Medications that assist in procreation
Gonadotropin medications contain hormones such as follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), or a combination of both. The following includes the classes of gonadotropins drugs.
- Human menopausal gonadotropin: consists of FSH and LH to induce the ovaries
- Synthetic human chorionic gonadotropin: stimulates ovulation
- Follicle-stimulating hormone: induces follicle growth of the ovaries
- Gonadotropin-releasing hormone: activates pituitary gland to produce FSH and LH
These medications help with ovulation stimulation however, just like any drug, these have potential side effects.
The associated side effects or risks
Couples may find reproductive medications successful, however, there are some associated risks. The side effects and risks vary from person to person. One syndrome that may occur but is rare is ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome where the ovaries are enlarged and painful. Other potential risks include multiple pregnancies and cancer such as ovarian cancer or any part of the female genital tract. Tubal pregnancy, twisting of the ovary, and any reaction to the injection are also possible risks that may occur.
An insight into the process
Unlike other reproductive medications, gonadotropins medications are given by injections in the early phase of the menstrual cycle. The gonadotropin injections are usually applied with reproductive treatments such as in vitro fertilization and intrauterine insemination. After the administration of injections, patients are observed closely and the hormone levels are monitored. The specialist may provide some specific instructions for example, when to have intercourse. Consulting a healthcare provider is recommended if there are any concerns or questions before or after the procedure.
The success rate
Not every patient will have a successful outcome in the initial trial, sometimes more than one trial is required. The outcome also depends on factors such as age and pre-existing medical conditions. However, the use of gonadotropins is considered to be a sensible treatment decision that can help patients with fertility problems. Due to the risk of multiple pregnancy outcomes with gonadotropins, close observation and management are required.