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1.  Cervical Length Measurement for the Prediction of Preterm Birth in Symptomatic Women with a Twin Pregnancy: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis 
Objective. The aim of this study was to assess whether cervical length measurement (CL) could predict preterm birth (PTB) in symptomatic women with a twin pregnancy. Methods. We searched MEDLINE and EMBASE to identify studies investigating the accuracy of CL measurement in predicting PTB in symptomatic women with a twin pregnancy. We extracted data to construct two-by-two tables and used bivariate meta-analysis to generate point estimates of sensitivity and specificity. Results. Five studies (N = 226) were included. Variation in definition of PTB and cut-off points for CL was strong. One study investigated delivery within seven days, demonstrating a sensitivity of 1.0 (95% CI: 0.83–1.0) and a specificity of 0.31 (95% CI 0.2–0.43) for a CL cutoff at 25 mm. Three studies reported on predicting PTB < 37 weeks at a CL cutoff of 30 mm, with sROC point estimates of 0.76 (95% CI: 0.66 to 0.84) and 0.37 (95% CI: 0.21 to 0.56) for sensitivity and specificity, respectively. For preterm birth <34 weeks, no pooled estimates could be estimated since only 2 studies with large heterogeneity were identified. Conclusions. There is limited evidence on the accuracy of cervical length measurement testing the prediction of preterm birth in symptomatic women with a twin pregnancy, especially on the most important outcome, that is, delivery within 7 days.
doi:10.1155/2013/125897
PMCID: PMC3666225  PMID: 23766761
2.  Second generation endometrial ablation techniques for heavy menstrual bleeding: network meta-analysis 
Objective To determine the relative effectiveness of second generation ablation techniques in the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding.
Design Network meta-analysis on the primary outcome measures of amenorrhoea, heavy bleeding, and patients’ dissatisfaction with treatment.
Data sources Nineteen randomised controlled trials (involving 3287 women) were identified through electronic searches of the Cochrane Library, Medline, Embase and PsycINFO databases from inception to April 2011. The reference lists of known relevant articles were searched for further articles. Two reviewers independently selected articles without language restrictions.
Eligibility criteria for selecting studies Randomised controlled trials involving second generation endometrial destruction techniques for women with heavy menstrual bleeding unresponsive to medical treatment.
Results Of the three most commonly used techniques, network meta-analysis showed that bipolar radiofrequency and microwave ablation resulted in higher rates of amenorrhoea than thermal balloon ablation at around 12 months (odds ratio 2.51, 95% confidence interval 1.53 to 4.12, P<0.001; and 1.66, 1.01 to 2.71, P=0.05, respectively), but there was no evidence of a convincing difference between the three techniques in the number of women dissatisfied with treatment or still experiencing heavy bleeding. Compared with bipolar radio frequency and microwave devices, an increased number of women still experienced heavy bleeding after free fluid ablation (2.19, 1.07 to 4.50, P=0.03; and 2.91, 1.23 to 6.88, P=0.02, respectively). Compared with radio frequency ablation, free fluid ablation was associated with reduced rates of amenorrhoea (0.36, 0.19 to 0.67, P=0.004) and increased rates of dissatisfaction (4.79, 1.07 to 21.5, P=0.04). Of the less commonly used devices, endometrial laser intrauterine thermotherapy was associated with increased rates of amenorrhoea compared with all the other devices, while cryoablation led to a reduced rate compared with bipolar radio frequency and microwave.
Conclusions Bipolar radio frequency and microwave ablative devices are more effective than thermal balloon and free fluid ablation in the treatment of heavy menstrual bleeding with second generation endometrial ablation devices.
doi:10.1136/bmj.e2564
PMCID: PMC3339574  PMID: 22529302
3.  Induction versus expectant monitoring for intrauterine growth restriction at term: randomised equivalence trial (DIGITAT) 
Objective To compare the effect of induction of labour with a policy of expectant monitoring for intrauterine growth restriction near term.
Design Multicentre randomised equivalence trial (the Disproportionate Intrauterine Growth Intervention Trial At Term (DIGITAT)).
Setting Eight academic and 44 non-academic hospitals in the Netherlands between November 2004 and November 2008.
Participants Pregnant women who had a singleton pregnancy beyond 36+0 weeks’ gestation with suspected intrauterine growth restriction.
Interventions Induction of labour or expectant monitoring.
Main outcome measures The primary outcome was a composite measure of adverse neonatal outcome, defined as death before hospital discharge, five minute Apgar score of less than 7, umbilical artery pH of less than 7.05, or admission to the intensive care unit. Operative delivery (vaginal instrumental delivery or caesarean section) was a secondary outcome. Analysis was by intention to treat, with confidence intervals calculated for the differences in percentages or means.
Results 321 pregnant women were randomly allocated to induction and 329 to expectant monitoring. Induction group infants were delivered 10 days earlier (mean difference −9.9 days, 95% CI −11.3 to −8.6) and weighed 130 g less (mean difference −130 g, 95% CI −188 g to −71 g) than babies in the expectant monitoring group. A total of 17 (5.3%) infants in the induction group experienced the composite adverse neonatal outcome, compared with 20 (6.1%) in the expectant monitoring group (difference −0.8%, 95% CI −4.3% to 3.2%). Caesarean sections were performed on 45 (14.0%) mothers in the induction group and 45 (13.7%) in the expectant monitoring group (difference 0.3%, 95% CI −5.0% to 5.6%).
