An eventful start to 2018 for Prof Siebert, as he delivers a lecture at an international endometriosis conference and brings back fresh knowledge in the field of infertility and endometriosis. Prof Siebert recently returned from his trip abroad, which consisted of the Updates in Fertility (UIT) Meeting in Madrid (24 Jan 2018 – 26 Jan 2018), as well as the Endo Dubai 2018 Conference (1 – 3 February 2018).
Prof Siebert’s learnings from the UIT Meeting, consisted of the most current research findings, of the topics mentioned below:
- Role of Preimplantation Genetic Testing, to detect abnormalities in chromosomal numbers (aneuploidy), during IVF.
The normal number of chromosomes in a cell are 46. However, in the case of ‘aneuploidy’, 45 or 47 chromosomes are present. An extra or missing chromosome is a common cause of genetic disorders, including some human birth defects. Therefore, preimplantation genetic testing is a technique used during IVF to detect for these chromosomal abnormalities.
- Luteal phase support with progesterone, during assisted reproductive treatment(ART)
The luteal phase is defined as the period from ovulation until the establishment of a pregnancy or the resumption of menses 2 weeks later. In the context of assisted reproduction techniques luteal phase support (LPS) is the administration of medication, e.g. progesterone, to increase the success rate of implantation. To increase success rates of implantation ongoing research investigates different dosage, duration and type of luteal phase support.
- Fertility preserving in patients with cancer
Fertility preservation is of utmost importance to enhance the quality of life for cancer patients. However, research suggest that implementation in this area is still very poor. Techniques which can be used for fertility preservation includes cryopreservation of embryo and gametes (egg or sperm) prior to cancer treatment.
- Long term study on babies conceived through ART, including same sex pregnancies.
Long term studies were conducted looking at the impact of babies conceived through ART, from both heterosexual- and homosexual couples. The outcome of these studies where very positive, as no negative physical or psychological effects were noted.
After his departure from Madrid, Prof Siebert also visited Dubai, for the Endo Dubai 2018 Conference (1 – 3 February 2018). Here, Prof Siebert delivered a lecture on the impact of surgery for endometriosis on ovarian reserve.
Why is ovarian reserve of so much importance during surgery for endometriosis?
Woman are born with all their eggs (plus/minus two million) in the uterus, but a certain amount of eggs die monthly. Unwanted damage to the ovary can compromise the pocket of eggs (ovarian reserve), which would cause the woman to run out of eggs and enter menopause early. Therefore, if endometriosis affected the ovary of young woman who still want to fall pregnant, the best surgical approach is to drain and cauterise the cysts, to preserve the pocket of eggs.
Reflecting back, Prof Siebert’s highlights from the Endo Dubai 2018 Conference, include new learnings on the management of chronic pain. Fresh insight was gained on different options to treat chronic pain in complicated cases of patients suffering from endometriosis.