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Progesterone supplementation in IVF cycles

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Progesterone supplementation in IVF cycles

  1. 1. Fact Sheet From ReproductiveFacts.org The Patient Education Website of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine Progesterone Supplementation During In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) CyclesWhat is progesterone? When and how should I take progesterone?Progesterone is a hormone produced by the Doctors usually prescribe progesteroneovary. It is first detected in the middle of the supplementation to start on the day the eggs aremenstrual cycle when an egg is released harvested. If a pregnancy takes place, the doctor(ovulation). Progesterone prepares the lining may tell you to continue taking progesteroneof the uterus (endometrium) to allow a fertilized throughout the first trimester. Progesteroneegg (embryo) to stick or implant. If a pregnancy can be taken as an intramuscular injection ordoes not take place, progesterone levels will vaginally (suppositories, gel or vaginal tablets).fall and you will have your period. If an embryo There appears to be no difference in theimplants into the lining of the uterus, the ovary chances of becoming pregnant or continuing awill produce progesterone until eight weeks into pregnancy if progesterone is given by injectionthe pregnancy. After that time, progesterone will or intravaginally. You should talk to your doctorbe produced by the placenta throughout the rest about which form of progesterone will better fitof the pregnancy. your needs.Why do doctors prescribe progesterone What are the risks of taking progesterone?during fertility treatments? Many studies have been performed to look atDuring an in vitro fertilization (IVF) cycle, the use of natural progesterone during infertilitymedications are usually used to prevent you from treatment cycles. These studies have shownreleasing an egg early (premature ovulation). that progesterone will pose no significant riskThese medicines affect your progesterone to you or your baby. In 1999, the US Food andlevels. Therefore, your doctor may prescribe Drug Administration (FDA) did an in-deptha progesterone supplement to make up for review of progesterone. They found that usingthis decrease in your ovary’s ability to make synthetic progesterone may be associated withprogesterone. That way, an embryo can implant birth defects. Synthetic progesterone is primarilyand grow inside your uterus (womb). Many derived from the male hormone testosterone.scientific studies have looked at pregnancy Therefore, natural progesterone agents shouldrates in IVF cycles that used progesterone. only be used during early pregnancy.These studies have shown that the rates aremuch higher compared to cycles where no Revised 2011progesterone was used. For more information on this and other reproductive health topics, visit www.ReproductiveFacts.org AMERICAN SOCIETY FOR REPRODUCTIVE MEDICINE • 1209 Montgomery Highway • Birmingham, Alabama 35216-2809 TEL (205) 978-5000 • FAX (205) 978-5005 • E-MAIL asrm@asrm.org • URL www.asrm.org

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