There are multiple means of conception via fertility treatments. Some women opt to have embryos transferred into the uterus and others choose to have sperm and egg implanted in hopes of a more natural conception. What some men and women do not understand is the egg harvesting process and just how much goes into maturing multiple eggs and ensuring those eggs are ready for harvest at just the right time. Fertility drugs play a huge part in the entire fertility treatment process.
Fertility Drugs Commonly Used in Fertility Treatments
Fertility drugs have been used for more than 25 years to help women achieve pregnancy. Fertility drugs come in both oral and injected varieties.
Clomiphene: The most popular fertility drug is clomiphene, sold under the brand names Clomid and Serophene. The drug works by inhibiting estrogen. This allows the hypothalamus and pituitary gland to release reproductive hormones. Clomiphene has been around for more than 25 years, which makes it a safe choice as the first line of treatment against infertility.
hCG: Human chorionic gonadotropin, or hCG, promotes egg release.
FSH: Follicle stimulating hormone, or FSH, promotes growth of ovarian follicles.
hMG: Human menopausal gonadotropin, or hMG, promotes FSH and luteinizing hormone (LH).
GnRH Agonist: Gonadotropin releasing hormone agonist, or GnRH agonist, promotes release of FSH and LH.
GnRH Antagonist: Gonadotropin releasing hormone antagonist, or GnRH antagonist, prevents premature LH surge.
Other medications commonly used during fertility treatment include aspirin, ganirelix acetate, heparin, cabergoline and bromocriptine.
When attempting advanced fertility treatment interventions like IVF and IUI, medications are a major part of the process. Fertility drugs, when given at just the right time, control ovulation, egg maturation and reproductive hormones so doctors can harvest multiple eggs for later use. Fertility drugs, though crucial to some fertility treatments, are extremely expensive and may not be covered by health insurance policies.