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Expecting too much from IVF clinic?

(7 Posts)
Luxnuova Thu 01-Jun-17 22:43:14

We just had our first (failed) round of IVF. It could be that I'm channelling my disappointment into anger, but several things have really frustrated me about the care we received. I don't know if I'm being unreasonable, so thought I'd check in with others. I'm finding it hard to get any info as we're based in NZ, so there is very little choice of clinics, not a great deal of info online, and not much government support.

I'd be so grateful if others would mention their experiences and expectations, so I can get a gauge on whether I'm just fixating. We don't have any other experience of private medical care (NZ has a good public system, and private sector not as developed here), so guess we were hoping for far more consistency/ pastoral support, etc.

Everyone was generally kind to us, so no concerns about rudeness or anything. But, at no stage did anyone explain the protocol I was on, or the medication. I only saw my doctor once during the cycle, for an ultrasound - he did not do the EC or have any follow-up. The nurse we spoke with first left mid-way through my cycle without anyone telling us. We spoke with a different nurse every time, and when got our results it was someone who had had no contact during the cycle. We were not informed prior to EC that embryos wouldn't be checked at 3 days (I posted about this earlier). They didn't check my lining before transfer (though I don't know if this is standard).

I also have a feeling that they have a rather cookie-cutter approach to protocol. I was on short protocol, and that seems like their default. Nobody told me why, or explained what they were hoping for. Nobody told me how my body was reacting or if things were on track at ultrasound. I have a feeling they'll simply try again with the same protocol and meds, even though it didn't work. I think the implant failure will be put down to 'one of those things'.

So, my question is - how normal is this? I thought there'd be more continuity of care, more of a personal approach, and more explanation. We felt particularly abandoned after transfer - result was really perfunctory, and no personal follow-up from Dr (though I already knew at this stage).

One factor is that I've been listening to this podcast (which I highly recommend for all going through IVF - Matt and Doree's Eggcellent Adventure) - and the woman's expectations for her Dr seem fairly high in terms of comms, etc. It's American, though, and the privatised system more developed there. The treatment sounds much more tailored, much more detailed and individual.

I just feel - we're spending $13,000+ for a single cycle, and they can't even pick up the phone? Anyone else have frustrations like this?

Gaggleofgirls Thu 01-Jun-17 22:54:50

Hiya, sorry about it failing and the obvious bitter disappointment that brings anyway without anything else.

I'm in the U.K. So I can only really relay my experience from over here.

The first thing is about consistency, we saw the same nurse and doctors (one at appointments and another for each procedure). This I felt reassured us greatly, they were very informative although I think I did kind of over do it on the questions.

I had several scans throughout to determine the correct 'environment' and had to have one only four days later to make sure it was exactly right.

We had follow up consultations both to find out results and to ask how we wished to continue after a failed attempt.

I personally would complain and just voice your concerns. Be very specific and maybe ask them what they suggest to maintain consistency? Fertility treatment is a horrible process to have to go through and the mental strain is unreal without added concerns, they should be thoroughly reassuring you that they're doing everything in their power to help.

Good luck lovely, we got our daughter after our failed attempt so don't feel too downheartened. I will never forget the struggles and you will appreciate your resilience once you're through it xx

stealthbanana Fri 02-Jun-17 08:52:34

There are a wide range of approaches to communication and it's not unusual to not have continuity of care. I agree with you that at $13k+ you'd expect it, but not everyone offers it.

HOWEVER, not checking your lining before transfer is negligent. How do you know that you're transferring into a sufficient uterine environment without doing that? How did they even do the transfer without seeing your lining? I don't understand that at all.

blackcherries Fri 02-Jun-17 13:45:19

I'll pm you OP

Luxnuova Sat 03-Jun-17 01:36:50

Thank you so much to all who responded. Thanks Gaggle for the words of encouragement. I do so hope you're right and we have a successful experience like yours.

It sounds like the lack of continuity of care is common. They did actually warn us about it. I just think that, especially due to emotional nature of treatment, they could have mitigated it by communicating better. Or introduced us to the nurses or something. Or at least told us about the rationale behind different things. The doctors may communicate amongst themselves, but from our perspective we don't necessarily know this - so you're in the dark throughout.

One of the worst elements was hearing the results from someone we'd never met or talked to. We do have a follow-up appointment, but it was scheduled for three weeks after our results. That feels a long time to be hanging in limbo, wondering what went wrong or what to think.

I will talk to them further about the lining thing. It's entirely possible they did check it before transfer - but because nothing was mentioned to us, about what they're looking for or anything, I just don't know.

I do realise we're probably being a bit unreasonable, as I don't necessarily think the care was sub-standard. But, I think it's what you said gaggle - you're under so much mental strain and there were so many ways they could have made us feel they were doing their best, that we were individuals with individual issues rather than just cogs in the machine, etc. We have actually gone to the clinic with our feelings and they've been very good and have scheduled a quicker follow-up. Now I feel a bit bad that we've complained, but we'll see.

Blondeshavemorefun Sat 03-Jun-17 08:10:46

I don't understand why they didn't check your lining - if was too thin or thick then limits your chances hugely

We did see the same nurse at every scan but consultant in uk clinic only at ec and et after first initial chat

Abroad we saw consultant every time and he spoke to us on the phone after had scans done locally and results emailed to them to rely the info

Sounds like your clinic could have done more tbh

Sorry the cycle didn't work. It's awful when fails 😢😢🌷🌷

JoJoSM2 Sat 03-Jun-17 10:12:35

We're only about to have our first cycle. However, so far no one has mentioned any rationales for things except the doctor dissuading us from PGS and explaining why he'd only transfer 1 embryo. However, we have received a booklet with a lot of general information in it.

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