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Hey there, forward thinker! Whether you’re contemplating egg freezing for personal, professional, or health reasons, you’ve made family planning a priority. Now you’re hoping to find out how much it will cost.

Let’s not beat around the proverbial bush. Egg freezing will set you back about as much as a one-week luxury holiday in Maui. That’s nothing compared to the cost of waiting for years to have IVF only to find out you need to try multiple rounds before succeeding.

While egg freezing isn’t an insurance policy (or even a guarantee) that you’ll have a successful pregnancy, it does boost your odds of having a healthy baby later in life.

Here’s everything you need to know before making your decision.

What is Egg Freezing?

By now, you’re probably familiar with the term oocyte. If you aren’t, it’s the scientific name for a woman’s egg. By the time a woman reaches puberty, she has only 200,000 eggs – we say “only,” because at birth, a woman has 6 million. The older we get, the lesser the quality (and number) of eggs, which can lead to difficulty conceiving.

Egg freezing allows your eggs to exist in a permanent state of youth; being literally frozen in time the moment they’re vitrified (flash-frozen in liquid nitrogen). Medication is used to help you produce more eggs during each cycle, which is best done in your early to mid-30s.

The more eggs you freeze, the greater the chance of a successful pregnancy.

Once you decide to use the eggs, they’re thawed and fertilized (each with a single sperm) through an intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). Between 3 and 5 days after fertilization, the egg is ready to be moved to the uterus.


Register to Attend Our Online Egg Freezing Webinar!

Join us Tuesday, May 21 at 7PM ET to have your egg freezing questions answered by Dr. Spencer Richlin!

What’s the Cost of Egg Freezing?

Egg freezing is a big decision often made when you're too young to know when (or if) you’ll need to make use of it. Freezing eggs can cause strain on both on your pocket book and your emotions, so you need to weigh your decision well.

We spend time factoring things like college, cars, and houses into our budgets. It makes sense that we should include building our families into our financial plans.

So, how much are you looking at? Egg freezing costs depend on a few different factors, including:

  • Where you live – Certain cities (like New York) are more expensive than others (like Boston and San Francisco)
  • Your age – Those over 37 need more cycles of egg freezing to garner the same number of viable eggs as healthy, younger women.
  • Your health – Costs may be lower if you’re freezing eggs due to a medical condition (i.e. cancer, endometriosis or a family history of early menopause).
  • The clinic – Prices vary between fertility practices.
  • Your insurance – Each company has a different policy, so check yours carefully.

On average, one cycle of egg freezing will cost around $11,000. Since most women will need to undergo this procedure more than once, you’ll need to double, triple or quadruple that number.

Here’s a breakdown of the cost of egg freezing:

 

What Does the Cost of Egg Freezing Include?

Wondering what your money will get you? Here’s what’s included:

  • An initial consultation
  • Hormonal and/or medical stimulation
  • Monitoring of hormone levels
  • Surgical retrieval of eggs
  • Egg storage
Does My Insurance Pay for Egg Freezing?

Each insurance company has a different policy.

The one thing most agree on – they won’t cover egg freezing. Often, however, they’ll include diagnostic testing, the initial consultation, and sometimes medication.

How Do I Pay for Egg Freezing?

Here are a few helpful options:

  1. Speak with a financial advisor to determine what you can afford.
  2. Price shop. Ask each clinic for a detailed list of what’s included. See if they have payment packages or guarantees (some offer a 100% money-back guarantee if the pregnancy doesn’t take).
  3. Look for deals on fertility medications. Talk to different pharmacies and your doctor for special rates.
  4. Save. Set up a regular automatic debit from your checking account into savings.
  5. Ask friends or family to help. This could be a great birthday or holiday gift.
  6. Set up a GoFundMe page to accumulate donations.
  7. Use a flexible spending account (if you have one).
  8. Pay with a rewards credit card. You’ll get cash back, travel, or other rewards in return for your spending.
  9. Read carefully through your employee benefits. Some companies cover egg freezing.
Are There Cost Packages Available?

Many treatment centers offer cost packages to help offset the expense of egg freezing. A select few include medication.

At Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut, you can expect to pay about $10,000 for one cycle of egg freezing and $500 a year for storage. Our Egg Freezing Opportunity Plan is the only all-inclusive egg freezing treatment plan in the Tri-State Connecticut Region that also includes medications.

Am I the Right Age for Egg Freezing?

It’s best to freeze your eggs during your early to mid-30s, although many places will conduct the procedure up to 40. Those under 37 should freeze 15 to 20 eggs while older women need 25 to 30.

One Woman’s Story About Egg Freezing

Valerie Landis froze her eggs twice – at 33 and again at 35.

Knowing for years that she would pursue egg freezing, Valerie had plenty of time to save, plan for, and choose the perfect doctor and clinic to perform the procedure. Having worked in the women’s health and fertility industry for over a decade, she also had the bonus of being well-informed about her choice. In addition to boosting her chances of having a successful pregnancy later in life, Valerie knew she’d save cash by choosing to freeze her eggs. “I saw egg freezing kind of like a savings plan or 401K, that I would actually save money in the long run by being my own egg donor,” she explains.

