IVF Cycle FAQs

IVF Cycle FAQ’s

Frequently Asked Questions specifically related to your IVF cycle.


Can I swim after my embryo transfer?

A: Generally speaking it is best to stay away from public pools in this time frame because of the chemicals and the bacteria. Once a pregnancy is established, swimming is permissible provided everything is going well.

Can I use a hot tub, Sauna, or Jacuzzi?

A: It is best not to. It is important to keep yourself well hydrated.

Can I Get a Massage?

A: If it involves the head and neck and face, there is no problem. You should avoid pelvic/abdominal massages.

Can I have a glass of wine or alcohol during the cycle?

A: No alcohol after the procedure but you may have a glass of wine during your cycle. Avoid more than one glass of wine. Keep yourself well hydrated, especially in hot weather.

Can I travel more than 4-6 hours in a car or airplane after my embryo transfer?

A: Yes (car only). Please do not fly any sooner than 48 hours after the embryo transfer if possible. If this is not possible, discuss this with the doctor for specific precautions.

What is the length of bed rest after transfer?

A: Stay off your feet as much as you can for 24 hours. It is okay to get up for limited periods, such as walking to the bathroom or car.

How much exercise can I do after hCG? After Embryo Transfer?

A: Rest at home for 48 hours. No vigorous or high impact exercise until after clinical pregnancy confirmation. Walking and other light aerobic exercise are okay. Avoid heavy lifting greater than 10 pounds if possible.

How soon after my procedure (egg retrieval/embryo transfer) can I have intercourse?

A: One week. However, the ovaries may still be swollen at that time; therefore, you should be careful of vigorous activity.

How long will I be on stimulation mediation?

A: Nine to ten days

Can I get my hair colored or permed?

A: No. Try to avoid artificial coloring procedures.

Can I use Monostat for yeast infections?

A: Yes, before the embryo transfer

Can I have electrical stimulation (i.e. TENS)?

A: Yes

Can I take the following medications during a cycle or after an embryo transfer?

a) Prednisone – Yes
b) Cold medications (Sudafed, Robitussen) – Yes
c) Anaprox, Motrin, Aleve, Advil – No
d) Amoxicillin, ampicillin – Yes, before embryo transfer
e) Bactrim – OK before the embryo transfer
f) Flagyl – OK before the embryo transfer
g) Doxcycline – OK before the embryo transfer
h) Erythromycin- Yes, before the embryo transfer
i) Nasal spray decongestants – (YES, but dependence may occur which will lead to rebound congestion. Saline sprays are better.)
j) Tylenol Cold or PM – Yes
k) Claritin D – Yes
l) Valium – Yes, before embryo transfer
m) Prozac – Yes, before embryo transfer
n) Xanax – Yes, before embryo transfer
o) Ativan – Yes, before embryo transfer
p) Benadryl – Yes, before embryo transfer
q) GI medications (MOM, Colace, Senekot, Kaopectate, Immodium, Pecid) – Yes
r) Headache medications (Fiuricet, Fiorinal) – Yes, before embryo transfer
s) Echinacea, St. John’s Wart, Ginko Biloba – No Please check with your pharmacist regarding any drug interactions

Injections I can have during a cycle?

a) Flu Shot – No
b) Hepatitis Vaccine – No
c) Chicken Pox immunoglobulin – No
d) TB test-PPD – No
e) Tetanus shot – No
f) Allergy shots – No
g) Novocaine used for dental procedures – Yes
h) Rubella Immunization – No

I just got my period. Now what?

A: Call the office and find out what further tests need to be done as well as when Dr. Batzofin would like to see you next.

While on my birth control pills, I have breakthrough bleeding. What’s going on?

A: Continue your pills. It’s not unusual to have breakthrough bleeding as the pills are used to coordinate your cycle. If the bleeding continues or becomes heavy, please notify the office. You will also experience withdrawal bleeding a few days after you have discontinued the birth control pill.

What are the common side effects of the medications?

A: While on the stimulation medications, you may experience bloating, breast tenderness and some mood swings. If you are taking Leuprolide Acetate (lupron, lucrin, or synarel,) you may experience dry skin, spotting, hot flashes, dizziness, headache and fatigue.

What is the window of opportunity for missed medications?

A: Generally speaking, 1 hour on either side of the time you were supposed to take your medication. However, if you are taking hCG, a dose must be taken within 36 hours or the cycle will be lost. Please contact the office immediately if you forgot to administer the hCG.

Where do I find an Egg Donor?

A: There are agencies that coordinate egg donors as well as surrogates. New York Fertility Services has several proven agencies that we work with and we’ll be happy to make recommendations

What are the indications for surrogacy?

A: There are several: Recurrent pregnancy loss, malformed or absent uterus and autoimmune disease. Social surrogacy (wanting to use a surrogate because it is not convenient to be pregnant), is not acceptable.

How long should we abstain from sex before my husband brings in his sample?

A: A minimum of two days but no longer than five days

What medications can I take or not take while on stimulation medications?

A: Tylenol is fine but all others, please ask the office, if they are not listed in #13

Can I exercise or are there activity limitations while I’m on my medications?

A: Go about your normal daily activities, but within a few days prior to your egg retrieval, taper down on your activity level

Can I fly or travel while I’m in fertility treatment?

A: While you are on the stimulation medications, you may travel. It is a good idea, if you’re flying, to hand-carry your medications in case of travel delays, lost luggage, etc. Following your procedure, we recommend not traveling for 48 hours.

My progesterone injection sites are very sore and uncomfortable. Recommendations?

A: Swelling and redness at the injection immediately after the injection is normal. Please apply an ice pack prior to the injection and a warm compress after the injection. Walking around and warming the medication in a bowl of warm water will also help with absorption. Please notify the office. The swelling and hard bumps persist for more than 24 hours after the injection.

Which medications will require refrigeration?

A: Please refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines. With the exception of the delestrogen, progesterone in oil, and suppositories (refrigerate up until 30 minutes prior to administration time,) most can be stored at a stable room temperature. Refrigeration is recommended if your home environment runs the risk of warm temperatures.

How often will I be seen for cycle monitoring?

A: This will depend upon your response to the stimulation medications (i.e.: Gonal F, Bravelle, or Follistim.) You may be seen in the office for blood work and an ultrasound every day, every other day, or every third day.

Prenatal Diet

A: Aim for a well balanced and nutritious diet high in fruits, vegetables, calcium, and protein. Avoid raw fish, unpasteurized cheeses, alcohol, and mercury rich fish (swordfish, tuna, and swordfish.) Limit caffeine intake to 200 mg daily.