Oral antioxidants supplementation for women with unexplained infertility undergoing ICSI/IVF: randomized controlled trial

Hum Fertil (Camb). 2015 Mar;18(1):38-42. doi: 10.3109/14647273.2014.927595. Epub 2014 Jul 3.


Objective: Good oocyte quality and maturity are important prerequisites for high fertilization and implantation rates in IVF/ICSI treatment cycles. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are produced within ovarian follicles, especially during the ovulation process, and increased ROS activity may be a cause of impaired oocyte maturation and higher rate of failure of IVF/ICSI cycles.

Study design: RCT evaluating the effect of antioxidant supplementation on ICSI/IVF outcomes. Two hundred and eighteen women with unexplained subfertility undergoing IVF/ICSI were randomized into two groups. The study group (n = 112) received daily oral antioxidants in the form of multivitamins and minerals (amino acid chelated) while the control group (n = 106) did not. Main outcomes were number of mature metaphase II (MII) oocytes and clinical pregnancy rate.

Results: There were no significant changes between the groups as regards age, BMI, basal FSH, number of mature (MII) oocytes (12.7 ± 9.4 vs. 13.2 ± 8.6, P = 0.7) and clinical pregnancy rate per woman randomized (38% vs. 34%; [OR = 1.2; 95% CI, 0.70-2.11].

Conclusion: Oral antioxidants in the form of a combination of multivitamins and minerals (amino acid chelated) did not improve oocyte quality and pregnancy rates in women with unexplained infertility undergoing IVF/ICSI treatment.

Keywords: Antioxidants; IVF/ICSI; ovarian stimulation.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Chelating Agents / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Egypt / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Fertility Agents, Female / pharmacology
  • Fertilization in Vitro*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Infertility, Female / diet therapy*
  • Infertility, Female / physiopathology
  • Infertility, Female / therapy
  • Lost to Follow-Up
  • Oocyte Retrieval
  • Oogenesis / drug effects
  • Ovulation Induction / adverse effects*
  • Oxidative Stress*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Rate
  • Sperm Injections, Intracytoplasmic*
  • Trace Elements / therapeutic use
  • Vitamins / therapeutic use


  • Antioxidants
  • Chelating Agents
  • Fertility Agents, Female
  • Trace Elements
  • Vitamins