After her first course of freezing, Valerie felt so emotional that she decided to document her journey. “I saw why this was a hard decision for others both emotionally and financially,” she says. “I decided it was my duty to help educate others to be as prepared as possible and ease those fears by demystifying what to expect.”

Now a well-known patient advocate, Valerie founded Eggsperience.com and became host of the Eggology Club podcast to help share her vast knowledge of egg freezing and other fertility-related topics. “Egg freezing isn’t all fun and games,” she says. “It can be kind of hard.”

For now, Valorie is dedicated to her job as a patient advocate and she’s coaching others on their fertility journeys. If she doesn’t find the right person to start a family with, Valerie will use her eggs to become a single mom. Thankfully, she can rest easy knowing they’re ready and waiting for the moment she’s ready.

Learn more about Valerie Landis and her egg freezing experience.

What Else Do I Need to Know About Egg Freezing Costs?

You now know how much egg freezing costs, who’s paying for egg freezing (you – unless you can get your others to help), and what the treatment includes. Below are six other factors to take into consideration:

  1. You may require multiple egg freezing cycles. Most women need two cycles in order to gain the recommended number of eggs. Those over 37 may need three or four.
  2. Don’t freeze your eggs when you’re too young, or too old. At 20, your eggs are of a better quality and you’ll get a lot more of them in one cycle. Being so young, though, means you won’t have a good idea of whether you’ll need them later. You could be throwing away money if you get pregnant naturally. By 30, you’re closer to the age at which you’ll use the eggs and will have a better idea of whether you’ll need them.
  3. Choose your clinic carefully. Do your research before freezing your eggs and choose a clinic with plenty of experience and high success rates.
  4. Eggs can’t be stored forever. While most say eggs can be stored indefinitely, certain countries (like the UK) won’t allow them to be stored for more than 10 years.
  5. Prepare to lose eggs. Freezing won’t guarantee success. There’s still a chance some eggs won’t survive the freeze or thaw, and others won’t fertilize correctly.
  6. Be prepared for failure. According to some sources, the live birth rate associated with egg freezing is a mere 20 percent for those who froze eggs at the age of 36. Other sources, namely fertility clinics, put the live birth rate as high as 70 to 80% for younger women and 65 to 75% for 38 to 40 year-olds. Older women also have a higher risk of pregnancy and birth complications.

Learn more about egg freezing and determine if The Egg Freezing Opportunity Plan at RMACT is right for you.


Register to Attend Our Online Egg Freezing Webinar!

Join us Tuesday, May 21 at 7PM ET to have your egg freezing questions answered by Dr. Spencer Richlin!

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How to Cope with Mother's Day When Going Through Fertility Treatment - YouTube
 

Hi, I’m Lisa Schuman. I'm the Director of Mental Health Services for Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut. I’m here today to talk to you a little bit about Mother’s Day.

Now, Mother’s Day can be a very difficult topic if having a baby is hard for you. So, what can you do today to help yourself?

Learning How to Parent Yourself

Today I think it would be helpful for you to think about giving yourself a Mother’s Day gift, and that Mother’s Day gift would be to practice being a mother to yourself. So, being a good parent does not mean either indulging yourself too much, or letting yourself slide, right?

For example, if you have a child and the child skins his knee, you might wipe his knee up to make him feel better and maybe rub his back a little bit, give him a kiss on the head, and say, “okay, now we’re going to go to school.” You wouldn’t say, “just go to school,” and you also wouldn’t say, “stay in bed all day.”

And, I know that this is really hard because when you’re struggling, it’s hard not to eat that extra cookie, and it’s hard not to want to crawl in bed and put the covers over your head. But, being a good parent to yourself means taking care of yourself in a helpful way.

So, for Mother’s Day, make this promise to yourself that you’ll do it for one day, and then if you’re able to do it for more days, put them on your calendar because when things don’t get scheduled, sometimes they don’t happen.

Mother’s Day would be the first day that you’d be practicing being a mother to yourself. Maybe take a walk outside, decide to eat healthy, decide to do other things that are helpful, call some old friends and increase your social supports. Do things to help yourself, and then if you feel better, you can start to enlist the help of some friends, maybe tell other people about your plans, and schedule it maybe for twice a week or three times a week.

Try this out and let me know what you think. I’d love to hear from you!  

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When you are ready to have a baby and you are 35 or younger, do this:

Try for 12 months to have a baby on your own. Take your temperature, get the timing right, and don’t let anxiety override the fun. If you are 36 or older, try for six months.

After that, you can talk to your ob/gyn, who might remind you that one out of eight adults experiences infertility, and suggest you visit a fertility clinic.

As you prepare for this step, consider four important categories that will help you explore your options.

1. Evaluate Fertility Doctors

Anyone can call themselves a fertility specialist. The term has no specific meaning and the person making the claim has not necessarily had any training regarding infertility. Instead, look for a board-certified reproductive endocrinologist, someone who has the highest available training in fertility treatment. These medical doctors follow four years of medical school with a four-year residency in obstetrics and gynecology.

After that, they receive three more years of training in reproductive endocrinology. Board certification tests their knowledge and requires written and oral examinations in obstetrics and gynecology along with reproductive endocrinology and infertility.

The Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology, keeps track of pregnancy rates from participating clinics across the country and publishes them on its website. You will be able to compare pregnancy rates at various clinics.

2. Find Out Which Treatments the Fertility Clinic Offers

In vitro fertilization is the gold standard for fertility treatment. It is proved to offer the highest chance of success for women who have not been able to get pregnant any other way.

IVF is not the first step in fertility treatment, however. At your initial visit, the fertility clinic you choose should gather information about you and your partner, and begin tests to determine what might be causing infertility. Health care professionals should be available to explain all your potential options. It could be a hormone imbalance, a physical issue, or a combination of issues that is preventing sperm from successful connecting with egg.

Treatment might begin with a dose of drugs that prompt your hormones to signal the ovaries to release eggs. The next step could involve intrauterine insemination, which involves placing sperm as close as possible to an egg during ovulation. With IVF, eggs are removed from the woman and then fertilized with sperm in a lab before being reintroduced into the uterus. When successful, the process leads to an embryo and a pregnancy that concludes with birth.

As you might imagine, fertility treatment can be expensive.

3. Research Insurance and Affordability Options

If you are lucky, your health insurance will cover a significant amount of the costs. Most insurance does not. You can work with your insurance company, though, as well as your employer, to make sure you get everything you are entitled to. After you complete that task, you can look into grants, loans, and financing, including what might be offered by the fertility clinic.

Your first visit to any clinic should also include counseling with a financial services advisor, who will help you find the information you need to pay for treatment.

4. Remain Hopeful

You don’t need us to tell you that treatment for infertility can be long, nerve-wracking and sometimes discouraging. At the same time, a good clinic offers you a team that will support you and keep working toward the outcome you want – a baby. Although it can be scary to take the first step – before you know what is causing your infertility and what you can do about it – your doctor and everyone from the nurses, yoga instructors and receptionists are there to bolster your confidence and courage. They will help you with self-care, mindfulness and sense of well-being, and remind you why you are on this journey.

Are you ready to take the next step?

When you begin to compare fertility clinics for success rates, the types of support they provide, and doctor qualifications, please add RMA of Connecticut to your list. Our success rates are substantially above average, our doctors are highly trained and leaders in their fields, and our support staff and services are unequaled. As important, we share your goal: to have a healthy baby.

To help you find the right doctor for you, download this ebook, “Choose a Fertility Doctor,” and then call us at 203-956-2265.

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Just as every family is different, so is insurance coverage for each of those families—or at least it seems that way. 

When you seek infertility treatment, insurance coverage is the first place to look for help paying for the procedures your doctor may recommend. Patience will be helpful in this process as when you start asking questions, you will likely find that there are layers of answers. 

Your policy, and the options offered, will vary by state, by employer, and by cost.

With this guide, however, you will learn the medical questions to ask, the places you can find answers about affordability and the other methods of paying for fertility treatment when insurance won’t cover everything you need. 

Questions to Ask Your Insurance Carrier 

The very first step is to read your insurance policy. Take your time, because insurance policies are dense with information and not written in easy-to-understand language. Look up terms on trusted sources on the internet and if you buy your insurance through an employer, ask for help from the human resources department. The person at your insurance company’s 800 number will also answer questions. 

Many policies still will not pay for fertility treatment, like in vitro fertilization. Those same policies, however, may cover infertility consultation and testing, which could include hysterosalpinogram (HSG), vaginal ultrasound, and blood tests for hormones and the work-ups that precede sperm analysis

What is IUI and IVF? 

Intrauterine insemination (IUI) assists the combination of egg and sperm by injecting sperm into your uterus during ovulation. The procedure can be helpful when a man’s sperm count or sperm motility is low.  

In vitro fertilization (IVF) describes the process of removing eggs from your ovaries and combining them with sperm in a laboratory. An embryo is returned to your uterus and monitored to ensure it implants and continues to grow. 

More than 1 million babies have been born in the U.S. between 1987 and 2016 through the use of IVF and other techniques to address infertility, according to a 2018 report by the Society of Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART). And over that same period, the chance of taking home a baby with each IVF try has increased from 5% to 30%.  

Should I think about freezing my eggs? 

Even women who aren’t planning to get pregnant right away might consider signing up for a fertility test. One in eight people who do want to have children are diagnosed as infertile. It’s better, and easier, to know as early as possible what options you might pursue. 

If you are in your 30s, the ticking of the biological clock coincides with a decline in the quality of your eggs. It’s true for everyone, and knowing if there are other issues will help you make plans for the day you do decide you want to become pregnant. 

Treatment for infertility requires a commitment of time, money and mental and physical resources. If you do have fertility issues, knowing earlier than later will help you prepare to the fullest possible extent. 

When should I spend on medical bills? 

