Are you gearing up for a round of injectable medications to treat your infertility? The team at Attain Fertility is here to guide you through the process and make this journey as stress-free and successful as possible!
Types of Injectables for Infertility
Your doctor will prescribe injectable medications that are best suited to your unique situation and fertility diagnosis. If you are having an ART treatment (assisted reproductive technology), like IVF, it is likely that you’ll take a few different medications with each cycle. The two types of injections most commonly given to women who are undergoing fertility treatment are subcutaneous and intramuscular injections. Subcutaneous injections are inserted directly into fat deposits underneath the skin, while intramuscular medications are inserted directly into the muscle.
Keep in mind the dosing instructions and be careful when injecting. Be sure to dispose any needles into a special sharps container.
What are GnRH Agonists and GnRH Antagonists?
GnRH medications are subcutaneous injections. They prevent a woman from ovulating early, and suppress normal hormone functions of the body. These injections can increase your chances of conceiving by regulating your ovulation cycle. It is uncommon to experience any side effects from GnRH agonists or antagonists. Women who undergo IVF treatment often have success with these injections. Some GnRH agonist examples include Lupron, Acetate and Leuprolide. Some GnRH antagonist examples include Cetrocide, Ganirelx and Acetate.
The gonadotropin medication help develop healthy, mature eggs and stimulate the ovaries.
There are several groups of gonadotropins:
- Luteinizing hormone (LH)
- Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH)
- Follicle stimulating hormone with luteinizing hormone (FSH/LH)
All groups of gonadotropin medications can be received through an intramuscular or subcutaneous injection. Your doctor will monitor your progress through estradiol testing and a transvaginal ultrasound when taking gonadotropins. Although the cysts usually go away, sometimes surgery is necessary to remove.
Each gonadotropin medication is different. Some groups, like Bravelle, Menopur and Repronex come in vials. With these medications, the powder and liquid are mixed together with syringe and Q-cap reconstitution device before the injection is given.
Other medications are injected with a pen device, such as Follistim and Gonal-F. Luteinizing hormones (Luveris, Novarel, Profasi, and Ovidrel) are also in a class of gonadotropins, stimulating the ovaries and yielding healthy egg development.
Progesterone prepares the uterus for pregnancy
When a woman ovulates, the hormone progesterone is naturally produced in the ovaries. Progesterone helps prepare your uterus for pregnancy by preventing the uterine line from shedding. With a strong lining, a fertilized egg can plant itself into the uterus and grow. If you do not produce enough progesterone on your own, your doctor may prescribe progesterone to be inserted as an intramuscular injected or vaginally. The injection can be taken daily, and is typically more favorable as it keeps the highest hormone blood levels.
The Emotions of Infertility Treatments
If you’re feeling emotional through this process, you’re not alone. Most women get used to the injections as time progresses, and look on the bright side: the goal is to ultimately have a baby! This positively as you work towards this goal. Many couples achieve success of a pregnancy after injectable medications. Talk to your doctor about any discomfort you’re experiencing, and be aware of your medications and how to administer them properly. Be sure you have approval from your doctor, and that all fertility medications are acquired inside the US. Anything purchased outside of the United States is illegal.