Submitted by Shelby D Burns Sun 03/06/2011
Tweet thinking During in vitro fertilization cycles, treatment with a medication called granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) significantly improves inadequate endometrium, according to a report published in Fertility and Sterility. The report also suggests the G-CSF may generally improve IVF pregnancy outcomes. While not approved for this application, G-CSF is an FDA approved treatment. G-CSF is a cytokine that facilitates communication between cells. The case study covers four women in particular who had a highly inadequate endometrium, were unresponsive to conventional treatments and faced IVF cancellation. In all these cases, G-CSF helped. Once administered, it expanded the endometrium to a minimal thickness of 7mm within approximately two days, allowing for embryo transfer. In the end, all four of the women conceived. Only about 1% of all IVF cycles have the thin endometrium phenomenon. In such IVF cycles there are currently only two options: forget about it and freeze embryos hoping for a better technology, or go ahead and accept that the chance of a successful outcome is small. “Conventional treatments for inadequate endometrium have had spotty success at best. Without G-CSF perfusion, these patients, likely, would not have reached embryo transfer,” explains David Barad, MD, Director of Clinical ART at CHR and one of the authors. “That all of them also conceived was a big surprise and is of course quite remarkable.” Four women hardly make the case. But hope is on the horizon and randomized tests start soon.