What’s the best fertility treatment for PCOS? If only there was a universal answer! But research is getting closer to more successful options like IVM and Letrozole (Femara).
Letrozole is a medication intended for treating early stage breast cancer and to keep the breast cancer from returning (source: WebMD). They found that Letrozole had a positive affect on ovulation and less side effects than it’s counter Clomid. Letrozole for PCOS infertility has increasingly been prescribed to PCOS patients since the early 2000’s. Letrozole has also been prescribed to patients suffering from Endometriosis.
Letrozole is said to also have a lower chance of congenital malformations and chromosomal abnormalities compared with Clomid. Here is the excerpt straight from Wikipedia:
A more detailed ovulation induction follow-up study found that Letrozole, compared with a control group of Clomiphene, had significantly lower congenital malformations and chromosomal abnormalities at an overall rate of 2.4% (1.2% major malformations) compared with Clomiphene 4.8% (3.0% major malformations).
A study done at the University of Colorado – Advanced Reproductive Medicine announced the results of a 4-year research study of PCOS infertility patients, the results were very encouraging:
…the results of a study that began in 2009 at seven research locations—including one in Denver—proving that the drug Letrozole is 30-40 percent more effective than the previous gold standard drug used to overcome the infertility effects of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
The article continues with:
“The first line therapy has always been Clomiphene citrate, and nearly half of the women with PCOS who take it get pregnant. But Letrozole is 30-40 percent better than Clomiphene. That’s great news for potentially millions of women. Eighty-five women with PCOS in Colorado took part in the randomized control trial, the first scientifically rigorous study to prove the significant benefit of Letrozole for women with PCOS. Thirty-one Colorado women in the UCARM trial became pregnant taking Letrozole, which is primarily used in breast cancer treatment and is a relatively new drug in the area of ovulation induction.”
The entire article can be read here CU Fertility Clinic’s Breakthrough Research Affects Millions.
This is exciting news! Personally I’ve struggled with Clomid- really harsh side effects and no success with it. Hoping that Letrozole can bring little bundles of joy to all my PCOS gals out there that are ttc!
Letrozole carries the same risks as other fertility meds like Clomid and are not for everybody, talk with your doctor and research away!