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Comparing Enclomiphene With Clomiphene, IVF, And TRT

Fertility drugs are used to treat infertility and are used as part of the in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure. Fertility drugs for women prepare the body for treatment and increase the likelihood for the ovaries to release more healthy eggs. Fertility drugs for men increase levels of bioavailable testosterone and decrease levels of estradiol (a form of estrogen). Today, we’ll be taking a look at how four different fertility treatments work and how they compare to one another. Read on to learn more!

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Enclomiphene vs Clomiphene

In this section, we will discuss what enclomiphene and clomiphene are, the mechanism of action of each medication, and the common uses of each medication. We will also cover the potential side effects, dosage and administration, and cost and accessibility of clomiphene and enclomiphene.

What is Clomiphene?

Clomiphene is an ovulatory stimulant medication used to bring about egg production in women who want to become pregnant but do not produce eggs.

Clomiphene works by stimulating the release of lutenizing hormone (LH), gonadotropins, and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). These work together to cause the ovarian follicle to develop and mature, produce eggs, and develop the corpus luteum – a benign cyst that produces the progesterone needed to ensure the uterus is healthy and prepared for pregnancy.

Clomiphene is most often prescribed to treat infertility in females. It may also be used to help treat menstrual abnormalities, fibrocystic breasts, and male infertility.

What is Enclomiphene?

Enclomiphene is used to treat secondary hypogonadism in men by raising testosterone levels while maintaining normal sperm counts.

Enclomiphene is a selective estrogen receptor antagonist. In men who have secondary hypogonadism, it helps improve testosterone levels and sperm motility (ability to move.)

Enclomiphene is commonly used to address infertility. It is often prescribed to men who have a low sperm count, but it can also be used to increase testosterone levels and reduce symptoms associated with low testosterone.

Potential Side Effects of Clomiphene and Enclomiphene

Potential side effects of clomiphene include:

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • Breast discomfort
  • Flushing (feeling of warmth)
  • Headache
  • Upset stomach
  • Vomiting

Serious but uncommon side effects of clomiphene include blurred or double vision, shortness of breath, swelling or pain in the stomach, and visual disturbances.

Common side effects of enclomiphene include:

  • Acne
  • Mood swings
  • Nausea

For both medications, contact your doctor if your symptoms are severe, do not go away on their own, or get worse over time.

Dosage and Administration

Clomiphene is an oral medication that is usually taken once a day for a set number of days, as determined by your doctor. The exact dosage will vary depending on the individual, as will the number of doses each day and duration of the overall treatment.

Enclomiphene doses can range between 12.5 mg and 25-mg for men with secondary hypogonadism or low libido. The exact dosage and frequency will be determined by your healthcare provider.

Cost and Accessibility

The average cost for clomiphene is about $68 for ten 50-mg tablets. The average cost for enclomiphene is roughly $200 per month.

For both medications, there may be additional costs in the form of clinician fees and lab tests, some of which may be covered by insurance.

Enclomiphene vs. IVF

Next, let’s look at how enclomiphene compares to in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments.

What is IVF?

IVF is a type of assisted reproductive technology (ART) that involves fertilizing sperm and egg outside of the human body and placing the fertilized embryo in the mother’s uterus several days after fertilization. The embryo will then implant itself into the uterine wall, resulting in pregnancy.

IVF works by combining medications and surgical procedures. First, you will take a medication – typically birth control pills or estrogen – that will help regulate your menstrual cycle to maximize the number of mature eggs available for extraction.

Then, your doctor will remove the eggs from your body and add sperm to the eggs to fertilize them. Once one or more of the eggs are fertilized, they will be put into the uterus, where the egg or eggs may implant into the uterine wall, resulting in pregnancy.

IVF has numerous steps and takes several months to complete. It also often does not work on the first try.

IVF is used to treat infertility caused by many conditions, including:

  • Advanced maternal age
  • Blocked or damaged fallopian tubes
  • Endometriosis
  • Male factor infertility
  • Unexplained infertility

Potential side effects of IVF may include:

  • Allergic reactions to medicines
  • Bleeding
  • Bloating
  • Breast tenderness
  • Bruising from shots
  • Cramping
  • Headaches
  • Infection
  • Mood swings

IVF can be emotionally difficult for the person going through the procedures, their partner, and family. It is common to experience anxiety and depression while undergoing IVF, but there are many support groups available.

Dosage and Administration

There are many potential medications that may be given during IVF, and dosage and administration will vary based on multiple factors.

Common medications include, but are not limited to:

  • Lupron
  • Ganirelix acetate and Cetrotide
  • Progesterone
  • Gonadotropins
  • Clomiphene

Cost and Accessibility

IVF is one of the most expensive treatment options for infertility. A single cycle of IVF can cost $15,000 or more, and many women need to have more than one cycle of IVF. A few states require health insurance companies to pay for part, or all of the cost of IVF treatment for patients who meet certain criteria, but many insurance plans do not cover infertility treatment at all.

Enclomiphene vs TRT

Next, we will go over everything you need to know about testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) as a treatment for infertility.

What is TRT?

TRT is given to men who have low testosterone levels and symptoms of hypogonadism.

This treatment works by restoring normal testosterone levels.

TRT is used to increase the levels of the male hormone testosterone in the blood and reduce symptoms of low testosterone and hypogonadism.

Potential side effects of TRT include:

  • Acne
  • Bladder irritability
  • Breast soreness or enlargement (gynecomastia)
  • Decreased sperm production
  • Hair loss
  • Increase in prostate size
  • Shrinkage of the testes

Dosage and Administration

TRT can be administered in many forms, including:

  • Implants
  • Intramuscular injections
  • Mouth patches
  • Oral medication
  • Topical creams or gels
  • Transdermal patches

How often you take testosterone will depend on the method of administration. You may need to take it daily, weekly, monthly, or every three months. Your doctor will be able to determine which form and dose of TRT will work best for you.

Cost and Accessibility

TRT costs about $1,650 to $3,200 per year. What you pay for TRT will vary based on what form you take, the mode and frequency of the dose, and whether or not your health insurance plan covers your treatment. Most insurance companies cover all types of TRT.

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The Verdict: Which is Better for Whom?

Enclomiphene is one of the more affordable infertility treatment options we have discussed, so this treatment may be more suitable for male factor infertility or when the cost of other treatments is not feasible.

TRT may also be effective in cases of male factor infertility.

Clomiphene may be the more suitable option for female infertility when the issue at hand is a lack of egg production. It is also an affordable option.

IVF may be more suitable when other treatments have not been effective or if the cost of treatment is not an issue.

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Summary and Key Takeaways

There are many options for treating infertility in both men and women. Treatments vary in methodology, cost, and effectiveness. Treatments include:

  • Clomiphene
  • Enclomiphene
  • In vitro fertilization (IVF)
  • Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT)

Clomiphene and enclomiphene are generally the most affordable options. TRT falls in the midrange. IVF is the most expensive treatment option we have discussed, as it can cost $15,000 or more for one cycle, and most people will need to undergo multiple cycles.

The method of administration will vary depending on which treatment you use. TRT comes in many forms, including injections, pills, and topical creams and gels. IVF combines medication and surgery. Clomiphene and enclomiphene are tablets that you take by mouth.

Your doctor will be able to recommend which infertility treatment option is likely to work best for you, as well as which is safest based on your medical history.

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