Starting a family can be one of life’s greatest gifts, but the complex nature of conception is often not thought about until there is a problem. What should a woman do to maximize her chances of becoming pregnant and at what point should she see a doctor?
According to Dr. Susan Treiser MD, PhD and Co-Director of IVF New Jersey, a full service fertility center, “women need to be proactive.” Dr. Treiser and her team have helped thousands of patients reach their dream of becoming parents through the latest fertility treatments, but the first step is making the appointment.
This does not mean panicking if you have only been trying for a few months. If you are under 35, an average couple could take as long as one year to conceive. However, if you have been actively trying, Dr. Treiser states, “Do not wait to see a doctor especially if you are over the age of 35 and you have been trying to conceive for at least 6 months or more.” Here are some options:
The latest breakthroughs include in vitro fertilization (IVF) with Intra Cyto Plasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) for male infertlity. Normally, a male would need a set amount of sperm to complete in vitro fertilization successfully. With ICSI, doctors can now use a very low amount of sperm – or biopsy the testicles and then use the sperm they collect to do the procedure. Dr. Treiser explains, “This was such a great discovery for males having fertility problems. In the past, a minimum number of sperm was needed and if males could not create that amount then they could not succeed with in vitro which made options limited.”
For infertility in women who are often older, where the quality and quantity of their eggs have diminished, using an egg donor with their husband’s sperm is another option. This procedure allows women to actually carry their baby through a pregnancy. “Often times the experience of carrying the pregnancy means so much to the future mother that using an egg donor is the best solution.”
A Gestational Carrier, often referred to as a surrogate mother, is another option for women who have had their uterus removed or have a medical condition that does not allow them to carry a pregnancy, but still have functioning ovaries. In this situation, the women’s eggs and the husband sperm would be implanted into the Gestational Carrier. The child is therefore, totally genetically linked to the parents, and the fetus is not linked to the carrier at all.
Same sex couples also have new options, according to Dr. Treiser, “We are working more with same sex couples and in the past we could only use donor sperm. Now males can use an egg donor and their own sperm, and females can use donor sperm.”
IVF NJ also offers an egg-freezing program and is one of the first centers in New Jersey to perform this procedure. Egg preservation can be thought of as an insurance policy for women who know that one day they want children- but they are presently without a partner or simply not ready for a baby.
Success rates depend on the treatment. According to the Center for Disease Control, IVF NJ’s success rates are among the highest in the United States.
Financially, there is also good news. New Jersey is a mandated state which means that insurance covers (on qualified patients), fertility diagnosis up to and including four IVF cycles, and many will cover egg donation. The billing specialists at IVF NJ will assist patients and verify their insurance benefits. IVF NJ also offers a discount program for those patients without insurance.
For additional information please visit ivfnj.com or call 1-800-IVFNJ-44. IVF NJ has four convenient locations in Somerset, Short Hills, Freehold and Hamilton. Monitoring in New York City is also available.