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Preview: Human Reproduction Update - Advance Access

Human Reproduction Update Advance Access





Published: Thu, 15 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Last Build Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2018 02:48:48 GMT

 



The effect of pregnancy on endometriosis—facts or fiction?

Thu, 15 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
BACKGROUND
It is not uncommon for women with endometriosis to be advised that becoming pregnant might be a useful strategy to manage their symptoms and reduce disease progression. Consequently, many women diagnosed with endometriosis and motivated to become pregnant, may also have expectations regarding improvement of symptoms and the disease. However, study results on the effect of pregnancy on endometriosis are controversial and pregnancy in women with endometriosis is not always associated with improved symptoms. Moreover, there is increasing evidence that endometriosis may interfere with a successful pregnancy outcome.
OBJECTIVE AND RATIONALE
The objective was to evaluate the evidence on whether pregnancy and lactation has a beneficiary effect on growth characteristics and symptoms of endometriosis diagnosed prior to pregnancy.
SEARCH METHODS
A search for articles containing keywords related to pregnancy and endometriosis was performed via PubMed. Manuscripts dealing with a potential effect of pregnancy on endometriosis were systematically reviewed. We included English, French and German language publications on human studies from 1966 to May 2017. Bibliographies of these manuscripts were searched for further relevant literature.
OUTCOMES
Five small observational studies were identified concerning the longitudinal development of endometriotic lesions during and after pregnancy, four of medium and one of low quality. Eleven publications reported measurements of endometriomas during pregnancy and the postpartum period (the five studies just mentioned and six case reports). Another 22 case reports/small case series (maximum of five cases), six studies on histology of endometriotic lesions in pregnancy, plus eight studies on the role of pregnancy in initial development and recurrence of endometriosis were included. Few studies of very limited quality are available to evaluate the effect of pregnancy and the postnatal period on the development of endometriosis. The development of endometriosis is variable and there is no evidence that pregnancy can be expected to generally reduce the size and number of endometriotic lesions. Growth and structural changes of lesions during pregnancy may occur with decidualization. Results on the association between pregnancy and symptoms of endometriosis are controversial and strongly biased.
WIDER IMPLICATIONS
Available data on the development of endometriosis during and after pregnancy show fewer beneficial effects than previously reported. Therefore, women aiming for pregnancy on the background of endometriosis should not be told that pregnancy may be a strategy for managing symptoms and reducing progression of the disease.



The effect of paternal factors on perinatal and paediatric outcomes: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Thu, 15 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
BACKGROUND
Maternal factors, including increasing childbearing age and various life-style factors, are associated with poorer short- and long-term outcomes for children, whereas knowledge of paternal parameters is limited. Recently, increasing paternal age has been associated with adverse obstetric outcomes, birth defects, autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia in children.
OBJECTIVE AND RATIONALE
The aim of this systematic review is to describe the influence of paternal factors on adverse short- and long-term child outcomes.
SEARCH METHODS
PubMed, Embase and Cochrane databases up to January 2017 were searched. Paternal factors examined included paternal age and life-style factors such as body mass index (BMI), adiposity and cigarette smoking. The outcome variables assessed were short-term outcomes such as preterm birth, low birth weight, small for gestational age (SGA), stillbirth, birth defects and chromosomal anomalies. Long-term outcome variables included mortality, cancers, psychiatric diseases/disorders and metabolic diseases. The systematic review follows PRISMA guidelines. Relevant meta-analyses were performed.
OUTCOMES
The search included 14 371 articles out of which 238 met the inclusion criteria, and 81 were included in quantitative synthesis (meta-analyses). Paternal age and paternal life-style factors have an association with adverse outcome in offspring. This is particularly evident for psychiatric disorders such as autism, autism spectrum disorders and schizophrenia, but an association is also found with stillbirth, any birth defects, orofacial clefts and trisomy 21. Paternal height, but not BMI, is associated with birth weight in offspring while paternal BMI is associated with BMI, weight and/or body fat in childhood. Paternal smoking is found to be associated with an increase in SGA, birth defects such as congenital heart defects, and orofacial clefts, cancers, brain tumours and acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. These associations are significant although moderate in size, with most pooled estimates between 1.05 and 1.5, and none exceeding 2.0.
WIDER IMPLICATIONS
Although the increased risks of adverse outcome in offspring associated with paternal factors and identified in this report represent serious health effects, the magnitude of these effects seems modest.



IUI: review and systematic assessment of the evidence that supports global recommendations

Wed, 14 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Abstract
BACKGROUND
IUI with or without ovarian stimulation (OS) has become a first-line treatment option for many infertile couples, worldwide. The appropriate treatment modality for couples and their clinical management through IUI or IUI/OS cycles must consider maternal and perinatal outcomes, most notably the clinical complication of higher-order multiple pregnancies associated with IUI–OS. With a current global emphasis to continue to decrease maternal and perinatal mortality and morbidity, the World Health Organization (WHO) had established a multi-year project to review the evidence for the establishment of normative guidance for the implementation of IUI as a treatment to address fertility problems, and to consider its cost-effectiveness for lower resource settings.
OBJECTIVE AND RATIONALE
The objective of this review is to provide a review of the evidence of 13 prioritized questions that cover IUI with and without OS. We provide summary recommendations for the development of global, evidence-based guidelines based upon methodology established by the WHO.
SEARCH METHODS
We performed a comprehensive search using question-specific relevant search terms in May 2015. For each PICO (Population, Intervention, Comparison and Outcomes) drafted by WHO, specific search terms were used to find the available evidence in MEDLINE (1950 to May 2015) and The Cochrane Library (until May 2015). After presentation to an expert panel, a further hand search of references in relevant reviews was performed up to January 2017. Articles that were found to be relevant were read and analysed by two investigators and critically appraised using the Cochrane Collaboration’s tool for assessing risk of bias, and AMSTAR in case of systematic reviews. The quality of the evidence was assessed using the GRADE system. An independent expert review process of our analysis was conducted in November 2016.
OUTCOMES
This review provides an assessment and synthesis of the evidence that covers 13 clinical questions including the indications for the use of IUI versus expectant management, the sperm parameters required, the best and optimal method of timing and number of inseminations per cycle, prevention strategies to decrease multiple gestational pregnancies, and the cost-effectiveness of IUI versus IVF. We provide an evidence-based formulation of 20 recommendations, as well as two best practice points that address the integration of methods for the prevention of infection in the IUI laboratory. The quality of the evidence ranges from very low to high, with evidence that may be decades old but of high quality, however, we further discuss where critical research gaps in the evidence remain.
WIDER IMPLICATIONS
This review presents an evidence synthesis assessment and includes recommendations that will assist health care providers worldwide with their decision-making when considering IUI treatments, with or without OS, for their patients presenting with fertility problems.