PROBLEM: To determine if chymotrypsin-galactose (CG) treatment of sperm bound with antisperm antibodies (ASA) improves pregnancy rates (PRs) following in vitro fertilization (IVF).
METHOD: Patients with >50% ASA who failed to conceive despite six intrauterine insemination (IUI) cycles were included. Initially the sperm treatments were randomized with CG vs culture medium; subsequently only CG treatment was used.
RESULTS: There was a significantly lower fertilization rate in those patients inseminated with sperm incubated in culture medium vs CG (27% vs 47%, P<.05 t-test). Similarly, a higher percentage of patients receiving culture medium treatment of sperm had failed fertilization (45%) compared to CG (11%). Though the clinical PRs were higher with CG (21%) than medium (9.5%), there was no statistical difference.
CONCLUSIONS: Though the percentage of sperm bound with antibodies are not reduced, we hypothesize that the CG treatment improves fertility by possibly mitigating the antagonistic action of these antibodies.