Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS) is characterized by painfully swollen ovaries. In a majority of cases it is brought on by intravenous hormone fertility treatments, but in rare instances it can occur while taking oral fertility meds. Even more rarely it can occur naturally. Mild cases are quite common while undergoing IV fertility treatments.
High levels of the pregnancy hormone HCG can cause ovarian blood vessel leakage. The excess fluid causes swelling, and in more serious cases it can enter into the abdominal cavity. The condition can significantly worsen if pregnancy occurs during treatment because of increasing HCG levels. Life-threatening complications occur very rarely.
The symptoms of ovarian hyperstimulation can range from mild to severe. Symptoms of mild to moderate ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome may include:
More serious symptoms may include:
Treatment of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome is usually unnecessary, but in moderate cases it may include:
Treatment for serious complications of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome may include hospitalization, intravenous fluids, anticoagulants, medication to counter the effects of HCG and surgical repair of a ruptured ovarian cyst. Intensive care may be necessary in the treatment of serious lung and liver problems.