Fertility Medication: 5 Most Popular Fertility Drugs
on Aug 28, 2012
by Dr. Prabha Sahgal, MD
Looking for fertility medication? Check out the details about 5 of the more common fertility drugs on the market for women.
Fertility medication is most commonly meant to influence ovulation in the female. But fertility drugs can be used not only by women, but also by their partners, to treat male infertility – although this is less common. Claim Your 20 Free Pregnancy Tests – Click Here
The 5 most popular prescribed fertility drugs are Clomid, Arimidex, Follistim, Cetrotide and Ovidrel. Let’s find out a little more about each of them.
This is a fertility pill of which you have most certainly heard if you have been trying to conceive. Clomid, or clomiphene citrate, as it is also called, is usually the first drug that an obstetrician recommends. Statistics say that 40%-45% of couples using this drug get pregnant within 6 months after starting to use it. It helps stimulate ovulation in women who have irregular ovulation or anovulatory cycles.
This is a fertility drug used to induce ovulation in women that have ovulatory disorders. Reports have shown that this fertility medication has the same success rate as Clomid. Like Femara, Arimidex blocks aromatase, an enzyme that is a major source of estrogen in many major body tissues. Women with high estrogen levels often encounter fertility problems, and so this fertility drug can assist in lowering estrogen levels.
Follistim replicates the behavior of the FSH hormone, by “telling” the oocytes in a female’s ovaries to grow and mature. Follistim pills are developed using the recombinant DNA technology. Typically, this fertility drug is prescribed to those women who are Clomid-resistant or who suffer from PCOS.
We mentioned earlier that fertility drugs are used to influence ovulation. Although you may think that they work to trigger ovulation, you have to know that some of them actually suppress it. And one of the fertility pills that does this is Cetrotide, which works against the hormones FSH and LH. It is indicated for inhibiting premature luteinizing hormone (LH) surges in women who are undergoing various fertility treatments like assisted insemination or reproductive technology (ART) procedures. It may seem unnatural to do this, if you want to get pregnant, but this type of drug is used during IVF treatment. Many women do not have problems getting pregnant, but they do have problems in carrying the baby; this is why some of their eggs need to be eliminated, before they are ovulated. This is the reason for which drugs like Cetrotide are used.
This fertility pill has the same behavior as the LH hormone, being responsible for triggering ovulation. Just like in the case of the previous pill, Ovidrel is used during IVF treatment. However, this can be also used after FSH treatment or during IUI.
Fertility pills need to be taken on precise intervals (just like contraceptive pills), because only this way can they prove their effectiveness. A female or male who takes fertility drugs also needs to see their doctor on a regular basis, to allow him to check the results of the pills and see if the treatment is working or if he should suggest another approach.
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Dr. Prabha Sahgal MD, is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and subspecialty board certified in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. Dr. Sahgal holds a B.S. degree from MIT in molecular biology and currently serves on the ConceiveEasy board of directors.