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Numbers and Infertility

By Tracey Minella

December 13th, 2014 at 9:23 am

 

credit: photokanok/ freedigitalphotos.net


Today is 12-13-14. It’s the last time the date will show consecutive sequential numbers in our lifetimes, unless you count the modified 1-2-34. And that’s 20 years away, too.  Many people consider these kinds of unique dates to be lucky. No doubt couples will be purposely marrying today, especially since it is a weekend. And maybe planned births will choose today as well.

I remember when I used to think like that. I was going to get married on 10-10 (not 10-10-10 though…try the prior century!). And when I was first trying to conceive… clueless to the 7 year infertility battle that awaited me…I’d speculate on what month I’d choose to have my baby and think of potentially lucky due dates. (Boy, do I feel foolish admitting to that!)

Other people are superstitious about unique dates, like Friday the 13th, or September 11. They’re uncomfortable if their retrieval, transfer, IUI, or baby’s birth fall on those dates. I’ve shared my actual 9-11 story before…the one about the patient who was inseminated amidst all the news unfolding on 9-11 and ended up getting pregnant with twins. Beautiful miracles in the middle of such loss and horror.

As my own infertility journey continued longer than I expected, my dreams for a baby morphed from “Man, I really wanted to have a girl first in April at Hospital X !” to “I just want one healthy baby and don’t care if it’s born on Christmas Day in the garage!”

As infertiles, we are surrounded by significant numbers. Cycle days, follicles (the number and their sizes), blood levels, vials of medication, trigger shot date, IUI date, retrieval and transfer, number of embryos and their grades, the date we need to conceive by in order to have a baby before our next birthday/next holiday/next Mother’s Day. The list goes on. It’s enough to make your head spin. Many of us have committed to memory the number and grade of frozen embryos we have and the cycle(s) they came from. The numbers have taken over our lives.

AND SPEAKING OF NUMBERS there are only 2 days left…

LONG ISLAND IVF was nominated BEST IN VITRO FERTILITY PRACTICE in the Long Island Press’s “Best of Long Island 2015″ contest. If you’d like to vote to help us win, you can vote once per day through Dec 15 here: http://bestof.longislandpress.com/voting-open/

 

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So how about you? Are there any significant numbers in your baby-planning?

 

credit: freedigitalphotos.net/photokanok

 

 

 

 

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TTC? Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Clomid

By David Kreiner MD

December 7th, 2014 at 5:23 pm

credit: taoty/ freedigitalphotos.net

It has become commonplace for women who have been frustrated with repeated unsuccessful attempts to conceive naturally on their own to see their gynecologist who often times will try clomid therapy on them. Clomid, the traditional brand name for clomiphene citrate, is a competitive inhibitor of estrogen. It stimulates the pituitary gland to produce follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) which in turn will stimulate the ovaries to mature follicle(s) containing eggs. Estrogen normally has a negative effect on the pituitary: Clomid blocks estrogen and leads to pituitary FSH production and ovarian stimulation.

Infertility patients — those under 35 having one year and of unprotected intercourse without a resulting pregnancy and those over 35 having six months without pregnancy — have a two to five percent pregnancy rate each month trying on their own without treatment. Clomid therapy increases a couple’s fertility by increasing the number of eggs matured in a cycle and by producing a healthier egg and follicle. The pregnancy rate with clomid therapy alone is approximately ten percent per cycle and 12 -15 percent when combined with intrauterine insemination (IUI). Women who are unable to ovulate on their own experience a 20 percent pregnancy rate per cycle with clomid, the equivalent to that of a fertile couple trying on their own.

Clomid and Your Cervical Mucus

Women who are likely to conceive with clomid usually do so in the first three months of therapy, with very few conceiving after six months. As clomid has an anti-estrogen effect, the cervical mucus and endometrial lining may be adversely affected.

