Describe your experience with Carolina Conceptions.
The clinic has a huge clientele, one that far outweighs their staff numbers in my opinion. I was not assigned a nurse, which was one of my biggest complaints going through the process when questions or issues would come up outside of hours. The clinic also does not offer any sort of in house financing options, nor do they accept common payment forms like Care Credit. Infertility treatment is a huge financial burden for so many, and having some options would help so many, including myself. Otherwise, everyone is prompt, friendly, compassionate and knowledgable.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with John Park at Carolina Conceptions?
I felt like because I was only doing IUI and not paying thousands and thousands of dollars for IVF, my needs and concerns were not as carefully considered once treatment started. Both IUI's, the nurse did the insemination and I didn't see the Dr at any of my appointments beyond my consultation. I felt like I left my first IUI without a clear understanding of what I could and couldn't take (I get headaches, so having a confident, clear understanding of what was safe, was not provided to me initially). Basically I felt like a lot of information was withheld until I asked about it, including, but not limited to more cost effective way to obtain the medications I needed.
Describe your experience with the nursing staff.
The nursing staff was always pleasant at each visit. In fact, after my initial consultation, the nurses were the only ones I saw at each visit. I was not assigned a nurse, so when I would contact the nurse line for questions, they were all pleasant and helpful.
How was your experience with John Park at Carolina Conceptions?
Dr. Park was very professional and explained things well during my consult. When we started treatment, we were happy to hear that Dr. Park did not think we would need to consider IVF, as he felt we would likely conceive from IUI, but that it possibly make take a few attempts. He was also was considerate of my lack of infertility coverage through insurance, and factored that in to medication options, appointment coding (though nothing about IUI was covered), and attempted to balance a good treatment approach while being cost effective at the same time. My disappointment came when Dr. Park didn't see me, or follow up with me during or after either of my IUI's. The 2 week wait is such a roller coaster of emotions, and it would have helped ease my mind to hear from him (or someone) to see how I was feeling, or at least a check in to see if I had a positive pregnancy test at the end. I think that Dr. Park is very knowledgable, and one of the best in his field, but I didn't feel like things and approaches were always thought through as well as they could have been. The clinic is a VERY busy practice and it's impossible to please everyone, but I think unless you're an IVF patient, you don't get the same level of care.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of John Park at Carolina Conceptions?
Advocate for yourself! If you feel like something should be added to your protocol, tell him. If something said or certain instructions don't sound right to you, question it! They're human and make mistakes too, so always do you research, know whats what, and don't be afraid to ask! It's easy to feel like you're being bothersome by asking lots of questions, but when you're paying them a lot of money, you should always feel like you're being heard and taken well care of.
Describe the protocols John Park used in your cycles at Carolina Conceptions and their degree of success.
Dr. Park thought we would be successful with a basic round of IUI. My protocol was baseline ultrasound, followed by low stimulation (letrozol only), 2nd monitoring ultrasound and finally the trigger shot before insemination day. While I was going through treatment, I had spoke to several friends also going through treatment, as well as my own researched, and I was curious why progesterone wasn't part of my protocol, especially with my history of spotting after ovulation, deeming me to have a "luteal phase deficiency". Dr. Park agreed that it couldn't hurt, so we added progesterone suppositories to my second cycle, which seemed to help, but still did not result in a pregnancy. After 2 failed cycles, I contacted Dr. Park to see if he had any insight on why we weren't successful yet. He confirmed that I responded exactly as I should have to the meds, and my husbands sample was just fine on insemination day, and that basically we just needed to keep trying, as IUI can often take multiple attempts. After that, we stopped treatment to gather our thoughts, reassess finances and just emotionally get over our 2 failed attempts.
Describe the costs associated with your care under John Park at Carolina Conceptions.
For a very basic approach, our cost was around $1500 each attempt. Future attempts will be more aggressive and much more expensive.
Monitoring ultrasouds: $250/each. I only needed 2
Semen Analysis: $148
Meds: around $300 (letrozole and ovidrell)
Insemination day: $480
Describe John Park's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Carolina Conceptions.
I haven't done IVF yet, though we were asked by our Dr if we were interested in an IVF clinical trial. We're currently working on securing funds to proceed with the IVF clinical trial, or continue with further IUI attempts.