BACKGROUND: The addition of recombinant LH (rLH) to controlled ovarian hyperstimulation (COH) shows a beneficial effect on ongoing pregnancy rates in poor responder women, with an increase of ongoing pregnancy rate. Next to this possible beneficial effect, there are two potential drawbacks of adding rLH to COH; women have to administer extra injections, and daily rLH injections generate additional costs. We therefore investigated women's perspectives on an additional injection of rLH with respect to live birth rates (LBR) and out-of-pocket costs in a discrete choice experiment.
METHODS: Women eligible for IVF were asked to choose between treatments that differed in LBR after one IVF cycle, the amount of self-administered injections and out-of-pocket costs or reimbursement. The relative weights that women place on these attributes were estimated with a logistic regression model. To test for heterogeneity of preferences among women, patient characteristics were included in the model.
RESULTS: Two-hundred and thirty-four women were asked to participate in the study. In total, 223 women responded (response rate 95%) and 206 questionnaires were analysed. An increase of one daily injection did not alter women's treatment preference. LBR and costs did have a significant (P < 0.001) impact on women's choice of IVF treatment. Patient characteristics significantly influenced the effect of costs on women's preferences.
CONCLUSIONS: One extra daily injection will not cause a woman to refrain from a certain IVF treatment. However, to compensate for the out-of-pocket costs of this extra daily injection, the expected LBR should at least be 6%.