Are you and your partner ready to start a family but struggling with the effects of infertility?
We understand that going through infertility can be an emotional journey. Here at Tree of Life Fertility Center (TLC), we have been helping individuals and couples face these frustrating circumstances and ultimately plant seeds of hope, love and life. When you walk through those doors, you become part of our family. Let’s work together to make your dreams come true!
At the Tree of Life Center we offer prospective parents the opportunity to learn about assisted reproductive technology options — as well as legal considerations to consider, costs of treatment, insurance coverage, and much more.
DID YOU KNOW?
By the age of 40, women retain only 3% of their egg reserve.
One out of 20 men have fertility issues pertaining to low levels of sperm.
You are not alone.
Infertility is common.
One of every eight couples in the country now experience infertility due to factors that include stress, demanding careers, marriage later in life, and environment.
The TLC team is here to guide you and can help you schedule your first fertility test, which is easy and straightforward. This will provide us with an accurate baseline to help you achieve your dream of becoming a parent
Why should you book your first appointment?
Natural intercourse is not working for you
You conceived via natural intercourse but experienced a miscarriage
During your first appointment, the doctor will perform beginning tests such as blood tests or an ultrasound:
– Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) – stimulates the ovaries to mature an egg
– AMH (anti Mullerian hormone) – indicates the size of a woman’s ovarian reserve
– Estradiol – prepares the uterine lining for implantation
– Luteinizing hormone (LH) – stimulates the release of eggs from the ovaries
Transvaginal ultrasound tests allow our fertility specialists to assess the health of your ovaries, uterus, and follicles. This process begins with the doctor gently inserting an ultrasound probe vaginally, examining ovaries and endometrial lining.
Results can show possible reasons for difficulties conceiving, such as:
– Low egg reserve
– Thin lining in the uterus
If further steps are needed, the next test might include a hydrosonogram or hysterosalpingogram:
– This procedure begins similarly to a pap smear and has similarities to Hysterosalpingograms (minus the dye and x-ray portion).
– The doctor inserts a speculum and saline is inserted into the vagina. The saline fills the uterine area and, simultaneously, the doctor will insert the ultrasound probe vaginally and perform a transvaginal ultrasound.
– It shows the inside of the uterus and whether the fallopian tubes are open.
– HSG examine the walls of your uterus and fallopian tubes, which allows us to see whether your fallopian tubes are open, check for the presence of fibroids, and assess the shape of your uterus.
– A dye is inserted into the vagina and enters the uterus. The uterine area accumulates dye and, if the fallopian tubes are open, dye will fill the tubes and enter the abdominal area.
– An x-ray shows where the dye goes after entering the uterus, which reveals whether the fallopian tubes are open or blocked, and, if blocked, the location of the blockage.
A Semen Analysis tests for volume, motility, morphology, concentration, and appearance of your sperm count. Our lab measures several of the following properties important to egg fertilization and conception and we typically have results within a week!
– Sperm samples can be obtained by the patient at home or in office.
– If you’d rather produce in the comfort of your home, you will need a sterile container and the sample needs to be brought into the office within one hour of being produced.
The most basic form of treatment, which assists patients’ timing of intercourse around their most fertile days of the month.
Usually the first step to take after suspecting that you may have fertility issues.
This involves tracking your menses via ovulation tests to determine the best times to conceive.
Some women experience inconsistent ovulation, which can be due to PCOS, stress, health/lifestyle, weight, or irregular menses, and makes getting pregnant difficult. This treatment involves a simple injection to stimulate ovulation.
IUI increases the number of sperm that reach the Fallopian tube, subsequently increasing the chance of fertilization. It puts the “best” sperm all the way at the top of the uterus (close to Fallopian tubes), increasing chances for success.
The sperm “wash” happens when a semen sample is taken, mixed with solution, and centrifuged to separate the strongest swimmers from the excess un-usable semen.
This process is often used in conjunction with Ovulation Induction.
When ovulation occurs (or has been stimulated via Ovulation Induction), a follow-up appointment for insemination with the “washed’ sperm takes place 1.5 days after.
