Find a Doctor
Potential Side Effects and Complications of Fertility Drugs

Potential Side Effects and Complications of Fertility Drugs


To treat infertility, there are a number of drug and hormone treatments available, each with its own varying degrees of success (i.e., ovulation or pregnancy) rates. These drugs often have side effects and in some cases may result in health complications. Below is a brief overview of these side effects and complications. Your fertility specialist should provide with more information prior to treatment.

Side Effects of Fertility Drugs

  • Mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Hot flashes
  • Decrease in desire
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Blood clots
  • Fibroid growth
  • Cyst growth
  • Endometriosis
  • Hair thinning
  • Nausea
  • Insomnia
  • Blurred vision
  • Weight gain
  • Depression
  • Headache
  • Water retention
  • Sore breasts
  • Abdominal discomfort

Ask your doctor what side effects you can expect to encounter with the fertility drugs you will be put on. Also ask how severe and how common they are.

Possible Fertility Drug Complications

  • Multiple pregnancies are very common with fertility drugs. Those taken orally have lower rates of this than those that are injected.
  • Premature birth occurs at a higher frequency (esp. with multiples) and miscarriage does too.
  • Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) occurs when overstimulation causes ovaries to swell and become cyst-ridden. This causes pain and bloating. At times, fluid accumulation can build in abdomen and lungs. In 1 percent of the cases, blood clots, and kidney failure occur.
  • Many symptoms and side effects can actually deter pregnancy such as discomfort, depression, endometriosis, and cyst development.
  • 1/3 of Clomid users develop hostile cervical mucus that kills sperm.

Want More Information?

Contact a Doctor Near You.