Medications for Infertility in Men

Medications for Infertility in Men

Here are the basics about each of the medicines below. Only common problems with them are listed:

Prescription Medications

Testosterone

Common names are:

  • Androl-LA
  • Androderm
  • Delatestryl
  • Depo-testosterone

Testosterone is needed for sperm production. Health problems like hypogonadism, hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, and delayed puberty result in low amounts of this hormone. Testosterone can be given by mouth, injection, or patch.

Problems may be:

  • Leg cramps
  • Fluid buildup
  • Yellowing of the skin and the whites of the eyes

Clomiphene Citrate

Common names are:

  • Clomid
  • Serophene

Clomiphene citrate is given to men who have hormone imbalances. It causes luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) to rise. This increases the signal to the testes to make more testosterone and sperm.

Problems may be:

hCG, hMG and FSH

Common names are:

  • Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG)
  • Human menopausal gonadotropin (hMG)
  • Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)

These drugs are used to treat hypogonadism, which is low testosterone and sperm production. They trigger cells in the testicles to make more male hormones to trigger sperm production.

hCG is injected into the muscle 2 to 3 times a week. This may need to be done for several weeks, months, or longer. Men with low sperm count have been taking this medicine for 6 months may also be given another hormone medicine, such as menotropin or urofollitropin injection. These medicines may need to be taken together for up to 12 more months.

Menotropins (hMG) are a mix of FSH and LH that are naturally made by the pituitary gland. These are also injected into a muscle 3 times a week for 4 or more months. Usually, another medicine called chorionic gonadotropin will be given before and during treatment with hMG.

Problems may be:

  • Injection site pain
  • Acne
  • Enlarged penis and testicles
  • Breast enlargement
  • Headache
  • Irritability
  • Restlessness
  • Public hair growth

Bromocriptine Mesylate

This drug is given to men who have high levels of prolactin. This is a pituitary hormone that interferes with other hormones. The drug is given as a tablet that is taken with food 1 to 3 times a day.

Problems may be:

  • Feeling very tired
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Tingling in the hands and feet

References:

Infertility in men. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/infertility-in-men-23. Accessed November 11, 2021.
Male infertility/andrology. American Society for Reproductive Medicine website. Available at: https://www.reproductivefacts.org/topics/topics-index/male-infertility. Accessed November 11, 2021.
Overview of infertility. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/gynecology-and-obstetrics/infertility/overview-of-infertility. Accessed November 11, 2021.
Last reviewed November 2021 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Mary-Beth Seymour, RN
Last Updated: 11/11/2021

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