You can get the most out of your existing coverage by making sure you meet your deductibles before the end of the year so that insurance will pay for a maximum of everything else you can fit in. In other words, if you expect to meet your deductible with normal exams and medications, schedule fertility-related procedures for November and December, when insurance will pay the full cost. 

Policies May Offer Some Coverage, But Not What You Need 

If you have a policy that covers procedures, congratulations! There may still be limitations, so find out exactly what treatments your insurance will cover. 

  • Some policies limit the number of cycles for intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization, even if you don’t get pregnant.  
  • They may cap the amount of insurance money you can spend, either annually or for the life of the policy.  
  • Others may not pay for medications, which are a critical component of treatment.  

Although you may not need some procedures – donation of egg or sperm, for example – it’s a good idea to determine whether those would be covered as well. 

Not Every Fertility Clinic is Covered 

Some insurance carriers will work only with fertility clinics that meet certain criteria.  

What accreditations and experience should you look for? 

They may require the fertility program to be a center of excellence. It is just as likely that an approved clinic will report to the Society for Assisted Reproduction Technology. SART is an independent organization that lists the annual pregnancy success rates of participating fertility clinics across the country.  

Other accreditations and licenses may be required, such as that offered by the College of American Pathologists for laboratories.  

It may be obvious, but it’s important that you like your doctor. And part of liking your doctor is the experience and training that they have gained. Don’t settle for less than a board-certified Reproductive Endocrinologist, the highest possible standard. 

More Questions to Ask About Insurance 

If you live in Connecticut or New York, state laws require insurance carriers to provide certain minimums for infertility treatment. Another 15 states have similar mandates. 

Connecticut Residents

Connecticut law requires most insurance companies to cover infertility diagnosis and treatment, including up to four cycles of ovulation induction, a maximum of three intrauterine insemination (IUI) cycles, and up to two in vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments. The Connecticut State Mandate requirements do not apply to employees in self-funded insured plans or to employees who work for certain religious groups.   

New York Residents

New York requires private group health insurance plans that are issued or delivered in the state, and that provide coverage for hospital care or surgical and medical care, also must cover the diagnosis and treatment of infertility for patients. They must be between the ages of 21 and 44 and have been covered under the policy for at least 12 months. The law currently excludes certain procedures, including IVF, but changes included in the 2020 New York state budget would require companies that provide insurance to 100 or more employees to pay for IVF. Details are still being worked out, including whether LGBTQ+ prospective parents will be covered. The new law would improve benefits for about half the residents of the state. 

Finally, inquire about insurance riders you may purchase for, say, IVF treatment, that would pay for the treatment at a lower cost than an IVF cycle. 

What to Do When You Have Exhausted Your Insurance Options 

There are other ways to afford infertility treatment if insurance doesn’t cover all your expenses.  

You can save for treatment via financial products available to employees and the self-employed. Flexible Spending Accounts, Health Savings Accounts and Health Reimbursement Accounts all allow you to put money away tax-free to pay for medical procedures. 

Nonprofit and government agencies offer grants that could cover some procedures. 

Where can I look for financial help? 

In Connecticut, for example, the Nest Egg Foundation provides grants of up to $10,000 for patients undergoing IVF if they can prove financial need, meet specific clinical criteria. In New York, the state earmarks nearly $1 million annually for residents who earn less than $195,000 per year and who are good candidates for in vitro fertilization. Eligible clinics all perform more than 100 IVF cycles annually and achieve at least a 30% success rate. The fertility clinics select the patients who will get the grants. 

In addition, financing is available from several institutions, including many fertility clinics. When you visit a clinic, ask about how it might help you understand your insurance and find more money to pay for treatment. 

Learn about open enrollment 

If you find yourself dissatisfied with your insurance options, explore changes you might be able to put into place during a period called open enrollment. The opportunity to make changes generally begins on Nov. 1 and ends Dec. 15, but you should check with your employer. 

Open enrollment is the time you can change plans to add more beneficial for you and your specific situation. Your human resources department will provide information and guidance. 

For more information, download a free, no-obligation issue of the RMA of Connecticut Open Enrollment ebook.

And please don’t hesitate to set up a meeting with our Health Care Team. We understand that you need to explore all your options when you look for a fertility clinic, and we are happy to get you started by answering all your questions about cost, access and performance. 


Trying to Conceive? How to Have a Baby in 2019

Your guide to financial planning for fertility treatment.

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Once a year, it's all about affording infertility -- whether it's actual cost for fertility treatment cycles, the emotional pain of miscarriage, or the unknown of whether there will ever be a baby.

National Infertility Awareness Week (#NIAW) is the week we deliver the message that we want our families too. This year the message being delivered to our legislators in May is #InfertilityUncovered, which is also the theme for National Infertility Awareness Week®, founded in 1989 by RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association. National Infertility Awareness Week and is the largest public awareness campaign that addresses the public health issue of infertility.

As the public discourse around infertility is at an all-time high, we’d like to highlight the issues important to the millions of Americans struggling to build a family. Infertility does not discriminate based on sex, race, religion, age or even socio-economic status.

Let’s uncover the issues of access facing the most vulnerable members of our community — those without access to insurance coverage for infertility care or the economic means to pay out-of-pocket for treatments, third-party options or adoption.

1 in 8 Couples are Affected by the Disease of Infertility


Family building is important, in fact vital, to many of us. In fact, having our children is often described as the most important decision and action of our lives. The one single thing that makes our lives complete and full. If you feel that way about your children, that you can't even imagine your life without them, please consider how those of us who face infertility feel. 

With infertility, one in eight couples are waiting and hoping for their chance to become parents and know they need medical help for their dreams to come true. Reproductive disease, treated by appropriate and effective treatments like IVF, should not have to be solved by crowdfunding or fundraising -- it should be covered by insurance. 

We're asking you to help those of us who need medical help in building our families.

Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMACT) recognizes that reproductive disease (infertility) is a disease like every other disease in that it is a medical condition that very often can be treated so that we can have our beloved children. It is a disease recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO), The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), The American Medical Association (AMA), the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM).

It is a disease that affects one in every eight couples, a significant statistic.

How You Can Help Build Families - Sign 1 Letter

We need your help. Free, we don't need your money. We need your signatures. We need you to add your voice that our families are important, including the babies we don't have yet.

Our goal is 4,000 letters. At this moment, we have 120. That leaves 3,880 to go. More than manageable, right?

Whether you help by signing one letter or by asking your friends and family to pitch in and get 300+ letters signed, please help so we can tell our legislators that we care about infertility and family building. We will deliver your letters and your message to our legislators in person in Washington DC and make sure that they understand the overwhelming pain and despair that infertility can bring, especially when insurance coverage is unavailable or denied.

Take Action Today and Sign a Constituent Letter 

Let's tell Senators Blumenthal and Murphy about #InfertilityUncovered. 

RESOLVE has made this so easy. All you need to do is sign this electronic letter and then, please share the information with your friends and family. It's important that you and anyone you've asked to sign, fill in the field that states "Referring Advocate" with Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut. 

Thank you in advance for your help.

And thanks to all of you who joined us on Thursday night, April 25th, for our Family & Friends Advocacy Night. We appreciate every single one of you!

This is the year to meet the goal of 4,000 letters. Add your voice here. Click to sign the Legislators Letter.

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One way to help people who have been diagnosed with infertility is to let them know they aren’t alone. #InfertilityUncovered is the focus of National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW), from April 21 to 27.

RMA of Connecticut is fully engaged in this support effort and offers events and guidance for your voice to be heard, as well as sponsoring NIAW.

Infertility Uncovered -- Let's Tell Our Legislators What Family Building Means to Us

First, we invite you to attend a Fertility Advocacy Evening for Family and Friends, where we will come together for a letter-writing campaign to our representatives in Washington, D.C.

Last year, Connecticut delivered over 1,000 letters to politicians in support of infertility rights, including access to insurance. This year, we hope to bring 4,000 letters.

The party will start at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 25, at 761 Main Avenue, Suite 200, Norwalk, CT. Sign up and bring your family and friends.

If you can’t make this event, please sign a set of three letters, using this link. IMPORTANT: Add your first name and last initial and RMA of Connecticut at the very end as the referring advocate. Or come into any of the RMA of Connecticut offices to sign letters or pick up letters to have friends and family sign.

For Connecticut residents: You will sign letters for two U.S. Senators (Senators Richard Blumenthal and Christopher Murphy) and your one member of the House of Representatives. (Representatives John Larson -- 1st District, Joe Courtney -- 2nd District, Rosa DeLauro -- 3rd District, Jim Himes -- 4th District, Jahana Hayes -- 5th District).

NIAW 2019 | Infertility Uncovered: Patient Prospective - YouTube

We Need Affordable Fertility Treatment Coverage Now

This is what they need to hear:

  • Anybody can be challenged to have a family. Infertility affects 1 in 8 families in the U.S.
  • Most people struggling with infertility receive no coverage from their health insurance. This inhibits many people from being able to move forward to treatment.
  • Employers should include infertility treatment in their health plans for a medical diagnosis that affects millions of Americans.
  • Cancer, injury or simple genetics may be a factor in a family’s inability to conceive.
  • Laws and policies still limit access to many family-building options.
  • Let your representatives know about resources where they can learn more about #InfertilityUncovered and National Infertility Week.
National Infertility Awareness Week Events and Takeovers at RMA of Connecticut

There are plenty of other events, too, to help everyone get better educated about infertility and the methods to help people overcome this disease and have a baby.

An Instagram Takeover to Show our Fertility Expertise

On Tuesday, April 23, Dr. Spencer Richlin, an RMA of Connecticut board-certified reproductive endocrinologist, will take you on an Instagram tour of his daily routine. He says he is also going to reveal plans about the newest RMA of Connecticut initiative – Fertility U.

On Wednesday, April 24, the members of our Andrology and Endocrinology Laboratory will show you an insider’s view of the work this team does to help you achieve your dream of having a baby.

What Our Doctors Say About Advocating for You

The six doctors at RMA of Connecticut are passionate about helping as many people as possible. Watch this video of them sharing their views about National Infertility Awareness Week.

Get Involved in the Movement

Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMACT) recognizes that reproductive disease (infertility) is a disease like every other -- it is a medical condition that very often can be treated. It is a disease recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO), The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), The American Medical Association (AMA), the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM).

A diagnosis of infertility feels very personal. And it can be isolating – if you let it.

#InfertilityUncovered is an opportunity to talk to others who are dealing with the same issues and feelings. At the same time, you can educate our elected representatives about the scope of infertility and what they can do to help.

Remain connected and help us spread awareness during National Infertility Awareness Week.

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Infertility does not discriminate and is not sexist. It can strike men and women in almost exactly the same ratio.

Male factor issues account for 40% of all infertility problems, exactly the same percentage of a woman having a fertility challenge.

The other 20% of the time? It's either a combination of problems or idiopathic (unexplained) infertility. Testing both partners is imperative to understanding the whole fertility picture, adding crucial information for the most effective fertility treatment.

Even great results can be improved, changes in lifestyle can improve sperm counts. 

Remember, Fertility Testing for Men is 50% of the Picture

If you are a woman reading this, maybe you've already been to your Obstetrician/Gynecologist. They tell you, "you're fine!" You're menstruating regularly, every 24-36 days. Maybe you've bought ovulation kits and and you're seeing that you are ovulating normally and within the right time frame. Or you're using an app that shows you when is the right time of the month to have sex. You're doing it all right. 

You're missing half the picture. 

Get the whole picture by having your partner tested.

If you're a guy reading this and you're trying to have a baby, get your sperm tested. Your DNA contribution is 50% of a baby; it's how they get your eyes or chin. Having the baby that you've been hoping for may depend on checking your fertility. 

Fertility Testing for Men is Inexpensive and Simple

Fertility testing for men is also inexpensive and non invasive. You get a kit with everything you need inside, including detailed instructions ranging from how long to abstain from sex (only 2-3 days) to scheduling an appointment to drop off the semen sample so the lab who's examining it is prepared for you.

Most semen testing is covered by your insurance company, but do ask to make sure.  

What's Involved in a Semen Analysis

For men, fertility pretty much hinges on having healthy sperm, so semen analysis is the most important test for the male half of a couple that is experiencing fertility issues. It is an inexpensive test that should be done early in any infertility evaluation.

Usually two or more semen samples, taken at separate intervals, are analyzed because it’s normal for sperm counts to fluctuate. The analysis requires abstinence for two to three days. The specimen is collected directly into a clean container.

The semen sample is examined in a laboratory for quantity, color and the presence of infections or blood. Then a detailed sperm analysis is done to determine the number of sperm present and any abnormalities in their size, shape and structure (morphology) and movement (motility).

Low sperm count is also called oligospermia. Theoretically, it only takes one sperm to fertilize an egg, but the odds of one sperm reaching the egg are very low. Consequently, a low sperm count reduces a man’s chances of fathering a child. An urologist can suggest medical or surgical treatments to increase those odds, and men are advised to avoid smoking, excessive drinking and illegal drugs, maintain a healthy weight, and stay out of sources of excessive heat (like tubs and saunas) that can temporarily reduce sperm count.

Both morphology and motility are factors in male infertility because they impair the sperm’s ability to reach and fertilize an egg. Some causes of abnormal morphology are infections, high fever, congenital testicular abnormalities, varicocele (enlarged veins in the scrotum) and illicit drug use. Again, a urologist can recommend treatments that can improve morphology, including treating an infection, varicocele repair and hormone replacement. Pregnancy may still be possible through intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization.

If sperm abnormalities are detected, the semen analysis can be repeated in four to six weeks to determine if they are permanent or temporary. If the sperm analysis is normal, your doctor will probably recommend a thorough testing of your female partner before considering additional male infertility tests.  

If you're concerned about your fertility, start the conversation. Contact us for more information on semen analysis.

4 Lifestyle Changes to Make to Improve Sperm Quality

Sperm is produced every 64 days, give or take a day. Great news! At any point, it will be beneficial to do all the things listed below. Or to stop doing them. 

  1. Excessive temperatures can damage sperm - there is a reason your testicles are on the outside of your body and it is to regulate temperature. This is a great time to avoid hot tubs and saunas. And yes, get your lap top off your lap!
  2. Alcohol - reducing or eliminating intake can make a significant difference in sperm quality.
  3. Any kind of smoking is harmful and counterproductive to a healthy conception, pregnancy and baby. Read this excellent article by RMA of Connecticut's Fertility Nutritionist, Carolyn Gundell, MS - Lifestyle Risks to Male Fertility: Smoking
  4. Excess stress can also play a part in reducing your fertility fitness. See what you can do about sleep hygiene and exercise, both excellent stress reducers. 
2 More Articles to Read About Male Factor Infertility and Sperm

Getting all the testing done will complete the fertility picture. Take a moment and schedule your semen analysis now. Then you can cross it off your to-do-list, knowing that you've closer to building your family.  

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There is a simple blood test that evaluates your current fertility. That's the first part of the answer. The AMH (anti mullerian hormone test) will also give you some information about your fertility future -- a baseline, if you will.

Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMA of CT) is offering all women a free opportunity to find out about their fertility potential.

Here’s a quick course on what we used to believe about fertility, conception, pregnancy and reproductive health.

The 4 Pregnancy Myths Not to Fall For-  You Probably Know Them

The likelihood is that you know these as they've been around for a long time.

  1. Smoking while pregnant is safe. (Nobody believes that anymore, right?)
  2. There is no harm in drinking liquor while pregnant. (Another no brainer, I hope!)
  3. If you are a woman, your fertility slows up at 40  (you may say, oh, that one's true -- nope, it's absolutely not -- fertility takes a big drop at age 35.) 
  4. Infertility is only a woman’s problem.
Myth 5 - There's No Way to Predict Your Fertility Potential

For years, decades even, there has been no test that has been easy, non-invasive and reliable in predicting a woman’s possibilities in becoming pregnant when she's ready.

That assumption has now become archaic.

AMH is the Fertility Test When Planning Your Future

With the introduction of the Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH) blood test, doctors can now predict more successfully if a woman will be able to become pregnant. This blood test can be performed at any point in a woman’s reproductive cycle, whether she is menstruating, ovulating or isn’t even sure where she is in her reproductive cycle. Regardless of any type of birth control being used, this simple test can be done in a doctor’s office.  

The disproving of each one of the fertility and pregnancy myths on this list changed the way that society looked at reproductive health and increased understanding of how to take care of a pregnant woman and the fetus that she carried. When we look at the first two myths, it seems almost ludicrous that was ever a belief that smoking and drinking were ok. The third and fourth myth? It’s more than possible that many people still believe those to be true. The fifth myth changes everything. Having the AMH test provides the tool to be proactive about planning your family.

Fertility Testing Provides A Tool To Be Proactive About Family Planning

We plan so much in our lives. Even before we are ready to take action. Our education, our careers, where we live, whom we live with, who we love, our weddings, our homes, to name just a few. Why wouldn’t you want to be able to plan your family as well? To be able to factor in how high your fertility capability is at this time adds valuable information in forming well balanced decisions about all the other aspects of your life.

Ultimately? If you want to have children, if that is a priority for you, even if not at this moment, this is a test that will ensure that you will have the family that you want. We don’t always have a way of predicting the future. In this case, when it comes to future pregnancies, we do.

The test is free. The information you receive from the AMH test could ensure that your vision of your life comes true.

On Thursday, May 2nd, Dr. Spencer Richlin and Dr. Ilana Ressler will host a free fertility testing event.

Register today.

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You have plenty of time to start a family. So there’s no reason to have a fertility test.

That’s what you tell yourself.

Life’s funny, though. You never really know what turns your path will take, and what options you may or may not have at a critical time.

Here are some reasons women tell us when we suggest fertility testing before they are with a partner, and at the perfect time in life to have children.

1. I'm in the middle of my college experience. No babies for me!

Good choice. Don’t start a family until you are out of college. Taking a fertility test doesn’t mean you have to get pregnant.

2. I'm starting my career and need to focus on that for right now.

Nothing wrong with that. Get experience and make connections that you can rely on in the future, after your kids head to school and you are ready to rejoin the (paid) workforce.

3. My career is in full swing. I want to have a baby, but not right now.

Career and work – with the responsibilities and satisfaction – can be fun, satisfying and rewarding. It’s up to you to decide when and whether you are ready to put that on hold. The ticking of the biological clock gets louder in your 30s, but that doesn’t mean now is the time to get pregnant.

4. I haven't met the person that I want to have a baby with yet.

You’ve been listening to your mother – and that’s a good thing! Trying to raise a child with someone you aren’t committed to rarely ends happily ever after.

5. I'm not entirely sure that I want to have children.

We are the first to tell you that you don’t have to be a mom, ever. For some people, children are fulfilling and meaningful. And many people have fulfilling and meaningful lives without kids.

6. I get my period regularly and my mom was perfectly fertile. I'm sure I'm fine.

You are half-way to knowing that your child-bearing future is in good shape. You also know that half your genes come from your dad. That raises the question about whether you will be like your mom.

You might ask, why should that matter now?

Testing doesn’t commit you to having children

What we’re saying is that, in fact, there are good reasons to sign up for a fertility test even though you have absolutely no intention of having kids right now. Or even if you aren’t sure you ever will want to raise children.

One in eight people who do want to have children are diagnosed as infertile. It’s better, and easier, to know as early as possible what options you might pursue.

If you are in your 30s, the ticking of the biological clock coincides with a decline in the quality of your eggs. It’s true for everyone, and knowing if there are other issues will help you make plans for the day you do decide you want to become pregnant.

And although we don’t like to think about it, some of us get sick. The treatment for some diseases causes infertility. With preparation, you can have children after you recover your health.

What you can do with testing information

Treatment for infertility requires a commitment of time, money and mental and physical resources. If you do have fertility issues, knowing earlier than later will help you prepare to the fullest possible extent.

For instance, cryopreservation allows you to collect and freeze a number of your eggs for future use. This ensures your eggs will be as healthy as any 30-year-old’s even if you have them implanted in your uterus (with in vitro fertilization) when you are over 40.

When your eggs are preserved, perhaps you will decide to donate some to a woman who can’t produce viable eggs. While you might decide motherhood is not for you, your contribution could be a godsend to a couple without other options.

The AMH fertility test is easy, too

A blood test is now able to tell women, more easily than ever before, about their potential to become pregnant. This blood test, known as Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH), helps doctors determine your chances of becoming pregnant now and in the future. Unlike previous tests, it can be measured at any point of the menstrual cycle and does not require a sonogram. A woman can also have her AMH tested while still on birth control pills.

Think of fertility testing as an insurance policy and more importantly, a way to have peace of mind. Wouldn't it be great for you to know that waiting to have a baby will fit beautifully for your life plans?

Join us on Thursday, May 2 for an information session with a board-certified fertility doctor and free fertility testing

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Education is key when it comes to fertility. Knowing your own fertility potential gives you a way of making the most meaningful decisions possible when it comes to building your family.

Free Fertility Testing for Women Who Are Teachers

Because we believe in education, we are offering free fertility testing to female teachers at Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMA of Connecticut). As a thank you. As a reminder to think of yourself and your own family, even as you spend your career educating others. We know that this is an effective way to predict your ability to get pregnant. We know that this test is reliable and efficient.

We want you to put yourself first this summer. Come in. Find out what you need to know so that any regrets in the future about what you didn’t know are unnecessary.

We know that this is education at its best.

Put Yourself First – Get Educated on Your Fertility

That’s why we’re offering it to you this summer, when it may be easier to come in and get it done. Call your friends and bring them too.

You do so much to teach, support and educate.

We want to do that for you this summer. -Lisa Rosenthal

RMA of CT Provides Fertility Testing this Summer

Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut (RMA of Connecticut) is supporting female teachers and their fertility. Any teacher interested in her reproductive health, whether she plans to start a family now or in the future, can visit any of RMA of CT’s four locations for an anti-mullerian hormone (AMH) blood test. AMH is an excellent measure of a woman’s ovarian reserve, which naturally declines with age.

RMA of Connecticut’s medical staff will be available to draw blood for the AMH tests from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Monday through Friday at the fertility practice’s locations in Danbury, Norwalk, Stamford and Trumbull from Monday, June 17, 2019 to Wednesday, July 31, 2019. 

“Like the teachers we created this program for, we believe in education,” says Dr. Cynthia Murdock, a Board Certified OB/GYN and reproductive endocrinologist. “We offer workshops, support groups and classes each year because we want our patients to be informed about their fertility. This program is about more than offering a free test; it is an opportunity for women to have the necessary facts to plan for the future and for their family.”

Teachers who come to RMA of Connecticut will have their blood drawn and will receive a phone call from a nurse with results within 10 business days. The AMH blood test can be drawn at any time of a woman’s menstrual cycle, even if she is on Birth Control Pills so there is no special scheduling required.

AMH levels are widely recognized as a reliable indicator of a woman’s reproductive potential; however, for a more thorough understanding of their fertility, patients should schedule an individual consultation at RMA of Connecticut that includes a complete diagnostic work-up. For women, this diagnostic testing includes AMH, follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and hysterosalpingogram (HSG). For men, who contribute to up to 40 percent of infertility issues, diagnostic testing includes semen analysis. Both partners will also discuss their family and medical histories during their initial consultations.

About RMA of Connecticut

RMA of Connecticut is a leader in fertility care, specializing in a range of infertility treatments. Our assisted reproductive technologies (ART) include intrauterine insemination (IUI), in-vitro fertilization (IVF) and pre-implantation genetic screening (PGS). RMA of Connecticut is Fairfield County’s largest fertility clinic and egg donation center. Through RMA of Connecticut’s Integrated Fertility and Wellness Center, we offer nutrition counseling, individual and couples psychological counseling, acupuncture and yoga, as well as financing and support services for our patients going through infertility treatment.   

Our internationally recognized Gay Parents To Be program at RMA of Connecticut specializes in LGBTQ family building. In 2017 and 2018, RMA of Connecticut was recognized as a Leader in Healthcare Equality by the Human Rights Campaign.

The RMA of Connecticut team includes lead physicians Drs. Mark P. Leondires, Spencer S. Richlin, Joshua M. Hurwitz, Cynthia M. Murdock, Shaun C. Williams, as well as fertility specialist, Dr. Ilana B. Ressler. All six physicians are Board-Certified Reproductive Endocrinologists and are members of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM). Our team of doctors are named as Castle Connolly "Top Doctors" and are members of the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART). RMA of Connecticut’s IVF laboratory is accredited by the College of American Pathologists (CAP), and CLIA. Other accreditations include the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). RMA of Connecticut has offices in Danbury, Norwalk, Stamford, Trumbull and Poughkeepsie, New York. For more information visit: www.RMACT.com or find us on Facebook.

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