Alan S. Penzias

Boston IVF

Rated 8.8
Strongly recommend: 72%Neutral: 19%Don't recommend: 9%8.8
72% strongly recommend
17 reviews
Humanity
9
9
Humanity

Ratings of 1 mean patients felt this doctor treated them as "a number."

Ratings of 10 mean patients felt this doctor treated them as "a human."

Communication
9
9
Communication

Ratings of 1 mean poor communication.

Ratings of 10 mean excellent communication.

Frequency Seen
5.8
5.8
Frequency Seen

Ratings of 1 mean patients only saw this doctor once or twice during treatment.

Ratings of 10 mean patients saw this doctor at every appointment.

Responsiveness
7.7
Good
Responsiveness

Scale is "poor, ok, good, excellent" and measures how responsive a care team was when patients needed to speak to them.

Education

Medical School
SUNY
Residency
Harvard
Fellowship
Yale

How Doctor Communicates

doctor, nurse available by email
doctor, nurse available by directline
doctor, nurse available by directline
doctor available by personal cell phone
doctor available by personal cell phone
Alan S. Penzias works at

Boston IVF
Rated 8.3
Strongly recommend: 65%Neutral: 18%Don't recommend: 16%8.3

At 3 offices

Boston
800 Washington St
Boston, MA 02111
888 300-2483
Waltham
130 Second Avenue
Waltham, MA 02451
(781) 434-6500
South Portland
778 Main Street, Suite 2
South Portland, ME 04106
(207) 358-7600
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Explore Clinic

4 patient reviews filtered by:

Verified

This patient has provided documentation of treatment at this clinic.

