The day fertility drugs are started is marked on the Calendar.
These medications will stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs. The response to these drugs varies according to the patient’s age, her FSH hormone levels, the size of the ovaries, and the amount of drugs given. The dose should be clearly indicated on the Calendar. Such medications include drugs such as Bravelle, Follistim, Gonal-F, and Menopur.
These drugs are given once (usually in the evening) or twice daily (morning and evening). Mixing and injection instructions will be given to the patient prior to treatment initiation. The patient will be told when to stop taking these drugs. If the patient stops taking these medications prematurely, it might lead to the cancellation of the cycle.
These drugs are usually taken for 10 to 14 days. Some patients might need a longer period of time to have a successful stimulation. This is common in older patients or women with elevated FSH levels. A vaginal ultrasound examination will be performed 4-5 days after the start of these medications.
Ganirelix Acetate Injection
Some patients will be taking Ganirelix Acetate Injection instead of Lupron. They both do the same thing, which is preventing premature ovulation. The difference being in that Ganirelix Acetate Injection is given after the initiation of ovarian stimulation when the lead follicle is 12-14 mm in diameter. Ganirelix Acetate Injection is given every night for about 3-5 days. It is extremely critical to take the Ganirelix Acetate Injection shot every night until told to stop by Dr Sharara. Failure to do so may result in premature release of the eggs and cancellation of the IVF cycle!
Often patients are placed on Dexamethasone and Baby Aspirin. These drugs are also started the same day the fertility drugs are started. Some women with elevated prolactin levels will be given Parlodel or Dostinex. Further instructions will be given to the patient as to when to continue or discontinue these medications.
Folic acid is a vitamin that every patient attempting to conceive should take prior to conception. It has been shown to reduce the incidence of serious birth defects (neural tube defects such as spina bifida) when taken during the first 50-70 days after conception. Adequate doses of folic acid are found in prenatal vitamins.