Treatment with GONAL-f should be initiated under the supervision of a physician experienced in the treatment of fertility disorders.
The dose recommendations given for GONAL-f are those in use for urinary FSH. Clinical assessment of GONAL-f indicates that its daily doses, regimens of administration, and treatment monitoring procedures should not be different from those currently used for urinary FSH-containing medicinal products. It is advised to adhere to the recommended starting doses indicated as follows.
Comparative clinical studies have shown that on average patients require a lower cumulative dose and shorter treatment duration with GONAL-f compared with urinary FSH. Therefore, it is considered appropriate to give a lower total dose of GONAL-f than generally used for urinary FSH, not only in order to optimise follicular development but also to minimise the risk of unwanted ovarian hyperstimulation. See Pharmacology: Pharmacodynamics under Actions.
300 IU/0.5 mL, 900 IU/1.5 mL and 1,050 IU/1.75 mL:
Bioequivalence has been demonstrated between equivalent doses of the monodose presentation and the multidose presentation of GONAL-f.
1,050 IU/1.75 mL:
The following table states the volume to be administered to deliver the prescribed dose: (See Table 2.)
Click on icon to see table/diagram/image
The next injection should be done at the same time the next day.
Women with anovulation (including polycystic ovarian syndrome):
GONAL-f may be given as a course of daily injections. In menstruating women treatment should commence within the first 7 days of the menstrual cycle.
A commonly used regimen commences at 75-150 IU FSH daily and is increased preferably by 37.5 or 75 IU at 7 or preferably 14 day intervals if necessary, to obtain an adequate, but not excessive, response. Treatment should be tailored to the individual patient's response as assessed by measuring follicle size by ultrasound and/or oestrogen secretion. The maximal daily dose is usually not higher than 225 IU FSH. If a patient fails to respond adequately after 4 weeks of treatment, that cycle should be abandoned and the patient should undergo further evaluation after which she may recommence treatment at a higher starting dose than in the abandoned cycle.
When an optimal response is obtained, a single injection of 250 micrograms recombinant human choriogonadotropin alfa (r-hCG) or 5,000 IU, up to 10,000 IU hCG should be administered 24-48 hours after the last GONAL-f injection. The patient is recommended to have coitus on the day of, and the day following, hCG administration. Alternatively intrauterine insemination (IUI) may be performed.
If an excessive response is obtained, treatment should be stopped and hCG withheld (see Precautions). Treatment should recommence in the next cycle at a dose lower than that of the previous cycle.
Women undergoing ovarian stimulation for multiple follicular development prior to in vitro fertilisation or other assisted reproductive technologies:
A commonly used regimen for superovulation involves the administration of 150-225 IU of GONAL-f daily, commencing on days 2 or 3 of the cycle. Treatment is continued until adequate follicular development has been achieved (as assessed by monitoring of serum oestrogen concentrations and/or ultrasound examination), with the dose adjusted according to the patient's response, to usually not higher than 450 IU daily. In general adequate follicular development is achieved on average by the tenth day of treatment (range 5 to 20 days).
A single injection of 250 micrograms r-hCG or 5,000 IU up to 10,000 IU hCG is administered 24-48 hours after the last GONAL-f injection to induce final follicular maturation.
Down-regulation with a gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist or antagonist is now commonly used in order to suppress the endogenous LH surge and to control tonic levels of LH. In a commonly used protocol, GONAL-f is started approximately 2 weeks after the start of agonist treatment, both being continued until adequate follicular development is achieved. For example, following two weeks of treatment with an agonist, 150-225 IU GONAL-f are administered for the first 7 days. The dose is then adjusted according to the ovarian response.
Overall experience with IVF indicates that in general the treatment success rate remains stable during the first four attempts and gradually declines thereafter.
Women with anovulation resulting from severe LH and FSH deficiency:
In LH and FSH deficient women (hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism), the objective of GONAL-f therapy in association with lutropin alfa is to develop a single mature Graafian follicle from which the oocyte will be liberated after the administration of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). GONAL-f should begiven as a course of daily injections simultaneously with lutropin alfa. Since these patients are amenorrhoeic and have low endogenous oestrogen secretion, treatment can commence at any time.
A recommended regimen commences at 75 IU of lutropin alfa daily with 75-150 IU FSH. Treatment should be tailored to the individual patient's response as assessed by measuring follicle size by ultrasound and oestrogen response.
If an FSH dose increase is deemed appropriate, dose adaptation should preferably be after 7-14 day intervals and preferably by 37.5-75 IU increments. It may be acceptable to extend the duration of stimulation in any one cycle to up to 5 weeks.
When an optimal response is obtained, a single injection of 250 micrograms r-hCG or 5,000 IU up to 10,000 IU hCG should be administered 24-48 hours after the last GONAL-f and lutropin alfa injections. The patient is recommended to have coitus on the day of, and on the day following, hCG administration.
Alternatively, IUI may be performed.
Luteal phase support may be considered since lack of substances with luteotrophic activity (LH/hCG) after ovulation may lead to premature failure of the corpus luteum.
If an excessive response is obtained, treatment should be stopped and hCG withheld. Treatment should recommence in the next cycle at a dose of FSH lower than that of the previous cycle.
Men with hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism:
GONAL-f should be given at a dose of 150 IU three times a week, concomitantly with hCG, for a minimum of 4 months. If after this period, the patient has not responded, the combination treatment may be continued; current clinical experience indicates that treatment for at least 18 months may be necessary to achieve spermatogenesis.
Elderly population: There is no relevant use of GONAL-f in the elderly population. Safety and effectiveness of GONAL-f in elderly patients have not been established.
Renal or hepatic impairment: Safety, efficacy and pharmacokinetics of GONAL-f in patients with renal or hepatic impairment have not been established.
There is no relevant use of GONAL-f in the paediatric population.
Method of administration:
GONAL-f is intended for subcutaneous administration. The first injection of GONAL-f should be performed under direct medical supervision. Self-administration of GONAL-f should only be performed by patients who are well motivated, adequately trained and have access to expert advice.
The injection site should be alternated daily.
1,050 IU/1.75 mL:
As GONAL-f multidose is intended for several injections, clear instructions should be provided to the patients to avoid misuse of the multidose presentation.
Due to a local reactivity to benzyl alcohol, the same site of injection should not be used on consecutive days.
Individual reconstituted vials should be for single patient use only.
300 IU/0.5 mL and 900 IU/1.5 mL:
As GONAL-f pre-filled pen with multidose cartridge is intended for several injections, clear instructions should be provided to the patients to avoid misuse of the multidose presentation.