Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Why is in vitro fertilization (IVF) so expensive?

California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. strives to make in vitro fertilization (IVF) a cost effective approach to maximizing the chances of pregnancy. We understand the additional stress finances place on patients wishing to get pregnant and that for many, the cost of starting or continuing treatment is a barrier to pregnancy.

Cost, Overhead and the Modern Embryology Lab

The combination of physician, embryologist and staff experience along with our modern embryology laboratory, which creates an environment that mimics the human body, is why we can help women get pregnant with in vitro fertilization (IVF). However, in addition to high staffing costs, maintaining a high tech lab contributes significant overhead and affects the cost of treatment. Major lab systems include the:

Air System – Designed by a specialized engineer, this system creates a positive airflow that pushes air out of the lab, limits temperature fluctuations within 1-2 degrees and constantly removes contaminants with four Hepa filtration units. It is inspected annually for clean air compliance and maintains a 96% seal from the outside world.

Gas System – The oxygen concentration of normal air is toxic to embryos. Specialized incubators, microscopes and handling techniques protect the embryos and maintain a gas mixer that optimizes growth.

Microscope System – Given the tiny size of embryos, high powered microscopes fitted with mechanical manipulation devices are required to perform treatments such as intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) or embryo biopsy for pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD).

Safety System – This system continuously monitors the lab for proper air and incubator temperatures and gas levels as well as the liquid nitrogen level of frozen embryos and semen samples. If there is a power outage, our diesel generator automatically starts and can run for several days without refueling.

California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. uses its modern embryology lab to increase the effectiveness of fertility treatment and patient pregnancy rates. If you have any questions regarding the embryology lab and its affect on the cost of treatment, please ask. We remain committed to helping patients realize the joy and miracle pregnancy can bring.

--> © California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. Male and female infertility specialists near Sacramento.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Northern California Fertility Doctor Joins Genetic Testing Clinical Study to Help Roseville and Sacramento IVF Infertility Patients Get Pregnant

Getting pregnant using fertility treatments like in vitro fertilization is stressful for any couple. But for couples in which one or both partners has the potential of having a child with a genetically based disease like Tay Sachs or Gaucher’s disease can be frightening. A new genetic screening under clinical study gives at-risk IVF patients a fuller glimpse of their developing embryos.

Until now, IVF patients have had to choose between testing for chromosome abnormalities like Down Syndrome or single-gene hereditary disorders like Tay Sachs. A new screening from Redwood City, Calif. based Gene Security Network combines single gene hereditary disease testing and a 24-chromosome comparison into one test.

Dr. Ernest Zeringue, founder of California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. says “this test will offer at risk couples an additional tool for increasing their chance of pregnancy while minimizing the risk of having a baby with a genetic disorder.”

While new technology can not completely relieve the worries of getting pregnant, this next step in the genetic testing of embryos will help at risk patients make more informed decisions about their best options for bringing home a healthy baby.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sacramento Area Infertility Support Group for Fertility Patients

California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. encourages its patients to seek group support for general infertility issues as well as during advanced reproductive therapy like in vitro fertilization (IVF).

The Infertility Support Group of the Sacramento area is one resource for all Northern California women struggling with infertility to turn to so they do not have to struggle with getting pregnant alone.

The Infertility Support Group of the Sacramento area is a peer led support group for women that provides a place to discuss the emotional impact of infertility. Women are provided a welcoming space to discuss treatments for infertility like IVF and artificial insemination as well as alternatives like using acupuncture to help with stress and increase ovulation. Recommendations and experiences with Sacramento area infertility doctors and clinics many also be discussed openly and honestly.

Women with fertility issues may want to contact the Sacramento Area Infertility Support Group if any of the following statements apply:

  • I'm feeling lonely and isolated because of my infertility.

  • I have very few people to talk with about my infertility.

  • No one understands how infertility is affecting me.

  • My husband is the only one I have who provides emotional support in dealing with infertility.

  • Infertility is affecting my work and career.

  • I feel that my life plan is out of control because of infertility.

  • I'm having trouble navigating my medical treatment options for infertility.

  • I can't decide when "enough is enough" of infertility treatments like IVF, IUI and fertility medications like Clomid.

  • Holidays and coping with family and friends is becoming more & more difficult the longer I deal with infertility and answer questions about why I am not getting pregnant or having a baby.

For more information about the Sacramento Area Infertility Support Group, email your questions or comments to Christine at sacramentoinfertilitygroup@gmail.com

Bimonthly Meetings take place on the 2nd and 4th Monday of every month in the Sacramento area.

Visit http://resolve.org for more information about infertility issues and a list of Northern California Support Groups

--> © California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. - Male and female infertility specialists serving the Sacramento, Roseville and the greater Northern California area including the San Francisco Bay Area.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis of Embyros Provide "Gene Security" to Sacramento Area IVF Patients

In recent years, genetic testing has made the leap from science fiction to science present. While many older moms-to-be worry about disorders such as Down Syndrome, they are not the only women who can benefit from advanced genetic testing. Couples of any age who have miscarried frequently may gain new insight into their best pregnancy options by combining in-vitro fertilization (IVF) with a 24 gene screening test. At California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc., we are proud to be the greater Sacramento area partner for Gene Security Network, an innovative genetic testing company based in Redwood City, CA. This partnership allows us to provide patients and referring doctors with the cutting edge technology necessary to make informed decisions about the best chances for pregnancy.

Performed in the three to five day window between egg fertilization and embryo implantation, a twenty-four gene pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD24) is a battery of tests that looks at twenty three pairs of chromosomes along with the X/Y gender selecting pair. The result is a chromosome-level glimpse into the viability of a patient’s developing embryos. Ruling out the implantation of embryos with known genetic disorders is the primary reason for this test. Although it is not recommended to perform PGD24 for gender selection alone, this is one potential benefit for couples who are concerned about potential genetic disorders, already have children and wish to balance out their current families by favoring the selection of healthy embryos of a certain sex.

On its website, Gene Security Network lists the following reasons for combining IVF and PGD24 testing:
- the female partner is 35 years of age or older
- the couple has had recurrent miscarriages of unknown cause
- a previous child or pregnancy has had a chromosome abnormality
- the couple is concerned about having a child with a chromosome abnormality
- the couple has had a previous, unsuccessful IVF cycle
- one member of the couple carries a balanced chromosome translocation or inversion
- the couple is at risk of having a child with an inherited single gene genetic disease

Contact California IVF: Davis Fertility Center, Inc. at (530) 771-0177 to learn more about combining IVF with a PDG24 screening from Gene Security Network.