What are the side effects of IVF injections?
With a stimulated frozen cycle, patients take medication to go through the process of down-regulation. This temporarily shuts down your ovaries and prevents any eggs from being released. You will have a scan on day two or three of your period and start taking medication to prepare your womb for the embryo transfer. A second ultrasound scan at day eight or nine will be performed to check the thickness of your endometrium. Once it is of the appropriate thickness, doctor can start the embryo thawing process and book your transfer.
Progesterone = vaginal cream or suppositories or intramuscular injection of a medication (female hormone) called progesterone. This drug helps to prepare a receptive lining for embryo implantation.
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What drugs do you take for frozen embryo transfer?
Before the FET cycle, you will take medicines to reduce ovarian activity. You will take either birth control pills or an injection of a hormone called leuprolide (Lupron).
After taking this medicine for at least 10 days, you will take the hormone estradiol, as a pill, injection, or patch. Estradiol helps prepare your endometrium to accept the embryo.
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Do frozen embryos take longer to implant?
Unlike fresh embryos, which usually implant within one or two days after a blastocyst transfer, frozen embryos take a little longer to implant. Usually, they implant within five days. This is referred to as late or delayed implantation. This slight delay has several advantages, including:
Frozen embryo transfer implantation does take slightly longer. Typically an at home pregnancy test is performed around ten to twelve days after the transfer to see if it has been successful.
Are frozen embryo transfers more successful?
Having frozen embryos allows you additional opportunities for success from a given egg retrieval. If your fresh transfer is unsuccessful, frozen embryos may provide the possibility of trying again without having to take ovarian stimulation medication or to have another egg retrieval.
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What are the side effects of IVF injections?
Fertility treatments are generally very safe, but all medical procedures carry some risk of potential side effects. The side effects of IVF may include reactions to the hormonal fertility medications taken during the preparation for egg retrieval. There is also a small risk of rare complications during egg retrieval and embryo transfer procedures.
Your fertility specialist will work with you to make sure any treatment you undergo is as safe as possible. You should always consult them if you have concerns, especially if you’re experiencing severe side effects of IVF.
Soreness or Bruising from Injections
During the ovulation induction part of the IVF process, injectable fertility medications are used to stimulate the ovaries to develop multiple eggs. Sometimes women experience pain, bruising, or tenderness at their injection sites. You can reduce this side effect by choosing different sites for injections when possible.
Another one of the physical side effects of IVF is nausea. Some women also experience vomiting, but not always.
Breast tenderness is often a side effect of fertility drugs. It is similar to the sensitivity some women experience before or during their menstrual cycles.
This is another side effect that many women are familiar with during their menstrual cycle. This is because the hormones being used to stimulate egg development are the same ones involved in regular menstruation, they’re just present in larger quantities during fertility treatments.
Some women report that taking hormonal fertility medication causes them to have hot flashes.
Hormonal medication might cause emotional changes like mood swings. Irritability, restlessness, or a general feeling of being down may occur while taking fertility medication.
Fatigue may be a side effect of IVF. This could be due to hormonal shifts caused by fertility drugs. Other physical symptoms like hot flashes may also interfere with sleep, leading to tiredness.
Some women experience allergic reactions to injections. This may include skin itching or redness at the injection sites.
Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS)
Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) is an excessive response to taking the injectable hormones used in IVF cycles. If a woman has too many growing follicles, fluid may leak into the abdomen. OHSS is usually mild and leads to symptoms like bloating, nausea, and weight gain. Mild to moderate cases can be treated with rest and hydration with electrolyte-rich liquids. In rare cases, OHSS is severe enough to require treatment at the hospital.
Mild Pelvic and Abdominal Pain
During or after the egg retrieval step of IVF, you may experience mild to moderate pelvic and/or abdominal pain. Some women describe the pain as being similar to cramping. Usually, this pain is mild enough to be treated with over-the-counter pain medication and resolves within a day or two of the procedure.
Pelvic infections are also a risk of the egg collection and embryo transfer steps of IVF but are very rare. Some doctors give antibiotics before and after procedures to prevent infection, but not everyone’s the same.
Having a pregnancy with more than one baby is more likely with IVF. This risk is increased when more than one embryo is transferred. Being pregnant with multiples increases the risk of preterm labor, high blood pressure, gestational diabetes, and the need for a C-section.
Many people have great success with IVF, but every cycle does not end with a pregnancy. If you do not get pregnant after a cycle, it can be terribly disappointing because you’ve put so much effort into it. And as the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ARM) points out, while IVF does not increase the risk of miscarriage, pregnancy loss after going through an intense process might be even more painful.
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