2016 - 2018, Unsuccessful
8
8
Age 42 - 44
4 IVF
Diminished Ovarian Reserve
Poor Egg Quality
Unexplained
European
Income $100K - $199K
Only Doc Seen
Neutral
Neutral
Unsuccessful
Even though I was 40 and had low reserve, was a poor responder he [Dr. Alan Penzias] didn't tell us donor eggs were the only choice. He know how we wanted our own child and he said out what our chances were. He has worked with us to optimize how many eggs we get but my eggs are not fertilizing. He is not encouraging or promoting of alternative therapies or naturopathic treatments to improve quality as he thinks they make minimal impact. But he will approve them and supplaments that I chose to do.
Their [Boston IVF-RSC] strengths are that due to their size you can cycle any time and they do egg retrevial and transfers every day of the year. I also love the Domar Center located at their Waltham location. Acupuncture there is awesome with all practioners and the nutritionist was very helpful too. You do not usually get your doctor for retrevial, but mine came in once special to do just mine or a weekend morning. Billing is frustrating as you never get an actual bill or breakdown, and now we are paying out of pocket so you pay ahead for the whole cycle and get reimbursed if you did not use all of the plan treatments.
How was your experience with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
Dr Pandas was very responsive to questions and requests, even while traveling He is accessible thru the nurse or via email. He was also flexible with us as far as having conference calls when we couldnt meet at his office due to schedule conflicts. We found him as he came highly rated to us from a Chief of another department Even though I was 40 and had low reserve, was a poor responder he didn't tell us donor eggs were the only choice. He know how we wanted our own child and he said out what our chances were. He has worked with us to optimize how many eggs we get but my eggs are not fertilizing. He is not encouraging or promoting of alternative therapies or naturopathic treatments to improve quality as he thinks they make minimal impact. But he will approve them and supplaments that I chose to do. I always keep him in the loop with what I am taking. He does like the use of acupuncture for transfer. We are looking to do another cycle or two with him at this point and looking at different treatment options. He has also gone to bat for us more than.once with the insurance company.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
He is a down to earth person and a straight communicator that relies on data and proven methods. He is not on the cutting edge but it up to date on everything going on out that and looks to reliable data of success before recommending it to patients. He is very professional. Go in with lots of questions and you will come out with solid options to choose from.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
He is very fact based but also very personable. He encourages questions and looking at new treatment plans and will discuss it all in detail and give you approx. Success rates of different options.
Describe the protocols Alan S. Penzias used in your cycles at Boston IVF and their degree of success.
For my first cycle we did menopure and gonal f with Cetrotide to suppress, and during the cycle my dosing was upped as I was a poor responder. I ended up ovulating thru the Cetrotide is the cycle was candles. My next 2 cycles (the first I did immediately after the fist cycle as some research indicates that works better for older women) we switched to micro Lupton and stuck with the m &g. The first cycle we got 1 mature egg that did not fertalize naturally. I took a cycle off then the next cycle we used the same protocol and got I believe 3 eggs. They did not fertilize with ICSI, for the ones it could be used on. We switched to mini IVF since I was at max doses for stimulating meds but not getting good responses. Used Clomid with a hcg trigger (same as all the others) and got 6 eggs, 5 mature, none fertalize with ICSI. Took another few cycles off and did another mini IVF where I believe we got 3 or 4 eggs, nothing fertalized again. It has been attributed to my poor egg quality at my age, even though they look good at retrevial. Dr.P told me at my age less than maybe 1 in 12 eggs are chromosomaly normal, so it is a numbers game.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Boston IVF. (Assigned nurse: Sara Mawn)
Sara is wonderful. Very compassionate and responsive. She was out for a while and we experienced other nursing staff. Most we great! At my first ERA biosposy, I was disappointed in the nursing as the 2 we not very professional, but my second biopsy was the exact opposite. It is a very large clinic so you will have interactions with many staff, but you also have a main point of contact.
Describe your experience with Boston IVF.
Their strengths are that due to their size you can cycle any time and they do egg retrevial and transfers every day of the year. I also love the Domar Center located at their Waltham location. Acupuncture there is awesome with all practioners and the nutritionist was very helpful too. You do not usually get your doctor for retrevial, but mine came in once special to do just mine or a weekend morning. Billing is frustrating as you never get an actual bill or breakdown, and now we are paying out of pocket so you pay ahead for the whole cycle and get reimbursed if you did not use all of the plan treatments. You do need to be on top of things as far as your treatment as there is not someone to walk you through the process once you are on treatment or remind you. Follow up is also on you. But nurse communication is great and so was the coordinator.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF.
Our first 4 cycles were covered by insurance, but the PGS testing was not. He did appeal to insurance and got 2 cycles covered that were initially rejected by insurance. Out of pocket IVF was $7750 for the cycle plus 2500 for icsi and 980 for the embryoscoping (which was at our request). PGS was $3300 For 7 to 8 embryos and went up and down from that number For the mini IVF cycle it is $4950 and that includes ICSI but not PGS testing.
