How was your experience with Bruce Bateman at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia?
When I started my infertility journey in 1999, things were very different. The current treatment of that archaic time was to cut out a wedge of my ovary to “kickstart” it.
With Dr. Bateman everything he recommended was researched-based and progressive. He never recommended fertility drugs like Clomid, I did 14 cycles of that in 2000. He read my medical history and knew I did not need to go back to that stage. When the IUI did not work, he was the one who said IVF with ICSI was needed due to my husband’s inconsistent sperm counts and motility. When the two fresh embryos did not take when a colleague put them in, he recommended assisted hatching. This cycle, four years later, Now includes assisted hatching in its basic costs. Every “setback” was seen by him as another step. He never once made me feel that a baby was not just around the corner. He kept hope even when we were stressed and losing faith. His calm manner was contagious.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Bruce Bateman at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia?
Don’t do a fresh transfer, let your body go back to equilibrium.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Bruce Bateman at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia?
Dr. Bateman put in my twins in 2014. When I went back last month to put in my last remaining frozen embryo, he remembered me. With the numerous people he sees on a daily basis, he took time to talk to me before the FET and hold my hand and wish me luck when it was complete. Both FETs he did resulted in pregnancies. I’m currently 16 days with baby three after starting this process in 1999!
Describe the protocols Bruce Bateman used in your cycles at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia and their degree of success.
Skipped Clomid because of my 2000 records.
Started with prelim tests to check for causes of infertility. No blockages in tubes, good egg reserve, high thyroid, PCOS, low sperm count and motility.
Did IUI because we requested.
Did egg retrieval protocol with Gonal F and frequent ovary checks.
Egg retrieval followed by fresh transfer. ICSI and 2 fresh 5 day blasts used. Three additional blasts frozen on day five. Unsuccessful
Frozen Embryo Transfer using assisted hatching at age 38. Twins. I think same meds last time as this time.
Frozen Embryo Transfer age 42. 16 days pregnant. Medications this time were birth control, estrace, lupron, progesterone in oil and progesterone suppositories. And thyroid meds.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia. (Assigned nurse: Stephanie Barrix)
Stephanie knew me by name and was there the day I found out it was twins. I went in early (5weeks) because I was bleeding. I was so worried. Dr. Bateman was calm and looking at the ultrasound machine. For the first time it was faced away from me. Stephanie was standing right behind him. I knew when I saw her smile from ear to ear that everything was okay. Then they turned around the screen and I saw the two sacs for myself. I was not the only one tearing up.
She was also the one to call me the first time with the fresh transfer and break the news that it was not a pregnancy. I would not want that part of her job for all the money in the world. She is a blessing.
Finally, at the end of my egg retrieval cycle in 2014, when they kept upping my dose until I was at four vials a day, I ended up running short mere days before the trigger shot. She packed a small bag for me that had the necessary meds so I did not have to pay extra for overnight delivery. (Now they all seem to deliver overnight.)
Describe your experience with Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia.
Overall I would rate this clinic a 10/10. Every step, from diagnosis to treatment, made sense and gave me hope. A friend referred me here. She had her son via an IUI.
On my first visit, they did preliminary tests and actually sat and read 12 years of prior records! Dr. Smith sat with me for almost an hour and answered my laundry list of questions. I felt at ease and hopeful for the very first time. Additionally, things moved quickly. After more than a decade of vague answers, I walked out of this clinic in less than a year pregnant with twins. Is it any wonder I went back this year to see if my frozen baby would take?
Describe the costs associated with your care under Bruce Bateman at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia.
My insurance paid for testing until I got a diagnosis. After that, we paid around 500 plus meds for the IUIs. We were approved for the $20k shared risk program, but at the last minute went with the $12k procedure which included egg retrieval, ICSI, and transfer. The following FET cycles cost $2850. Meds for the egg retrieval ran about $3K and about $700 for the transfers. Costs have changed since I first went; for example, assisted hatching is included in the price now. My first FET was $2500 with $650 added for AH. Now everyone pays the $2850.
In reality, the only thing that slowed down our journey to parenthood was money. I took us right at a year to save the money for the four months of treatment (2IUIs, 1 fresh ICSI IVF, 1 frozen ICSI, AH, IVF) we ended up doing.
Describe Bruce Bateman's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Reproductive Medicine & Surgery Center of Virginia.
I was 38 and had been seeking fertility treatments for 14 years. By the time we were recommended to Dr. Bateman, we were serious about having at least one. We were counseled about multiple births and selected 2 for the fresh and 2 more for the frozen. He gave us guidelines, but the final choice within those guidelines was ours.