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New to this board - not new to JM. *UPDATE about insurance post 9


Forum: Trying to Conceive with Medical Assistance

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  #1  
March 14th, 2011, 02:03 PM
kelbert's Avatar a.k.a. Kelli
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,659
Hello ladies! My name is Kelli and I have been a member of JM for a while. Spend most of my time in TTC#1. After my recent RE visit I am really in need of some help. Obviously we are in this part of the forum for a reason and I was hoping for some input.

A little history - We started TTC last June, which really in the grand scheme of things isn't that long. I have a long history of irregular cycles, ever since AF first showed up at the ripe young age of 14. The doctor put me on BC when I was young, high school I think, just to straighten things out.

Fast forward to now.. after BC, cycles went right back into their crazy long selves and I am never able to pin point O. I use OPKs and can usually catch it, but its really hard. I had an early loss back in november... my beta level never went over 28. The doc said he could barely call it a +.

Was refered to an RE, had all the usual tests done, filled up 15 viles of blood, and DH had a SA. Met with him today about the results. All of my stuff came back normal, but he said he thinks I may have PCOS, but he doesn't think there is a need to "label" it, just my main issue is ovulation. Dh's SA wasn't good either. He has weak swimmers is the only way I know how to put it. The volume was ok, but he said after the wash they found they may not be strong enough to make it into the egg. (which I wonder if that has something to do with the loss.. ) I didn't ask for a copy of the results because I was so upset I didn't think about it.

SO here is my issue (kudos to those that made it this far):
Insurance covers up to $5000 towards fertility treatments. This is a life time deal. Doc pretty much wants me to get the best bang for the buck and was really pushing IVF. I was just really shocked because I am only almost a year in. But he thinks with the male factor, trying clomid cycles and/or IUI would use up some of my 5000 and if they didn't work that would be less to go towards an IVF cycle.

I can understand what he is trying to do, but it feels strange just jumping right into it. Any advice, suggestions, comments, feedback would be great! I am just really lost!
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Last edited by kelbert; March 14th, 2011 at 04:49 PM.
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  #2  
March 14th, 2011, 02:20 PM
cavewoman's Avatar #2 due in June!
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Arizona
Posts: 14,732
Well.. you might want to take my response with 2 grains of salt, and not just 1.. because I have no experience here.. BUT, coming from someone who has been able to get PG, just not sustain pregnancies.. to me I'd be very reluctant to dive into IVF.. "discount" or not. I don't know a thing about your doctor, but I'd probably want to see a different one, at least for comparison to see what another RE would have to say about your situation. Good luck hun!!
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  #3  
March 14th, 2011, 02:34 PM
KMH KMH is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: right of center
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Welcome, Kelli! I'm Melissa, one of the co-hosts of the board, and I'm glad you found us, but of course sorry you have to come here...I wish TTCMA didn't have to exist at all! I hope you find TTCMA to be a helpful and friendly place to find support for your journey.

It is tough for me to say without knowing what your DH's results were...there are some cases where IUIs really won't work, so then you'd be better off going straight to IVF.

If that isn't the case though (and it sounds like it might not be if your RE mentioned IUI), you do have options. There are vitamins and lifestyle changes that your DH might be able to make that can get his swimmers a little healthier. We were just discussing this the other day in another thread: http://www.justmommies.com/forums/f7...lt-levels.html (Anyone know about SA result levels?) It does take time to notice a difference, but it could save you a LOT of money and keep you from having to go thru fertility treatments if it works!

Everyone's financial situation is different, and only you and DH know what you can do, both financially and emotionally. Going from trying naturally to IVF is a HUGE leap...one that I could not have done. We did 6 IUIs before moving on to IVF, and even then it was a big decision for us. Yes, the IUIs will use up your benefits, but if DH's counts are high enough, I'd vote for giving it a chance. My IUI cycles with my RE were $565...expensive, but compared to IVF ($15,000), they were a bargain! If it works, you'll have benefits left over to try again (assuming you want more than one child), or at least time to save up money for IVF.

Clomid + IUI is successful for many women...it is definitely something to consider.

I don't know if I have helped at all...I'm sure others will join in and give ideas/advice. I hope that whatever you decide to do, it brings you a sticky BFP very soon!
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IVF babies Claire (4), Abigail (2) and George (2)

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  #4  
March 14th, 2011, 02:37 PM
kelbert's Avatar a.k.a. Kelli
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,659
Thanks for the response! I welcome any sort of input. I am very reluctant as well. I just called the RE office and scheduled DH another SA. I can't just jump into all this without him being checked again. Its like he is just "assuming" DH has an issue and we can't do it on our own.

And its not really the money. I mean the 5000 is nice, but I don't want to do IVF just because it would be cheaper with that money. I am starting to have a bit more clarity now that I have gotten over my initial upset.

-----------------------------
Melissa - we posted at the same time! Thanks for the advice and the link!

I am going to get some vitamins for DH. I want him to do another SA at the clinic (he actually agreed!) and then another one later after vitamins to see if there is improvement.

