Follitropin beta is used on its own or as part of assisted reproductive technology (ART) to treat infertility in women.
It is also used with another medicine called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) to help in the production of sperm in men who are infertile due to low levels of certain hormones.
Follitropin beta is available in cartridge or in vial form.
If you are using the cartridge, Follitropin beta is to be injected subcutaneously (into the fatty layer under the skin, usually in the thigh, upper arm or abdomen area). Remember to rotate the injection sites. Do not inject into the same area all the time. New injection sites should be at least 1.5 inches away from the previous injection site.
If you are using the vial, it may be given subcutaneously (into the fatty layer under the skin) or intramuscularly (into a muscle).
When given intramuscularly, Follitropin beta should be administered by your doctor or nurse.
When given subcutaneously, the first injection should be given under the supervision of your doctor or nurse. If you or your caregiver had been given the proper training on the preparation and injection techniques of Follitropin beta, you or your caregiver may do the succeeding administration.
Use this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not administer more or less than instructed by your doctor.
Make sure you know how to use this medicine. If you have problems or do not understand the instructions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
The dose of Follitropin beta will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the course of your treatment depending on your response to the medication.
Ensure that you keep all appointments with your doctor so that you do not miss any doses. Your doctor also needs to regularly monitor your response to Follitropin beta.
If you miss an appointment or miss an injection, alert your doctor or nurse. A replacement appointment or injection should be given as soon as possible.
If you or a caregiver had been trained to administer this medicine, inject the missed dose as soon as you remember and return to your normal dosing schedule.
Do NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to inject your medicine, let your doctor or pharmacist know.
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- abnormal or unexplained vaginal bleeding
- ovarian cysts (sacs of fluid in the ovaries) or enlarged ovaries
- tumours of the ovaries, breast, womb, testes, prostate, hypothalamus or pituitary gland
- malformations of sexual organ incompatible with pregnancy
as Follitropin beta may not be suitable for you.
Do not use Follitropin beta if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Inform your doctor if you have porphyria (an inherited disorder that may cause skin or nerve problems).
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.
- To check the appropriateness of Follitropin beta medication, thorough evaluation and assessment before the initiation of the treatment may be needed.
- You may need to have routine tests (e.g. ultrasound, blood tests to measure oestradiol level). Your doctor will advise you about how often you will need to have these tests.
- Regular monitoring of your condition may be needed while you are being treated with Follitropin beta as this medicine may increase your risk of an ectopic pregnancy (a pregnancy in which the fetus develops outside of the womb), multiple births or pregnancy loss.
Follitropin beta may cause any of the following side effects: headache, acne, pain at the injection site, abdominal pain, nausea, ovarian torsion (twisting of the ovary), pain at the pelvis (the area between the abdomen and thighs).
Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
- enlarged abdomen, abdominal discomfort or severe abdominal pain, diarrhoea, nausea and/or vomiting, weight gain or difficulty breathing, as these may be symptoms of a severe condition called ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS)
- blood clots
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in the refrigerator, between 2-8 °C. Do not allow to freeze. If frozen, this medicine will become ineffective and should not be used. Alternatively, store in a cool, dry place for a maximum period of 3 months.
Protect from light. Light may cause the medication to lose some of its effectiveness.
Do not use this medicine if it becomes cloudy or if it has changed in colour.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.