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IVF Medications and Natural Alternatives

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When facing the stressful and overbearing issue of infertility, many women and couples consider IVF in order to pursue parenthood and create a family. IVF, in vitro fertilization, is a “complex series of procedures used to help with fertility”, as described by the mayo clinic. This center also shares the various paths taken when choosing IVF, which includes using one’s own eggs and their partner’s sperm, or acquiring these essential components for conception from anonymous donors. 

 

When undergoing the process of IVF, there are certain factors to face. One includes the high costs of medication. The GoodRx analysis of medication prices show that drugs used in IVF have increased in cost by 50% since 2014. They also share that the average cost of IVF is approximately 23,000 per cycle. Not only are you faced with this high price, but the medications, which are helpful during the treatment process, and thus are seen as a necessity, are a separate fee to tend to. 

 

If you look at Menopur, an injection used to increase development of eggs, one crucial thing to note is how it’s cost has increased dramatically, which prices at 197 dollars for a single vial. Along with the burden of price, there’s the side effects that you need to watch out for. RxList lists the unfavorable effects including drowsiness, vomiting, diarrhea and weakness of muscles. Gonal-F, another injection that increases development of eggs, also has similar side effects, as well as pelvic pain, skin rashes and abdominal pain. 

 

This discussion of financials and side effects shouldn’t steer you away from the wonders of IVF, as it is an influential form of reproductive technology that Penn Medicine share has resulted in the birth of up to 1 million babies between 1987 and 2015. Consider the wonders of natural medicine and how you can incorporate it into your IVF process. 

 

Natural medicine can be obtained through supplements. There are multiple supplements that can aid you throughout your IVF journey. Starting off with Ubiquinol, as the organization “Extend Fertility” shares, is a form of CoQ10, an antioxidant, that a study showed resulted in a higher chance of women producing durable embryos. Another supplement to consider is Inositol. If you have PCOS, and are thus pursuing IVF, this supplement creates multiple benefits, such as improving ovulation, hormonal levels, and increasing pregnancy rates. Lastly, intake of Vitamin D will increase your chances of a successful pregnancy as well. In a study of 132 women undergoing IVF, it was revealed that pregnancy rates were higher in women with sufficient intake of Vitamin D. 

 

Lastly, consider Acupuncture! Here at Naturna, we highly suggest our IVF patients to come in for a treatment before and after their IVF procedure. Why? It increases the implantation rate! In a study where participants went to acupuncture 25 minutes before their embryo transfer, it was concluded that IVF success rates and outcomes had increased (Dehghani et al.). IVF can be a lot to handle. So consider how natural medicine can lessen the financial and health effects and make your journey easier.


 

References:

Chase, Lauren. “IVF Medication Prices Rose by 50% Over the Past 5 Years – GoodRx.” The GoodRx Prescription Savings Blog, 3 May 2021, www.goodrx.com/blog/ivf-in-vitro-fertilization-prices-rose-50-percent-over-5-years/. 

 

Cunha, John P. “Side Effects of Gonal-F (Follitropin Alfa), Warnings, Uses.” RxList, RxList, 25 Feb. 2021, www.rxlist.com/gonal-f-side-effects-drug-center.htm. 

 

Cunha, John P. “Side Effects of Menopur (Menotropins Injection), Warnings, Uses.” RxList, RxList, 5 Mar. 2021, www.rxlist.com/menopur-side-effects-drug-center.htm. 

 

Dehghani, Alamtaj Samsami et al. “The effect of acupuncture on the day of embryo transfer on the in vitro fertilization outcomes: An RCT.” International journal of reproductive biomedicine vol. 18,3 209-214. 29 Mar. 2020, doi:10.18502/ijrm.v18i3.6719

 

“Female Fertility Supplements: an Evidence-Based Guide.” Extend Fertility, 1 Sept. 2020, extendfertility.com/female-fertility-supplements/. 

 

“IVF by the Numbers.” Penn Medicine, www.pennmedicine.org/updates/blogs/fertility-blog/2018/march/ivf-by-the-numbers. 

Manhattan Acupuncture and New York City Fertility Center