I am really leaning towards trying clomid, and us just BD on our own. Then maybe discuss IUI. Its been one heck of a day!
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"Sometimes all you can do is not think. Not wonder. Not obsess. Not imagine.
Just Breathe, and have faith that everything will work out for the best."


Thank you Jaidynsmum for my beautiful siggy


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Last edited by kelbert; March 14th, 2011 at 02:41 PM.
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  #5  
March 14th, 2011, 03:22 PM
ccartanddesign's Avatar With Faith
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 997
One idea is to pay out of pocket for a couple IUIs and then make a decision to go on.
My IUI's cost $400 plus the trigger and other meds - It adds up to $780/month and I pay out of pocket. IVF is so costly. I haven't started down that route.
But here's a helpful thread to search for IVF clinical trials Basic Search - ClinicalTrials.gov
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Me-38 DH-38. TTC #1 since August 2009
2/2011 - IUI + Femara + HCG trigger and Progesterone injection BFN
3/2011 - IUI + Femara + HCG trigger and Progesterone injection
4/2011 - not doing IUI - DH out of town
5/2011 - IUI with Femara and HCG trigger. In hospital due to infection from IUI.
Took a break from all meds this summer.
9/2011: - Start with new RE - testing begins.
10/2011: - Hysteroscopy - determine tubes are blocked.
10/2011 : - Laparoscopy - clip blocked tubes, determine right ovary is adhered to pelvic wall, cut adhesions
11/24/2011: IVF cycle #1 begins. Start stims.
12/2/2011: End stims. HCG trigger.
12/4/2011: Egg Retrieval. 9 eggs, only 1 embryo.
12/7/2011: Transfer.
12/20/2011: IVF #1 failed.
1/16/2012: IVF #2 first scan
"Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible." Matt. 19:26
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  #6  
March 14th, 2011, 03:23 PM
KMH KMH is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: right of center
Posts: 19,203
It is easy to make decisions based on panic and emotion, but it sounds like you have a very calm head! I'm glad that DH is willing to re-test, too! You have a lot going for you in this process already.

You might want to also check out our threads about the lemon water detox and soy...several ladies who have had failed IUIs and IVFs have used simple remedies like these to get pregnant naturally. Here are a couple of threads:

http://www.justmommies.com/forums/f7...g-recipes.html (Brandi's NATURAL Baby-Making Recipes!)

http://www.justmommies.com/forums/f1...ter-detox.html (Lemon Water Detox)

Good luck, and please keep us posted!
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IVF babies Claire (4), Abigail (2) and George (2)

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  #7  
March 14th, 2011, 03:31 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NY Baby!
Posts: 639
kelli - my insurance covers nothing in regard to procedures, just meds and ultrasounds - i just paid 730 dollars yesterday for my IUI - try really hard not to make a decision based on $ - put your body first, if you can - IUI is obviously filled w way less hormones than IVF - i would pick a reasonable # that you will try w IUI and then move on; my # is 3 IUIs - also, i am a huge fan of 2nd opinions, if you live in an area where there are reputable places - i am on my 2nd RE and love him with a capital L
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Married May 2010
TTC since August 2010, almost a year
IUI in December 2010 - BFP - chemical
IUI on 3/13/11 - BFN
April natural cycle - BFP on 4/22 - chemical confirmed 4/28
IUI done on 5/12 - BFN

IUI #4 done 6/6 - BFN
so sick of getting BFNs

total of 4 failed IUIs
IVF in July

using acupuncture 1x week, Royal Jelly, pre natals, organic Spirulina, Maca Root and Red Raspberry tea
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  #8  
March 14th, 2011, 03:50 PM
Regular
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 68
Hi Kelli - although I am relatively new to JM and even newer to MA, I wanted to respond with my experience. Our brief background - I have a 2 1/2 yr son, conceived naturally on first try at 37 - the very month after my husband was diagnosed with a varicocele. Despite DH's diagnosis, we got comfortable and didn't start trying again until right after my 39th b-day (oh if we could turn back time!). Got pg on 1st try again but m/c in Feb '10 at 7 wks which was disappointing but honestly thought we'd be successful again in no time. Fast forward to Jan '11 with a year of no luck - I have no issues and even DH's SA weren't that poor (but he did have varicocele repair in Dec '10 in our effort to do something - anything to make this work). Although RE did suggest clomid, he really advocated for IVF since at our age w/male factor it was the best chance we have to conceive #2.

Like you, thinking about going to IVF after no other MA felt to me like using a shotgun instead of a flyswatter to kill the fly. I hoped thru acupuncture and time to allow DH count to improve we would have been successful but we realized we had to own our choices to build our family later and time was simply not on our side. We also had a lifetime cap of $20K for fertility and age 40 is age 40, so we took the leap and are in the midst of our 1st IVF cycle with retrieval tomorrow. It's still surreal to me we are doing it ... BUT I will say IVF was so much more overwhelming in my head than it is actually turning out to be - I am happy with our choice to proceed and just pray this will bring our son the sibling we hope to give him.