Describe Alan S. Penzias's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Boston IVF.
We haven't gotten to that point, but we originally talked about doing only FET transfers of PGS tested embryos and at my age, 1 or 2 at a time.
What specific things went wrong at Boston IVF?
  • Failed to call with results
  • Failed to convey critical information
Describe the specific things that went wrong at Boston IVF.
My first Clomid challenge cycle i was not called with my results, which required a retest on another cycle, which ended up delaying the start of my treatment 3 months.
8
Doctor
Alan S. Penzias
Humanity
Communication
Frequency Seen
Trustworthiness
Compassion
Explained risks
Adaptability
8
Clinic
Boston IVF
Waltham
Operations
Scheduling
Billing Department
Nursing Staff
Clinic Atmosphere
Educational Resources
2017 - 2018, Successful
8
6
Age 30 - 31
1 IVF
Male Factor
Unexplained
East Asian
Only Doc Seen
Neutral
Doesn't Recommend
Successful
Dr Penzias put us on 6 months of medicated cycles...he had a scientific and statistical approach to everything. He would explain things thoroughly in statistical terms, which is great if your mind works that way, but sometimes I would've preferred more layman terms. We were pleased during our times with him, but the main problem was we could rarely get a hold of him for any ad hoc questions, and appointments with him took a while to schedule out. We also thought he would be performing our procedures (ie egg retrieval) but that was not the case.
Diagnostic testing [at Boston IVF] that was not covered by insurance amounted to about 2-3k, which came as a surprise to us and I would've elected not to do some of it (like for STDs)... I was happy overall with my doctor when I got to see him, and the latter dedicated nurses I had were very helpful and caring...it was a little clumsily run. Every time I would check in at the main front desk, there would be three employees sitting there chatting and I would rarely be pointed to the right place for secondary check-in. Oftentimes I was sent to wait by the blood testing wing and they would be calling my name in the other wing or vice versa, and have me marked as late for my appointment. The staff that were at the payment windows were also terribly unfriendly more often than not ... they'd be on their phones and roll their eyes when I approached asking if I pay for my appointment there.
How was your experience with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
Dr Penzias seemed to be very knowledgeable and had a scientific and statistical approach to everything. He would explain things thoroughly in statistical terms, which is great if your mind works that way, but sometimes I would've preferred more layman terms. We were pleased during our times with him, but the main problem was we could rarely get a hold of him for any ad hoc questions, and appointments with him took a while to schedule out. We also thought he would be performing our procedures (ie egg retrieval) but that was not the case.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
For the first 75% of my cycle I was under the care of a rotating stream of nurses. I would get monitoring result and other related calls from a different person each day, and they were not always on the same page. Some of the nurses were very nice and some were curt. I'm not sure if this was sorted out and they now have 1 dedicated nurse for Dr Penzias, but the rotating care was frustrating since i had to re-explain a concern or re-ask a question constantly to different people.
Describe the protocols Alan S. Penzias used in your cycles at Boston IVF and their degree of success.
Dr Penzias put us on 6 months of medicated cycles (he gave us the choice of IUI vs just timed relations each month - we did the latter due to our travel schedule) before we moved on to IVF. I was on standard Gonal F, ovidril, cetratide prior to egg retrieval and then progesterone in oil prior to embryo transfer.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Boston IVF. (Assigned nurse: Ashley)
The latter reviews for primary nurse are specifically for Sara and Ashley. In the first portion of my time with Dr Penzias I was treated by a rotating schedule of nurses which was frustrating. But when Sara was working she was very attentive, compassionate, super responsive and helpful and then when Ashley took over she was also amazing.
Describe your experience with Boston IVF.
Even though Boston IVF Waltham is a large center, it was a little clumsily run. Every time I would check in at the main front desk, there would be three employees sitting there chatting and I would rarely be pointed to the right place for secondary check-in. Oftentimes I was sent to wait by the blood testing wing and they would be calling my name in the other wing or vice versa, and have me marked as late for my appointment. The staff that were at the payment windows were also terribly unfriendly more often than not ... they'd be on their phones and roll their eyes when I approached asking if I pay for my appointment there. If you can look past these administrative issues, I was happy overall with my doctor when I got to see him, and the latter dedicated nurses I had were very helpful and caring.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF.
Our insurance ended up covering our IVF cycle, but we were quoted about 15k for the cycle. Diagnostic testing that was not covered by insurance amounted to about 2-3k, which came as a surprise to us and I would've elected not to do some of it (like for STDs).
What specific things went wrong at Boston IVF?
  • Failed to call in prescriptions to pharmacy
8
Doctor
Alan S. Penzias
Humanity
Communication
Frequency Seen
Trustworthiness
Compassion
Explained risks
Adaptability
6
Clinic
Boston IVF
Waltham
Operations
Scheduling
Billing Department
Nursing Staff
Clinic Atmosphere
Educational Resources
Verified

