What to Look for When Selecting a Fertility Center or Fertility Doctor
Entering into fertility treatment can be stressful and scary. The visit to the physician should be one that eases your mind. It is important to find the right fertility center for your specific needs. Many couples tend to begin with centers and doctors that are close to their homes. This may not, however, provide them with the best experience and results. Take the time to research the fertility center and staff prior to making an appointment. The following guide will help couples struggling with infertility to find the right medical care for fertility treatments.
It is important to work with a physician that is not only certified as an OB/GYN but one who also specializes in infertility. Doctors display their certificates of achievement, course completion certificates and diplomas in their offices. While in the consultation with that physician, browse the certificates displayed. This will show you the educational path taken by that physician to help determine his or her knowledge of the multiple causes for infertility.
Physicians that have taken part in studies, procedure development and research are often the most qualified for couples with multiple failed attempts at conception and more than one year of unsuccessful attempts to conceive naturally. These doctors understand the multiple causes of infertility and have treatment plans to help couples individually as every situation is different.
It is important to work with a fertility doctor that individualizes your treatment plan. What works for one couple, may not necessarily work for another. There are many underlying issues that can cause infertility such as stress, general health conditions and even some bodily injuries can lead to infertility.
Physician Success Rate
A physician’s success rate with various types of treatment including IVF is crucial to a couple’s potential for success. However success is something that varies from patient to patient based on their diagnosis, age and other factors. Success rates alone should not be used to compare treatment centers because different fertility physicians treat different types of infertility diagnoses and from different age groups.
Fertility centers with above average success rates are in high demand. Success rates of 50-percent or higher are considered to be impeccable in terms of infertility. For IVF, success rates range greatly based on the patient’s age however an average success rate for all IVF cases is around 30-percent. Our IVF success rates are at or sometimes higher than the national average.
Keep in mind that some couples do not conceive, even when all treatment options are exhausted. This has nothing to do with failed science or medical procedures. In some cases, the cards are just not falling into place for a couple to start a family due to conflicts within one or both partners’ bodies from underlying health conditions, poor egg health or poor sperm health.
Fertility Center Team
When researching for a fertility center, you want to select one that has educated staff who are experienced in dealing with infertility patients. Many times a fertility center has multiple team members for each couple in order to ensure a thorough experience. Typically a couple will deal with the physician, a fertility nurse, an ultrasound technician and a medical assistant during their treatment. It’s important that the staff members are professional, able to answer your questions and make you feel comfortable.
Working with one team, based out of one fertility center is better for a couple. It helps them establish trust with their team of providers and often leads to better success rates. One of the things that many couples fail to understand is that stress, anxiety and the type of lifestyle that a couple leads can be contributing factors for infertility.
Some fertility centers may also recommend other providers are part of the fertility treatment process. This is because there are many levels of care when treating infertility from stress reduction, weight loss and even psychological counseling. Sometimes a physician may make a referral to another provider such as a psychologist if needed.
Reviews and Testimonials
Always read reviews posted for both the fertility center and the fertility doctor prior to making an appointment for an initial consultation. Testimonials are also ideal to review. These words are left by previous clients of the fertility doctor and/or clinic and provide insight for future clients of a particular physician or center. Couples will be candid and thorough.
Reading this information helps you understand how other couples felt during their treatment. The reviews are your “inside source” for information regarding the compassion of the staff, cleanliness of the facility and knowledge of the treating physicians.
When reading through reviews and testimonials, always read the good and the bad. Remember to keep in mind that not all couples will have a positive experience, and it does not mean that you will experience the same.
Previous clients of a physician or fertility center that have had successful treatments and were able to achieve conception and the birth of a child typically give testimonials. Although rare, it is possible to come across a testimonial praising a physician or clinic for their impeccable compassion and care, even though a birth was unable to achieve. These are comforting for couples beginning this journey to read.
Word of Mouth Suggestions
Ask friends and family members that have struggled with fertility about their experiences and general commentary about specific treatments and doctors related to IVF and infertility treatments. A word of mouth suggestion really is the best source of information as you’ll be able to hear if their words are sincere in the tone of their voice and see their sincerity on their faces.
If you belong to local groups or social media groups relating to fertility, don’t be afraid to ask members of those groups for their suggestions. Most won’t hesitate to share their experiences as they understand how important it is for couples that want to have children to do so.
Cost is often a big factor for couples when entering into fertility treatment. Some health insurance companies will cover a portion of the treatment cost, while others cover nothing. It is important for a couple to determine if their income and household expenses can feasibly afford treatment. There are discount IVF treatment facilities and discount IVF medications available however not all fertility centers offer discounted treatment.
The average cost, nationally, for fresh IVF treatment and medications ranges between $15,000 and $17,000. Our cost for fresh IVF treatment is significantly lower than most IVF centers. We provide all of our prices upfront with no hidden fees on our IVF pricing page.
Certified Clinic Status
Certified clinics are recognized as industry leaders and often have high success rates. These clinics will display a plaque or certificate showing their certified status. If you do not see any suggestions of clinic certification status displayed, always ask. You can read about our certifications here.
Emotional Support Group Suggestions
Emotional support is vital during fertility treatment, regardless of the type of treatment. It is taxing on your emotional health and can lead to continued infertility. Inquire with your physician about in-house emotional support groups and local support groups. Being a part of a group and having a strong circle of support around you during this phase of your life together is beyond beneficial. Speaking with other couples that are going through treatment and that have been through treatment is very comforting. It helps couples get through the difficult parts and failed attempts.
One of the best pieces of advice that group members often give newcomers is to never give up hope until all possible options are exhausted. In vitro fertilization can be attempted up to a dozen times before it’s deemed that conception efforts should cease.
Comfort of Office Atmosphere
The office and general reception area of the fertility center should be uplifting with its décor and should feel comfortable. Centers that feel like sterile hospital environments often lead to couples having hesitations and discomfort when entering the facility. This can hinder their potential for successful treatment.
The staff should greet you with a smile and should be compassionate in understanding your nervousness and apprehensions about the entire fertility treatment process. The treatment areas may seem like a
hospital setting, however, these areas must be kept clean to prevent infection and illnesses from occurring.
If you do not feel comfortable in the general reception area, it is important to express this to the physician so that he or she can make an attempt to make you feel more comfortable working with them in an effort to build the family you and your partner have dreamed of.
Comfort with the Physician
You and your partner must feel absolutely comfortable with your treating physician during fertility treatments. After an initial consultation and routine physical testing, the physician will devise a treatment plan. In most cases, it begins with basic fertility testing, dietary and/or lifestyle changes. Then a treatment plan can begin. Feel free to ask your physician any questions and voice any concerns you may have so that you feel completely comfortable.
Your physician should explain every step of the process to you in terms that you can understand. He or she should also assist in finding psychological support groups, therapists and specialists to help you through every aspect of the procedure. If you are uncomfortable with your physician, it may lead to failed attempts at conception.
There is far more to conception and remedying fertility issues than science and procedures alone. Your body and its overall health are vital for your success in starting a family. It can be a difficult process and it may be emotionally taxing. It may be financially straining on most couples as well. It is important to know that the clinic, physicians and it’s staff will do everything they can to help you and your partner have a beautiful family, you just need to relax the best you can and follow your treatment plan exactly as it is laid out for the best possible results.