Importance: Previous reviews have shown that a history of cesarean section (CS) is associated with a worse in vitro fertilization (IVF) prognosis. To date, whether the decline in the IVF chances of success should be attributed to the CS procedure itself or to the presence of isthmocele remains to be clarified. Objective: To summarize the available evidence regarding the impact of isthmocele on IVF outcomes. Data sources: Electronic databases and clinical registers were searched until May 30, 2023. Study selection and synthesis: Observational studies were included if they assessed the effect of isthmocele on IVF outcomes. Comparators were women with isthmocele and women without isthmocele with a previous CS or vaginal delivery. Study quality was assessed using the modified Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. Main outcomes: The primary outcome was the live birth rate (LBR). The effect measures were expressed as adjusted odds ratios (aORs) and unadjusted odds ratios (uORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs). The body of evidence was assessed using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation working group methodology. Results: Eight studies (n = 10,873 patients) were included in the analysis. Women with isthmocele showed a lower LBR than both women with a previous CS without isthmocele (aOR, 0.62; 95% CI, 0.53-0.72) and those with a history of vaginal delivery (aOR, 0.55; 95% CI, 0.42-0.71). The LBRs in women with a previous CS without isthmocele and those with a history of vaginal delivery were similar (aOR, 0.74; 95% CI, 0.47-1.15). Subgroup analysis suggested a negative effect of the intracavitary fluid (ICF) in women with isthmocele on the LBR (uOR, 0.36; 95% CI, 0.18-0.75), whereas the LBRs in women without ICF and those without isthmocele were similar (uOR, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.61-1.45). Conclusion and relevance: We found moderate quality of evidence (Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation grade 3/4) supporting a negative impact of isthmocele, but not of CS per se, on the LBR in women undergoing IVF. The adverse effect of isthmocele on IVF outcomes appears to be worsened by ICF accumulation before embryo transfer. Clinical trial registration number: CRD42023418266.

Isthmocele, not cesarean section per se, reduces in vitro fertilization success: a systematic review and meta-analysis of over 10,000 embryo transfer cycles

Gerli, Sandro;Favilli, Alessandro
2023

Abstract

Importance: Previous reviews have shown that a history of cesarean section (CS) is associated with a worse in vitro fertilization (IVF) prognosis. To date, whether the decline in the IVF chances of success should be attributed to the CS procedure itself or to the presence of isthmocele remains to be clarified. Objective: To summarize the available evidence regarding the impact of isthmocele on IVF outcomes. Data sources: Electronic databases and clinical registers were searched until May 30, 2023. Study selection and synthesis: Observational studies were included if they assessed the effect of isthmocele on IVF outcomes. Comparators were women with isthmocele and women without isthmocele with a previous CS or vaginal delivery. Study quality was assessed using the modified Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. Main outcomes: The primary outcome was the live birth rate (LBR). The effect measures were expressed as adjusted odds ratios (aORs) and unadjusted odds ratios (uORs) with 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs). The body of evidence was assessed using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation working group methodology. Results: Eight studies (n = 10,873 patients) were included in the analysis. Women with isthmocele showed a lower LBR than both women with a previous CS without isthmocele (aOR, 0.62; 95% CI, 0.53-0.72) and those with a history of vaginal delivery (aOR, 0.55; 95% CI, 0.42-0.71). The LBRs in women with a previous CS without isthmocele and those with a history of vaginal delivery were similar (aOR, 0.74; 95% CI, 0.47-1.15). Subgroup analysis suggested a negative effect of the intracavitary fluid (ICF) in women with isthmocele on the LBR (uOR, 0.36; 95% CI, 0.18-0.75), whereas the LBRs in women without ICF and those without isthmocele were similar (uOR, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.61-1.45). Conclusion and relevance: We found moderate quality of evidence (Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development and Evaluation grade 3/4) supporting a negative impact of isthmocele, but not of CS per se, on the LBR in women undergoing IVF. The adverse effect of isthmocele on IVF outcomes appears to be worsened by ICF accumulation before embryo transfer. Clinical trial registration number: CRD42023418266.
2023
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11391/1566116
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