Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Does a hysterosalpingogram make you more fertile? Update

If you have read my earlier posts, you know I believe that using Ethiodol (oil-based contrast medium) for a hysterosalpingogram increases the post-procedure pregnancy rate. Unfortunately, the only US source for Ethiodol announced in March of 2010 that they were shutting down production "for marketing reasons". Since then, limited supplies of a similar product (Lipiodol Ultra-Fluide) have been made available in the US by FDA-approved importation from a French manufacturer; the current distributor is Guerbet USA. I called up Guerbet today to see if I could buy some Lipiodol Ultra-Fluide, but alas, it is only being made available for use in "life-saving medical procedures", and even if they would sell it to me, one 10 mL ampoule would cost $590 (ouch!).

The company rep said they hope to have Ethiodol back on the market within a year.



Bainbridge said...

Do you have any updates on whether Lipiodol or Ethiodol is available in the US again for HSG's? Thanks.

Michael P. Steinkampf, MD said...

I am sorry to report that as of October 25, 2012, Ethiodol is still not available for use as HSG contrast medium in the US.


Mcook said...

As of now, is the Ethiodol-HSG available at your facility yet? Thanks Dr. S! I've heard great things about you!

Michael P. Steinkampf, MD said...

Thanks for asking about this. I just checked, and it appears to be back on the market in the US, approved for HSG use! I am taking the ordering info to the radiology departments at the hospitals where we do HSGs next week. I am looking forward to using this product again. Stay tuned! mps

Lauren D said...

Hello Doctor,

Odd question, perhaps. After delivering my son 2 and 1/2 years ago I developed chronic urticaria with hives daily. Essentially I couldn't function without an antihistimine all that time. Allergist said autoimmune and no further assessment done. Interestingly, I had the oil-based dye test last week for unexplained inter filing and mild endometriosis. Since then, I have been give free. 1) Any hypotheses on what could have been happening in my reproductive system to cause hives hat the dye may have resolved? 2) Can Zyrtec impact cervical mucus and therefore impact fertility? Thank you!

Michael P. Steinkampf, MD said...

MPS: I don't know of any relationship between oil based dye and chronic urticaria, but I am happy to hear that your symptoms have cleared up.

Oil-based HSG dye is now available in the US, produced by the French Company Guerbert, branded as Lipiodol. Actually, it was being manufactured in Canada for Guerbert, but because of manufacturing difficulties there is a shortage of the product, so the US FDA is allowing Guerbert to import a similar product, Lipiodol Ultra-Fluide, from France. The bad news is that I called Guerbert today and found out they are selling a 10 mL ampule of Lipiodol Ultra-Fluide for $1,027.00. I think that is too expensive for HSG use.