Constipation After Egg Retrieval: Treatments and Causes

Trying to conceive by way of in vitro fertilization (IVF) is tense sufficient. But add in a nasty bout of constipation after egg retrieval, and it’s no marvel this process can take a toll in your bodily and emotional well being.

The excellent news? Getting aid from constipation is rather a lot simpler than you would possibly suppose. Because it’s a frequent aspect impact of egg retrieval, there are many individuals who have been in your place. Which means, there are many tips and methods for eliminating this uncomfortable drawback.

Read on to find out how lengthy constipation can final after egg retrieval, how one can get aid, what causes it, and whether or not or not constipation can have an effect on embryo implantation.

“Constipation can last for a few days after the retrieval, or it might last until the next menstrual cycle when progesterone levels drop,” says Khaled Zeitoun, MD, OB-GYN and reproductive endocrinology & infertility (REI) specialist at New Hope Fertility in New York City.

However, in case you get pregnant, Zeitoun says constipation would possibly final for much longer as a result of being pregnant additionally causes excessive progesterone ranges and can provide you constipation.

Constipation is a traditional aspect impact after egg retrieval. But that doesn’t imply it’s a must to endure by it. Natural cures might help.

Here are 5 methods to alleviate constipation naturally after egg retrieval.

Stay hydrated

Zeitoun suggests consuming loads of water earlier than the process and staying hydrated after egg retrieval.

That’s as a result of water helps you eliminate waste by bowel actions. Water additionally aids in preventing constipation by retaining you from changing into dehydrated.

You get water from meals and fluid. Ideally, most of your hydration ought to come from consuming water all through the day.

But additionally, you will discover water in meals like watermelon, strawberries, apples, cantaloupe, cucumbers, lettuce, skim milk, broth, and soup.

Fill up on fiber

Choosing meals excessive in fiber may assist relieve constipation after egg retrieval.

That’s as a result of fiber can speed up the transit of stool by the digestive system, permitting you to have common bowel actions.

According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, ladies ages 19 to 30 ought to eat 28 grams of fiber when following a 2,000 calorie per day food regimen.

This quantity decreases barely for ages 31 to 50, with the advice of 25 grams for a 1,800-calorie-per-day food regimen.

Fiber-rich meals embody:

  • fruits reminiscent of berries, apples with pores and skin, or prunes
  • greens like broccoli, pumpkin, candy potato
  • whole-grain meals like brown rice and bran cereal
  • almonds, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, and flax

If your fiber consumption is presently on the low finish, slowly enhance the quantity you eat. Adding an excessive amount of fiber too rapidly may cause belly discomfort.

Drink a glass of prune juice

In addition to consuming a number of water, Zeitoun recommends a glass of prune juice. If you don’t like consuming juice, attempt snacking on a number of prunes as an alternative.

Results from a randomized managed study discovered that wholesome people with rare stool habits skilled a rise in stool weight and frequency after consuming prunes.

Increase your magnesium consumption

Magnesium is a mineral discovered in lots of meals and dietary supplements.

According to the National Institutes of Health, the really useful dietary allowance or RDA for girls ages 19 to 30 is 310 milligrams (mg) and 320 mg for ages 31 to 50. This quantity will increase when you turn out to be pregnant.

If you’re already taking a prenatal vitamin or different dietary supplements, test the quantity of magnesium to be sure you’re staying inside the RDA on your age.

Foods excessive in magnesium embody pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, almonds, and spinach. Check together with your physician if you wish to add a magnesium complement to your routine.

Go for a brief stroll

Physical exercise like strolling or jogging can typically get issues shifting and maintain your bowel actions common.

Aim for a 10- to 15-minute stroll, two to 3 instances a day, particularly after meals. But be sure you’re near a rest room in case your bowels determine it’s time to empty.

One of the extra frequent negative effects of IVF egg retrieval is constipation, says Zeitoun. If you’ve been capable of dodge this disagreeable situation, contemplate your self lucky. But in case you’re coping with bloating, discomfort, and ache, you would possibly marvel why egg retrieval causes constipation.

Higher progesterone ranges

According to Zeitoun, throughout an IVF cycle, progesterone ranges are a lot greater than regular. And since progesterone is a muscle-relaxing hormone, it relaxes the colon, too, inflicting constipation.


Egg retrievals are carried out underneath anesthesia to maintain you asleep and cozy through the process.

Because of this, Iris Insogna, MD, OB-GYN, and reproductive endocrinology/infertility skilled at Columbia University Fertility Center, says some folks might have constipation on account of anesthesia, which can quickly sluggish the bowels.

Fluid or blood in pelvis

“It’s common to have a little fluid or blood in the pelvis after a retrieval, which can irritate the bowels, and some women may develop constipation as a result of that as well,” Insogna says.


Janet Choi, MD, reproductive endocrinologist, medical director of CCRM, New York, and Progyny medical advisory board member, says in case your physician provides you the drug Cabergoline to attenuate ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) dangers, you may additionally expertise constipation.

In addition to pure cures, Insogna says that sure, it’s also possible to use a light laxative to assist with constipation. “This may include stool softeners like Colace and laxatives like Miralax or senna,” she says.

But earlier than you go shopping for up each model within the retailer, speak together with your physician or a pharmacist about the very best laxative for you.

Laxatives sometimes have completely different substances and strengths. Your physician might want you to begin with a light laxative and work your means as much as a most power, particularly in case you’re new to taking them.

It’s essential that you simply learn the instructions on the drug label and solely take the really useful quantity. Taking extra won’t produce higher outcomes.

Taking more than you need might make you sick and trigger electrolyte disturbances, belly ache, cramping, and diarrhea.

Stimulant laxative

The strongest sort of laxatives works by stimulating your bowels. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, a stimulant laxative causes the bowel to squeeze, which strikes the stools out.

Stimulant laxatives are meant for short-term use — sometimes just for a number of days. They don’t require a prescription, and you should buy a laxative at most grocery shops or pharmacies.

Stool softener

If a stimulant laxative is just too harsh, it’s also possible to attempt a stool softener or emollient laxative. Stool softeners are a kind of laxative however are gentler in your physique than a stimulant laxative.

A stool softener doesn’t trigger a bowel motion, however it could actually assist relieve non permanent constipation by softening stools to make them simpler to move. They can be found over-the-counter and are available in tablets, capsules, liquid, or syrup.

Constipation could also be extremely uncomfortable and inconvenient, nevertheless it gained’t have an effect on embryo implantation.

While constipation might not have an effect on embryo implantation throughout IVF remedy, other risk factors may contribute to recurrent implantation failure or RIF, together with:

  • maternal age
  • physique mass index
  • smoking
  • stress
  • immunological points
  • an infection
  • anatomical abnormalities and endometrial thickness
  • genetics

Constipation is a traditional and customary aspect impact after egg retrieval from IVF. In most instances, it solely lasts a number of days. But typically, it could actually persist till the following menstrual cycle.

To assist with discomfort throughout this time, contemplate a number of the pure cures listed above, or speak to your physician about taking a laxative. They can advocate the very best plan of action for you.

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