Cervical mucus is normally produced just prior to ovulation and may be noticed as a stringy egg white like discharge unique to the middle of a woman’s cycle just prior to and during ovulation. It provides the perfect environment for the sperm to swim through to gain access to a woman’s reproductive tract and find her egg. Unfortunately, clomid may thin out her cervical mucus, preventing the sperm’s entrance into her womb. IUI overcomes this issue through bypassing the cervical barrier and depositing the sperm directly into the uterus.

However, when the uterine lining or endometrium is affected by the anti-estrogic properties of clomid, an egg may be fertilized but implantation is unsuccessful due to the lack of secretory gland development in the uterus. The lining does not thicken as it normally would during the cycle. Attempts to overcome this problem with estrogen therapy are rarely successful.

Side Effects

Many women who take clomid experience no side effects. Others have complained of headache, mood changes, spots in front of their eyes, blurry vision, hot flashes and occasional cyst development (which normally resolves on its own). Most of these effects last no longer than the five or seven days that you take the clomid and have no permanent side effect. The incidence of twins is eight to ten percent with a one percent risk of triplet development.

Limit Your Clomid Cycles

Yet another deterrent to clomid use was a study performed years ago that suggested that women who used clomid for more than twelve cycles developed an increased incidence of ovarian tumors. It is therefore recommended by the American Society of Reproductive Medicine as well as the manufacturer of clomiphene that clomid be used for no more than six months after which it is recommended by both groups that patients proceed with treatment including gonadotropins (injectable hormones containing FSH and LH) to stimulate the ovaries in combination with intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization.

Success rates

For patients who fail to ovulate, clomid is successful in achieving a pregnancy in nearly 70 percent of cases. All other patients average close to a 50 percent pregnancy rate if they attempt six cycles with clomid, especially when they combine it with IUI. After six months, the success is less than five percent per month.

In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a successful alternative therapy when other pelvic factors such as tubal disease, tubal ligation, adhesions or scar tissue and endometriosis exist or there is a deficient number, volume or motility of sperm. Success rates with IVF are age, exam and history dependent. The average pregnancy rate with a single fresh IVF cycle is greater than 50 percent. For women under 35, the pregnancy rate for women after a single stimulation and retrieval is greater than 70 percent with a greater than 60 percent live birth rate at Long Island IVF.

Young patients sometimes choose a minimal stimulation IVF or MicroIVF as an alternative to clomid/IUI cycles as a more successful and cost effective option as many of these patients experience a 40 percent pregnancy rate per retrieval at a cost today of about $3,900.

Today, with all these options available to patients, a woman desiring to build her family will usually succeed in becoming a mom.

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Do you have any other questions for Dr. Kreiner about Clomid?

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4 Ways to De-Grinch An Infertile Heart This Holiday Season

By Tracey Minella

December 5th, 2014 at 11:19 pm

 

 

credit: wpclipart.com


Hot on the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday was #GivingTuesday…a day to give back. We shared a list of some worthy infertility-related not-for-profits for anyone’s consideration.

But why should giving only be reserved for only one day? Especially since giving can be so therapeutic.

Holidays that involve having children are understandably particularly hard on us infertile folk. And there’s no way to really fill that void, but here are a few suggestions to help get through this month while you’re waiting for your own “dream present”:

Toys for Tots: Most communities have Toys for Tots campaigns and are in seeking unwrapped, new toys for underprivileged children. Some of these children do not have parents and the holidays are particularly hard for them, too. You can donate a toy at your local Toys R Us but if braving the toy store is too hard, you can donate money instead. For more information and for a list of other drop-off locations and volunteer opportunities see: http://www.toysfortots.org/donate/toys.aspx

Adopt-a-Family: Many local hospitals and houses of worship have programs where people can adopt-a-family for the holidays. The families chosen have fallen on hard times due to unemployment, military deployment, serious illnesses, death, homelessness, or other hardships. If not for this program, the children may not have food, warm clothes, or any presents for the holidays. Why not call and inquire about how you can help? The Salvation Army in Blue Point, NY (631-363-2136) and Soldier’s Angels http://soldiersangels.org/holiday-adopt-a-family-program/ and Toys of Hope http://www.toysofhope.org/adopt_family.html and The Retreat (for domestic violence victims) http://www.theretreatinc.org/ are just a few local adopt-a-family programs.

