Purpose: to compare the baseline characteristics and chance of live birth in the different categories of poor responders identified by the combinations of the Bologna criteria and establish whether these groups comprise a homogenous population.
Methods: database containing clinical and laboratory information on IVF treatment cycles carried out at the Mother-Infant Department of the University Hospital of Modena between year 2007 and 2011 was analysed. This data was collected prospectively and recorded in the registered database of the fertility centre. Eight hundred and thirty women fulfilled the inclusion/ exclusion criteria of the study and 210 women fulfilled the Bologna criteria definition for poor ovarian response (POR). Five categories of poor responders were identified by different combinations of the Bologna criteria.
Results: There were no significant differences in female age, AFC, AMH, cycle cancellation rate and number of retrieved oocytes between the five groups. The live birth rate ranged between 5.5 and 7.4 % and was not statistically different in the five different categories of women defined as poor responders according to the Bologna criteria.
Conclusion: The study demonstrates that the different groups of poor responders based on the Bologna criteria have similar IVF outcomes. This information validates the Bologna criteria definition as women having a uniform poor prognosis and also demonstrates that the Bologna criteria poor responders in the various subgroups represent a homogenous population with similar pre-clinical and clinical outcomes.