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Rachel Gurevich

Fertility Treatment On Trial: Does Clomid Work?

By August 18, 2008

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Clomid is the most prescribed fertility drug on the market. But is Clomid right for everyone?

You might have read on the news that the fertility drug Clomid doesn't statistically improve the chances of pregnancy in women with infertility. The news reports also stated that the fertility treatment IUI was shown to be ineffective. (IUI is a fertility treatment that involves taking semen, putting it through a specialized washing process, and then injecting the sperm directly into the uterus, via the woman's cervix.)

If you're currently taking, or planning to take, Clomid as part of your fertility treatments, these news reports may have you worried. Are you wasting your time and money? Is this really going to work?

Rest assured -- unless you have been diagnosed with "unexplained infertility", this new study doesn't apply to you.

I saw many news reports leaving out or only briefly mentioning a key component to this study - it looked at couples with unexplained infertility. This is opposed to couples with a diagnosis of female or male factor infertility issues, for which Clomid and IUI are proven as effective treatments.

Unexplained infertility may be one of the most frustrating of fertility diagnoses (if you can call it a diagnosis.) A diagnosis of unexplained infertility is typically given when fertility testing fails to find a problem in the woman or man, and age cannot explain a couple's infertility problems. (You can find articles on age and fertility here.)

When the problem can't be found, it's much more difficult to find a solution. How can you fix what isn't understood?

This is why Clomid and IUI are often the first treatments tried when unexplained infertility is diagnosed. They are easy, low-tech treatments, with fewer side effects and risks than IVF.

Also important to note, the study has been criticized in the fertility community. Some doctors are saying that moving directly to higher power treatments for couples with unexplained infertility isn't the right way to go. They've seen results in their patients with Clomid and IUI, despite the findings. This is a subject that needs further research.

Personally, I hope that this study will push doctors to further investigate what these "unexplained infertility" cases really are. Couples shouldn't be left without answers, and this study goes to show that trying to find solutions in the dark isn't the best of options.

You can read more about Clomid and IUI success rates, along with additional information, in these articles:

More about Clomid and infertility:

Have you had success with Clomid or IUI? Share your stories in the comment section below.

Would you like to receive trying to conceive tips and fertility information every week? Sign up for a free fertility newsletter here.

September 3, 2008 at 12:39 am
(1) Margy says:

Yes, I did have sucess with IUI. The first IUI did not work, but I am not sure I calculated my ovulation day correctly then. They tell you to use the ovulation predictor kits, but not always they show clear result and I was afraid to miss the timeframe in the meantime, so I came to the office not being 100% positive I’m ovulating. The second IUI was sucessfull! She is 13 months now!

January 28, 2009 at 7:59 am
(2) iyosco says:

i had a success with clomid 2007 but had a stillbirth,and i have been trying since then with clomid.i have taken it for just 2 of my cycles.

January 12, 2010 at 8:14 am
(3) Susan Pringle says:

I tried for 7 years had lots of different tests, it turned out my eggs weren’t releasing due to low progesterone level, then was given clomid. I fell pregnant the first month I took it and had a beautiful daughter. 3 years later I took it again and fell pregnant the first month with my wonderful son.

March 12, 2010 at 3:50 pm
(4) beverly says:

We r trying to get pregnant now. I had fibroid surgery but after the surgery there is nothing wrong with both of us. Not able to get pregnant after 7 months including 3 months of clomid. Doc says there is no issue wid both of us and it should happen on its own. Now after reading this article I am worried and I am thinking I may need assisted help in getting pregnant may be like IUI/IVF. Hope IUI works for us atleast.

April 27, 2010 at 10:39 pm
(5) T says:

Have tried clomid w/IUI twice with failure. On our third try, wish us luck.

March 18, 2011 at 3:40 pm
(6) Chris says:

After trying to get pregnant for two years without success, and having one mc after six more months of trying, my husband & I went through fertility testing, all to get labeled with, “unexplained infertility”. Our Dr. said we were to do three cycles (months) of IUI, without Clomid, and see what happened. If there wasn’t a successful pregnancy, then we’d have to try IVF. I tracked my ovulation & did the ovulation kit, having my optimum day come up on a Saturday! Our Dr. meet us at the office, we went through the IUI procedure and hoped for the best. And amazingly the first try worked!!! Plus, we were doubly-blessed to have identical twin boys! Our boys are now vibrant, super-busy 3 1/2 years olds! Since the IUI worked for us the first time, our Dr. has said we’ll try it again – but this time with me taking Clomid due to my age (40). If it doesn’t work after two cycles, my husband & I decided we’ll not try IVF, because of the high costs. We’re so, so lucky to have our twins and couldn’t imagine life without them. Best wishes to all of you going through the fertility maze – and a heaping hand full of baby dust!

July 14, 2011 at 1:10 pm
(7) Andrea says:

After 1 1/2 years of TTC we moved on to Clomid/IUI and it worked for us on the first try. Unfortunately I miscarried at 6 weeks. We have since made 2 more attempts and both times have been unsuccesful. I am extremely disheartened right now. It is so frustrating. I hope these studies do not discourage couples from trying IUI.

August 19, 2011 at 6:22 pm
(8) jane says:

Ive had 5 misscarriges-including an ectopic and since then have been trying 2 get pregnant and taken 3 cycles of clomid but im not ovulating, have had tests for everything but no diagnosis :(

October 18, 2011 at 4:09 am
(9) Tracy says:

I have been on Clomid now for 6 months, unfortunetly the first 5 months i did not ovulate even with taking Progesterone then clomid day 5 to 9. However i was happy when i received news from my Gynocologist that i finally ovulated last month. So my husband and i are hopeing that i continue to ovulate from now on and crossing our fingers that we have success to fall pregnant soon now that i am ovulating.

People tell me to try not think about it (falling pregnant) and i will be lucky, however its hard not to think about falling pregnant when you want it so much and im on medication specifically to help me fall pregnant.

January 5, 2012 at 1:05 pm
(10) Anna says:

I just finished third cycle of clomid and have to take a pregnency test on 16th jan. fingers crossed..
waiting to see the positive results this time.. counting days and hours and feeling nervous.. My Dr said if clomid doesn’t help this time, have to go for other alternate solution. But dont want to wait any more..hope GOD blesses us this time. Wish us luck. good luck for everyone going through this maze..

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