Low ovarian reserve

Optimising the outcome for patients found to have a "low ovarian reserve" or be "poor-responders" in previous fertility treatment cycles is an area in which The Lister Fertility Clinic team excels.

A diagnosis of low ovarian reserve is often an unexpected one and adds to what can already be a period of significant stress and anxiety.

This is often compounded by the contradictory advice and information couples are given and the reluctance to offer fertility treatment that couples encounter elsewhere.

It has been suggested that some clinics refuse to treat patients with elevated basal FSH, low AMH levels or other poor markers suggesting low ovarian reserve to maintain their overall success rate or to improve their position on success rate "league tables" (Sharif and Afnan, 2003).

Many women with low ovarian reserve are lead to believe that they are unsuitable for IVF treatment, would have no chance of a successful outcome. They are therefore forced to consider other treatment options to provide them with a chance of motherhood, although not with their own genetic child.

We believe that markers of low ovarian reserve should be used as a means of appropriate counselling rather than a tool for rationing or declining fertility treatment.

Any chance, even a reduced one, of achieving a pregnancy with your own genetic child is precious and important. At the Lister Fertility Clinic, we believe our duty of care is to ensure that every woman in this position should have the right to choose whether to proceed with fertility treatment. As long as she has been given appropriate information regarding her chance of success, appropriate alternative choices and what to expect in a cycle of fertility treatment.

This ethos has allowed us to build a wealth of experience and knowledge and over 40% of our fertility treatment cycles now occur in couples or women with a low ovarian reserve. It is our role to use all this expertise to then individualise care and maximise the chances of pregnancy.

Read more about the importance, assessment and options for women with low ovarian reserve via our PDF leaflets.

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The Lister Fertility Clinic
The Lister Hospital
Chelsea Bridge Road
London SW1W 8RH

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