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Gonal-f® (follitropin alfa for injection) is indicated for the induction of ovulation and pregnancy in the anovulatory infertile patient in whom the cause of infertility is functional and not due to primary ovarian failure. Gonal-f® is also indicated for the development of multiple follicles in the ovulatory patient participating in an Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) program.
Selection of Patients
- Before treatment with Gonal-f® is instituted, a thorough gynecologic and endocrinologic evaluation must be performed. This should include an assessment of pelvic anatomy. Patients with tubal obstruction should receive Gonal-f® only if enrolled in an in vitro fertilization program.
- Primary ovarian failure should be excluded by the determination of gonadotropin levels.
- Appropriate evaluation should be performed to exclude pregnancy.
- Patients in later reproductive life have a greater predisposition to endometrial carcinoma as well as a higher incidence of anovulatory disorders. A thorough diagnostic evaluation should always be performed in patients who demonstrate abnormal uterine bleeding or other signs of endometrial abnormalities before starting Gonal-f® therapy.
- Evaluation of the partner's fertility potential should be included in the initial evaluation.
Gonal-f® (follitropin alfa for injection) is indicated for the induction of spermatogenesis in men with primary and secondary hypogonadotropic hypogonadism in whom the cause of infertility is not due to primary testicular failure.
Selection of Patients
- Before treatment with Gonal-f® is instituted for azoospermia, a thorough medical and endocrinologic evaluation must be performed.
- Hypogonadotropic hypogonadism should be confirmed, and primary testicular failure should be excluded by the determination of gonadotropin levels.
- Prior to Gonal-f® therapy for azoospermia in patients with hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, serum testosterone levels should be normalized.
DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION
Each Gonal-f® Multi-Dose Vial delivers 450 IU or 1050 IU follitropin alfa, respectively.
Infertile Patients With Oligo-Anovulation
The dose of Gonal-f® (follitropin alfa for injection) to stimulate development of the follicle must be individualized for each patient.
The lowest dose consistent with the expectation of good results should be used. Over the course of treatment, doses of Gonal-f® may range up to 300 IU per day depending on the individual patient response. Gonal-f® should be administered until adequate follicular development is indicated by serum estradiol and vaginal ultrasonography. A response is generally evident after 5 to 7 days. Subsequent monitoring intervals should be based on individual patient response.
It is recommended that the initial dose of the first cycle be 75 IU of Gonal-f® per day, ADMINISTERED SUBCUTANEOUSLY. An incremental adjustment in dose of up to 37.5 IU may be considered after 14 days. Further dose increases of the same magnitude could be made, if necessary, every seven days. Treatment duration should not exceed 35 days unless an E2 rise indicates imminent follicular development. To complete follicular development and effect ovulation in the absence of an endogenous LH surge, chorionic gonadotropin, hCG, (5,000 USP units) should be given 1 day after the last dose of Gonal-f® . Chorionic gonadotropin should be withheld if the serum estradiol is greater than 2,000 pg/mL. If the ovaries are abnormally enlarged or abdominal pain occurs, Gonal-f® treatment should be discontinued, hCG should not be administered, and the patient should be advised not to have intercourse; this may reduce the chance of development of the Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome and, should spontaneous ovulation occur, reduce the chance of multiple gestation. A follow-up visit should be conducted in the luteal phase.
The initial dose administered in the subsequent cycles should be individualized for each patient based on her response in the preceding cycle. Doses larger than 300 IU of FSH per day are not routinely recommended. As in the initial cycle, 5,000 USP units of hCG must be given 1 day after the last dose of Gonal-f® to complete follicular development and induce ovulation. The precautions described above should be followed to minimize the chance of development of the Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome.
The couple should be encouraged to have intercourse daily, beginning on the day prior to the administration of hCG until ovulation becomes apparent from the indices employed for the determination of progestational activity. Care should be taken to ensure insemination. In light of the indices and parameters mentioned, it should become obvious that, unless a physician is willing to devote considerable time to these patients and be familiar with and conduct the necessary laboratory studies, he/she should not use Gonal-f® .
Assisted Reproductive Technologies
As in the treatment of patients with oligo-anovulatory infertility, the dose of Gonal-f® to stimulate development of the follicle must be individualized for each patient. For Assisted Reproductive Technologies, therapy with Gonal-f® should be initiated in the early follicular phase (cycle day 2 or 3) at a dose of 150 IU per day, until sufficient follicular development is attained. In most cases, therapy should not exceed ten days.
In patients undergoing ART, whose endogenous gonadotropin levels are suppressed, Gonal-f® should be initiated at a dose of 225 IU per day. Treatment should be continued until adequate follicular development is indicated as determined by ultrasound in combination with measurement of serum estradiol levels. Adjustments to dose may be considered after five days based on the patient's response; subsequently dosage should be adjusted no more frequently than every 3-5 days and by no more than 75- 150 IU additionally at each adjustment. Doses greater than 450 IU per day are not recommended. Once adequate follicular development is evident, hCG (5,000 to 10,000 USP units) should be administered to induce final follicular maturation in preparation for oocyte retrieval. The administration of hCG must be withheld in cases where the ovaries are abnormally enlarged on the last day of therapy. This should reduce the chance of developing OHSS.
