How was your experience with Maureen "Moe" Schulte at SIRM St Louis (Sher institute for Reproductive Medicine)?
The entire staff at SIRM was a complete Godsend for my husband and I in 2019. I was diagnosed with stage 3 colorectal cancer at the age of 31. Just 48 hours before, I had been playing with my wiggly and growing nephews with the desire to be a mom. Before my diagnosis, I thought our pregnancy journey would begin just a few months later in summer 2019.
Our “normal” life was stripped from us. We met with my radiation oncologist, oncologist and surgeon. For the first time in my life, I felt extremely hopeless when we were informed that I would very likely become infertile from radiation and chemotherapy. Our only option was invitro fertilization (IVF) and then surrogacy. Seeing that I had almost a complete obstruction in my rectum, my healthcare team was hesitant to allow fertility treatment to proceed. However, given my age and my current childless state, I was given the green light with specific instructions that I had three weeks to undergo IVF and then cancer treatment started.
Following referral from a close friend, I contacted SIRM the next day. I felt battered, beaten down and extremely fragile. In all honestly, I had an extremely negative attitude and felt powerless to my situation. Andrea McClain answered the phone. From the first interaction, we felt relief. Although booked solid, Andrea opened Dr. Maureen Schulte’s schedule for us to arrive the next day as a “rescue retrieval” case. We drove there in silence. The fear was palpable. We needed a win, however small, that day.
Insert Dr. Moe. I arrived at SIRM with little to no hope. I did not understand the IVF process. I had no idea if I was fertile. All I knew was that I had aggressive cancer and we had one shot to have a family genetically. Five hours later, I left SIRM rejuvenated with hope and encouragement that I was being taken care of by the best doctors before cancer treatment started.
Dr. Moe took on my case as if we were long-time friends or immediate family members. Absolutely every single interaction was heartfelt, honest and meaningful. During the 10-day hormone injection period, Dr. Moe sent daily text messages of encouragement, support and love. To be honest, I often felt like I was Dr. Moe’s only patient during our egg retrieval because she was genuinely concerned about our health journey. It was extremely obvious that our situation was just as important to her as it was to us.
Dr. Moe called to inform us that we had genetically normal embryos waiting for us when I was cancer free. To be Dr. Moe’s first “rescue retrieval” was a gift. When I had little hope and the possibility of having a family felt like it was slipping away, I received encouragement, love and tons of hugs from every single member of the SIRM family. Every individual, from the front desk, to lab technicians, to our administrative gurus and Dr. Moe, made our world seem a little less scary.
When I wanted to quit during my six months of chemotherapy, our future family kept me going more times than I can count. We dreamt of our family more in the last six months than ever before. That dream will one day become a reality because of Dr. Moe and her talented team.
Dr. Moe is living her calling in life. It is insanely obvious that she fully invests in her patients through her witty and adorable bedside manner, personal touch and follow-up interactions.
As a past patient and cancer survivor, I highly recommend SIRM for all your fertility needs. Make the right choice. Choose SIRM today.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Maureen "Moe" Schulte at SIRM St Louis (Sher institute for Reproductive Medicine)?
Do not be intimidated by the process. You are with the best. She will make you feel taken cared of and do everything in her power to help you start your family.
Describe your experience with your nurse at SIRM St Louis (Sher institute for Reproductive Medicine). (Assigned nurse: MerryKay Montgomery)
Every single time I walked into the clinic, I felt like the only patient. The level of compassion and care was obvious and much needed.
Describe your experience with SIRM St Louis (Sher institute for Reproductive Medicine).
Knowledgeable. Compassionate. Caring. Loving. Having been recently diagnosed with cancer, the team of healthcare professionals at SIRM made me feel like having a family was not a dream but a reality someday post cancer. They provided me with a level of confidence I lost after I was diagnosed. Every interaction was positive and refreshing.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Maureen "Moe" Schulte at SIRM St Louis (Sher institute for Reproductive Medicine).
Roughly $5,000 for certain medications and genetic testing. My insurance covered the rest of the costs.