Research question: How can laboratory and clinical outcomes of spontaneously, early maturing germinal-vesicle oocytes and sibling in-vivo-matured (metaphase II [MII]) oocytes be quantified and compared?
Design: A prospective, non-randomized intra-cohort study of oocytes from women aged 38 years or younger, with six or fewer MII oocytes and four or more germinal vesicles retrieved. No indication was identified for genetic tests or oocyte or embryo cryopreservation. The study was carried out at IVIRMA-Valencia. Early maturing germinal vesicles were selected for reproductive purposes. In vitro- and in-vivo MII oocytes were fertilized. After time-lapse culture, hatching blastocysts from germinal vesicles were biopsied for aneuploidy screening and vitrified. Laboratory and clinical outcomes were compared according to oocyte origin.
Results: Almost 70% of germinal vesicles had matured early and spontaneously, and had comparable in vitro-outcomes and morphokinetics to sibling in vivo-matured oocytes. Fifty per cent of biopsied blastocysts were euploid. Germinal-vesicle rescue increased the number of MII oocytes per cycle to 3.9, finally adding one extra-blastocyst per cycle. A live birth confirmed the feasibility of this approach. Further data, however, are needed to quantify its real contribution to standard intracytoplasmic sperm injection cycles. Nevertheless, 40% of patients obtained either an immediate advantage (reduction of cancellation rate) or long-term benefit (availability of extra blastocysts of attempts).
Conclusions: Germinal-vesicle rescue can be considered as a complementary approach when folliculometry (expected) and number of MII (observed) are unequal.
Keywords: Germinal vesicle oocyte; Immature rescue; In-vitro maturation; Morphokinetics; Stimulated cycles.
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