Male Patients With Hypogonadotropic Hypogonadism
The dose of Gonal-f® (follitropin alfa for injection) to induce spermatogenesis must be individualized for each patient. Gonal-f® must be given in conjunction with hCG. Prior to concomitant therapy with Gonal-f® and hCG, pretreatment with hCG alone (1,000 to 2,250 USP units two to three times per week) is required. Treatment should continue for a period sufficient to achieve serum testosterone levels within the normal range. Such pretreatment may require 3 to 6 months and the dose of hCG may need to be increased to achieve normal serum testosterone levels. After normal serum testosterone levels are reached, the recommended dose of Gonal-f® is 150 IU administered subcutaneously three times a week and the recommended dose of hCG is 1,000 USP units (or the dose required to maintain serum testosterone levels within the normal range) three times a week. The lowest dose of Gonal-f® which induces spermatogenesis should be utilized. If azoospermia persists, the dose of Gonal-f® may be increased to a maximum dose of 300 IU three times per week. Gonal-f® may need to be administered for up to 18 months to achieve adequate spermatogenesis.
Multi-Dose 450 IU Vial
Dissolve the contents of one Multi-Dose vial (450 IU) with 1 mL Bacteriostatic Water for Injection (0.9% benzyl alcohol), USP. Resulting concentration will be 600 IU/mL. Following reconstitution as directed, product will deliver the equivalent of six 75 IU doses.
Multi-Dose 1050 IU Vial
Dissolve the contents of one Multi-Dose vial (1050 IU) with 2 mL Bacteriostatic Water for Injection (0.9% benzyl alcohol), USP. Resulting concentration will be 600 IU/mL. Following reconstitution as directed, product will deliver the equivalent of fourteen 75 IU doses.
Patients should be instructed to use the accompanying syringes, calibrated in FSH units (IU FSH) for administration. The 27-gauge injection syringe (see figure below) has unit dose markings from 37.5 IU to 600 IU FSH for use with Gonal-f® Multi-Dose. Patients should be instructed to take a specific dose of Gonal-f® Multi-Dose. The doctor, nurse, or pharmacist should show the patient how to locate the syringe marking that corresponds to the prescribed dose.
Patient Instructions For Use For Gonal-f® Multi-Dose Vial
Step 1: Mixing (reconstituting) Gonal-f® Multi-Dose Vial
- Wash your hands with soap and water.
- Using your thumb, flip off the plastic cap of the Gonal-f® Multi-Dose vial.
- Wipe the top of the vial stopper with an alcohol swab.
- Carefully twist the needle cap off the syringe labeled 'Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP'. Do not touch the needle or allow the needle to touch any surface.
- Position the needle of the syringe of water in a straight, upright position over the marked center circle of the rubber stopper on the vial of Gonal-f® Multi-Dose powder. Keep the needle in a straight, upright position as you insert it through the center circle, or it may be difficult to depress the plunger. Slowly inject the water into the vial by depressing the syringe plunger. When all the water has been injected into the vial, withdraw the needle and safely dispose of it immediately in your needle container. Do not use this needle to inject your dose.
- Do not shake the vial. If bubbles appear, wait a few moments for the bubbles to settle. The liquid drug should be clear.
Step 2: Preparing the Dose
- Wipe the rubber stopper of the vial of Gonal-f® Multi-Dose liquid with an alcohol wipe.
- Carefully pull the cap from the needle. Do not touch the needle or allow the needle to touch any surface. Firmly hold the vial of Gonal-f® Multi-Dose liquid on a flat surface, insert the needle through the marked center circle of the rubber stopper.
- Keeping the needle in the vial, lift the vial and turn it upside down with the needle pointing toward the ceiling. With the needle tip in the liquid, slowly pull back the plunger until the syringe fills to slightly more than the mark for your prescribed dose. Next, keeping the needle in the vial, slowly adjust the plunger to your prescribed dose – this will clear away any air bubbles.
- Check that you have the plunger set at your prescribed dose.
- Remove the syringe needle from the vial.
- Inject the prescribed dose as directed by the doctor.
Parenteral drug products should be inspected visually for particulate matter and discoloration prior to administration, whenever solution and container permit.
Gonal-f® (follitropin alfa for injection) is supplied in a sterile, lyophilized form in multiple dose vials filled with 600 IU or 1200 IU in order to deliver 450 IU and 1050 IU FSH, respectively, after reconstitution with diluent (Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP, containing 0.9% benzyl alcohol as a preservative). Each carton contains syringes with mounted 27G × 0.5 inch needle, calibrated in FSH units (IU FSH) which should be used for administration. Lyophilized Multi-Dose vials may be stored refrigerated or at room temperature (2°-25°C/36°-77°F). Following reconstitution, the Multi-Dose vial may be stored refrigerated or at room temperature (2°-25°C/36°-77°F). Protect from light. Discard unused reconstituted solution after 28 days.
The following package combinations are available:
- 1 vial Gonal-f® Multi-Dose 450 IU, 1 pre-filled syringe of Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (0.9% benzyl alcohol), 1 mL and 6 syringes calibrated in FSH Units (IU FSH) for injection NDC 44087-9030-1
- 1 vial Gonal-f® Multi-Dose 1050 IU, 1 pre-filled syringe of Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (0.9% benzyl alcohol), 2 mL and 10 syringes calibrated in FSH Units (IU FSH) for injection NDC 44087-9070-1
Manufactured for: EMD Serono, Inc., Rockland, MA 02370 U.S.A. Revised: Apr 2013This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 10/7/2016
Additional Gonal-F Information
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