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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Follistim AQ, Follistim AQ Cartridge, Gonal-F, Gonal-f RFF, Gonal-f RFF Pen

Generic Name: follicle stimulating hormone (Pronunciation: FOL ik al STIM ue lay ting HOR mone)

What is follicle stimulating hormone (Follistim AQ, Follistim AQ Cartridge, Gonal-F, Gonal-f RFF, Gonal-f RFF Pen)?

Follicle stimulating hormone is a man-made form of a hormone that occurs naturally in the body. This hormone regulates ovulation, the growth and development of eggs in a woman's ovaries.

Follicle stimulating hormone is used to treat infertility in women who cannot ovulate and do not have primary ovarian failure.

Follicle stimulating hormone is also used to stimulate sperm production in men.

Follicle stimulating hormone is often used together with another medication called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG).

Follicle stimulating hormone may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of follicle stimulating hormone (Follistim AQ, Follistim AQ Cartridge, Gonal-F, Gonal-f RFF, Gonal-f RFF Pen)?

Some women using this medicine have developed a sudden buildup of fluid in the stomach or chest area. This condition is called ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS), and can be a life-threatening. Avoid having sex and call your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms of OHSS:

  • severe pain in your lower stomach;
  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating;
  • feeling short of breath;
  • swelling in your hands or legs;
  • weight gain;
  • urinating less than usual.

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using follicle stimulating hormone and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body);
  • pain, swelling, warmth, or redness in your arms or legs; or
  • severe pelvic pain on one side.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • headache;
  • mild nausea or stomach pain;
  • mild numbness or tingly feeling;
  • mild pelvic pain, tenderness, or discomfort;
  • runny or stuffy nose, sore throat;
  • breast swelling or tenderness;
  • acne;
  • mild skin rash; or
  • pain, bruising, redness, or irritation where the injection was given.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about follicle stimulating hormone (Follistim AQ, Follistim AQ Cartridge, Gonal-F, Gonal-f RFF, Gonal-f RFF Pen)?

Do not use this medication if you are already pregnant. Your doctor may give you a pregnancy test to make sure you are not pregnant before you receive follicle stimulating hormone.

Follicle stimulating hormone is not effective in women with primary ovarian failure or in men with primary testicular failure.

You should not use this medicine if you are allergic to follicle stimulating hormone, neomycin (Mycifradin, Neo-Fradin) or streptomycin, or if you have an untreated or uncontrolled endocrine disorder (thyroid, pituitary gland, or adrenal gland), heavy or abnormal vaginal bleeding that has not been checked by a doctor, an ovarian cyst, or cancer of the breast, ovary, uterus, or testicle.

Before using follicle stimulating hormone, tell your doctor if you have polycystic ovary disease, asthma, or a history of stroke or blood clot.

You should not breast-feed while you are using follicle stimulating hormone.

Avoid having sex and call your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms of a fluid buildup in your stomach or chest area: severe pain in your lower stomach, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, feeling short of breath, swelling or weight gain, or urinating less than usual.

Fertility treatment may increase your chance of having twins, triplets, etc (multiple births). These are high-risk pregnancies both for the mother and the babies. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns about this risk.



Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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