May 4, 2017

What Can I Take for GI Complaints During Fertility Treatment and When Pregnant?

stomach pain pregnancy

Many women experience GI complaints while undergoing fertility treatments and when pregnant. These include constipation, indigestion/heartburn, and nausea in response to gonadotropin stimulation and due to high gonadalsteroid levels in early pregnancy. This is generally due to the slowing of smooth muscle contractility and central effects caused by high levels of estrogen and progesterone during treatment and in pregnancy. Patients often ask, “What can I take for GI complaints during fertility treatment and when pregnant?”

It is important to consult with your physician before taking anything during treatment or in pregnancy. Many over-the-counter medications are safe and effective to use to treat these symptoms even during pregnancy.

These medications include for:

  • Constipation: Metamucil, Colace, citracel, milk of magnesia, Ducolax;
  • Indigestion/Heartburn: Tums, Maalox, Mylanta, Pepcid;
  • Nausea: Vitamin B6 and if necessary prescription for Diclegis

Milder cases may be treated with:

  • Bed rest, but not too much
  • Dietary changes and antacids
  • Acupressure: The pressure point to reduce nausea is located at the middle of the inner wrist, three fingerbreadths away from the crease between the two tendons. Locate and press firmly, one wrist at a time for three minutes. Seabands also may help with acupressure and can be found at your local drug store
  • Herbs-Ginger or Peppermint
  • Hypnosis
  • Antiemetic Medications: It is important that the risks and benefits be weighed as some drugs may have adverse effects on you or the development of your baby and should only be take under physician supervision

Visit one of our blog entries on morning sickness for more information on nausea during pregnancy and after infertility treatment. Additionally, is Zofran safe to take while pregnant to help with the extreme nausea?

Knowing what to do can be overwhelming. If you have questions about what medications are safe to take, please contact us, or consult with your doctor beforehand.

Joseph A. Hill, III, M.D. Board-Certified in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility