Top 10 Tips on Navigating Fertility Clinics
1.Make sure you call your insurance company, and do some investigation into coverage for procedures, and for including coverage for any IVF or fertility medications (this is a big one that a lot of people forget to do!).
2. Find an REI (Reproductive endocrinology and infertility) specialist that takes the time to work on your case and your specific needs. Not all are the same!
3. You’ve found the right person, now complete the necessary work-up! This may require a semen analysis, HSG (x-ray dye test of the fallopian tubes), trans-vaginal ultrasound, and cycle day 2-3 hormone panel blood-work. Most clinics also require you to complete STI testing and some basic genetic screens.
4. Make a follow-up with your provider so you can further understand the test results and go over the best treatment options. Bring your partner or a supportive friend. It helps to have an extra set of ears as this can be an overwhelming process
5. Make sure you know the staff. At many of the clinics, it is the nursing staff that navigates you through the process. Be sure to connect with someone before you leave! Do a little bit of reading on your own so you can cultivate the best understanding of your diagnosis and treatment options
6. Speak up and ask questions. Be your own advocate!
7. Go ahead; get a second opinion if you think you need to.
8. Stay on top of your appointments and treatment schedule. Make notes in your calendar because life is crazy and sometimes we forget things!
9. Remember to BREATHE and do something for yourself every day! You could read, write, go for a walk, do yoga, meditate, and spend time with a friend or loved one.
10. You will get through the journey. Some people’s paths are longer than others -this is just a moment.