HomeInfertilityInfertility TreatmentWhy Do Doctors Suggest Birth Control Pills Before IVF Treatment?

Why Do Doctors Suggest Birth Control Pills Before IVF Treatment?


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Reproductive endocrinologists often recommend birth control pills as the initial step in an IVF treatment program. These pills contain the exact hormone dosage as women on the natural cycle, so they help the ovaries respond to stimulation medications better. 

Another advantage of birth control pills is that they allow doctors to plan the procedure for the best timing possible. If you’re not taking the pills, consult your doctor to decide whether or not you should take them.

If you have decided to start IVF treatment, the next step will be to take birth control pills. Birth control pills are a way for women to regulate their menstrual cycle and predict the start of their period. 

The pills also help women to plan their schedules for work and vacations based on the time of their period. Keep reading, if you’re wondering why your fertility doctor recommends birth control pills before IVF.

What Are Birth Control Pills?

As the name goes, birth control pills help you to prevent pregnancy. It works by stabilizing hormone levels. This prevents hormonal imbalances. Hormonal fluctuations can cause serious mood swings for some women. 

For example, women who suffer from PMS or PMDD usually experience mood swings that can become severe and lead to PMDD. Birth control pills work to prevent these mood swings and prevent pregnancy. They are also highly effective in regulating a woman’s menstrual cycle.

Most contraceptive pills are easily available over the counter and come in packs of three. Each pack contains enough pills for one month. Women can use these pills to control their periods, and some even have the added benefit of predicting a woman’s period. However, it’s important to note that birth control pills must be taken daily.

How to Use Birth Control Pills?

Whether you are planning to get pregnant or want to know how to take birth control pills, it is important to understand how to take these tablets properly. The birth control pill is 99% effective when taken regularly. 

If you are taking birth control pills to prevent your monthly period, you should follow certain guidelines. First, ask your health care how to take birth control pills. If your pill schedule is unpredictable, you can set the alarm to remind you to take the pill at a certain time. 

Another important rule when taking birth control pills is to take them on time. If you miss a pill, take it as soon as you remember and take the rest of the pack as usual. If it’s more than twelve hours away, use another method of contraception.

Certain medical conditions make birth control pills less effective or riskier for women. Women with blood clots, liver disorders, or migraine headaches should not use the pill. Women with unexplained vaginal bleeding should consult a doctor. Taking birth control pills requires a prescription from a doctor or nurse practitioner. 

How Does Birth Control Pills Work?

The pill prevents ovulation during the monthly cycle. Without ovulation, sperm cannot fertilize an egg. Contraception also prevents the natural hormonal fluctuations that occur during the menstrual cycle, such as the release of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). The pill blocks the release of FSH, making it difficult for an egg to attach to the uterine wall and become fertilized.

The effectiveness of birth control pills depends on several factors, including health conditions, medicines, herbal supplements, and antibiotics. It is important to check with your healthcare provider about the possible side effects of any method you are considering. Another factor is convenience. You’ll need to remember to take your pills on time to prevent pregnancy. 

While most combination pills contain estrogen and progestin, there are progestin-only pills that don’t contain estrogen. People with certain medical conditions, including blood clots, liver problems, or migraine headaches, may want to avoid taking the pill. 

Why Take Birth Control Before IVF?

Many women wonder why they need to take birth control pills before IVF. The pill suppresses the female hormones, so a woman’s body does not produce enough ovaries to produce an egg. This, in turn, prevents her from becoming pregnant. The pill also prevents the growth of follicles and keeps the endometrial lining thin. So, taking birth control before IVF could prove helpful.

In the natural cycle, multiple follicles develop. One follicle becomes dominant and releases an egg. In an IVF cycle, multiple follicles grow, but only one mature egg. Birth control pills are often used to maximize the number of mature eggs harvested during egg retrieval. They stimulate follicle growth at similar rates, so more mature eggs are harvested during egg retrieval.

If a fertility specialist recommends contraceptive pills, the first step is to call and schedule an appointment. Most women begin taking birth control pills three to four weeks before IVF, depending on their cycle. They are typically divided into four rows, with the first three being active pills and the fourth row not containing any hormones. 

After starting the birth control pills, a nurse will discuss with you when you should stop taking them. The average cycle takes 10 to 15 days, and a woman will need to take the pills for 10 to 15 days to get pregnant. It is important to note that light breakthrough bleeding is normal and will not affect the IVF cycle. This will allow her to plan her work schedule and vacations accordingly.

Before IVF, women will take hormone supplements to control their cycles. These supplements will help the ovaries produce multiple eggs at once. The gonadotropins are called Gonal-F and Follistim. Follistim is an example of human menopausal gonadotropins. Both hormones can boost the odds of successful implantation. Some women will also take progesterone supplements before embryo transfer to help the embryo grow and implant.

Another reason to use birth control pills before IVF is that they can help the ovaries produce more estrogen, which is important for successful IVF. Estrogen helps to build the endometrial lining, ovulate the fetus, and prepare the body for breastfeeding. In addition to these benefits, taking birth control pills before IVF can also help schedule fertility treatment. It allows you to plan ahead for your cycles to avoid conflict with important events like weddings or graduations.

How Do Contraceptive Pills Support IVF Treatment?

If you are starting an IVF treatment, you may be wondering how birth control pills can support your fertility. They are a common practice for fertility patients, and they will help your clinic regulate your cycle, as well as prevent any pre-stimulation bleeding. Taking birth control pills before undergoing assisted reproductive technology can also help you plan your trip so that you don’t have to worry about missing important events.

After you have finished taking the pills, your fertility doctor will switch you to gonadotropin medications to stimulate your ovaries to release multiple eggs. These medications must be taken daily and last anywhere from eight to fourteen days. To avoid early egg release, women who have been on birth control pills must take other drugs as well. Your doctor may adjust your treatment protocol if you do not see results in a few weeks or if you have a low egg count.

During the menstrual cycle, a woman’s follicles grow in pairs. One of these becomes the dominant follicle and releases an egg. In the case of IVF, birth control pills are used before the ovarian stimulation medication to encourage the growth of all follicles at similar rates. This means more mature eggs will be harvested during the egg retrieval cycle.


Before starting fertility treatments like IVF, the doctor may advise you to take contraceptive pills. It helps to manage the ovulation and menstruation cycle. These medicines can also help to increase the number of healthy eggs for fertilization. However, birth control pills are not for everyone and should only be taken when advised by a healthcare professional. 


Can Birth Control Cause Infertility?

No, birth control doesn’t cause infertility. It can cause a temporary pause in fertility, but women can get pregnant after they stop using birth control. It may take up to six months after stopping the contraceptive from conceiving again. 

Who Should Not Use Birth Control?

Women who smoke and are over the age of 35 years should not use birth control containing estrogen. Apart from that, women with a history of heart attack, breast cancer, blood clots, high blood pressure, and migraine should also not use birth control. 

Is Birth Control Used in Other Fertility Treatments?

Yes, doctors may recommend taking birth control pills to evaluate fertility before starting any fertility treatments. Many doctors advise women to take birth control before assisted reproductive methods, such as IVF. This is because birth control helps maintain the same level of hormones in your body during your cycle, which allows the ovaries to respond better to stimulation medications. 

Somapika Dutta (B.Sc Physiology, Honours)
Somapikar holds Bachelors Degree in Physiology from University of Culcutta. She has 6+ years of experience writing in different niches, including health, tech and lifestyle. An animal enthusiast and a raging foodie, experiencing life - one day at a time.


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