The Appraisal of Body Content (ABC) trial: increased male or female adiposity does not significantly impact in vitro fertilization laboratory or clinical outcomes

Increased adiposity in male and female patients undergoing in vitro fertilization does not significantly affect embryology, pregnancy, or delivery outcomes.

VOLUME 116, ISSUE 2, P444-452


Julia Kim, M.D., M.P.H., George Patounakis, M.D., Ph.D., Caroline Juneau, M.D., Scott Morin, M.D., Shelby Neal, M.D., Paul Bergh, M.D., Emre Seli, M.D., Richard Scott, M.D., H.C.L.D.



To investigate the impact of obesity as determined by bioelectric impedance analysis (BIA) and body mass index (BMI) on in vitro fertilization (IVF) laboratory and clinical outcomes.


Prospective cohort study.


Academic-affiliated private practice.


A total of 1,889 infertile couples undergoing IVF from June 2016 to January 2019.


Female patients and male partners underwent BIA and BMI measurement at the time of oocyte retrieval. Embryology and clinical outcomes were prospectively tracked with comparison groups determined by percentage of body fat (%BF) and BMI categories.

Main Outcome Measure(s)

Fertilization rate, blastocyst formation rate, euploidy rate, miscarriage rate, sustained implantation rate, live birth rate, rates of low birth weight/very low birth weight, prematurity rates.


Fertilization rates and euploidy rates were equivalent among all women. Blastocyst formation rates were slightly higher (55%) in women with an obese %BF compared with all other %BF categories (51%); however, this trend was not noted in women defined as obese by BMI. Miscarriage rates, sustained implantation rates, and live birth rates were equivalent among all women. The rate of very low birth weight was low but increased in obese women (3%) versus underweight, normal-weight, and overweight counterparts (0%–1.3%) as determined by %BF and BMI. Obesity in men did not significantly affect any embryologic or clinical outcomes.


Although maternal obesity imposes a small but increased risk of very low birth weight infants, most embryology and pregnancy outcomes are equivalent to normal weight patients. Paternal obesity does not appear to affect IVF, pregnancy, or delivery outcomes.

Please sign in or register for FREE

Your Fertility and Sterility Dialog login information is not the same as your ASRM or EES credentials. Users must create a separate account to comment or interact on the Dialog.