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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Predicting empty follicle syndrome.

OBJECTIVE: To determine a simple predictive test for empty follicle syndrome before oocyte retrieval. DESIGN: Retrospective correlation analysis. SETTING: Patients attending Nottingham University Research and Treatment Unit, a tertiary, university-based assisted reproductive technologies (ART) program between April 1, 1994 and March 31, 1995. PATIENT(S): Six women in whom no oocytes were retrieved after superovulation for ART (empty follicle syndrome) were compared with 11 women with successful oocyte retrieval. INTERVENTION(S): Subcutaneous buserelin acetate plus IM hMG and hCG were used for superovulation. Oocyte retrieval was transvaginal and ultrasound guided. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S): Ultrasound measurement of follicular growth and serum E2 levels during superovulation. Serum beta-hCG levels before and 36 hours after hCG administration IM. Number of oocytes retrieved. RESULT(S): Before hCG administration, beta-hCG was not detectable in the serum. The serum beta-hCG 36 hours after hCG was 209 +/- 16.7 mIU/mL (conversion factor to SI units, 1.0; mean +/- SEM, range 106 to 290 mIU/mL) in women with successful oocyte retrieval and 4 +/- 1.8 mIU/mL (range 0 to 9 mIU/mL) in empty follicle syndrome. This difference was significant. CONCLUSION(S): Empty follicle syndrome is associated with very low bioavailability of beta-hCG and can be predicted by measuring serum beta-hCG level 36 hours after IM hCG administration.[1]


  1. Predicting empty follicle syndrome. Ndukwe, G., Thornton, S., Fishel, S., Dowell, K., al-Hassan, S., Hunter, A. Fertil. Steril. (1996) [Pubmed]
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