We administered pulsatile low doses of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) (1 to 5 μg) to patients whose anovulation was caused by relative and absolute deficiency of endogenous GnRH. Eight such patients, including one with previous pituitary stalk transection, were treated during a total of 23 cycles; pulses of GnRH were administered via a portable pump every 96 or 120 minutes. Activation of pituitary-ovarian function with orderly development of a single dominant follicle, a luteinizing hormone surge, and ovulation occurred in 20 of the 23 cycles. The other three cycles were anovulatory. All patients responded, and five (62%) of the eight conceived, for a total of seven pregnancies and four full-term deliveries of normal infants. This study demonstrates that small pulsatile doses of GnRH can activate cyclic pituitary-ovarian function in hypogonadotropin-acyclic women and induce ovulation resulting in pregnancy and live birth.
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