Aka controlled ovarian hyperstimulation. The process of inducing a woman to release more than one egg in a month. It’s different from ovulation induction, where the goal is to release one egg a month.
A more advanced procedure, in vitro fertilization (IVF) refers to when a physician will remove eggs from your ovaries. These eggs are fertilized by sperm inside the lab. IVF has the highest success rate of treatments that use your own eggs or sperm.
Aka micro or minimal stimulation IVF. Similar to conventional IVF in the procedures used during treatment. What’s different is how much medication is used to stimulate the ovaries to produce eggs. While typical IVF aims to produce several eggs for retrieval, mini-IVF uses weaker medications or lower doses of medications to produce only a few eggs. It may also be done without any ovarian stimulating drugs.
Natural cycle IVF is a treatment similar to traditional, or stimulated, IVF, but without the use of medications to stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs. It may appeal to those who dislike medications.
This treatment involves the direct injection of sperm into eggs obtained during in vitro fertilization (IVF). Once the steps of ICSI have been completed and fertilization has succeeded, the embryo is transferred to the woman’s uterus.
Frozen embryo transfers is a type of IVF treatment where one or more cryopreserved embryos (created during a full IVF cycle) are thawed and transferred to a woman’s uterus. The cryopreserved embryos can be from a woman’s previous conventional IVF cycle or it can be a donor embryo(s).
Elective single embryo transfer (eSet)
This involves identifying an embryo with a strong chance of successful pregnancy, then transferring that single embryo to the uterus. The lab “freezes” any additional healthy embryos for future use.
The process of saving or protecting eggs, sperm, or reproductive tissue so that a person can use them to have biological children in the future.
The first step is for a woman to see her fertility doctor for an ultrasound and physical exam. On ultrasound the ovaries are measured and the number of follicles determined. A treatment calendar with a schedule of injectable fertility drugs is initiated.
Using fertility medications for approximately ten days, multiple eggs begin to mature in the ovaries. Under sedation, the eggs are retrieved, a process that takes about 10-15 minutes. The eggs are then cryopreserved and placed in frozen storage.
At a later time, the eggs can be thawed, inseminated with sperm (ICSI is recommended), and the embryo(s) created transferred back into the uterus to develop into a pregnancy.
Genetic testing is a type of medical test that identifies changes in chromosomes, genes, or proteins. The results of a genetic test can confirm or rule out a suspected genetic condition or help determine a person’s chance of developing or passing on a genetic disorder. More than 1,000 genetic tests are currently in use, and more are being developed.
Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis for single Gene disorders
This test allows patients who are carriers or who are affected by genetic diseases to select unaffected embryos for transfer before becoming pregnant.
Preconceptional Genetic Testing
Aka carrier screening – this test is a way for parents to get a glimpse at their own genetic makeup and see what they may pass on to future children. Future parents may determine their risk of having a child with a genetic disorder. Being a carrier means you don’t present with any symptoms but that you have the gene and could potentially pass it along to your offspring.
This is a process where embryos are selected by their sex chromosomes during an IVF cycle in order to produce a male or female offspring, according to the wishes of the parents. This may be considered when possible medical issues arise that are linked to x chromosome disorders.
MONITORING YOUR HORMONES
This is defined as the occurrence of two or more consecutive pregnancy loss. A clinically-recognized pregnancy means that the pregnancy has been visualized on an ultrasound or that pregnancy tissue was identified after a pregnancy loss. A pregnancy loss is defined as a clinically-recognized pregnancy involuntarily ending before 20 weeks.
A hormonal syndrome that develops when women have higher than normal androgen levels, which can prevent the ovaries from releasing an egg (ovulation) and deter pregnancy. Your doctor may prescribe birth control pills that contain man-made versions of the hormones estrogen and progestin. These pills can help regulate your menstrual cycle by reducing androgen production.
This is a procedure to restore fertility after a woman has had a tubal ligation — a process that cuts or blocks the fallopian tubes to prevent pregnancy. During reversal, a surgeon will reopen, untie, or reconnect your fallopian tubes.
Hysteroscopic and laparoscopic myomectomy
Aims to remove/destroy deposits of endometriosis and cysts, is usually done via a laparoscopy (keyhole surgery).