Fertility Drugs Used to Treat Infertility
- Posted on: Feb 16 2014
Treating infertility in women can be a complicated process. A professional fertility specialist will carefully gather a patient’s medical history, evaluate prior fertility records and conduct a thorough physical examination. Before artificial insemination or surgical procedures are recommended, fertility medications are administered to treat the problem.
Some of the most common medications used to treat infertility include the following:
- Clomiphene or letrozole
Clomid, medically referred to as clomiphene citrate, is a fertility medication that induces the growth of eggs due to its stimulating properties on the pituitary gland. Letrozole (also known as Femara) works in a similar manner. These medications are administered by mouth and is often given to women who have difficulty with ovulation, endometriosis, diminished ovarian reserve, multiple miscarriages or unexplained infertility. Women who have polycystic ovarian syndrome or PCOS are often given this medication to treat infertility by stimulating egg production and ovulation.
- Follicle stimulating hormone therapy (FSH)
Follicle stimulating hormone is a hormone used to stimulate the ovaries to make multiple eggs. They are used in women who do not ovulate regularly, have endometriosis, unexplained infertility, diminished ovarian reserve, those that have failed other therapies or to women who have problems with the pituitary gland and fail to respond to clomiphene. The medication is usually injected into the woman’s body and helps egg development occur.
- Human menopausal gonadotropin
Human menopausal gonadotropin, also known as hMG, is similar to FSH in that it is a drug used for women who have problems with endometriosis, unexplained infertility, diminished ovarian reserve, or for those that have failed other therapies. The medication is generally injected into the woman’s body.
- Gonadotropin releasing hormone
This specific hormone is also used for women who do not ovulate regularly and have difficulty getting pregnant. This hormone treatment can also be given to women who ovulate prematurely, or before the egg is ready. This type of medication acts on the pituitary gland and is typically given as an injection or nasal spray.
- Other fertility drugs
Women with insulin resistance or those who have polycystic ovary syndrome may be given a drug known as metformin or Glucophage. The drug works to help decrease an elevation of male hormones in the female body and assists with regulating ovulation. The drug may be combined with another fertility drug, such as clomid and is usually administered by mouth.
Women with high levels of prolactin, the hormone leading to milk production (lactation), may be given medication to decrease the elevated prolactin hormone levels. High levels of prolactin can cause problem with ovulation.
The use of fertility drugs may increase a patient’s chance of having twins or multiples. Careful monitoring by a Denver fertility clinic is required. The rate of success will depend upon the diagnosis, age of the patient and partners sperm count.
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