How was your experience with Eve Feinberg at Northwestern Medicine?
Eve was kind, and came highly regarded with a six month wait list. I'm sure the hype and high expectations is part of the reason why, in the end, I am rating her only a 6. For someone so well regarded I would have expected more personal attention. Instead, I only saw her at our first and last (after conceiving) appointments.
At the first appointment, I spent 45 minutes discussing my situation with a doctor in training, who then stepped out and took 5 minutes to relay it to Dr. Feinberg in private. When Dr. Feinberg entered the room for the first time, she sort of just jumped to a recommendation, and I felt like I didn't get to explain myself to her, after looking forward to this appointment for 6 months!! Who knows what details the student chose to relay. 20 minutes later, Eve gave me an ultrasound, said my ovaries and lining looked good visually, and that the nurse would book my follow-up diagnostic appointments. From that point onward, all communication - the IUI procedure, the follow-ups, the sharing of results were all done by nurse staff. If I had a question for Eve, a nurse would take the question and relay it to her, then the nurse would get back to me in 24 hours.
All in all, I feel that Eve is probably very knowledgeable based on the fact that other doctors only had flattering things to say. However, in my limited time with her (~5 months), I didn't see the reason for the hype. Based on all my research, she recommended treatments that I fully anticipated (3 IUIs without medication, then IVF). I felt I would have had the same/similar outcome with any other fertility doctor at the same practice. Perhaps if I was a more involved, or difficult case, her pedigree and expertise would have been more valuable. I guess should consider myself lucky that we achieved pregnancy without having to get into touch choices or recommendations.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Eve Feinberg at Northwestern Medicine?
Know that you will be in good hands with Eve, but don't expect that the heavens will open up during your first appointment. She is a busy lady, in extremely high demand and your time with her will be very limited. No one knows how long it will take them to get pregnant. In "quick" cases, Eve will likely not add value. However, you should your journey be a more challenging one, you have one of the best doctors on your side to help get you pregnant.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Eve Feinberg at Northwestern Medicine?
I only saw Eve 2x during the duration of my time with Northwestern. For 95% of appointments, I saw different nurses or technicians. You would sit in a waiting room and they might call several names at once, and take 3 of you down the hall to your respective treatment rooms. In one appointment, you might see 3-4 different nurses or technicians - one to take your blood, one to do your ultrasound, and yet another to read your results. With every new technician you had to state your birth date as the means of verifying who you are. This made me feel very much like a number.
Describe the protocols Eve Feinberg used in your cycles at Northwestern Medicine and their degree of success.
We came to Eve knowing that my husband had POOR fertility - as evidenced by 4 prior sperm tests (low motility, morphology, count and volume). I had taken a few tests with my OBGYN that showed my AMH and other levels were normal, so my hypothesis was that the issue was with my husband.
Eve said she agreed with me, but still suggested I go through the standard tests just to cross off any issues on my end (like blocked tubes). So I had more rounds of blood draws and was scheduled for an HSG, prior to undergoing IUI. I ended up cancelling the HSG because if my tubes were blocked there is very little that can be done about it. Besides, I was fine gong to IVF if IUI didn't work (at which point blocked tubes are a moot point).
When it came time for IUI I asked if I could do a 'natural' IUI, since the problem appeared to be on my husband's side and I didn't want to take needless medication. She agreed, so I proceeded without any clomid, letrozole, etc, but she recommended I still take a trigger shot to force ovulation once my egg was 19mm or larger. She said success rates are higher this way because there is less room for human error in tracking ovulation (with strips, or other method).
She recommended no more than 3 IUI cycles (after which point your odds don't increase) and that after that I start IVF.
Describe your experience with the nursing staff.
Several nurses, all very young. You get to know a few of them, but aren't assigned to a specific one. They were very responsive over MyChart, if you had a question. It just didn't feel very personal. However, when you are pregnant, a nurse will call you with the results.
Describe your experience with Northwestern Medicine.
Strengths: A responsive staff. Even if you feel like a number, you know you are in experienced practice that perform well over the number of recommended cycles in a year.
Weaknesses: You do feel like a number - especially without an assigned nurse. Having to restate your birth date to confirm your identity is tough mentally. You want to feel like people support you during this journey, but it's a lot of advocating for yourself.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Eve Feinberg at Northwestern Medicine.
Insurance covered the bloodwork and IUI. All in all I think I paid <$800