Regular ovulation takes place when a woman’s ovary releases a mature egg and the egg prepares to be fertilized. Regular ovulation occurs every 28 days on average during a woman’s menstrual cycle, and intervals of 21 to 35 days are also considered regular ovulation. If fertilization and pregnancy doesn’t happen, the egg is broken down and cleared from the uterus naturally.
When ovulation is unpredictable or occurs less than once every 35 days, it is considered irregular. Irregular ovulation reduces the predictability of ovulation which makes it more difficult to conceive.
Ovulation induction is a noninvasive and low-cost infertility treatment compared to other options, which makes it one of the first treatments women and couples with infertility issues explore. It is also a common option for women who are not ovulating (anovulation), have irregular menstrual cycles, or unexplained infertility.
When determining whether ovulation induction is right for you or your partner, our doctors will evaluate:
presence of disorders that inhibit regular ovulation
exercise and lifestyle habits
Ovulation induction is one of the safest and most successful infertility treatments. Most women do not encounter significant side effects from oral or injectable medications, but some women have been known to experience:
It's important to disclose your entire medical history and lifestyle behaviors with your doctor to ensure the right treatment for you.
How Does Ovulation Induction Work?
Ovulation induction is achieved through medications that stimulate the release of hormones and drive egg production. Ovulation induction medication can be taken orally or by injection.
Oral medications are often the first course of treatment for irregular ovulation or for women who don’t ovulate. Our doctors begin a typical treatment cycle with an ultrasound and blood work on the third day of the menstrual cycle.
Clomid works by tricking the body into thinking that estrogen levels are lower than they actually are, which causes an increase in FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone). FSH stimulates the ovary to produce eggs that are ready to be released.
Femara is another common oral medication to help stimulate ovulation. Depending on when a woman’s period begins, femora is ingested on certain days throughout the cycle. Similar to Clomid, Femara causes an increase in FSH, which stimulates egg production.
Our fertility doctors monitor all patients while on oral medications to ensure a safe and healthy experience.
Injectable doses of FSH can also be used to stimulate ovulation, especially if oral medications are unsuccessful. Injecting FSH is proven to be a successful way to stimulate ovulation for many patients trying to conceive.
Injections are often given within three to five days following the start of woman’s menstrual cycle. Dosage is determined by our doctors and your health profile, and injections often continue for a few days during the cycle. Ultrasounds and bloodwork may be required to monitor the development and pace of progress.
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