Women with PCOS Have Higher Intrauterine Insemination (IUI) Success Rates Compared to Women with Other Causes of Infertility. ... Women who have ovulatory dysfunction, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), have the best chances of success with IUI compared to infertility resulting from other causes. PCOS is the most common ovulatory disorder affecting one in 10 women. For women 25 to 35 years old whom have an ovulatory dysfunction like PCOS, the pregnancy rate is just over 25 percent—an impressive increase over the natural pregnancy rate of 20%. However, just like the natural pregnancy rate, these numbers will decline as age increases.
To treat infertility specifically, fertility medication can be given to stimulate ovulation, although this can increase the risk of multiple births. The other option is to undergo in-vitro fertilisation (IVF), where the maturation of eggs is encouraged in a controlled environment. Once the eggs have been collected they can be fertilised outside the body before being replaced in the womb.
The good news is that women with PCOS generally respond well to IVF treatment. In fact the greatest problem with these patients is that they can respond too well to stimulation, which puts them at risk of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS). This is a potentially dangerous condition caused by overstimulation of the ovaries which causes them to swell and leads to a variety of symptoms.
At CREATE many PCOS patients are treated with our Mild Stimulation protocols, which include 5-9 days worth of stimulating drugs rather than the 4-5 weeks worth used in conventional IVF. This approach has the benefit of largely avoiding the severest risks of OHSS and in addition, this lighter regimen also has the added advantage of leaving the body less stressed and hopefully more receptive to implantation.