Short and Long-Term Efficacy of Laparoscopic Ovarian Diathermy in Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Rita Luz, Joana Barros, Ana Aguiar, Cátia Rodrigues, Ana Paula Soares, Joaquim Nunes, Sandra Sousa, Carlos Calhaz-Jorge


Introduction: Polycystic ovary syndrome is the most frequent cause of anovulatory infertility and management involves a multistep approach. Laparoscopic ovarian diathermy is accepted as a second-line treatment of patients who failed to respond to clomiphene citrate. The aims of this study were to determine the efficacy of this technique at short and long-term and to perform an analysis of predictive factors of spontaneous pregnancy.
Material and Methods: This retrospective study involved 76 women who underwent laparoscopic ovarian diathermy between 2004 and 2013 in a university hospital. Main outcomes were cycle regularity and pregnancy. Short-term outcomes recorded during followup in our centre were reviewed and long-term outcomes were evaluated by a telephone interview to all women whose surgery was undertaken more than three years ago. Clinical and biochemical data were analysed as predictive factors of spontaneous conception
in patients without other infertility factors.
Results: Menstrual cycle regularity was initially achieved in 53 (70%) women and in the long-term follow-up subgroup, 52% (12/23) had regular periods. In general, 53 (70%) women conceived and 77 pregnancies were achieved, 60% of which were spontaneous. The only prognostic factor found to be significantly associated with spontaneous conception was a shorter duration of infertility (< 3 years) (p < 0.05).
Discussion: Laparoscopic ovarian diathermy showed pregnancy rates comparable to other ovulation induction treatments with the advantage of having a long lasting beneficial effect in menstrual regularity and fertility.
Conclusion: Laparoscopic ovarian diathermy is a safe and effective treatment option for anovulatory infertility in women with polycystic ovary syndrome.


Anovulation; Diathermy; Infertility, Female; Laparoscopy; Polycystic Ovary Syndrome; Treatment Outcome.

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