How was your experience with Monica Pasternak at Spring Fertility?
I saw Dr. Pasternak about 3 times while I was at Spring. 2 times for appointments to monitor my IVF cycle (where she just measured my lining an counted number of eggs). She performed those competently. However, her weakness was, as I've stated in the embryo transfer. Dr. Pasternak has not been practicing for many years, and I suspect that her ego was committed to finishing the embryo transfer at all costs, rather than thinking about me as a patient or my future child. If she had, she would have stopped when she was having difficulty after 5 minutes (not 30/while/ I was in massive pain), obtained her supervisor, and explained that she had spent 30 minutes in my uterus, so that implantation would have been impossible. She would have explained that implantation was impossible and that I had the option to refreeze my embryo, and try again. She did none of those things. She simply continued to cause blood to enter my uterus, causing me to lose a 5AA embryo at age 43.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Monica Pasternak at Spring Fertility?
think Dr. Pasternak is fine for basic monitoring of lining and counting of eggs for IVF, becuase she doesn't make any decisions there. She just reports the information to the supervisor/doctor you have hired and they instruct on next steps. However, I would not let her touch you for an egg retrieval, an IUI, or an embryo transfer. From my experience, she can't take responsibility when she makes errors. To err is human, but to continue to err and jeapordize a patient once a Doctor realizes harm is antithetical to the Hippocrates oath of "Do no harm."
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Monica Pasternak at Spring Fertility?
Dr. Pasternak completed my embryo transfer. I had a PGS tested, day 5, 5AA Embryo, the best embryo one can have She spent over 30 minutes trying to find my uterus and was unable to do so. She ended up causing me so much pain throughout this 30 minute process, and I later found out from medical experts after the fact that her insertion of the catheter into my uterus would have caused implantation to be impossible. I felt like a number rather than a human because she continued to just try, allowing blood to enter my uterus, leading to a chemical pregnancy. At no time did she let me know that there was another option here - which I found out later - to just freeze my embryo and schedule another appointment, given that implantation failure was a definite due to her errors. I ended up having a chemical pregnancy and losing the best embryo I have ever received. At age 43, I don't have many other chances. Dr. Pasternak put her need to insert the embryo over preserving my embryo. She made me feel like just a number on her list of embryos to implant and put herself first before my future child.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Spring Fertility. (Assigned nurse: Irina)
Irina was a wonderful nurse. Totally organized, compassionate, could not ask for a better nurse.
Describe your experience with Spring Fertility.
Strengths: Dr. Minjarez is an excellent doctor who oversaw my IVF protocol and got me an amazing result. She is able to think outside of the box, and really tailor treatment to the particular patient.
Weaknesses: In my opinion (and I emphasize this is my opinion and not fact), Spring is growing at a remarkably fast rate. Many IVF clinics are receiving Private Equity funding, and are becoming more profit driven. They are hiring many new doctors, and many of those doctors are the ones assigned the embryo transfers, retrievals, etc. However, based on my experience with Dr. Pasternak, she was not trained well. And particularly not trained well for what to do when there is difficulty. Difficulty is expected in the medical field and doctors need to have a game plan for that.
Another weakness is that after my exprience, I asked to speak to Dr. Pasternak, and was sent a quick email telling me not to worry rather than get on the phone with me after this traumatic incident.
Lastly, I found this clinic to be too lax with Covid restrictions. I had to tell two of the doctors that their masks were falling off and their noses were not covered. This was in the middle of the height of the pandemic. Additionally, I had three incidences of people in the waiting room not wearing masks and the receptionist in charge was not enforcing the mask policy.
Describe Monica Pasternak's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Spring Fertility.
1 as I had a PGT tested embryo of the highest possible quality
What specific things went wrong at Spring Fertility?
- Failed to convey critical information
- Lost or damaged samples
Describe the specific things that went wrong at Spring Fertility.
The night before egg retrieval, one has to inject a drug. The instructions given to me were incorrect. I only knew this because I have had egg retrievals prior to this. When I called the doctor on staff that night and left a message, I did not receive a call back. However, the injectable must be timed perfectly, so a callback was necessary. I followed up - she gave me other instructions- which I then told her I thought were not accurate. At that point, she apologized and told me she had me confused with another patient. She then said she'd have to check with the nurse on the instructions to my injectable. All in all, everything went okay, because (1) I've had experience with egg retrievals before (2) I'm great at advocating for myself. However, what about the women who are doing this for the first time and do not feel comfortable speaking up to a doctor? I'm writing this review for those women!