How was your experience with Brian Levine at CCRM New York?
Dr. Levine is honestly the BEST. He took what had been a terrible, chaotic, anxiety-inducing experience and turned it into a structured, calm, and unexpectedly FUN experience. Dr. Levine explains everything extremely thoroughly and on repeat. You hear the same message over and over again, and it's so reassuring and empowering, because you know the plan at all times. Dr. Levine also has the most fun personality. He takes the time to chat and catch up, and we spent just as much time talking about different exercise classes we liked, restaurant recommendations, and LIFE as we did my fertility issues. This may seem silly, but it really changed the dynamic of my treatment from negative to positive. I looked forward to my appointments with Dr. Levine because they were so fun, and I left feeling happy, confident, and taken care of as an individual.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Brian Levine at CCRM New York?
Give yourself permission to slow down / relax during appointments and take the time to build a personal relationship with Dr. Levine. It will make an already incredible experience that much more amazing. Also, don't be afraid to ask questions or talk about how you're feeling. Dr. Levine is incredibly responsive, and you should never leave an appointment feeling like you're unclear on any part of his assessment or don't know the plan.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Brian Levine at CCRM New York?
I can't express exactly how nervous I was to begin fertility treatment with a specialist. I had been trying to conceive unsuccessfully for 13 months, and I had a terrible experience with an ob gyn who tried to treat me using guesswork out of his office instead of sending me to a specialist. This experience had been totally inhuman, awful, and ineffective.
I remember crying after my first appointment with Dr. Levine, because he treated me so warmly and compassionately from the moment I stepped into his office. I remember he spent a full hour with me discussing not only my case history, but who I was a person, what I liked to do during my free time, how I had been feeling about my fertility issues, etc. He didn't rush me, and he repeatedly allowed there to be pauses so I could ask more questions.
Dr. Levine and his team wrote everything down for me, always. I know this seems so simple, but I can't tell you how reassuring it was to have a plan and to have that plan documented in writing. Dr. Levine gave me his personal e-mail, and he ALWAYS responded or called me back, even when I e-mailed late at night. I remember receiving a call from him at 8pm, 2 minutes after I had e-mailed, when he was clearly in the middle of a family dinner.
Finally, the one moment I will never forget: receiving a call from Dr. Levine at 1pm on a Saturday, in between cycles, just to say "Hey, how are you feeling about everything?"
Describe the protocols Brian Levine used in your cycles at CCRM New York and their degree of success.
At my first appointment, Dr. Levine diagnosed me with unexplained fertility and recommended that we proceed with a course of Letrazole followed by an Ovidrel trigger shot and timed intercourse. He wanted to start off as non-invasive as possible and then ramp up as needed. After three unsuccessful cycles of timed intercourse, Dr. Levine suggested trying an IUI, and I was ready to move to the next step. Fortunately, my first IUI was successful -- and I am now 5 months pregnant with a baby girl!
Describe your experience with the nursing staff.
As I've mentioned, Dr. Levine was the best, but his nursing staff was even more the best. I know they see a lot of patients, but I was floored every time they recognized me and greeted me by name. They were so friendly and wonderful and reassuring, whether drawing blood, explaining how to inject my Ovidrel trigger shot, or calling me to make sure I knew the next steps. They were also the best cheerleaders and the best coaches when you didn't get the results you wanted. Also, when I found out I was pregnant, I could feel the support of the nursing staff -- they all congratulated me and made me feel so special.
Describe your experience with CCRM New York.
I honestly can't say a bad thing about CCRM. They are so organized and so on top of things. I was always able to get an appointment at the time that I wanted, and I always felt totally taken care of.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Brian Levine at CCRM New York.
I don't actually remember, but I think that all in we probably spent ~$8,000 for three timed intercourse cycles and an IUI, the majority of which was reimbursed by my husband's insurance.
Describe Brian Levine's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at CCRM New York.
Not applicable in my situation