This month, I get to ingest/inject/insert four drugs into my body. They have silly names.
Bravelle (generic name, urofollitropin): This synthetic, injectable FSH is generically up-with-women. One could believe that, in 19th-century Europe, female performers were applauded with “bravelle!,” and that its use died out along with aviatrix and authoress and usherette. Bravelle sounds like it should always be printed with a swoosh near it, and indeed it is.
Clomid (generic name, clomifene): This one’s less dumb, as it’s derived directly from the drug’s molecular structure. Yet it sounds like a “real” word, rather than Big Pharma syllable salad. I like to imagine that, in an early draft of “Downton Abbey,” Edith was named Clomid.
Ovidrel (generic name, human chorionic gonadotropin, injectable): The prefixes “ov-“, “fol-” and “fer-” are the “well,” “like” and “uh” of the fertility-drug name pool. Reach for them when you need something that’s not silence.
Prometrium (generic name, progesterone): This name prompted a rant about the lack of a compelling link between Prometheus and vaginal suppositories. “Does the name imply that it brings fire to the uterus?” I said, out loud. “Does an eagle regularly tear out this drug’s liver?” On actual inspection of the word, it became clear that it’s a harmless portmanteau of progesterone and endometrium.