How was your experience with Briana Rudick at Columbia University?
Dr. Rudick is very professional and knowledgeable. She never pushed me to do something I was not ready to do, and let me set the pace of my treatments. When I decided to take a short break between cycles, she was very understanding. She is also very straight forward and matter-of fact with results and reasons for those results, and she doesn't sugar-coat, which I appreciated and which added to my trust of her. When I received bad news after a few cycles back to back, Dr. Rudick sent me a very nice email and I felt that we were in this together, working toward a common goal. Although Dr. Rudick was not always available at every visit, all of the doctors and nurses at Columbia were pleasant to work with. Before and during each procedure, Dr. Rudick would explain each step in detail, which helped ease my anxiety. I felt very cared for by her and the team at Columbia.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Briana Rudick at Columbia University?
I would tell her that she is in good hands, to trust the process, and to ask a lot of questions to ease anxiety and understand all of the details and risks. At points, it can seem like there are no answers and it is all trial-and-error, but with each cycle, more information is gathered that will lead you toward the right treatment for you.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Briana Rudick at Columbia University?
I was treated like a human, Dr. Rudick was very patient with me, and was always available by email or by appointment to go through all of my questions. She made me feel like I had full control over the process, and that it was up to me to decide how aggressive I wanted to be, and the pace at which I wanted to proceed.
Describe the protocols Briana Rudick used in your cycles at Columbia University and their degree of success.
After several tests, we were diagnosed with unexplained infertility, which can be very frustrating. We decided to try IUI first. The first cycle of IUI was with Clomid, which was not successful. The Dr. switched me to Letrozole for the next three IUI cycles. I felt a lot better on Letrozole (much less bloated). Unfortunately, these cycles all resulted in biochemical pregnancies. We met with Dr. Rudick to discuss next steps, and she recommended IVF with genetic testing as she suspected a chromosomal issue in the embryo was the cause of the biochemicals. We proceeded with this recommendation, which produced two normal embryos. We transferred one of the embryos and this resulted in a positive pregnancy.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Columbia University. (Assigned nurse: Julissa Mota)
Julissa and the nursing staff were very organized and pleasant to work with. Julissa always called me and/or emailed me with results around the same time of day, the day after testing. This was very consistent and eased my mind, because I knew when to expect to hear from her. I felt that I could reach out to her if I had any questions about medications, treatments, etc. When I started my first IVF cycle, Julissa met with me and showed me how to mix and administer each medication, and gave me tips on how to organize the meds and make it easy. She also sent me links to instructional videos online. The information was very helpful and eased my anxiety. I also got to know the phlebotomists; they were always nice and would greet me and say hello when they saw me. I felt like everyone was rooting for me.
Describe your experience with Columbia University.
The clinic has a very calming atmosphere, and is very clean. There are plenty of seats for waiting patients, and several bathrooms. There was always water available and fresh fruit.
The reception staff was very pleasant each time I arrived and check in was quick. The process during morning monitoring was consistent, and I hardly ever had to wait more than 5-10 minutes after my scheduled appointment time to be seen.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Briana Rudick at Columbia University.
Fortunately, I had fertility coverage under my health insurance. I did have to pay some costs out of pocket up to the deductible. I also had to pay for the embryo freezing and the Genetic Testing separately, these were not covered by insurance. All in, I feel that I paid close to $8,000 out of pocket in total.
Describe Briana Rudick's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Columbia University.
Dr. Rudick recommended transferring one embryo at a time, to avoid a multiple pregnancy. We agreed on this course of action.