Soup Kitchen: Volunteering to feed the homeless and poor at a local soup kitchen is a great way to make a difference in someone’s life and make you feel good, too. Your local house of worship or Salvation Army can direct you to the nearest facility. Here is another list: http://www.homelessshelterdirectory.org/cgi-bin/id/countyfb.cgi?county=Suffolk-County&state=NY

Sick Children: You love children. Why not share your love with those who are suffering life threatening illnesses? You could volunteer with organizations like Make-A-Wish and be part of granting magical wishes http://suffolk.wish.org/  Or you could contact the social services department of your local hospital and ask if you can help brighten the mood of any of the children battling cancer who will be spending the holidays in the hospital and whose families might not be able to afford gifts.

It’s so easy to become a Grinch in December. Why not try one (or more) of these suggestions? I’ll bet your heart grows 3 sizes that day…

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What do you do to help get through the holidays? If you try any of these tips, please let us know how it goes! Or better yet, take a selfie doing one of these things and share it with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

 

 

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Negative Pregnancy Test Again! Now What?!

By David Kreiner MD

November 30th, 2014 at 9:51 am

 

credit: davidcastillodominici/ freedigitlaphotos.net


Women confronted with a negative result from a pregnancy test are always disappointed, sometimes devastated. Many admit to becoming depressed and finding it hard to associate with people and go places where there are pregnant women or babies, making social situations extremely uncomfortable. A negative test is a reminder of all those feelings of emptiness, sadness and grief over the void infertility creates.

We don’t have control over these feelings and emotions. They affect our whole being and, unchecked, will continue until they have caused a complete state of depression. This article can arm you with a strategy to fight the potentially damaging effects that infertility threatens to do to you and your life.

First, upon seeing or hearing that gut-wrenching news, breathe.
Meditation — by controlling and focusing on your breathing — can help you gain control of your emotions and calm your body, slow down your heart rate and let you focus rationally on the issues. It’s best to have your partner or a special someone by your side who can help you to calm down and regain control.

Second, put this trauma into perspective.
It doesn’t always help to hear that someone else is suffering worse — whether it’s earthquake or cancer victims — but knowledge that fertile couples only conceive 20% of the time every month means that you are in good company with plenty of future moms and dads.

Third, seek help from a specialist, a reproductive endocrinologist (RE).
An RE has seven years of post-graduate training with much of it spent helping patients with the same problem you have. An RE will seek to establish a diagnosis and offer you an option of treatments. He will work with you to develop a plan to support your therapy based on your diagnosis, age, years of infertility, motivation, as well your financial and emotional means. If you are already under an RE’s care, the third step becomes developing a plan with your RE or evaluating your current plan.

Understand your odds of success per cycle are important for your treatment regimen. You want to establish why a past cycle may not have worked. It is the RE’s job to offer recommendations either for continuing the present course of therapy — explaining the odds of success, cost and risks — or for alternative more aggressive and successful treatments (again offering his opinion regarding the success, costs and risks of the other therapies).

Therapies may be surgical, such as laparoscopy or hysteroscopy to remove endometriosis, scar tissue, repair fallopian tubes or remove fibroids. They may be medical, such as using ovulation inducing agents like clomid or gonadotropin injections. They may include intrauterine insemination (IUI) with or without medications. They also may include minimal stimulation IVF or full-stimulated IVF. Age, duration of infertility, your diagnosis, ovarian condition, and financial and emotional means play a large role in determining this plan that the RE must make with your input.

There may be further diagnostic tests that may prove value in ascertaining your diagnosis and facilitate your treatment. These include a hysteroscopy or hydrosonogram to evaluate the uterine cavity, as well as the HSG (hysterosalpingogram) to evaluate the patency of the fallopian tubes as well as the uterine cavity.

Complementary therapies offer additional success potential by improving the health and wellness of an individual and, therefore, her fertility as well. These therapies — acupuncture, massage, nutrition, psychological mind and body programs, hypnotherapy –
have been associated with improved pregnancy rates seen when used as an adjunct to assisted reproductive technologies.

