Review of the safety, efficacy, costs and patient acceptability of recombinant follicle-stimulating hormone for injection in assisting ovulation induction in infertile women

Marleen Nahuis, Fulco Van Der Veen, Jur Oosterhuis, Ben Willem Mol, Peter Hompes, Madelon Van Wely

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Anovulation is a common cause of female subfertility. Treatment of anovulation is aimed at induction of ovulation. In women with clomiphene-citrate resistant WHO group II anovulation, one of the treatment options is ovulation induction with exogenous follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH or follitropin). FSH is derived from urine or is produced as recombinant FSH. Two forms of recombinant FSH are available - follitropin alpha and follitropin beta. To evaluate the efficacy, safety, costs and acceptability of recombinant FSH, we performed a review to compare recombinant FSH with urinary-derived FSH products. Follitropin alpha, beta and urinary FSH products appeared to be equally effective in terms of pregnancy rates. Patient safety was also found to be comparable, as the incidence of side effects including multiple pregnancies was similar for all FSH products. In practice follitropin alpha and beta may be more convenient to use due to the ease of self-administration, but they are also more expensive than the urinary products.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-211
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Women's Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished or Issued - 1 Dec 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Follitropin apha
  • Follitropin beta
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Urinary gonadotropins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Maternity and Midwifery

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