Blog by Rhonda Levy - your fertility consultant

Why Those Contemplating Using Donated Eggs are Advised or Required to Meet With a Mental Health Professional

Touch of loveYour Initial Reaction

If you require the help of an egg donor to form your family, you may be surprised when your fertility clinic strongly suggests or even requires that you meet with a mental health professional. If the clinic refers to this meeting as a “psychological evaluation” or a “psychological assessment” your reaction may be more than surprise; you may become angry and defensive since fertile people are not “evaluated” or “assessed” when they decide to bring a child into the world.

The True Purposes of the Meeting

However, regardless of what may be an unfortunate choice of words by your fertility clinic, the true purpose of a meeting with a mental health professional is not to evaluate or assess whether you are fit to become a parent. The actual purpose of the meeting is to help you, educate you, and to advocate for your unborn child. Read More

Response to Emma Rosenblum’s Businessweek Article: “Later, Baby: Will Freezing Your Eggs Free Your Career?”

Frozen EggsBy now you may have read Emma Rosenblum’s cover story in Bloomberg’s Businessweek called, “Later, Baby: Will Freezing Your Eggs Free Your Career?” Despite its sensational but admittedly eye-catching title, Rosenblum’s article was excellent. However, I would like to emphasize three important points that were not mentioned:

1. Women who decide to freeze their eggs should be careful when choosing a fertility clinic in which to do so. Marketing efforts around egg freezing can be quite aggressive, especially in large urban centers where it is most common. Surprisingly, some fertility clinics are still using the “slow freeze” method of freezing eggs. And even in clinics that are using advanced vitrification techniques, many cannot point to a statistically significant track record of successfully thawing frozen eggs, creating embryos with them, and then conducting transfers that have resulted in the birth of a baby. Women considering freezing their eggs ought to think of themselves as “consumers” who have a right to ask physicians penetrating questions and who are entitled to receive meaningful answers. Read More

“Thoughts on Choosing a Fertility Doctor” New Blog Post on Own the Process with Empowered IVF™ at Fertility Authority

Check out the latest post on my blog Own the Process with Empowered IVF™ at Fertility Authority: “Thoughts on Choosing a Fertility Doctor” http://www.fertilityauthority.com/blog/rhonda-levy/2014/4/16/thoughts-choosing-fertility-doctor

Working With an Egg Donor Agency? 6 Things to Think About in Regard to Its Service Agreement

Asian couple with baby1. Confirm That the Agency Has a Service Agreement

If you need donated eggs to become a parent, one of your options is to work with an egg donor agency. If this is the option you decide to proceed with, it is highly recommended that you confirm that the agency has a Service Agreement, and that you avoid working with one that does not.

2. Understand Its Purpose

The purpose of the Service Agreement is to establish, in writing, the terms of your relationship with the agency, including the fees you will pay to the agency in return for its services. A well drafted Service Agreement should leave no doubt as to what services the agency has agreed to provide to you as recipient and your financial obligations in return for receiving the agency’s services. Read More

“Why Are Some Women Still Unaware of the Risk of Delaying Pregnancy?”: New Blog Post on Own the Process With Empowered IVF™ at Fertility Authority

Check out the latest post on my blog  Own the Process With Empowered IVF™ at Fertility Authority:Why Are Some Women Still Unaware of the Risk of Delaying Pregnancy?” http://www.fertilityauthority.com/blog/rhonda-levy/2014/4/03/why-are-some-women-still-unaware-risk-delaying-pregnancy

Why I Believe in Pre-implantation Genetic Screening (PGS)

pgs-imgIn a high quality fertility clinic, the most common reason why in-vitro fertilization (IVF) cycles fail is because the transferred embryos were aneuploid (chromosomally abnormal). The likelihood that this is the failure’s cause increases dramatically with the female partner’s age.

However, when a patient does IVF without pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGS) and the cycle fails, it is impossible for the physician to offer a precise reason for the cycle’s failure and, any reason offered is, in reality, speculation. Many of my clients have expressed frustration in response to their physicians’ inability to explain why their IVF cycles have failed. Read More

“How One of My Dearest Friends Told Me She Was Pregnant”: New Blog Post on “Own the Process With Empowered IVF™” on Fertility Authority

Check out my new post on my blog on Fertility Authority, Own the Process With Empowered IVF™:”How One of My Dearest Friends Told Me She Was Pregnant”  http://www.fertilityauthority.com/blog/rhonda-levy/2014/3/27/how-one-my-dearest-friends-told-me-she-was-pregnant

Still Not Pregnant? Time For a Second Opinion!

Doctor ConsultationKnowing When the Time is Right

If you’ve been a patient at a fertility clinic for some time and have not yet become pregnant, it is likely time for you to get a second opinion. Fertility clinics diverge in their cultures and attitudes, their approaches to treatment, and their ability to help patients achieve their goal of becoming parents. Changing your focus can often mean the difference between whether you will or will not have a baby.

Remember That You Have a Professional Relationship With Your Doctor

That said, if you are feeling reluctant, I can understand why. Many of the fertility doctors I know are kind, compassionate and sincere people who are deeply invested in helping their patients become parents. You may feel a strong sense of gratitude for the care and devotion you have received and not want to seem ungrateful for the efforts that have been made on your behalf. I sympathize completely, but you must not lose sight of the fact that your relationship with your doctor is a professional one. It is important that you not allow a fear of “insulting” your doctor prevent you from owning the process and taking “smart” steps in your quest to form your family. The stakes are high and this must remain at the forefront of your decision-making process at all times. Read More

New Blog Post on Own the Process With Empowered IVF™

Check out my new post on my blog on Fertility Authority, Own the Process With Empowered IVF™: “It is Virtually Impossible to Interpret Fertility Clinic Success Rates”: http://www.fertilityauthority.com/blog/rhonda-levy/2014/3/20/it-virtually-impossible-interpret-fertility-clinic-success-rates

Why I Felt Oddly Proud & Lucky When I Used IVF to Build my Family

Touch of loveWhen I used IVF to build my family I felt oddly proud and lucky; proud that while having a baby was so easy (and fun) for most others, I was willing to endure the needles, blood draws and stirrups to have a baby if I had to; proud that I would not (could not) give up until I did; lucky that although I did not have insurance coverage for IVF, I was able to find a way to pay for 5 IVFs (believe me, it was not easy); and lucky that I had (and still have) a husband who felt with every cell in his body believed that any challenge we faced in life was a challenge we would face together.

In fact, more than 18 years later I still feel so proud that I talk about how I had my children with pretty much anyone who will listen, although I am careful to ensure that my disclosures are appropriate in terms audience, time and place. Often this has led to an opportunity to help my social companion, his or her family member, friend or co-worker.  Read More

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