For women who are not ovulating regularly or who are having a difficult time ovulating on their own, ovulation induction is commonly used. By using these hormonal therapy drugs, the body is stimulated to produce healthy eggs that are then released. The hopes are that the woman’s body will then produce and release a single egg that is healthy and ready to be fertilized.
Ovulation induction can also be used with the intent of developing more than one healthy egg, which in turn increases the chances of conceiving and becoming pregnant. There are a great number of options available for women who are having issues with ovulation and each come with their own price tag and risk factors for side effects.
CLOMIPHENE CITRATE (SERAPHENE AND CLOMID)
The most commonly used drug is clomiphene citrate. Brand names are Seraphene and Clomid, but Clomid is by far the most well-known brand of this drug. These drugs are anti-estrogen drugs and can actually trick your body into thinking that estrogen levels are low in the body.
This act encourages the body to produce more FSh which then induces the release of an egg or ovulation. Typically, women who begin taking this treatment method become pregnant within the first three months.
However, there are some significant side effects that can be seen through Clomid and many women have found that they need to be monitored closely while they are taking it. At times Clomid is prescribed along with other fertility treatments such as IUI (intrauterine insemination).
HUMAN MENOPAUSAL GONADOTROPIN OR HMG
Human menopausal gonadotropin or hMG is also used for ovulation induction. It can stimulate the egg development in women and is especially helpful for women who ovulate infrequently or not at all. One of the downsides of these particular drugs is the fact that it may be difficult to determine how much to prescribe because every woman’s body reacts differently to the drug.
While this drug can also be used at the same time as IUI and IVF treatments, some monitoring is required by your doctor in order to help minimize complication risks and eliminate side effects. hMG is currently only available as an injection, but it is possible to perform the injection at home after special training.
FSH medications are given to women in the hopes that multiple eggs will be produced. At times they may be combined with hMG for women with severe cases of ovulation issues, but they also work great by themselves as well. One risk that you run with these medications is the risk of multiple births. However, this risk is also present with any fertility drug and the chances are increased as dosages are increased. FSH is also only available through an injection.
HUMAN CHORIONIC GONADOTROPIN (HCG)
Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is also a popular drug that is used to increase ovulation and is used to promote the maturity of the eggs. With this drug, mature eggs are usually released about 36 hours after a woman is given hCG. It can also help the uterus prepare for the implantation of the egg once it becomes fertilized.
LUTEINIZING HORMONES AND FOLLICLE STIMULATING HORMONES
Luteinizing hormones and Follicle Stimulating hormones are also important for women who are looking to promote ovulation. Lupron is a drug that helps with both of these cycles by promoting the ovaries response to non-dormant follicles. It also helps regulate the ovulation cycle and has been shown to prevent premature ovulation. Typically Lupron is monitored through ultrasounds and blood tests and is commonly given to patients early on in the menstrual cycle.
If you are having a difficult time having a normal ovulation cycle, many of these drugs are helpful to get your body on track and help you ovulate. They all come with their own risks and a varying degree of dosage options. Many doctors will begin with a lower dosage of a drug and increase that dosage if it remains ineffective.
For women who are trying to get pregnant, discussing their ovulation patterns with their doctor is extremely important. Many women have trouble with ovulation and require medical assistance for it to be induced. Your doctor will be able to discuss with you the options that you have as well as any risk factor that may come along with any of the treatment options. Be sure to weigh your options carefully before beginning a treatment regimen.