Ovarian stimulation is a key component of many fertility treatments
Ovation Fertility™ partner physicians know the critical role that ovarian stimulation plays in many fertility treatments. However, patients aren’t always as familiar with the basics of ovulation and the importance of ovarian stimulation.
Most women have a regular monthly cycle, marked by regular periods and ovulation
Before getting into the details of ovarian stimulation, it makes sense to look at the basics of ovulation.
- At the beginning of a woman’s menstrual cycle, her pituitary gland releases a hormone called follicle-stimulating hormone, or FSH.
- FSH causes follicles, or fluid-filled spheres that contain eggs, to grow on both ovaries.
- Normally, only one follicle will mature and release an egg. This is known as ovulation.
- If the egg is fertilized and implants into the uterine lining, then the woman will become pregnant. Otherwise, the uterine lining is shed, resulting in a period.
Ovarian stimulation is an important part of many fertility treatments, including in vitro fertilization and intrauterine insemination
When you visit an Ovation Fertility partner physician for help getting pregnant, you will find that ovarian stimulation is a part of many fertility treatments.
The purpose of ovarian stimulation is to create regular ovulation for patients who have irregular or absent cycles. Ovarian stimulation can also help patients who have regular cycles by encouraging the ovaries to release multiple eggs, which increases the odds of getting pregnant.
The most common treatments that require ovarian stimulation include intrauterine insemination, IUI, and in vitro fertilization, IVF. Ovarian stimulation is accomplished by using oral or injectable medication.
- One of the most common oral medications is clomiphene citrate, commonly known as Clomid or Serophene. A patient will take a pill every day for 5 days at the beginning of her cycle.
- Some of the most common injectable medications, or gonadotropins, are Gonal F and Menopur. A patient will take one injection every day for 7 to 12 days.
- A hybrid approach is also available for patients who do not ovulate in response to oral medications alone. This approach involves stimulating the ovaries using a combination of oral medication and low levels of injectable medication.
Since these medications stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs, there is a possibility that the use of oral or injectable medications can result in a pregnancy with multiples. However, the odds of this happening are low and most patients have only one baby at a time.
Ovarian stimulation is a critical part of many fertility treatments. If you have any questions ovarian stimulation, please contact an Ovation Fertility partner physician.