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PCOS Fertility Treatment
on Sep 15, 2012
by Dr. Renee Hanton, MD
If you are suffering from polycystic ovarian syndrome, find out the most common PCOS fertility treatment options available to you to help you get pregnant.
PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is the most frequent endocrine medical condition affecting women of reproductive age; left untreated, this disorder leads to ovulation–related infertility. Polycystic ovaries lead to lack of ovulation (anovulation) due to lack of the menstrual cycle (amenorrhea) or infrequent ovulation (oligoovulation) due to irregular menstrual cycles. Women trying to conceive should maintain an optimum weight, because obesity triggers the worsening of the PCOS symptoms. Claim Your 20 Free Pregnancy Tests – Click Here
The PCOS fertility treatment consists of increasing female fertility by restoring a regular menstrual cycle and optimum ovulation. The main 5 treatments aimed at curing PCOS in women who want to conceive are as follows.
Clomiphene citrate (Clomid) is the most frequently used drug to increase fertility in PCOS patients, being considered the most effective treatments for ovulation-related problems. 75% of women with PCOS will ovulate following treatment with Clomid and 50% of women affected by PCOS and no other disorder will be able to conceive. Clomiphene citrate is administered orally, one tablet (50 mg) daily for five days, and the ovulation occurs 8 to 10 days after the last day of treatment. If ovulation does not occur, the dose should be increased to 150 mg daily, and, if this does not work either, other medical therapies should be considered.
FSH hormone (Gonadotropins) injections are recommended when Clomid proves unsuccessful; the treatment lasts one to two weeks and it works by stimulating the proper development of ovarian follicles, in order to promote the release of eggs (ovulation). This medication is more expensive than Clomid and presents the risk of causing multiple births, like triplets.
Letrozole (Femara) is another PCOS treatment option and the alternative for women who do not ovulate after taking Clomid, for those who do ovulate with Clomid, but do not get pregnant, or for women who stopped taking Clomid due to its side effects. Just like Clomid, it works by stimulating an increase in the FSH hormone which stimulates the release of one or multiple eggs.
Metformin (Glocophage) is a drug commonly used to control diabetes. It is also used effectively to promote ovulation and regular menstrual cycles, either alone or in combination with Clomid, for better results.
Diet and lifestyle changes are important steps of a PCOS fertility treatment because a normal weight improves the chances of ovulating and thus, of conceiving. Therefore, weight loss and adopting a healthy lifestyle improves the pregnancy success rates for women affected by PCOS.
These are the main options to consider if you suffer from PCOS and are trying to conceive. Discuss them with your fertility doctor, as he is the one who can best assess what course of action you should take.
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Dr. Renee Hanton is ConceiveEasy's Senior Physician with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. Dr. Hanton specializes in the endocrine causes of infertility, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)