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Can I Get Pregnant with PCOS?


Updated July 16, 2014

There's an excellent chance that this treatment will succeed
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Question: Can I Get Pregnant with PCOS?

In a word, yes, having PCOS and pregnancy is possible, though it may a little bit more difficult. While it can be a challenge, the good news is that there are a number of treatments available -- though you may need to seek the assistance of a fertility expert or reproductive endocrinologist.

Before You See an Infertility Specialist
Infertility Worksheet

Because PCOS can affect your menstrual cycles by preventing ovulation, sometimes medications are required to help your body ovulate. Regular ovulation is key in helping you get pregnant. Knowing when you ovulate, either naturally or with medication, can help you time intercourse or intrauterine insemination.

Clomid, or clomiphene citrate, is usually the first medication prescribed by the physician. Clomid works by helping the ovary recruit an egg which will eventually grow, mature and be released. Sometimes metformin, a diabetes medication, is added to the regimen. Because of the link between PCOS and insulin resistance, it is thought that lowering blood sugar can help reduce androgen levels and restore ovulation.

If these medications are not effective, there are other choices. Injectable medications are a widely used tool as well. These types of medications are usually a form of the hormone FSH, the major hormone produced by the body which stimulates the growth of an egg follicle each month. You will need to learn how to give yourself these injections as well as visit your doctor frequently to have your cycle monitored.

Giving a Subcutaneous Injection

Finally, the doctor may recommend in vitro fertilization, or IVF. During IVF, medication is given to stimulate the ovaries to allow many eggs to grow and mature. Those eggs are removed surgically once mature and allowed to fertilize in the laboratory. Once the embryos grow in the lab for a few days, they are placed back into the uterus in the hopes they implant and cause a pregnancy. This is a much more intensive form of treatment, and not everybody is ready to proceed with that process.

Overview of IVF
Assisted Reproductive Technologies
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