A negative pregnancy test can throw you off balance, out of your routine and depress you. Use my plan here to take control and not just improve your mood and life but increase the likelihood that your next test will be a positive one.

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What have you done to get through the disappointment?

 

photo credit: http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/CouplesPartners_g216-Depressed_Young_Couple_p104407.html

 

 

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Thanksgiving Survival Plan for the Infertile

By Tracey Minella

November 25th, 2014 at 12:58 pm

 

credit: debspoons/freedigitalphotos.net


Every holiday brings its own unique set of challenges when you’re suffering from infertility. From the deepest depression of Mother’s Day to the onslaught of adorable trick-or-treaters at Halloween, there is a challenge to face and a coping mechanism to engage in order to get through the day.

It’s exasperating navigating these different… yet always painful…holidays that force us to cope with our infertility in a more public way than we’re comfortable doing. Days that subject us to family traditions that may no longer evoke happy memories simply because we don’t have children to share them with yet.

Thanksgiving is no different.

You’re expected to gather with your extended families. Someone will be pregnant. As if that doesn’t hurt enough, they may be younger than you, or married less time, or already have children. As you sit there struggling to maintain your composure, your eyes wander longingly to the children’s table and wonder when it’ll be your turn.

Then the nagging begins. And the fact that it’s well-meaning doesn’t make it any easier to take. For those who’ve remained private, it’s “When are you two ever going to have a baby?!” For those who’ve “come out”, there is endless insensitive and inaccurate advice involving legs in the air, octomoms, and more.

How in the world are you supposed to meet the unique challenge of Thanksgiving…to find gratitude in infertility?

The best way I know is in the quiet time before these gatherings. First, find some alone time and force yourself to list 3 things or people you’re grateful for…maybe still having parents alive, a pet, a home or a job. Then, get your partner. Reconnect and together come up with a list of 5 things you love about each other. Corny, but effective.

Now come up with a signal or secret word that will let the other know you’ve had enough and it’s time to exit the gathering later. It’ll be a fun secret and just knowing it’s there if needed will help. Plan to take a long walk to get away and regroup between dinner and dessert.

Finally, think about the people, food and traditions that you’ll be celebrating with later. Force yourself to come up with something nice about them. Sure Aunt Jennie is nosy, but she makes a mean apple pie. Mmmm. Apple pie… your reward for tolerating Aunt Jennie. Sometimes we automatically default to “the funk” on holidays because it’s become easy and natural. Forcing yourself to find a few positive things about those you’ll be with can help turn the day from unbearable to tolerable, or even better.

Dibs on the wishbone.

 

HEY: HERE’S A DIVERSION…Slip away from the crows and snap a cute picture of your pet for our Holiday Furbaby Photo Contest! Check out the details in my prior blog post! Win a Petco gift card!!!

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What are you looking forward to or dreading most about Thanksgiving this year?

 

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Long Island IVF Fur-Baby Holiday Photo Contest

By Tracey Minella

November 21st, 2014 at 12:34 pm

 

Credit: Minion by Liz W


When you’re infertile and longing for a baby to hold and love, life can be exceptionally lonely…unless you have a dog. Or a cat. Or some other four-legged furry thing to love.

A “fur-baby”.

Many couples’ pets help get them through the infertility journey. While they are not babies, of course, they definitely help fill the void. They are soft and warm and needy. They offer unconditional love and tons of kisses. And many even tolerate being dressed up for holiday pictures.

At this time of year, it can be particularly hard to handle the onslaught of photo holiday cards from friends and family showing off their children in matching red and green outfits. So to create a diversion and to celebrate the adorable fur-babies in your life, we had a great idea…

Send us a photo of your fur-babies. They can be dressed up for a holiday… or not. Upload the photo in the comments section of this post on our Facebook page anytime from now until 5:00 pm EST on December 18, 2014.

[We’re required to post a bunch of rules despite the simplicity of the contest, but don’t let the obligatory legalese dampen your enthusiasm to enter your fur-baby! But do read the rules at the bottom of this post in their entirety (sorry!)]

