Fertility drugs are substances that enhance the reproductive capabilities of a woman by stimulating the development of follicles in the ovary. Men can also take fertility drugs. However, they have fewer options. Here is a look at some of the commonly prescribed medications. These include: Common ovulation induction drugs, Injectable gonadotropins, and GnRH agonists.
Common ovulation induction drugs
Ovulation induction drugs come in various forms and can be taken orally or as a tablet. They are usually taken at the same time each day. They contain the chemical clomiphene, which has actions similar to estrogen and stimulates the ovaries to ripen and release eggs. These medications usually last five days. They are marketed under brand names such as Clomid, Milophene, and Serophene.
Injectable gonadotropins are one of the most common ovulation induction drugs. They work by inhibiting the conversion of androgens to estrogen. The low levels of estrogen trigger the pituitary gland to produce FSH, a hormone that helps follicles grow and release eggs. However, these drugs should be used only after checking the level of fertility hormones in your body.
Ovulation induction drugs are commonly used for women who do not ovulate regularly. The purpose of these medications is to control ovulation and increase the number of mature eggs available for IVF. It has been estimated that approximately 25 percent of women experience infertility due to irregular ovulation. Ovulation induction can be used as an initial step in natural infertility treatment or in conjunction with other fertility therapies.
Injectable gonadotropins are hormones that stimulate ovaries to produce eggs. They are used in conjunction with other fertility treatments, such as IUI, to help women conceive. These drugs are injected into the muscle or under the skin. They must be taken for a few weeks, and you must have frequent blood tests to monitor your progress.
The main risk of gonadotropin therapy is multiple pregnancy. A few percent of women who undergo treatment end up conceiving twins or more. The increase in multiple pregnancies is due to the stimulation of more eggs during an ovulation induction cycle and the transfer of more embryos during an IVF cycle. Multiple pregnancies are most often twins, although up to 5% are triplets.
Injectable gonadotropins are injected under the skin, and they are a part of the IUI and IVF treatment cycle. The injections are given daily, usually on the evening of day three of the cycle. Depending on the level of serum estradiol, the dose may be maintained or increased. A fertility specialist will monitor the patient’s progress closely.
GnRH agonists are fertility medications that suppress the ovaries, which can increase the chances of conception. These drugs can reduce the risk of cycle cancellation, which was previously as high as 20 to 50 percent. The side effects of GnRH agonists are temporary, and the drugs’ actions reverse when they are discontinued.
This class of drugs can be injected into the body and is used to prevent ovulation. They inhibit the ovaries from responding to hormones produced by the pituitary gland. As a result, they create a condition that is similar to menopause. These drugs are also used to treat cancer. While chemotherapy targets active dividing cells and attacks them, GnRH agonists fool the drugs into thinking that the ovaries are no longer active.
Lupron(r) is a common GnRH agonist. Although it is not approved by the FDA for IVF treatment, it has been used for over 20 years. However, unlike other fertility drugs, Lupron(r) must be injected into the body in order to be effective. Lupron is injected under the skin in a process similar to that of insulin injections.