Do women with unexplained recurrent pregnancy loss have higher day 3 serum FSH and estradiol values?

Fertil Steril. 2000 Aug;74(2):335-7. doi: 10.1016/s0015-0282(00)00625-7.


Objective: To determine the potential role of diminished ovarian reserve in unexplained habitual abortion.

Design: Retrospective comparative analysis.

Setting: University-based practice.

Patient(s): Fifty-seven women who presented for evaluation of recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL).

Intervention(s): The test group (n = 36) comprised women with unexplained RPL. The control group (n = 21) comprised women with a known cause of RPL. Mean age, parity, day 3 serum FSH and E(2) levels, and presence or absence of a history of infertility were compared between groups.

Main outcome measure(s): Day 3 serum FSH and E(2) levels.

Result(s): Both day 3 FSH and E(2) levels were elevated in the unexplained group compared with the control group. When combined, FSH or E(2) levels, or both, were elevated in 58% of the unexplained RPL group and 19% of the control group (odds ratio, 5.95 [95% CI, 1.7-21.3]; P<.004). Age, parity, and presence of infertility did not differ between groups.

Conclusion(s): Women with unexplained RPL have a greater incidence of elevated day 3 serum FSH and E(2) levels than do women with a known cause of RPL. Therefore, diminished ovarian reserve may contribute to recurrent pregnancy loss and should be considered part of the work-up for RPL.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Habitual / blood*
  • Abortion, Habitual / etiology
  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Estradiol / blood*
  • Female
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood*
  • Humans
  • Menstrual Cycle / physiology
  • Ovary / physiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Estradiol
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone