Around the world, there are millions of families who come face-to-face with the hardship of infertility. More than 10% of American couples, during their childbearing years, have dealt with some form of infertility. While this statistic is upsetting, the increasing number of concerns has given way for more fertility clinics to open their doors. The doctors and healthcare providers at fertility clinics are there to help people fulfill their dreams of starting a family. So that they can do their job as efficiently as possible, here are some things to “know before you go” for your first visit to a fertility specialist.
Before you choose a fertility specialist, it important to know the ins and outs of what will take place at your visits. For women, it is most important that you know whether you ovulate, or not. If you are experiencing issues getting pregnant, it is easy to track your ovulation by monitoring your basal body temperature. This can save you time and money once you begin your visits with a fertility specialist.
Besides charting your ovulation, it is also important to collect as much about your personal and family medical history. Genetics play a role in some fertility issues and it is key to give your specialist as much information as possible on your first visit.
One area of research that all couples should map-out when considering a visit to a fertility clinic, is their budget. Most forms of fertility treatment are extremely expensive and are not covered by insurance providers. For example, a typical IVF cycle costs close to $12,000. Then include fertility medication and you can expect to drop another three to four thousand dollars. Luckily, there are payment plans and scholarships that exist. Every couple must understand the financial implications that come along with fertility support.
A patient’s first time with a fertility specialist will include quite a bit of talking, as mentioned above. Once they have all the medical information necessary to evaluate, they will begin testing. Your doctor will first lay out out all testing options. Many of them start right away including, the first rounds of blood work and examinations during the initial appointment. Some of the first rounds of testing include semen analysis for men and ultrasounds, checking the lining of the uterus, for women.
Another aspect that surprises many first-time patients to a fertility specialist are the side effects from the medications. Most fertility treatments require an ovulation stimulation medication. These drugs often carry risks and side effects that are unpleasant. Each new fertility patient should have an open dialogue about any risks with their specialist before diving into a new treatment.