. D. Ray, M. G.R. Hull

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In-vitro fertilisation (IVF) was carried out once for each of 104 couples who had a single cause of infertility. The group with tubal damage was used as the reference for normal fertilising capacity of both oocytes and sperms: the IVF rates were 68% (71/105) per mature oocyte and 88% (37/42) for couples from whom mature oocytes were recovered. Couples with poor sperm/mucus penetration had reduced IVF rates: 32% (12/38) per oocyte and 60% (9/15) per couple. Sperm function, which was judged normal by means of standard seminal analysis and mucus penetration, was confirmed by normal IVF in unexplained infertility: 63% (37/59) per oocyte and 90% (18/20) per couple. Despite favourable sperm function in their partners, women with endometriosis (without tubal damage) had reduced IVF rates: 33% (19/58) per oocyte and 60% (9/15) per couple. These findings indicate that ovulatory disorder is present in endometriosis and suggest that it causes the associated infertility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-239
Number of pages4
JournalThe Lancet
Issue number8449
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 1985
Externally publishedYes


Cite this

Wardle, P. G., Mclaughlin, E. A., Mcdermott, A., Mitchell, J. D., Ray, B. D., & Hull, M. G. R. (1985). Endometriosis and ovulatory disorder: Reduced fertilisation in vitro compared with tubal and unexplained infertility. The Lancet, 326(8449), 236-239. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(85)90289-2