This patient has provided documentation of treatment at this clinic.

2016 - 2017, Unsuccessful
7
4
3 IVF
Diminished Ovarian Reserve
Poor Egg Quality
Income $100K - $199K
Entrepreneur
Only Doc Seen
Neutral
Doesn't Recommend
Unsuccessful
[Dr. Alan S. Penzias was] Knowledgeable but didn't have a great bedside manner. He was uncomfortable having conversations with me and I felt rushed. He did however respond via email which was nice. He promised to provide me with follow up information after my three failed IVF cycles but I nevermind heard from him.... Don't expect him to be there every step of the way. He is only there behind the scenes. You almost never have contact with him.
[Boston IVF has] Great hours. Always available for help. They are big so there's not too much personal care. I wish they provided free counseling after the failed cycles. I also wish there was more follow up after my treatments. They dropped me like a hot potato after the third failed round.... Don't expect him to be there every step of the way. He is only there behind the scenes. You almost never have contact with him.
How was your experience with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
Knowledgeable but didn't have a great bedside manner. He was uncomfortable having conversations with me and I felt rushed. He did however respond via email which was nice. He promised to provide me with follow up information after my three failed IVF cycles but I nevermind heard from him.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
Don't expect him to be there every step of the way. He is only there behind the scenes. You almost never have contact with him.
Describe your experience with Boston IVF.
Great hours. Always available for help. They are big so there's not too much personal care. I wish they provided free counseling after the failed cycles. I also wish there was more follow up after my treatments. They dropped me like a hot potato after the third failed round.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF.
With my insurance, I paid 7-10k for 2 rounds of IVF.
7
Doctor
Alan S. Penzias
Humanity
Communication
Frequency Seen
Trustworthiness
Compassion
Explained risks
Adaptability
4
Clinic
Boston IVF
Waltham
Operations
Scheduling
Billing Department
Nursing Staff
Clinic Atmosphere
Educational Resources
2017, Unsuccessful
8
8
Age 35
6 IVF
Diminished Ovarian Reserve
Male Factor
European
Income $100K - $199K
Doctor
2nd of 3 Docs
Neutral
Neutral
Unsuccessful
Lots of experience, lots of evidence based medicine---he [Dr Alan Penzias] was able to answer my questions with trials/studies. The clinic is massive, so you often have different docs for procedures. In general a very nice man who is helpful and open.... lupron flare for DOR. Decent results for what we expected... [Boston IVF- Waltham is a] Huge clinic which could be a strength since they have lots of experience, but also you may see other docs for the procedures. People are generally friendly. There is also a well being center on site for acupuncture/counseling (although we never utilized it). Because of how large the practice is, it was easier to find times which worked with my schedule.
[Boston IVF- Waltham is a] Huge clinic which could be a strength since they have lots of experience, but also you may see other docs for the procedures. People are generally friendly. There is also a well being center on site for acupuncture/counseling (although we never utilized it). Because of how large the practice is, it was easier to find times which worked with my schedule.
How was your experience with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
Lots of experience, lots of evidence based medicine---he was able to answer my questions with trials/studies. The clinic is massive, so you often have different docs for procedures. In general a very nice man who is helpful and open.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF?
Took plenty of time to explain things to us
Describe the protocols Alan S. Penzias used in your cycles at Boston IVF and their degree of success.
lupron flare for DOR. Decent results for what we expected
Describe your experience with the nursing staff at Boston IVF.
busy but generally helpful
Describe your experience with Boston IVF.
Huge clinic which could be a strength since they have lots of experience, but also you may see other docs for the procedures. People are generally friendly. There is also a well being center on site for acupuncture/counseling (although we never utilized it). Because of how large the practice is, it was easier to find times which worked with my schedule.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Alan S. Penzias at Boston IVF.
MA has great coverage
8
Doctor
Alan S. Penzias
Humanity
Communication
Frequency Seen
Trustworthiness
Compassion
Explained risks
Adaptability
8
Clinic
Boston IVF
Waltham
Operations
Scheduling
Billing Department
Nursing Staff
Clinic Atmosphere
Educational Resources