Non-surgical fertility treatments often include the use of fertility drugs. Fertility medication is often the most appropriate first choice for couples who have been trying to conceive, but are having difficulty. Even though Southern California Reproductive Center (SCRC) is a well known IVF clinic, we are able to treat a fair number of infertility cases with just fertility medications (without IVF).

It All Starts With Infertility Diagnosis!

In order to determine whether non-surgical treatment with fertility medications is appropriate for you, you need to have an accurate infertility diagnosis. This requires a comprehensive evaluation of both partners’ medical history and thorough diagnostic tests. The results of these tests help SCRC’s fertility specialists determine whether fertility drugs are likely to result in your conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy.

Which fertility drugs are normally prescribed?

The most commonly used fertility drugs are Clomid® (clomiphene citrate) and gonadotropins. The purpose of fertility drugs is to induce ovulation.

Clomid® is taken in pill form. It stimulates the brain to increase levels of pituitary hormones, such as FSH (follicle stimulating hormone). As the name suggests, FSH stimulates follicular growth and maturation in the ovaries. Clomid® treatment usually begins at the start of the menstrual cycle, with the patient taking five days of pills. Approximately 70 percent of patients taking Clomid® ovulate and up to 40 percent may conceive within the first four cycles. If you still can’t conceive after four Clomid® cycles, it may be time to try another type of fertility drug to induce ovulation.

Gonadotropins are fertility drugs that mimic the hormones normally secreted by the pituitary gland and are administered by injection. Because gonadotropins have the potential for greater stimulation in the patient, the ovarian response is monitored closely to determine the degree of stimulation, the size of the developing follicles, and the best time to stimulate ovulation.

Gonadotropins can be used in conjunction with intrauterine insemination (IUI) or as part of the in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure at our infertility clinics. There are several types of gonadotropins your fertility specialist may use:

  • FSH (follicle stimulating hormone)
  • Mixture of FSH and LH (luteinizing hormone) – also called hMG , or human menopausal gonadotropin
  • hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin)


Ovulation Cycle Monitoring

Careful and accurate monitoring of the ovulation cycle is at the core of all infertility treatment procedures.

Blood tests measure hormone levels, and ultrasound testing monitors the size of the ovarian follicles. Ultrasound testing is a highly reliable and safe method of tracking ovulation, and is used to assess response to medications and to help your SCRC physician predict when ovulation is most likely to occur. A vaginal ultrasound is performed at specific stages of an ovulation cycle in order to give an accurate count and measurement of follicles and eggs as they develop in the ovaries. This allows for very accurate timing for natural intercourse or artificial insemination, such as the IUI procedure, to ensure the highest rate of success. To perform the ultrasound, your fertility doctor simply inserts a small transducer (similar in shape and size to a tampon) into the vagina. The ultrasound procedure is very safe and creates virtually no discomfort.

What’s My Next Step?

Call an SCRC fertility counselor at (866) 312-0771, or click here to contact us. We will schedule a consultation for you with an SCRC fertility specialist, who will evaluate your individual condition and provide you with personalized recommendations for infertility treatment.