Assessment of ovarian reserve

Orhan Bukulmez, Aydin Arici

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Purpose of review: Various methods have been proposed and are currently used in the assessment of ovarian reserve in order to predict the outcome in assisted reproduction. This review focuses on the current information regarding the ovarian reserve markers and tests, an active area of research. Recent findings: Female age alone is a rough parameter for assessing ovarian reserve. The basal follicle stimulating hormone level is not adequately sensitive to predict poor outcome and the same is true for other basal parameters, including basal estradiol, the follicle stimulating hormone/luteinizing hormone ratio, and inhibin-B levels. The clomiphene citrate challenge test has a low sensitivity but this sensitivity is greater than that of basal follicle stimulating hormone. The value of other hormonal dynamic tests remains to be determined. Among the ultrasound markers the total antral follicle count seems to be promising. Ovarian biopsy in this assessment is controversial. History of poor response to ovarian stimulation is a strong indicator for declining ovarian function. Summary: There is currently no clinically useful predictive test sufficiently accurate and distinct in time from controlled ovarian stimulation to assess ovarian reserve accurately. Further research is warranted to validate the ovarian reserve tests in the general population and in populations with different causes of infertility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)231-237
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 2004


  • Assisted reproductive technologies
  • In vitro fertilization
  • Infertility
  • Ovarian reserve
  • Pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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