What Are Clomid Side Effects?
What side effects can you get with Clomid? How common are they? Is there anything you can do to prevent or treat Clomid side effects?
How does Clomid work?
To understand Clomid side effects, you first have to understand how Clomid works. Clomid or clomiphene citrate is a type of medication called a selective estrogen receptor modifier. That means that it increases the effects of estrogen in some parts of the body and decreases or blocks the effect of estrogen in other parts of the body.
When do Clomid side effects occur & how long do they last?
Clomid is usually given over five days. These side effects usually will start after you have taken the last pill. It is unusual for these side effects to persist for more than a week.
What are the most common Clomid side effects?
Two of the more common side effects from Clomid come from the estrogen blocking effects. Headaches and hot flashes. These side effects are reported in about 10% of women who take Clomid. You know what a headache is but what are hot flashes. A hot flash is the sudden feeling of warmth in the upper body which is usually most intense over the face, neck and chest. Your skin might get a little red like you are blushing. A hot flash can sometimes also cause you to break out in a sweat. Most people are familiar with hot flashes due to another problem which causes them: low estrogen levels from menopause.
Which pain medications can I take for Clomid headaches?
It is okay to take Tylenol if you get a Clomid headache but at FertiGenic, we recommend avoiding other kinds of medications like Motrin or Advil, since these may actually interfere with ovulation.
Can you treat Clomid hot flashes?
Prevention or treatment of hot flashes is difficult. There are no good studies treating Clomid hot flashes because the hot flashes happen so sporadically and don't last very long so it's hard to know whether a treatment is helping or whether the hot flashes have just gone away on their own. The best thing that you can do is to talk to your doctor about possibly reducing the dose of Clomid in a future cycle. Do not take any supplements while using Clomid, they will not help with side effects and may cause other serious problems.
Visual side effects from Clomid
Visual problems have also been reported by women taking Clomid though they are not as common as headaches or hot flashes. Only about 1% of women who take Clomid will report them. Visual symptoms can include blurry vision, seeing lights or floaters, double vision, sensitivity to light, blind spots or even flickering or the appearance of waves in your vision. Scientists aren't really sure why Clomid can cause these side effects. But like other climate side effects they are more common with higher doses and longer treatment. These problems usually go away in days but in rare cases may last weeks. Visual problems should always be reported to your doctor. If you experience problems with your vision while taking Clomid, it is probably a good idea to switch to a different type of fertility medication next time.
Abdominal symptoms from Clomid
The most common side effect of Clomid is abdominal discomfort. This isn't surprising. Women usually have only one egg develop in their ovaries with Clomid and other fertility medications they may get multiple eggs to develop. That means that the ovaries will get larger than you are used to and you may notice it. Abdominal symptoms like bloating, cramps, gassiness or a heavy feeling happen to as many as 15% of women who take Clomid. It may be similar to the symptoms you have when you get your period. Taking anti-gas medications or laxatives will not help. This is not a dangerous side effect but if you are having severe pain and not just discomfort let your doctor know right away. Again, there is no effective treatment for this problem but reducing the dose of Clomid may lessen the chance that you get in the future.
Ovarian cysts from Clomid
Ovarian cysts may be more likely to occur in women who are taking Clomid. Remember, each egg develops in a cyst called a follicle. After ovulation, that cyst which is now called a corpus luteum, continues to grow and produce hormones. If you don't get pregnant, the corpus luteum cyst will usually stop producing hormones and shrink. By the time you get your period it's usually gone. Usually but not always. When you take a fertility medication like Clomid several follicles may grow and so there will be several corpus luteum cysts. This makes it more likely that not all of them will go away completely in the usual time. This is why it is important that your doctor performs an ultrasound each month before you start another Clomid treatment, to make sure you don't have any abnormal cysts. If you do, you should not start another climate cycle until those cysts have resolved. Cysts will usually go away on their own but on occasion might require medication or even surgery though that's very rare.
Some of the other possible side effects of Clomid are very uncommon. These include breast enlargement or breast tenderness, vaginal spotting or bleeding and nausea.
The majority of women who take Clomid will not have side effects. Most of the side effects that occur are mild and not dangerous, just annoying. The longer you take Clomid and the higher the dose, the more likely you are to see some side effects. Clomid should only be used under the supervision of a fertility doctor.