We will randomly select three (3) fur-baby photos, using random.org (or a similar automated random selection system) and announce the selections on December 19, 2014. Each of the three (3) Fur-babies will receive a $50.00 Petco Gift Card!

You do not need to be a patient. You can only enter once. You do not have to “like” our Facebook page in order to enter (but we’d love it if you did!) Remember the selections are by an automated computer system, it is not a judged contest.*

So go on and grab that camera! We can’t wait to see your adorable fur-babies.

NOW HERE ARE THE OFFICIAL CONTEST RULES:

 

Long Island IVF 2014 Furbabies Contest Rules

CONTEST RULES: We’re looking for your best photos of your furbabies! Whether they’re dressed up, doing something funny, or just plain being cute, post your photo in the comments below and you could win a $50 gift card to Petco!

*Only provide photos for which you own the rights (i.e. you took it). By submitting a photo, you represent that you own the rights to it, and consent to Long Island IVF’s public usage of your photo on their website and social media channels. There will be no compensation for use but photo credit will be provided. This contest is no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.

1. Eligibility: Contest open to anyone over the age of 18 with a Facebook account. Employees of Long Island IVF (the “Sponsor”), its advertising or promotion agencies, parent companies, service providers, agents, officers, subsidiaries or affiliates, or any other persons or entities directly associated with the Contest (collectively, the “Contest Entities”) and members of the immediate families of and/or persons living in the same household as such persons, are ineligible to enter the Contest. Contest is subject to all applicable federal, state and local laws. This Contest is void where prohibited.

2. How to Enter: To enter, submit a photo that you have taken of your furbaby on the Long Island IVF Facebook page. There is a limit of one entry per household. No responsibility is assumed for late, lost, damaged incomplete, illegible, or misdirected submissions. No responsibility is assumed for technical, hardware, software or other online entry malfunctions of any kind or unavailable network connections, or failed, incorrect, incomplete, inaccurate, garbled or delayed electronic communications caused by the sender, or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Contest which may limit the ability to participate, or by any human error which may occur in the processing of the submission. If for any reasons (including infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other cause beyond the control of the Sponsor, which corrupts or affects the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of the Contest), the Contest is not capable of being conducted as described in these Official Rules, Sponsor shall have the right, at its sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Contest.

3. Requirements of Entries: Each entry must be the original work of the entrant, and must not infringe upon the copyrights, trademarks, rights of privacy, publicity or other intellectual property or other rights of any person or entity. If the entry contains any material or elements that are not owned by the entrant, and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, the entrant is responsible for obtaining, before submission of the entry, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the use and exhibition of the entry by Sponsor in the manner set forth in these Official Rules, including without limitation, name and likeness permissions from any person who appears in or is identifiable in the entry (or their parents or legal guardians if such persons are minors). Sponsor reserves the right to request proof of these permissions in a form acceptable to Sponsor from any entrant at any time. Failure to provide such proof may, if requested, render entry null and void. Entrant understands that Sponsor has no obligation to display, publish, or otherwise include the entry in any Sponsor publication or Website. By submitting an entry, entrant warrants and represents that he/she, on his/her own behalf and on behalf of any children or legal wards of the entrant, if any, depicted in the entry, and any persons appearing or who are identifiable in the entry (or their parents or legal guardians if such persons are minors), consent to the submission and use of the entry in the Contest and to its use as otherwise set forth herein. By submitting your entry, you agree that your entry conforms to these Official Rules and that Sponsor, in its sole discretion, may disqualify your entry for any reason, including if it determines, in its sole discretion, that your entry fails to conform to these Official Rules in any way or otherwise contains unacceptable content as determined by Sponsor, in its sole discretion. By submitting your entry, entrants grant to Sponsor and its parent companies and affiliates an unlimited, transferable, exclusive license to use their entry/photograph on Facebook, in editorial publications, advertising material, for promotional purposes, on websites or in any other media form whatsoever that Sponsor may choose without further compensation unless otherwise prohibited by law. By submitting your entry, you agree to assume all liability for and indemnify and hold harmless Sponsor, Facebook, and each of their respective parents, subsidiaries, affiliates, employees, contractors and agents from any and all claims arising out of the publication or use of your entry, including without limitation any failure of your entry to comply with these Official Rules or any representations being made by you herein.