Conclusions In women with suspected intrauterine growth restriction at term, we found no important differences in adverse outcomes between induction of labour and expectant monitoring. Patients who are keen on non-intervention can safely choose expectant management with intensive maternal and fetal monitoring; however, it is rational to choose induction to prevent possible neonatal morbidity and stillbirth.
Trial registration International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial number ISRCTN10363217.
doi:10.1136/bmj.c7087
PMCID: PMC3005565  PMID: 21177352
4.  Diagnostic Strategies for Postmenopausal Bleeding 
Postmenopausal bleeding (PMB) is a common clinical problem. Patients with PMB have 10%–15% chance of having endometrial carcinoma and therefore the diagnostic workup is aimed at excluding malignancy. Patient characteristics can alter the probability of having endometrial carcinoma in patients with PMB; in certain groups of patients the incidence has been reported to be as high as 29%. Transvaginal sonography (TVS) is used as a first step in the diagnostic workup, but different authors have come to different conclusions assessing the accuracy of TVS for excluding endometrial carcinoma. Diagnostic procedures obtaining material for histological assessment (e.g., dilatation and curettage, hysteroscopy, and endometrial biopsy) can be more accurate but are also more invasive. The best diagnostic strategy for diagnosing endometrial carcinoma in patients with PMB still remains controversial. Future research should be focussed on achieving a higher accuracy of different diagnostic strategies.
doi:10.1155/2010/850812
PMCID: PMC2821624  PMID: 20169169
5.  Prediction of fetal lung immaturity using gestational age, patient characteristics and fetal lung maturity tests: a probabilistic approach 
Objectives
The lecithin/sphingomyelin (L/S) ratio and the lamellar body count (LBC) can be used to predict respiratory distress syndrome (RDS).
Design
We performed a retrospective cohort study among consecutive women who underwent amniotic fluid sampling for the assessment of fetal lung maturity. Logistic regression was used to construct models for the prediction of RDS in three gestational age categories, with models based on clinical characteristics only, clinical characteristics and the LBC, and on clinical characteristics and L/S ratio.
Results
When amniotic fluid was collected <30 weeks, the specificity of the LBC was 30% and the sensitivity 100%. Addition of the L/S ratio increased the specifity to 60%, for a sensitivity of 100%. When amniocentesis was performed between 30 and 33 weeks, addition of the L/S ratio only marginally improved the performance of the LBC.
Conclusions
At a gestational age <30 weeks, the L/S ratio has additional value over the LBC. Above 30 weeks of gestation, single use of the LBC seems sufficient.
doi:10.1007/s00404-009-1033-0
PMCID: PMC2780670  PMID: 19381669
Fetal lung maturity; Lamellar body count; L/S ratio; Respiratory distress sydrome (RDS)
6.  Prevention of multiple pregnancies in couples with unexplained or mild male subfertility: randomised controlled trial of in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer or in vitro fertilisation in modified natural cycle compared with intrauterine insemination with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation 
Objectives To compare the effectiveness of in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer or in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle with that of intrauterine insemination with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation in terms of a healthy child.
Design Multicentre, open label, three arm, parallel group, randomised controlled non-inferiority trial.
Setting 17 centres in the Netherlands.
Participants Couples seeking fertility treatment after at least 12 months of unprotected intercourse, with the female partner aged between 18 and 38 years, an unfavourable prognosis for natural conception, and a diagnosis of unexplained or mild male subfertility.
Interventions Three cycles of in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer (plus subsequent cryocycles), six cycles of in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle, or six cycles of intrauterine insemination with ovarian hyperstimulation within 12 months after randomisation.
Main outcome measures The primary outcome was birth of a healthy child resulting from a singleton pregnancy conceived within 12 months after randomisation. Secondary outcomes were live birth, clinical pregnancy, ongoing pregnancy, multiple pregnancy, time to pregnancy, complications of pregnancy, and neonatal morbidity and mortality
Results 602 couples were randomly assigned between January 2009 and February 2012; 201 were allocated to in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer, 194 to in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle, and 207 to intrauterine insemination with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation. Birth of a healthy child occurred in 104 (52%) couples in the in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer group, 83 (43%) in the in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle group, and 97 (47%) in the intrauterine insemination with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation group. This corresponds to a risk, relative to intrauterine insemination with ovarian hyperstimulation, of 1.10 (95% confidence interval 0.91 to 1.34) for in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer and 0.91 (0.73 to 1.14) for in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle. These 95% confidence intervals do not extend below the predefined threshold of 0.69 for inferiority. Multiple pregnancy rates per ongoing pregnancy were 6% (7/121) after in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer, 5% (5/102) after in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle, and 7% (8/119) after intrauterine insemination with ovarian hyperstimulation (one sided P=0.52 for in vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer compared with intrauterine insemination with ovarian hyperstimulation; one sided P=0.33 for in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle compared with intrauterine insemination with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation).
Conclusions In vitro fertilisation with single embryo transfer and in vitro fertilisation in a modified natural cycle were non-inferior to intrauterine insemination with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation in terms of the birth of a healthy child and showed comparable, low multiple pregnancy rates.
Trial registration Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN52843371; Nederlands Trial Register NTR939.
doi:10.1136/bmj.g7771
PMCID: PMC4288434  PMID: 25576320

Results 1-6 (6)