Myo-inositol may improve oocyte quality in intracytoplasmic sperm injection cycles. A prospective, controlled, randomized trial

Enrico Papaleo, Vittorio Unfer, Jean Patrice Baillargeon, Francesco Fusi, Francesca Occhi, Lucia De Santis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To determine the effects of myo-inositol on oocyte quality in polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) patients undergoing intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) cycles. Design: A prospective, controlled, randomized trial. Setting: Assisted reproduction centers. Patient(s): Sixty infertile PCO patients undergoing ovulation induction for ICSI. Intervention(s): All participants underwent standard long protocol. Starting on the day of GnRH administration, 30 participants received myo-inositol combined with folic acid (Inofolic) 2 g twice a day and 30 control women received folic acid alone, administrated continuously. Main Outcome Measure(s): Primary end points were number of morphologically mature oocytes retrieved, embryo quality, and pregnancy and implantation rates. Secondary end points were total number of days of FSH stimulation, total dose of gonadotropin administered, E2 level on the day of hCG administration, fertilization rate per number of retrieved oocytes, embryo cleavage rate, live birth and miscarriage rates, cancellation rate, and incidence of moderate or severe ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. Result(s): Total r-FSH units (1,958 ± 695 vs. 2,383 ± 578) and number of days of stimulation (11.4 ± 0.9 vs. 12.4 ± 1.4) were significantly reduced in the myo-inositol group. Furthermore, peak E2 levels (2,232 ± 510 vs. 2,713 ± 595 pg/mL) at hCG administration were significantly lower in patients receiving myo-inositol. The mean number of oocytes retrieved did not differ in the two groups, whereas in the group cotreated with myo-inositol the mean number of germinal vesicles and degenerated oocytes was significantly reduced (1.0 ± 0.9 vs. 1.6 ± 1.0), with a trend for increased percentage of oocytes in metaphase II (0.82 ± 0.11% vs. 0.75 ± 0.15%). Conclusion(s): These data show that in patients with PCOS, treatment with myo-inositol and folic acid, but not folic acid alone, reduces germinal vesicles and degenerated oocytes at ovum pick-up without compromising total number of retrieved oocytes. This approach, reducing E2 levels at hGC administration, could be adopted to decrease the risk of hyperstimulation in such patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1750-1754
Number of pages5
JournalFertility and Sterility
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2009


  • ICSI cycles
  • Myo-inositol
  • oocyte quality
  • ovarian stimulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Reproductive Medicine


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