To compare the outcome of double ovarian stimulation (DOS) with follicular phase ovarian stimulation (FPS) per started cycle in poor ovarian responders (PORs).
A total of 204 PORs who underwent ovulation induction for in vitro fertilization, cryopreservation of all embryos available, and frozen embryo transfer cycle were retrospectively analyzed. Of those, 146 received single FPS, and 58 received DOS. All viable embryos were cryopreserved and subsequently transferred within 1-6 months.
The number of oocytes collected and the number of mature oocytes per started cycle were higher in the DOS group compared to the FPS group (6.0 ± 1.9 vs. 2.8 ± 1.3 and 4.3 ± 1.3 vs. 2.2 ± 1.2, respectively, p = 0.001). Clinical pregnancy rate and live birth rate per started cycle were also significantly higher in the DOS group than the FPS group (41.4% vs. 16.4% and 36.2% vs. 15.1%, respectively, p < 0.001). The cancellation rate of embryo transfer due to no viable embryo was significantly lower in the DOS group (10.3%) than the FPS group (40.4%) (p = 0.001). In the DOS group, numbers of oocytes (3.2 ± 1.2 vs. 2.7 ± 1.1, p = 0.006), MII oocytes (2.6 ± 1.0 vs. 2.1 ± 0.8, p = 0.001), and cryopreserved blastocysts (1.5 ± 0.8 vs. 1.1 ± 0.7, p = 0.002) were significantly higher in the luteal ovarian stimulation compared to follicular ovarian stimulation.
Live birth per started cycle with DOS is superior to FPS in PORs. Luteal phase stimulation contributes to improving pregnancy rates in these patients.

© 2021 Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology.