Human Chorionic Gonadotropin HCG Injectable

Reviewed on 8/5/2022

What Is Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) and How Does It Work?

Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) is a prescription medication used to treat infertility in women and to increase sperm count in men. 

What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG)?

Common side effects of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) include:

  • headache.
  • feeling restless or irritable.
  • mild swelling or water weight gain.
  • depression.
  • breast tenderness or swelling; or
  • pain, swelling, or irritation where the injection is given.

Serious side effects of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) include:

  • hives. 
  • difficulty breathing. 
  • swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • pain, 
  • warmth, 
  • redness, 
  • numbness, or tingling in the arm or leg. 
  • confusion, 
  • extreme dizziness, or severe headache.

Rare side effects of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) include:

  • none

Seek medical care or call 911 at once if you have the following serious side effects:

  • Severe headache, confusion, slurred speech, arm or leg weakness, trouble walking, loss of coordination, feeling unsteady, very stiff muscles, high fever, profuse sweating, or tremors.
  • Serious eye symptoms such as sudden vision loss, blurred vision, tunnel vision, eye pain or swelling, or seeing halos around lights.
  • Serious heart symptoms such as fast, irregular, or pounding heartbeats; fluttering in the chest; shortness of breath; sudden dizziness, lightheartedness, or passing out.

This is not a complete list of side effects and other serious side effects or health problems that may occur because of the use of this drug. Call your doctor for medical advice about serious side effects or adverse reactions. You may report side effects or health problems to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

QUESTION

Men and women are equally likely to have fertility problems. See Answer

What Are Dosages of Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG)?

Adult dosage

Injectable, Subcutaneous:

  • Ovidrel: 250 mcg/0.5 mL (0.5 mL)
  • Assisted reproductive technologies and ovulation induction in females

Adult dosage

  • Assisted reproductive technologies (ART) and ovulation induction in females: SubQ: 250 mcg given 1 day following the last dose of the follicle-stimulating agent. 
  • Use only after adequate follicular development has been determined. 
  • Hold treatment when there is an excessive ovarian response.

Induction of Spermatogenesis

Adult dosage

  • Hypogonadotropic and hypogonadism in males: 1000-2000 units 2-3 times/week (may require 2-3 months of therapy); if needed, add follitropin alfa or menopausal gonadotropin to induce spermatogenesis; continue hCG therapy at dose required to maintain testosterone levels

Dosage Considerations – Should be Given as Follows: 

  • See “Dosages”

What Other Drugs Interact with Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG)?

If your medical doctor is using this medicine to treat your pain, your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor, health care provider, or pharmacist first.

  • Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) has no noted severe interactions with any other drugs.
  • Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) has no noted serious interactions with any other drugs.
  • Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) has no noted moderate interactions with any other drugs.
  • Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) has no noted minor interactions with any other drugs.

This information does not contain all possible interactions or adverse effects. Visit the RxList Drug Interaction Checker for any drug interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist about all your products. Keep a list of all your medications with you and share this information with your doctor and pharmacist. Check with your health care professional or doctor for additional medical advice, or if you have health questions or concerns.

What Are Warnings and Precautions for Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG)?

Contraindications

Effects of drug abuse

  • None

Short-Term Effects

  • See “What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG)?”

Long-Term Effects

  • See “What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG)?”

Cautions

  • Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) is given as an injection under the skin or into a muscle. If you use this medicine at home, your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist will give you specific instructions on how and where to inject this medicine. Do not self-inject this medicine if you do not fully understand how to give the injection and properly dispose of used needles and syringes.
  • Call your doctor at once if you have any of these signs of a blood clot: pain, warmth, redness, numbness, or tingling in your arm or leg; confusion, extreme dizziness, or severe headache.
  • Some women using this medicine have developed a condition called ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS), especially after the first treatment cycle. OHSS can be a life-threatening condition. Call your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of OHSS: severe pelvic pain, swelling of the hands or legs, stomach pain and swelling, shortness of breath, weight gain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, and urinating less than normal.
  •  HCG can cause early puberty in young boys. Call your doctor if a boy using this medicine shows early signs of puberty, such as a deepened voice, pubic hair growth, and increased acne or sweating.
  • Using this medicine can increase your chances of having a multiple pregn\ancy (twins, triplets, quadruplets, etc). A multiple pregnancy is a high-risk pregnancy for the mother and for the babies. Follow your doctor's instructions about any special care you may need during your pregnancy.

Pregnancy and Lactation

  • Using the medication once you are pregnant can cause birth defects in the baby. Do not use this medication if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment.
  • Lactation
    • It is not known whether HCG passes into breast milk. Do not use HCG without telling your doctor if you are breastfeeding a baby.

SLIDESHOW

Fertility Options: Types, Treatments, and Costs See Slideshow
References
https://www.emedicinehealth.com/drug-human_chorionic_gonadotropin_hcg_injectable/article_em.htm#whatis

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