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Bromocriptine as a Cause of Twins

by
author image Virginia Franco
Based in Charlotte, N.C., Virginia Franco has more than 15 years experience freelance writing. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications, including the education magazine "My School Rocks" and Work.com. Franco has a master's degree in social work with an emphasis in health care from the University of Maryland and a journalism degree from the University of Richmond.
Bromocriptine as a Cause of Twins
Twin brothers smiling in park Photo Credit altrendo images/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Bromocriptine Confused with Other Meds that Produce Twins

Bromocriptine, often referred to as Parlodelis, is a medication taken in either oral or vaginal pill form to reduce levels of prolactin that can be inhibiting ovulation by reducing estrogen levels. Approximately 90 percent of women who take bromocriptine will begin to ovulate while taking bromocriptine, and of those women anywhere from 65 to 85 percent become pregnant.

Because bromocriptine can induce ovulation, it is often associated with other medications that induce ovulation, many of which do in fact increase the risk of twins and other multiple births. Gonadotropins or Pergonal can increase the risk of multiple births by anywhere from 10 to 40 percent, while clomiphene or Clomid carries a 10 percent chance of conceiving multiples, most of which are twins.

Twin are Not A Side Effect of Bromocriptine Alone

According to both the fertility website Sharedjourney.com, and Babycenter.com's article reviewed by the BabyCenter Medical Advisory Board comprised of medical professionals, bromocriptine does not increase your risk of having multiples. The side effects that do result from bromocriptine use include nausea, dizziness, diarrhea and headaches early on in the treatment. These symptoms tend to subside as your body adjusts to the drug, and those who take the oral bromocriptine together with meals or who use the pill in vaginal form report fewer side effects.

Bromocriptine with Help Can Lead to Twins

For women with elevated prolactin but normal menstrual cycles, bromocriptine alone is less likely to be beneficial, according to Brigham and Women's Hospital Center for Infertility and Reproductive Surgery. The fertility options that would likely be included in a treatment plan with bromocriptine might include medications such as gonadotropins, which in fact can lead to twin or multiple pregnancies. In fact, a 1984 University Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics study in Denmark studied 30 women with low levels of prolactin and a history of normal ovulation followed by a 6- to 12-month stop in regular menses. The study concluded that prolactin alone had little to no effect on restarting ovulation.

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