So from all that - my two cents - if this was 10 yrs ago or even 5 yrs ago, for us we would never have gone straight to IVF as long as there was even the smallest chance it could happen naturally or with less aggressive MA. I would follow your heart - if IVF doesn't feel right to you & your DH, I would absolutely try whatever does feel right each step of the way. Good luck to you!!!
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  #9  
March 14th, 2011, 04:49 PM
kelbert's Avatar a.k.a. Kelli
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,659
I just want to tell you ladies thank you SO much for your responses. You have all helped me so much you have no idea. I am going to read all the links that were posted. Trust me I am not going to jump into ANYTHING.

UPDATE also about insurance. I got online and read about our benefits. My DH has really great insurance, so we are BLESSED in that department. I found out that the $5000 cap is specifically for assisted reproductive technologies, such as IVF, embryo transfer, gamete intrafallopian transfer (no idea what that is).

Artificial Insemination (which is IUI??) is NOT subject to the 5000 lifetime benefit max. Drug therapy is also not under that cap, which I would assume would be clomid and things like that.

So that was like a weight off my shoulders! But why would the doctor, or the person I spoke to about finances not KNOW this?? I even called my insurance to verify. They had me all upset and freaked out over something that could have been avoided.

DH told me he would to another SA AND he would start taking any vitamins that I wanted him to. The doctor's office is getting a phone call from me tomorrow morning!

I want to say thank you again for reading my long post and helping me out with this. If it does come down to IVF I know a lot more know than I did this morning
__________________
"Sometimes all you can do is not think. Not wonder. Not obsess. Not imagine.
Just Breathe, and have faith that everything will work out for the best."


Thank you Jaidynsmum for my beautiful siggy


My Art Page!
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  #10  
March 14th, 2011, 05:06 PM
Lash's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: North Texas
Posts: 17,683
Honestly if it's male factor, there is a much higher chance you will need IVF to combat the fertility issue. If you need ICSI just to get the sperm to penetrate the egg, the IUI wont' do much to help with that at all
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  #11  
March 14th, 2011, 05:13 PM
kelbert's Avatar a.k.a. Kelli
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,659
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lash View Post
Honestly if it's male factor, there is a much higher chance you will need IVF to combat the fertility issue. If you need ICSI just to get the sperm to penetrate the egg, the IUI wont' do much to help with that at all
Oh I know. I am just glad I have the other options before I jump straight into IVF. We haven't made it to a year TTC yet and I did get pregnant once. It didn't stick, but something happened.

So I dunno. DH has only had a SA done once. So he is going to go again. Of course I don't want to jump into something going off of just one test.

ETA: I like all your blinkies... I am a twilight fan too
__________________
"Sometimes all you can do is not think. Not wonder. Not obsess. Not imagine.
Just Breathe, and have faith that everything will work out for the best."


Thank you Jaidynsmum for my beautiful siggy


My Art Page!
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  #12  
March 14th, 2011, 06:21 PM
Veteran
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Chicago
Posts: 321
Kelli, my fertility is a $10,000 lifetime max and once you have all the tests, hsg, blood work done it goes down a little. We used about $2,000 on all the testing that to my knowledge all fertility clinics do. My doctor also suggested going straight to IVF due to the money issue, we wanted to make it our best shot. Although my first IVF did not work (found out Friday) we still think it was the best decision for us. We are currently planning a frozen embryo transfer.

I think it depends on what you guys are comfortable with. Think it over for a few days.....
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Cycles 1-12 all BFN's. Going straight to IVF per RE advice.

February 2011 IVF
2.24.2011. Retrieval 16 eggs! 15 were mature and 12 fertilized!
3.1.2011. Transferred 2 blasts!!
3.2.2011. 4 "beautiful" blasts on ice
3.11.2011. IVF #1 unsuccessful

5.20.2011. FET BFP!! 82
5.23.2011. 83
5.25.2011. 130
5.27.2011. 168 devastated
5.31.2011. 293 (saw sac on u/s)
6.3.2011. sac not growing m/c confirmed

9.2011. Planning another FET
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  #13  
March 14th, 2011, 06:59 PM
kelbert's Avatar a.k.a. Kelli
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,659
Quote:
Originally Posted by -hopeful- View Post
Kelli, my fertility is a $10,000 lifetime max and once you have all the tests, hsg, blood work done it goes down a little. We used about $2,000 on all the testing that to my knowledge all fertility clinics do. My doctor also suggested going straight to IVF due to the money issue, we wanted to make it our best shot. Although my first IVF did not work (found out Friday) we still think it was the best decision for us. We are currently planning a frozen embryo transfer.

I think it depends on what you guys are comfortable with. Think it over for a few days.....
I'm sorry your first IVF didn't work I hope your next one is it for you!!

I found out that my $5000 doesn't include bloodwork, meds or IUI.. just IVF. I had to call the insurance to find out. Its crazy how expensive all this ends up being. But in the end its totally worth it
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"Sometimes all you can do is not think. Not wonder. Not obsess. Not imagine.
Just Breathe, and have faith that everything will work out for the best."


Thank you Jaidynsmum for my beautiful siggy


My Art Page!
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