Friday, December 3, 2010

Can Progesterone Be Given With Clomid Induction? PCO Patient With 3 Failed Cycles Wants To Know...

I'm 31, never pregnant. Dx PCOS, receiving metformin 1500 mg a day. Three cycles with clomid with no ovulation. HSG normal, husband semen analysis OK. Now going through second cycle of IUI (intra uterine insemination), ovulation stimulated with Gonal F and triggered with ovidrel.

First cycle progesterone level on day 3 after second IUI was low (2.3), so I asked the doctors why they can not prescribe progesterone to improve luteal phase and make implantation more possible, and they told me they do it only with IVF. Is this Ok? What I mean is, why don't give progesterone if the level is low, and it is know than low progesterone impairs implantation and also increases risk of miscarriage in first trimester? Please give me some advice, or some reference articles where to read about this (scientific articles to support my request) Thank you! S. from Arkansas


Hello S. from the U.S.,

You have a very valid question and you should ask your doctor why they don't give progesterone after intra-uterine insemination. I'm sure there are many articles on the web that you could find that advise this technique. There is absolutely no reason not to give progesterone after IUI or even after simple ovulation induction.

However, I think that your thinking may be incorrect, however. If the ovulation induction were proceeding correctly, and ovulation occurs, then the hormones should be corrected and there should be a normal luteal phase. Usually a mid-luteal progesterone is not to see if there is adequate progesterone for implantation, but to see if ovulation in fact took place because if it did not, the progesterone would be low. So you see, rising progesterone levels occur from ovulation. If the progesterone is low, that is an indication that ovulation did not take place and replacing progesterone would not have anything to help i.e. no implantation would occur any way.

I have to wonder about the protocol that your doctor is using, and I would suggest that you look at my blog under how I do clomid induction cycles. One specific technique that I use is to follow the follicle(s) with the ultrasound to determine when ovulation is going to occur. That way, I can better time the insemination. I also give an HCG trigger. Then I start progesterone the day after the second IUI (I do two IUI's per cycle) for luteal phase support. This is mainly because progesterone is an easy medication to use, is not expensive and has no adverse reactions/side effects/harm to the pregnancy. It can only help and increased progesterone is one of the main stays for the treatment of implantation failure due to inadequate b-integrin levels.

Maybe you should ask your doctor why he uses it for IVF and not for IUI? The reason to use it should be the same.

Good Luck,
Edward J. Ramirez, M.D., FACOG
Executive Medical Director
The Fertility and Gynecology Center
Monterey Bay IVF Program
Monterey, California, U.S.A.

1 comment:


    Dear Dr Ramirez, I have just found your blog, and sorry for posting this here maybe it is the wrong place.

    I am 27 years old. Have been trying to have a baby for the last 3/4 years with no luck. I blamed the stress i was going through for not getting pregnant. At the beginning of this year i went to my GP and told him about this as i had been concerned for sometime. He sent me for tests and i had fsh done etc. My FSH showed a level of 11.4. Doctor was terrified and suggested i should have IVF a.s.a.p. He said i am running out of eggs. I was also sent for HSG which was OK.

    I am panicking that i won't have a baby even if i have ivf. Please can you tell me is it possible that someone as young as me to run out of eggs? i started my period at the age of 12, i remember i had a medium to a heavy period up to 5 years ago when it started getting lighter.

    After my HSG, i started doing some acupuncture to help my stress and ovaries and stop blood clotting. HSG or Acupuncture helped getting rid of clots. No medication taken so far. Only after the hsg and after i started Acupuncture my period has gone from 3 days to 1 day and half. I am getting worried, very worried. After hsg and acupunture I had hot flashes up to a month ago when i went to a nutritionist who gave me lot's of vitamins to help and balance my hormones. So for a month i haven't had the hot flashes.

    Do you think i am going in to menopause or running out of eggs? Can i have a baby with my FSH level of 11.4? Is there any other test i should do to be sure?? Please any opinion will help. I love children and i am so desperate to have one! God Bless all Doctors.

    Thankyou in advance.

    A from UK



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