Recently we have had patients contact us and ask about group treatment packages. What does that mean? It often means offering a number of treatments for one all inclusive price, for example 1 IVF cycle and 4 Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET) Cycles for $X
Whilst it may seem great, like everything it needs to be researched, questions asked and looked at with caution.
To work out if this is a good option for you our recommendations are that you ask the following questions before committing to anything:
1. Is it a low stim clinic offering the packaging ie one that only offers you the option of being awake for your procedure and therefore aiming for low egg numbers?
If the answer is Yes then you need to be very careful as low stim clinic protocols are such that they are trying NOT to get a lot of eggs which may mean that you would never end up having enough suitable embryos created from an IVF cycle to allow you to have 4 frozen embryo transfers if needed. Typically only 1/3 of eggs that fertilise actually grow on to day 5 and are actually suitable for freezing.
2. If they are a low stim clinic – how often do they end of freezing embryos and how many are frozen.
It’s not uncommon for a normal stim IVF cycle to have a fresh embryo transfer and then commonly up to 2 blastocysts (day 5 embryos) frozen. So it stands to reason fewer eggs as in a lower stim cycle may mean none to perhaps 1 embryo frozen.
3. Does the clinic freeze embryos on day 2-3 or day 5?
If the answer is day 5 great. If the answer is day 2-3 then this is not so good for the reason mentioned above. Almost all eggs that fertilise will reach day 2-3 in development however, there can be quite a drop off in numbers after day 3 with on average only 1/3 of eggs that fertilise growing successfully to day 5 and then be suitable for freezing.
4. If I fall pregnant before I use any or all the FET cycles is there a refund?
5. What happens if I have paid the full fee and I have no eggs collected at the procedure or my eggs don’t fertilise – is there a refund?
Our suggestion to everyone embarking upon fertility treatments is ASK QUESTIONS
Fertility Solutions may in the future offer patients all in one packages but, if we do, it will be well researched, based on best practice principles with the patient and their finances being the priority.