Dexamethasone As a Supplement for Exogenous Gonadotropin to Improve Ovarian Response of Women over 35 Years Undergoing IVF/ICSI Cycles

Document Type : Original Article


1 Endocrinology and Female Infertility Department, Royan Institute

2 Obstetrics and Gynecology Department, Shaheed Akbarabadi Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Science

3 Obstetrics and Gynecology Department, Imam Khomeini Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Science

4 Epidemiology Department, Royan Institute


Background: With aging, the ovarian reserve is decreased and that is a major contributor to poor ovarian response to exogenous gonadotropins. The aim of the present study is to evaluate the role of Dexamethasone on ovarian response in infertile patients aged over 35 years undergoing IVF/ICSI cycles.
Materials and Methods: In this triple blind placbo-control clinical trial study, a total of 72 infertile women over age 35, undergoing IVF/ICSI cycles, referred to Royan Institute from May 2000 to May 2002 were selected. Dexamethasone co-treatment (1mg/d) was started on the 21st of their preceding menstrual cycle and it was continued until oocyte aspiration. The main outcome measures were number of retrieved oocytes, number of fertilized and transferred embryos, number of used HMG, serum E2 level on HCG injection day, and pregnancy rate.
Results: There was no significant statistical difference in age, duration of infertility, Body mass index, hormonal tests, number of retrieved oocytes and transferred embryos. However, the number of used HMG was significantly lower in Dexamethasone group compared to placebo group (30.6±13.39 versus 41.64 ± 18.34) (p <0.05).
Conclusion: The addition of dexamethasone 1mg/d to standard long protocol decreased the number of HMG used in patients over 35 years who hold known risk of low ovarian response.