4. Judging: Winners will be selected randomly using a random number generator in conjunction with a list of entrants organized in chronological order of submission date.  Entries are accepted until 5:00 pm EST on December 18, 2014. Winners will be announced on the Long Island IVF Facebook page on or by December 19, 2014. It is the entrant’s responsibility to check the Facebook page for this announcement, and follow the provided instructions for claiming the prize. Failure to do so within 10 days will result in forfeiture of the prize.

5. Prizes: Three (3) winners will be chosen to receive one (1) $50 gift card to Petco.

6. General Conditions: By participating in the Contest, each entrant agrees to release, indemnify and hold harmless Sponsor, Facebook, and each of their respective parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries, employees, contractors and agents from any and all liability for injuries and damages sustained in connection with participation in the Contest and publication of winner’s photo.  By accepting a prize, each winner grants to Sponsor and its parent companies and affiliates the right to use his or her name, likeness, image, voice, testimonial and/or biographical information, as well as the name, likeness, image, voice, testimonial and/or biographical information of any children appearing in the entry, in advertising and promotion in all media without further compensation or permission, except where prohibited by law.
Sponsor of this Contest is Long Island IVF (Sponsor) 8 Corporate Center Drive, Melville, NY 11747.  This Contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.

 

* Hey did we mention that this contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook and each entrant or participant completely releases Facebook from any and all claims??

And if you’re not too tired to keep reading…

LONG ISLAND IVF was nominated BEST IN VITRO FERTILITY PRACTICE in the Long Island Press’s “Best of Long Island 2015 contest. If you’d like to vote to help us win, you can vote once per day from now through Dec 15 here: http://bestof.longislandpress.com/voting-open/

Photo credit: our good friend Liz and her taco dog, Minion

 

 

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Miracle on Old Country Road

By David Kreiner MD

November 19th, 2014 at 2:41 pm

 

credit: nuttakit/freedigitalphotos.net


I was feeling depressed the other day.  It seemed that we had insurmountable computer issues, staff morale was down and my family was acting rebellious.  My kids were arguing with each other, with me and I found myself mindlessly walking out of my office down Old Country Road.

I came to a busy intersection and just stood there as cars sped by me.  Honestly, at that moment in time I was thinking, why am I here?  Why put up with all the hard work at the office trying to make the practice viable despite the pressures of the recession?  Insurance companies were denying claims and when they were paying claims, it was at lower reimbursements that threatened to not compensate for our expenses.  The government was planning to lower reimbursements even more.  Patients, also experiencing financial difficulties were either asking for more breaks in the fees or not paying.  I have to admit I gave thought to giving it all up as the pain and aggravations were not worth the efforts.

Suddenly, a white Audi convertible came to a screeching stop right next to me.  It was one of my patients in the passenger seat sporting a very pregnant belly and apparently blowing through what I assumed was a labor pain.  Her husband spoke.  “Dr. Kreiner, Lara went into labor early this morning and we are on our way to the hospital to have the baby…can you come with us?”  Speechless and shocked, I let myself into the cramped backseat and tried to comprehend what was happening as Lara’s husband took off.

We pulled into the emergency room five minutes later.  Lara and I were taken to the labor floor while her husband dealt with the paperwork at the desk.  Nurses barked orders, the doctor was called, and Lara started screaming during her pains and in this laboring frenzy I was awakened from my funk.  It has been awhile since I was involved in a delivery but this baby was not waiting for the doctor and I got back into obstetrical mode, checking the baby’s position and heart rate and getting the anesthesiologist to administer the epidural.  Lara’s husband was now at her side assisting her with her breathing.

