How was your experience with Juan Alvarez at Fertility Centers of Illinois?
I think that his strengths are everything previously described as why he treated me like a patient and not a number. He was very open and honest, flexible, understanding, compassionate, and helpful! He was interested in my thoughts and suggestions, never condescending, and was very open to trying anything we wanted without being pushy toward one treatment or another
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Juan Alvarez at Fertility Centers of Illinois?
Ask questions! Do not be intimidated thinking that you have any "stupid questions", because Dr. Alvarez will NEVER make you feel that way. He is so caring and honest and listened so so well!!
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Juan Alvarez at Fertility Centers of Illinois?
Dr. Alvarez was very straight forward with our potential from the start. He listened to every single concern that we had and elaborated well when we asked questions. He didn't dismiss my thoughts and suggestions, just being a novice (although I am in the medical field, just not a reproductive endocrinologist). He actually took things that I said and asked seriously and was willing to work with us and didnt push any treatment over another.
Describe the protocols Juan Alvarez used in your cycles at Fertility Centers of Illinois and their degree of success.
Dr. Alvarez was super excited about us trying Invocell for our first attempt before traditional IVF because we were concerned about cost of regular IVF and we were unexplained and fit all of the criteria for Invocell. He was very hopeful and produced exactly the amount of eggs we expected. We ended up with only one or two of our 7 eggs even fertilizing inside of the Invocell device and he was very clear that there was obviously an issue with fertilization (something you can't really test for with labs or ultrasound). When we had our chemical pregnancy from our one resulting embryo, he was very straightforward that due to poor fertilization, IVF with ICSI would be our best option. He never pushed us into it, or made us feel as though he was forcing us to choose right away. He gave us the option of taking our own time to decide, but was still honest about the time frame in which we should move forward if we wanted the best results, due to me already being 32 and having these fertilization issues. We took everything he gave us, and we made the decision to move forward with IVF with ICSI a few months later and our results were phenomenal. We had 12 eggs retrieved, and we made one expanded day 5 blastocyst, and six expanded day 6 perfect grade blastocysts. We could not be happier with our results. We are currently pregnant from our first transfer of our day 5 embryo!
Describe your experience with your nurse at Fertility Centers of Illinois. (Assigned nurse: Michelle)
Michelle was typically good at responding to my emails in a timely fashion. I do not think that any of the weaknesses were directly hers so much as the clinic itself. There are only 2 nurses that work at my particular clinic and some days there is only one, or there will be several days where there is only one if one is on vacation. During those times when there is only one nurse, communication would fail. Calls wouldn't be returned or emails would go unanswered. There were several instances in which medications were not ordered correctly, and if I weren't the type of person to triple check everything, I could have been short meds for my cycle, or given the wrong meds.
Describe your experience with Fertility Centers of Illinois.
Dr. Alvarez is great all around! I loved my experience with him and I think he is very knowledgeable and trustworthy! The short staffing of their nurses was a definite downfall during my experience, and I hope that they can better staff their Tinley Park clinic in the near future!! I am not sure if this is an issue at any other clinic. I had my retrievals and transfers at the River North campus and they were always wonderful!! They called with updates when they said they would, they were friendly, and very helpful. I also loved my ultrasound tech and phlebotomist that I typically worked with at Tinley Park! Kathy in ultrasound and Crystal in the lab (blood draw) were always amazing so early in the morning for all of my monitoring appointments, I actually looked forward to our random conversations! They kept me positive and kept my mind off of the current situation and never made it feel like I was at the doctors office. It was a joy to work with them!
Describe your experience with your monitoring appointments at Fertility Centers of Illinois.
Most of the time it was pretty easy to get in at the times I needed! I would be in and out in 15 minutes on 95% of my appointments. There was ONE appointment throughout two cycles (I cant remember if it was monitoring or follow up beta draws) that I waited over an hour for some reason and no one ever explained to me why I waited that long. But overall,it was a pretty well oiled machine for monitoring!
Describe the costs associated with your care under Juan Alvarez at Fertility Centers of Illinois.
I dont remember a TON of specifics with a breakdown, but Invocell cycle was $6500, my medications were quoted at $3000 I believe. IVF with icsi fresh transfer, was $11,500. Egg freezing for one year was $1200. Medications for full IVF cycle were approximately $5000.
Describe Juan Alvarez's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Fertility Centers of Illinois.
I am in the medical field, and I know the risks already to carrying multiples, so an elective single transfer was the only option for me personally anyway. Dr. Alvarez was very clear on the data and the risks and also the protocols set forth by the ASRM, though and I fully agreed with it!
What specific things went wrong at Fertility Centers of Illinois?
- Provided conflicting information
Describe the specific things that went wrong at Fertility Centers of Illinois.
There were just a few instances of lack of communication due to unreturned emails, or my nurse not double checking her orders or what she was sending to a pharmacy. My IVF meds were ordered incorrectly for both rounds and I found the error.