How was your experience with Paula Brady at Columbia University?
I absolutely adore Dr. Brady. She is so thorough and thoughtful, always considering what more we can do to achieve a healthy pregnancy. She treats me as an intellectual equal and answers all my questions without ever rushing me or making me feel like my questions are silly. She was new to the clinic after my first round of IUI and I am so grateful to have switched to her care. I feel like she is fully invested in my case and always up to date on the latest research. Of all the doctors I have seen at the clinic, she is the most warm and personable. I seriously can't say enough about her. She is absolutely the best.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Paula Brady at Columbia University?
Ask all the fertility questions you have ever had! She will answer all of them!
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Paula Brady at Columbia University?
Dr. Brady has taken the time to really get to know me. She remembers everything that is going on with me, including in my life outside of fertility treatments, and checks in with me personally. I email her often with questions and she is always prompt to reply. When I had my first miscarriage, she seemed almost as upset as I was and offered a much needed hug. She is just personable and authentically human.
Describe the protocols Paula Brady used in your cycles at Columbia University and their degree of success.
With my first round of IUI, the Clomid caused ovarian cysts that took a while to go away. After that she switched me to Letrozole and I had no problem with it. When I began IVF, she monitored my follicles closely and raised the dose of Gonal-f and Menopur as she felt necessary. Considering my low reserve, I had a good egg yield during that cycle so she kept my doses the same during the next one. After my first round of IVF, I waited to do a frozen transfer and it didn't take so after the second round, we did a fresh transfer. All along Dr. Brady has been recommending that we do genetic testing of the embryos but we declined because of cost. In my first pregnancy, we had heard a heartbeat at 7 weeks and everything was proceeding normally. Then, when I went in for my last appointment with the clinic, Dr. Brady discovered at that time that the baby's heart had stopped beating. In disbelief, I asked the next day if she could check again and she invited me in and even had another doctor take a look. She recommended a D&C and testing of the contents of conception. The results of the testing showed that the baby had trisomy 9. I was grateful to know this as it helped bring closure to the loss. After that, Dr. Brady proceeded with additional testing (including additional blood panels and an endometrial biopsy) to make sure we cover all our bases before doing another transfer. I just lost my second pregnancy very suddenly at 6 weeks and when I informed Dr. Brady, she asked me to bring in the tissue I had passed so she could send it off for testing. She wants to schedule a meeting with my husband and I next week to discuss additional genetic testing and how we can try to prevent additional miscarriages.
Describe your experience with your nurse at Columbia University. (Assigned nurse: Karen)
Karen was my nurse until she left just recently. She always provided very clear instructions and seemed very caring. Her replacement seems a little less warm and less clear about instructions but I will see how she does moving forward.
Describe your experience with Columbia University.
When I was a new patient, the clinic was just moving to a newly renovated penthouse office in the same building. The new clinic carries all the state-of-the-art equipment and it is a beautiful office. I don't think I would ever leave this clinic. All the doctors are super knowledgeable and professional and the rest of the staff is so friendly and warm. They all know me by name at this point and they seem genuinely interested in talking with me. The office is also very efficient. I never wait very long at all for morning monitoring or procedures. Everything about this place is great and I can't imagine going anywhere else.
Describe your experience with your monitoring appointments at Columbia University.
Monitoring is super easy and fast. Monitoring occurs from 7am until 9:30am, 7 days a week. I am particularly grateful for the early hours because it takes at least 45 minutes to get from the clinic to my school (I am a teacher) and I can still make it to work on time if I go in at 7am. Since everyone at the clinic is always so pleasant and friendly, it's not a bad way to start the day. They really make it painless to have to get up a little earlier to go to a monitoring appointment before work.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Paula Brady at Columbia University.
Each procedure has been different so it's difficult to say what each cost has been. Also, my insurance covers some parts of treatment. So far, we have spent around $5,000 total.
Describe Paula Brady's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at Columbia University.
Dr. Brady has been adamant about transferring one embryo at a time for the health and safety of both me and my future child. At this point, I only have 2 frozen embryos left and one didn't make it to the blastocyst stage until day 7 which apparently means it's of lesser quality. Dr. Brady previously mentioned transferring those last 2 together so I am going to follow up with her about that the next time I see her.