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clomid vs. follistim

(IUI #4)

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "letters, 1", stating:

"what are the statistics on follistim v. clomid or other oral egg-enhancing drugs?"
Before I responded, I went on just to make sure I knew what I was talking about.  {Nothing like going through a medical procedure, thinking you know everything and then letting an Anonymous comment send me off my track. ha!}
Disclaimer: I'm not a dr. nor do I want to be a dr.  This is what I understand to be the difference.  This isn't fact, other than the links I'm posting, it's just my understanding.  Please DO NOT take my words for fact.

This is what I knew before I did the research:
Both Clomid and Follistim are ovary stimulating drugs that tell your ovaries to produce eggs.  They are both in the same in that aspect of things.  The physical difference is that Clomid is in pill form and taken orally.  Follistim is powder to liquid that is administrated by a pen/shot. 

From this point, the things that I understand to be a difference between these two drugs is that Clomid is taken days 3 - 7 of your cycle and then you are done.  You have to wait for your body to respond and when you go to the dr. to see your progress, you don't have a chance to take any more of Clomid.  After a few days, you go in for your ultrasound and from there they have to guesstimate when you might ovulate.  It's not right on point but they try their best to get you there to then do the IUI or timed intercourse.

Follistim, from my understanding, is a lot more controlled.  (I've only done Follistim one time and this has been my experience so far, which is my only knowledge of this drug.  Therefore other women's cycles might be different.) You start doing the injections on day 3 through 6, doing 75 to 125 units per injection.  On day 7, you have an ultrasound to see how you are progressing.  From there, you may or may not have to continue injections at the same unit amount or you might have to stay consistent.  Meaning, day 7 - 9, I did another 125 units.  On day 9, I had another ultrasound to show how I was progressing again and then was told how to continue the injections and from there set up the next procedure.

This may not be very clear in my previous paragraph, but basically what I was trying to have you see was that with Follistim, if you aren't responding like they want you to, they have the ability to increase your dosage and you go in multiple times for ultrasounds before they get it right and know that you are responding correctly.  It's more controlled and can be manipulated to do what you need it to do, all based on what the ultrasound shows and the dr. tells you.

Now for what says about Clomid and Follistim and then how they compare them to each other.

Statistics can be found here.

(Click on the image to make it bigger.)
Hope that helps clear a little bit up and answer any questions you might of had...

Anonymous, thanks for the question!  Next time, please leave your name or blog address!


Anonymous said…
hi! it's your anonymous pal again.

although you and i have a lot in common (i live in c-bus, am a runner, and have been trying to conceive for about two years now), there's one thing we don't: i am totally in the closet about our infertility. i really don't talk about it with anyone except the hubby and occasionally my parents (who insist that running is the source of my problem). i know that it would probably help me if i did, but i find it so immensely difficult to talk (or even type) about w/o crying that i just don't.

we have been to ORM and done two IUIs with Clomid + HcG. was diagnosed with endo last summer, and although the lap sucked in the middle of marathon training, it was worth it for the overall pain relief. unfortunately, the pain is now coming back, i still bleed every day of the month except about 5, and yet the docs insist that i am perfectly healthy!*? it blows my mind that they can't figure out what is wrong.

we aren't sure what to do next, which is why i anxiously await the outcome of your current efforts. i am praying for you. we may try the same, or a few more tries with Clomid, or we may say f- it and go to the Cleveland Clinic for a second opinion. part of me wants to just get pregnant and be done with it, but the engineer in me NEEDS to know what is wrong first. there has to be something to explain this.

anyway, best of luck to you and thanks for putting it all out there for the world to read. it helps me a lot to know that, although i may be defective :), i am not alone. fingers crossed for you.


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