TIME BETWEEN FERTILITY TREATMENT CYCLES – HOW LONG SHOULD I WAIT?

Do you have a question about fertility that you want answered? Submit questions via our Contact Form and we’ll be sure to have one of our physicians answer it. All questions answered on our blog will be posted anonymously.
I had an unsuccessful treatment cycle. Should I wait some time before trying to conceive again or should I try sooner rather than later?

Our approach is to carefully evaluate every unsuccessful cycle and optimize the next one. What kind of treatment cycle have you just completed?

In general, for women who ovulate regularly and have unexplained infertility, I recommend up to three months of Clomidin conjunction with intrauterine insemination (IUI). Clomid is an oral medication regularly prescribed for ovulation induction or for patients with unexplained infertility.

In women who do not ovulate regularly due to polycystic ovarian disease (PCOS), I would consider three or four cycles of Femara with intrauterine insemination. Femara is an oral medication approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of breast cancer. The medication has been used by reproductive endocrinologists since 2000 for its off-label use of ovulation induction. Letrozole has been shown to be more effective than Clomid for women with PCOS.

Fresh in vitro fertilization cycles should not be performed in back to back months. It is our practice’s approach to take one month off after a fresh cycle of IVF prior to embarking on another fresh cycle of IVF. Alternatively, we are very comfortable – and have had high pregnancy rates, doing a frozen embryo transfer immediately following a fresh IVF cycle.

Individualizing treatment protocols for each patient maximizes pregnancy rates. Our practice is exceptionally hands-on. Each patient works closely with a single physician to choose the next treatment cycle to help couples conceive shortest amount of time possible.

Question answered by:

Arthur Castelbaum, MD

Dr. Arthur Castelbaum, a world-class reproductive endocrinologist, received his medical degree from Washington University, and completed his residency training and postgraduate fellowship in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility at the University of Pennsylvania Medical Center. He is board certified in OB/GYN and subspecialty board certified in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. He has also been featured in Philadelphia Magazine and on The Discovery Channel. He also serves as a reviewer for the journals Fertility and Sterility and Human Reproduction.

Dr. Castelbaum won Vitals.com’s Compassionate Doctor Award for being one of the most caring doctors in the US 5 years in a row. Only 1% of all doctors in the US are bestowed this honor by their patients.

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