How was your experience with Jeffrey Fisch at Green Valley Fertility Partners?
I loved the staff at GVF but after my fourth failed IVF doing very similar protocols I had a feeling it was time for a change. He originally told me I would get a lot of eggs (about 20) but at retrieval, the numbers were cut in half (about 10) and only 3 or 4 would fertilize. He kept saying it was a numbers game and it could be the sperm it was always a wishy-washy answer. He seemed to want to stick to a very canned approach when I discussed trying something different. I confirm my suspicions after sending my medical records to two other RE's. My new RE discovered I had polyps (that may have caused a pregnancy to fail) that Dr. Fisch never found. After I got on a new protocol, my new RE not only got twice as many eggs at retrieval (23) but all my eggs mature eggs (18) fertilized. When I asked Doctor Fisch why so few fertilized he told me TESE sperm usually only fertilizes 50% or less, but my new RE got 17 out of 18 eggs fertilized with frozen sperm.
Plus, my new doctor told me things about the medical records I would have never known even though I asked Dr. Fisch about them. Like, how my last embryo transfer was from an embryo that was probably never going to make a viable pregnancy because it was the only embryo out of the batch that didn't fertilize properly originally.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Jeffrey Fisch at Green Valley Fertility Partners?
My take is -- if you are young and want to do a FRESH transfer Doctor Fisch is probably great. If you are over 35 or want to do a frozen transfer, I would recommend finding a doctor who is more flexible with changing protocol.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Jeffrey Fisch at Green Valley Fertility Partners?
Everybody at GVF was great. Very personable and for the most part easy to ask questions
Describe the protocols Jeffrey Fisch used in your cycles at Green Valley Fertility Partners and their degree of success.
Doctor Fisch used about the same protocol on me over and over. I stimmed with 450 Gonal F first two days then lowered to 300 Gonal F for the remaining days, at the end of each cycle added 75 IU's of Menopur while lowering Gonal F every other day. He used Cetrotide to prevent ovulation. Every time the expectation was to get around 20 eggs, but instead, I got about 10 eggs for each of the 4 rounds of IVF. He told me sometimes that happens when they expect to retrieve more eggs.
He decided not to move forward with one cycle because I had a lead follicle growing too fast, but the next month they did the same thing (almost an oversight on their part was my thought). However, this time he decided to move forward with the cycle. I asked if I could do a 3-day transfer, he said he only did Day 5 embryos transfers. But my embryos rarely made it to Day 5 with Doctor Fisch. I also asked to use Omnitrope, which he prescribed but decided not to use in the end because he was afraid it would cause the lead follicles to grow too fast compared to the smaller ones.
I was able to confirm my concerns about my time with Doctor Fisch only after consulting several new RE's and choosing a new one. My new RE changed my protocol adding a higher dose of Gonal F and Omnitrope into my cycle. I got more than twice as many eggs retrieved (23) than with Doctor Fisch. And all of the mature ones (18) fertilized, unlike Doctor Fisch's office who could only ever get 3 - 4 fertilize each cycle. I got five embryos at Day 5 to freeze/biopsy with my new doc. Unfortunately, it took me a long time to realize doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity. I got a better result in one round of IVF compared to the four I did with Doctor Fisch. My advice, if you are older and just starting IVF, don't settle for one RE too long if your instinct tells you there are problems. Trust your instinct, if you feel like something is wrong, get a second opinion. I personally wouldn't recommend Doctor Fisch for older patients.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Green Valley Fertility Partners.
Everyone on the staff was amazing although I thought the LPN clinical manager didn't show interest after my second cycle. There were a lot of things that fell through the cracks and they seemed to lose interest after so many failed cycles.
Describe your experience with Green Valley Fertility Partners.
I love the staff. They were kind and always had time for me. I loved how Doctor Fisch took the time to call me personally with updates after my retrieval. He was quirky, but that's kind of what I enjoyed about him.
I still have questions about the lab's ability to grow embryos. I had about ten eggs for each of my four cycles but only 3 or four would ever fertilize with ICSI and TESE sperm. And getting them out to Day 5 also seemed problematic too, which also made me wonder if there was a lab issue. At Doctor Fisch's clinic, I only ever had 1 or two embryos make it to Day 5. I realized it may be an egg quality issue, but my instinct told me to get another opinion.
My gut feeling was confirmed when I switched RE's for a 5th cycle. Not only did I get twice as many eggs at retrieval (23), but 18 out of 18 (all the mature ones) fertilized. Doctor Fisch said I should only expect < half to fertilize with frozen sperm, but my new doc said that's not at all true. Obviously, all the concerns turned out true. I had five embryos make it to Day 5 at a new facility more than all the previous cycles combined at GVF.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Jeffrey Fisch at Green Valley Fertility Partners.
I bought two pkg cycle for $15,500. It included free transfers until I was pregnant for up to a year. I got a discount for the next two cycles. They were $5000 each. Cycles included bloodwork. Anesthesia was $450, which was a separate cost and I paid for all my meds separately too.
Describe Jeffrey Fisch's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Green Valley Fertility Partners.
He liked doing fresh transfers better than frozen and he talked about how he got better results from frozen transfers. He wouldn't do a Day 3 transfer when I asked him if we could try it since Day 5 transfers didn't seem to be an option with him.
What specific things went wrong at Green Valley Fertility Partners?
- Provided conflicting information
- Failed to convey critical information
Describe the specific things that went wrong at Green Valley Fertility Partners.
I think that the more cycles I tried to do with them, the laxer they got about taking care of me like they did when I first started IVF with them. A couple time my appointment times were different than what I originally scheduled (but they still took me in). I also had troubles getting answers about meds I needed before my last round with them. Once my cycle was canceled because I had a follicle grow too fast among the rest, but when we canceled until the next month a similar mistake was made because I was never told to change how I was taking my birth control.