Author(s): Broekmans FJ, de Ziegler D, Howles CM, Gougeon A, Trew G,
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To provide recommendations for the standardized use of the Antral follicle count (AFC) which is used to predict ovarian response to gonadotrophin stimulation during assisted reproductive technology treatment. However, the nature of the follicles that are visualized by ultrasound and the competence of the oocytes held within are largely unknown. In addition, there is considerable variability in the clinical definitions and technical methods used to count and measure antral follicles in both published studies and clinical practice. DESIGN AND SETTING: In December 2007, specialist reproductive medicine clinicians and scientists attended a workshop in an effort to address these issues. Literature concerning the physiology and measurement of ovarian antral follicles was reviewed, clinical and technical considerations regarding antral follicle measurement were discussed, and an operational definition of AFC was developed. PATIENT(S): None. INTERVENTION(S): None. OUTCOME MEASURES: Simple recommendations were established for the standardization of AFC assessment in routine clinical practice. The basic clinical and technical requirements required for AFC evaluation were agreed upon, and a systematic method of measuring and counting antral follicles in routine practice was proposed. CONCLUSION(S): The use of a standardized approach according to the practical recommendations for antral follicle counting as presented is encouraged in future clinical trials and routine practice. The authors also advocate a systematic evaluation of these recommendations as standardized study data become available. Copyright (c) 2010 American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Fertil Steril
and referenced in Journal of Fertilization: In Vitro - IVF-Worldwide, Reproductive Medicine, Genetics & Stem Cell Biology