“Push Lara, push”, I yelled as I saw the baby’s head crowning.  She and her husband acted as if they had trained all pregnancy for this moment, working together as a team, his arm around her shoulders, breathing with her and supporting her back as she pushed.

Well, the doctor got there just before the baby was delivering.  I stood on the side watching this miraculous event…Lara and her husband together pushing the baby out of the same womb that I had implanted nine months earlier.  I remembered the image of showing Lara and her husband the photograph of the embryo and then watching on ultrasound as I injected the drop of media and air bubble containing the microscopic embryo into her uterus.  I thought how sweet life was and I smiled.

Moments later, Lara put baby Adam to breast, her husband a proud new father was beaming as he gave out chocolate cigars to the doctor and nurses and then came to me with tears in his eyes and said, “Thank you, so much Dr. Kreiner.  We could never have done this without you.”

What can I say?  It was as if my problems never existed.  I thought the only thing missing for me was to be with my family and appreciate what I have.  And what my wife and I have is truly amazing.  We have two lovely daughters and two sons, one a newlywed with a fantastic wife and another son who has the best wife and most gorgeous three children one can ever wish for.  Playing with them, having brunch and dinner with the family I love, I enjoyed a very Happy Passover.

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How do you feel about having to leave your fertility doctor once you get pregnant to go back to your OB/GYN? Do you wish your RE could deliver the baby?

 

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“Why Don’t You Just Adopt?”

By Tracey Minella

November 15th, 2014 at 12:28 pm

 

 

credit: David castillo dominici/ freedigitalphtos.net


Someone somewhere has or will ask you this question. As if it’s that simple. As if it’s their business.

November isn’t only the month of Thanksgiving, the official kick-off to the holiday season. It’s also National Adoption Awareness Month. The photos of orphaned children awaiting their forever families tug on our hearts. Without doubt, adopting a child is one of the most generous, selfless, loving things a couple can do.

But it’s not for everyone. And even for those who are open to the possibility of adoption, it often takes some time to come around to and embrace the idea.

And that’s okay.

While plenty of people…fertile or not… choose adoption right off the bat, many infertile people want to try to have a biological child before considering adoption. It’s natural to want a baby with daddy’s eyes or mommy’s musical talent…it’s natural for a woman to want to experience the joys of pregnancy and childbirth. Asking this question not only discounts those feelings and dreams, but also throws in a heap of unwelcome guilt. How could we be so selfish to want a child “of our own” when there are already children waiting?

Don’t feel guilty for wanting to exhaust all options of having a baby genetically tied to you before considering other choices like adoption or remaining childless. Each infertility journey is different and the fantasies we initially have of how our journey will play out get molded by our experiences, and evolve with each setback, failed cycle, or loss. Marriages are tested. Financial, physical, and emotional factors must be considered. Often, time and these experiences make people realize that they want more than anything to have a baby to love, and they may soften to the idea that genetic ties are not a priority. But it takes time for many to come to that realization. And it involves working through many issues and letting go of other dreams, which can be hard. And this can’t be rushed. Again, adoption is not for everyone.

In the spirit of keeping an open mind about the process, there is an option for family-building that many couples are not aware of and it’s offered at Long Island IVF. It’s called Embryo Donation. Often mistakenly referred to as embryo adoption, Embryo Donation allows infertile couples to acquire and use the excess frozen embryos created by another couple who’ve completed their own family and prefer to donate rather than use or discard their frozen embryos.

The recipient couple then simply proceeds with the thawing and transfer of these embryos as if they were originally their own. There may even be enough embryos to have more than one pregnancy. Though these children don’t share your genes, you get to experience childbirth and are in control of the pregnancy.

The cost of Embryo Donation is a fraction of traditional IVF as the embryos are donated and there is no need for stimulation and retrieval as in traditional IVF. Medications and monitoring are minimal, keeping costs low. For more information about Long Island IVF’s Embryo Donation Program, please contact the Donor Program Coordinator, Vicky Loveland, or click here: http://bit.ly/1CaZwfS

Let your personal journey to parenthood unfold as it’s destined to. Contrary to how it may feel sometimes, the infertility journey won’t last forever. Your heart will lead you to the child you’re meant to parent, whether biological, adopted, or otherwise.  And when you arrive there, you will feel that this was exactly as it was meant to be.

