How was your experience with Prakash Thiruppath at Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology?
After taking blood work, performing an HSG, and doing one semen analysis on my husband, he said we needed to go straight to IVF - all because my husband’s SA came back with 2% morphology (normal is 4% or higher). I was in utter shock when he told me this, and as soon as he got that out of his mouth, he then started telling me I could sign up for next month. As if IVF is $50 procedure. Since that day, I have never been able to shake the feeling that he’s only in this for the money. That one little number is not enough to tell someone to go straight to IVF. He should’ve offered IUIs as a first step, but he didn’t. And at that point in time, we’d only been TTC for 6 months. We ended up seeing a second RE who laughed at the fact we were told this based SOLELY on 2% morphology from ONE semen analysis. I still to this day feel like he’s more concerned with making money, and pushes IVF way too soon.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Prakash Thiruppath at Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology?
Don’t let him push you into IVF unless you have no tubes and therefore no other options. Have a list of questions you want answers to, because he won’t go in to much detail about things if you don’t ask. He’ll give you an elementary explanation of how IVF and IUI work, but he certainly won’t go into any detail about your diagnosis or why he thinks IVF is the only way you’ll get pregnant.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Prakash Thiruppath at Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology?
I didn’t really feel like I was treated one way or the other. I feel like I was kind of right in the middle. I never really got the sense that Dr. Thiruppathi or any of the staff actually cared about me. But they never seemed super busy either, so I didn’t feel like I was moved along like just another number.
Describe the protocols Prakash Thiruppath used in your cycles at Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology and their degree of success.
The very first cycle we did was a timed intercourse cycle with Femara (the lowest dosage to begin with) and then Ovidrel injection. The nurse and sonographer do the monitoring appointments, and don’t give you a lot of information about what they’re seeing unless you ask. You go in for a beta on day 14/15 regardless if you tested at home. They also do blood work at every monitoring appointment. The next 3 cycles were IUI cycles with Femara. Each cycle the dosage was increased (with the last cycle at the highest dosage). He does back to back IUIs, meaning you take the Ovidrel injection at your last monitoring appointment (all are done in the morning), then 24 hours later you have 1 IUI performed by the doctor. Then 24 hours after that, you have your second. Seemed like another ploy to get more money as most REs believe one well-timed IUI is enough. They never seemed to care too much about timing as I can remember being told to come back after an hour for the semen washing to be completed, and then waiting over another hour for the actual IUI. Sometimes they would take you right back for it. However it fit into their schedule I guess. None of the IUIs worked. He never offered to let us try an IUI with injectables either. It was also just Femara and Ovidrel. He never cared to change up the protocol except increasing the Femara dosage. I feel like they just do IUIs to make money, and don’t really take the necessary steps to help people be successful with them (because they want everyone to do IVF). Maybe I’m completely wrong, but that’s the impression I got. Thiruppathi is also the only RE in Columbus, with the next closest being 2 hours away. So we really don’t have any other options unless you want to travel (which I did, and it’s a pain).
Describe your experience with the nursing staff.
They don’t seem to really care about the patients. They rush you through your monitoring appointments without giving you any real updates during them unless you ask. And then you feel like you’re annoying them because they want to leave the room. You aren’t assigned to a nurse, so you just whoever is working that day. To my knowledge, you can only communicate with them outside of the office via phone - and that’s with leaving a voicemail and waiting for a call back. I remember I was waiting one time on my beta results, the day before Thanksgiving, and I had gone in that morning to give blood for it. I know they get their blood results back for things like usually by early afternoon (one of them told me they do). But I didn’t receive a call back from the nurse until well after 6:00 PM, and that was after I called the answering service to page the nurse. It was my first beta ever, so I was super anxious about getting the results. One thing I wanted to point out that I meant to earlier is that they give you progesterone supplements to take during the two week wait. But they have you take them orally. I didn’t know this at the time, but you only get a very small percentage of the medication when taken orally. This same medication can and should be taken vaginally to get the most from it. I don’t know if Thiruppathi prescribes it that way to IVF patients, but he does for IUIs and I think that’s wrong.
Describe your experience with Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology.
You have to pull information out of them, for just about everything. I do however very much like the fact that they will code your monitoring appointments as “testing ovarian function” in order for those with at least infertility testing coverage to be covered by your insurance company. So every appointment with Thiruppathi and every monitoring appointment was only my copay. The IUIs were $400 each (so back to back ones = $800 for one cycle)
Describe the costs associated with your care under Prakash Thiruppath at Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology.
Because of how they coded it (for IUI, I don’t know how it works for IVF), each visit with Thiruppathi and each monitoring appointment was only copays and then a little out of pocket for blood work after it had gone through insurance. Each IUI was $400 (so one cycle would be $800 for the back to back IUIs)
What specific things went wrong at Columbus Center for Reproductive Endocrinology?
- Failed to call with results
- Failed to convey critical information