My husband and I are high school sweethearts and have been married for 7 years. We got married after college and always knew we wanted to have a family but knew we needed to finish graduate school first. After I finished graduate school in 2016 I couldn’t wait to try for a baby. Never did I think getting pregnant would be a problem. Why would it be? After all, none of my family had fertility issues and I didn’t know anybody personally who was having difficulty with getting pregnant.
We tried for a year to have a baby on our own with no luck. I sought help from my regular doctor who ran tests and lab work but concluded everything looked normal. She suggested starting Clomid. I was excited to try this as I thought this would be my answer and help me get pregnant. I took this medicine for 7 months with no luck. I still wasn’t pregnant. She then suggested I have a procedure done called HSG which uses X-ray and dye to examine my uterus and Fallopian tubes. It was a very painful procedure but again, the doctor found nothing abnormal. We were reaching close to trying for a baby for 2 years at this point so my regular doctor recommended that I make an appointment with Fertility Associates of Memphis.
I was so nervous and scared about going to FAM. BUT, the moment we walked in to the time that we left, we felt nothing but love from FAM. We didn’t feel that they were out to get money from us but truly cared and wanted nothing but the best for us. They became our family. We sat down with Dr. Ke on January 10th 2018 and told him our history. Immediately after I began more (expensive) testing. He eventually concluded that he expected I had endometriosis, but needed surgery to confirm. We paid $5,000 upfront for this because my insurance would only cover a small portion AFTER my extremely high deductible. The surgery did prove that I had Endometriosis.
I was happy for answers but still I wasn’t pregnant and my hope was slowly dwindling. Dr. Ke suggested we start an IUI cycle. I completed 3 of these over the course of Summer 2018. These cycles were not covered by my insurance and cost $600 upfront each time. After three rounds of unsuccessful IUIs , Dr. Ke told us that he thought IVF would be our only chance of getting pregnant. I was devastated yet knew deep down that it was probable that IVF was in our future. Upfront the total cycle of IVF was going to cost $14,000 dollars. We transferred one embryo in September of 2018. Unfortunately I had a miscarriage the following month at 7 weeks pregnant. It was the lowest I’d ever felt in my entire life. To know I’d spent so much money just to miscarry was heartbreaking. InJanuary 2019 we attempted a second round of IVF with an additional cost of $4000. Those 2 perfect embryos turned into 2 perfect babies.
We are so fortunate to have the means to pay for fertility treatments but this is not the case for so many people. Not a single doctors visit, lab work or even consultation was covered by my “full coverage” insurance. All in all our 3 year journey totaled $50,000. Infertility is a medical condition and should be recognized as such. I’m so glad infertility is getting social medical coverage that it is, however I hope my story shines a little light onto the burden of infertility financially. If you’ve made it this far, I want to encourage you to never give up. Infertility takes a toll on you and your family financially, mentally, physically and emotionally. Thank you to the TN Advocacy Group for this awesome opportunity to tell our story!
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