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Have you adopted, or would you consider adopting if you can’t get pregnant? What do you say when someone asks “Why don’t you just adopt?”

 

 

 

 

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Long Island IVF Family Reunion 2014 Memories

By Tracey Minella

November 11th, 2014 at 4:26 pm


Long Island IVF just celebrated its 26th Annual Family Reunion event. With schools closed and many people off from work, we were blessed with an exceptionally high turn-out of babies and new parents. And we couldn’t have been happier!

The family reunion is the highlight event of our year because it’s when the doctors and staff get to meet the newest crop of little miracles. The last time some of these babies were held, they were only a few cells in size! It’s such an emotional experience for doctors and patients alike. This year, 99 of the newest babies came out. Maybe we’re biased, but they were all gorgeous! And their parents were bursting with smiles and pride…happiness and gratitude replacing the worry and stress of the past. A photographer was capturing the little dickens in a fall-themed pumpkin patch.

It was remarked that if we’d had all of the babies we helped to create for the past 26 years, we’d have filled the Nassau Coliseum!

We were also so lucky to have the event covered by several media outlets, including CBS, Fox, FIOS, and News 12. Not only did that coverage expose our practice’s success to potential patients who may need our family-building services, but it enabled all of our patients, past and present, to share in the reunion experience. You could feel the happiness in the air.

Please check out some of the videos of that news coverage on our Facebook page or at these links and check back often as we will update them as they are available:

http://longisland.news12.com/news/long-island-ivf-celebrates-26-years-of-helping-families-1.9608352

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/video/10839273-proud-parents-reunite-with-doctors-to-celebrate-birth-of-little-miracles/

 

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Have you been to a LIIVF family reunion? If so, what was the best part? If not yet, what part do you imagine would be the most fulfilling?

 

 

 

 

 

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Long Island IVF Builds Families for GLBT Community

By Tracey Minella

November 4th, 2014 at 6:57 pm

 

credit: david castillo dominici/free digital photos.net


Long Island IVF is so excited to return to the Long Island GLBT Expo this weekend on Sunday, November 9, 2014 at the Long Island Hilton in Melville, New York. We’ll have a raffle again, too, so be sure to stop by.

Long-committed to helping the GLBT community build their families, we love being able to reach out in person in a supportive environment like the expo. It gives you a chance to get a feel for us in a casual, rather than clinical, atmosphere. Some of our staff belongs to the GLBT community, so we understand what you’re feeling. Choosing a fertility practice is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make, so come over to our booth and say hello and ask us some questions.

Here’s a true story: Last year, a couple of guys (let’s call them “Max” and “Larry”~ not their real names) came by our booth at the expo. We talked. We bonded. And today, Max and Larry are a couple of proud new dads!  Their beautiful baby’s birth announcement just recently arrived. And it all started with a conversation at this expo.

There are so many options available and amazing new advances in assisted reproductive technologies that can help resolve your unique family-building challenge. We offer the most cutting edge technologies, including PGS (Pre-implantation Genetic Screening), and EEVA (Early Embryo Viability Assessment), many of which are only available at a handful of fertility centers in the country. We have pre-screened, multi-ethnic anonymous donors ready to help you, if needed. And we offer personal financial representatives to help navigate insurance issues and explain our many grant programs and flexible payment options.

We look forward to welcoming you into our family as we help you build yours.

 

LONG ISLAND IVF was nominated BEST IN VITRO FERTILITY PRACTICE in the Long Island Press’s “Best of Long Island 2015″ contest. If you’d like to vote to help us win, you can vote once per day from now through Dec 15 here: http://bestof.longislandpress.com/voting-open/

 

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Will we be seeing you at the expo on Sunday?

 

Photo credit: David Castillo Dominici/freedigitalphotos.net http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/latin-mother-with-daughter-and-aunt-photo-p200021

 

 

 

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