Fertility Medications 101

The most common fertility medications and what you need to know — in one place.

Phases of IVF or Egg Freezing:

Ovarian Stimulation
delaying ovulation
Trigger
Post-Transfer
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Medication
Description
Phase
files/Cetrotide.svg

Cetrotide

Around day 5 of the stimulation phase, you'll start Cetrotide to delay ovulation. This allows the follicles to grow and become similar in size to each other, increasing your chance of mature eggs. Cetrotide comes as a powder, and requires mixing before injecting. Some clinics or doctors will prescribe Ganirelix as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Preventing Ovulation
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Crinone

Crinone is a gel that contains a hormone called progesterone, which prepares the lining of your uterus for implantation and pregnancy. Oftentimes, fertility medications affect your progesterone levels. You may be prescribed a progesterone supplement to make up for this decrease when it's time for the transfer. Crinone gel is inserted vaginally using an applicator. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe different forms of progesterone as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Post-Transfer
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Estradiol

Estradiol is a type of estrogen used to thicken the lining of your uterus for implantation, helping you sustain pregnancy. Estradiol may be prescribed when you're ready for the transfer. It's available in many different formulations. Learn more.

Phase:
Post-Transfer
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Estrogen Patch

Estrogen is used to thicken the lining of your uterus for implantation, helping you sustain pregnancy. Estrogen patches are applied directly to the skin. Your doctor may prescribe a different formulation of estrogen as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Post-Transfer
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Follistim

Follistim is a follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) used to stimulate the growth of follicles in your ovaries to produce more eggs. It’s injected just under the skin on your thigh or lower stomach area. Some clinics or doctors will prescribe Gonal-F as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Ovarian Stimulation
files/Ganirelix_Acetate.svg

Ganirelix Acetate

Ganirelix is used to prevent your eggs from being released, giving them enough time to mature before ovulation. It works by blocking the hormone that's responsible for starting ovulation. Ganirelix is injected just under the skin on your thigh or lower stomach area. Some clinics or doctors will prescribe Cetrotide as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Preventing Ovulation
files/Gonal-F.svg

Gonal-F

Gonal-F is a follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) used to stimulate the growth of follicles in your ovaries to produce more eggs. It’s injected just under the skin on your thigh or lower stomach area. Some clinics or doctors will prescribe Follistim as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Ovarian Stimulation
files/Leuprolide.svg

Lupron

Leuprolide acetate, or Lupron, releases both a Follicle-Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and a Luteinizing Hormone (LH) to trigger ovulation when it's time for retrieval. It may be prescribed alone, or with hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) as a "dual trigger." Lupron may come as a kit or a prefilled syringe, and is injected just under the skin. Learn more.

Phase:
TRIGGER SHOT
files/Low-Dose_hCG.svg

Low-Dose hCG

Low Dose hCG, or Human Chorionic Gonadotropin, may be used during the ovarian stimulation phase to help with egg growth and maturation. It is mixed on-site at the pharmacy, but is taken home as a liquid in a vial. Low Dose hCG is injected subcutaneously just under the skin. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe low-dose hCG as an alternative to Menopur. Learn more.

Phase:
Ovarian Stimulation
files/Menopur.svg

Menopur

Menopur contains both a follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and a Luteinizing Hormone (LH). It’s sometimes added to the ovarian stimulation phase to help with egg growth and maturation. It’s also an injectable, but comes as a powder and requires mixing before use.
Learn more.

Phase:
Ovarian Stimulation
files/Novarel.svg

Novarel

Novarel contains a hormone called hCG, or Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. It's used to trigger the release of mature eggs. It may be prescribed alone or with Lupron as a "dual trigger." Novarel comes as a powder, and requires mixing before injecting directly into the muscle. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe Pregnyl, generic hCG, or Ovidrel as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
TRIGGER SHOT
files/Ovidrel.svg

Ovidrel

Ovidrel contains a synthetic version of hCG, or Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. It's used to trigger the release of mature eggs. It may be prescribed alone or with Lupron as a "dual trigger." Ovidrel comes as a prefilled syringe that's injected just under the skin. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe Novarel, Pregnyl, or generic hCG as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
TRIGGER SHOT
files/Pregnyl.svg

Pregnyl

Pregnyl contains a hormone called hCG, or Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. It's used to trigger the release of mature eggs. It may be prescribed alone or with Lupron as a "dual trigger." Pregnyl comes as a powder, and requires mixing before injecting directly into the muscle. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe Novarel, generic hCG, or Ovidrel as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
TRIGGER SHOT
files/Progesterone_in_oil.svg

Progesterone In Oil

Progesterone is used to prepare the lining of your uterus for implantation and pregnancy. Oftentimes, fertility medications affect your progesterone levels. You may be prescribed a progesterone supplement to make up for this decrease when it's time for the transfer. Progesterone in oil comes in a vial, and is injected directly into the muscle. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe different forms of progesterone as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Post-Transfer
files/Progesterone.svg

Progesterone Suppositories

Progesterone is used to prepare the lining of your uterus for implantation and pregnancy. Oftentimes, fertility medications affect your progesterone levels. You may be prescribed a progesterone supplement to make up for this decrease when it's time for the transfer. Progesterone capsules/suppositories are inserted vaginally. Some clinics or doctors may prescribe different forms of progesterone as an alternative. Learn more.

Phase:
Post-Transfer
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