Which Kind of Fertility Doctor Is the Best One for You?
Searching for “your own” doctor for fertility treatment is a task that definitely needs your attention. Important factors are not only qualifications and experience in the treatment of infertility, but also the willingness of the doctor to understand your needs and develop individual approaches based on health conditions and support you throughout the reproductive program.
- 🩺 Which doctors treat infertility?
- 🤰 How to find the right infertility specialist?
- ⭐ What should I look for when choosing a doctor?
- 💊 What questions should you ask when choosing a specialist?
- ✔ How do you know when to see another doctor?
- 📝 Protect your interests
Before you start looking for a specialist, read the information about the possible causes of infertility, treatment methods (IVF, ICSI, IUI), assisted reproductive technologies (surrogate motherhood, egg/sperm donation). This will help you formulate important questions and ask them the doctors you are potentially considering for your treatment.
Which doctors treat infertility?
You can be treated by your obstetrician-gynecologist in the event that he has training in the field of infertility diagnostics, an experience and successful cases in overcoming it.
You will also need the help of a certified reproductive endocrinologist who passed training in the field of diagnosis and treatment of infertility in women and men.
For checking fertility in men, a consultation and examination by an andrologist-urologist who has passed a specialized training and who is certified in the treatment of male infertility, will be needed.
How to find the right infertility specialist?
The first step for people who have doubts about their fertility, as a rule, is to contact a gynecologist (women) or their treating doctor (men). This allows you to get the first consultation, possibly to diagnose infertility, and in some cases, start treatment.
If your insurance plan includes fertility treatment, you may need a referral from your treating doctor before you see the specialist. At this stage, you can ask questions about the specialist you are being referred to. Does he have experience with patients who have had reproductive health problems similar to yours?
Some information about doctors can be obtained on websites with ratings of clinics and infertility specialists. Informative customer reviews (preferably video) will help form the first impression. The American Medical Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists maintain databases of physicians that can be searched by name, city, or zip code. Another source of information can be the Directory of Medical Professionals, which lists obstetricians and gynecologists with details of their special training. There are also government programs that allow you to learn about the specialists you need, their assessments from patients. For example, in Ukraine this is the Helsi.me service.
Most experts and people who have undergone fertility treatment recommend contacting a specialist in a reproductive clinic if you have problems conceiving after a year of regular intercourse without contraception. If a woman has reached 35 years - after 6 months.
Turning to specialized experts (reproductive endocrinologist, urologist-andrologist) is all the more recommended if a woman has had miscarriages, irregularities of menstrual cycle or infections of the pelvic organs. For men, treatment is relevant in case of a poor spermogram result (a small number or absence of spermatozoa, a violation of their functionality).
What should I look for when choosing a doctor?
A competent specialist is active, interested in new knowledge, is a member of communities, participates in seminars or courses. These data are public, and the specialist tries to declare his certificates and diplomas.In addition to qualifications, the feeling of confidence and support during the consultation, the feeling of the doctor as an ally, is very important. Detachment, cold indifference or neglect is a signal to change the doctor. If a specialist is not gentle with you, rushes you, does not consider it necessary to tell you in detail about treatment options or explain the prescription of drugs or procedures - do not waste time. A reproductive program is already a difficult test, and with such an attitude of a specialist, it can become difficult and even lead to depression.
Good signs: a doctor listens to you carefully, answers all questions in detail, supports you and is ready to listen to your needs in developing a treatment plan.
Important: if you have health insurance, it is advisable to choose a doctor from your insurance plan's network of specialists. Candidates can be found in a directory on the insurance agency's website or in their promotional products. This will give you confidence in their qualifications: candidates undergo certification carried out by health insurance agencies. Thanks to this step, you will also be able to save money..
What questions should you ask when choosing a specialist?
National Infertility Association Resolve can offer you a referral to reproductive endocrinologist. In addition, Resolve has developed recommendations for interviews with doctors, as well as a list of important questions:
- Where and when did you receive your medical education?
- Do you have a certification in reproductive endocrinology?
- How long have you been practicing in fertility treatment?
- How, when and who can I contact if I have questions? Can this be done during off hours?
- Is it possible to assign examinations and procedures on weekends?
- What clinic or hospital do you work with?
- What insurance plans do you work with?
- Are there funding programs and/or phased payments?
- What is the cost of treatment? Does it include tests, procedures and medications?
- Do you carry out IVF and other modern reproductive procedures?
- Does the clinic offer services of egg donors and sperm donors?
- Can you disclose statistics on successful reproductive programs at your clinic for women in my age group?
- Can you prepare a detailed treatment plan with the tests and procedures I need?
Discuss mutual expectations:
- A measure of the doctor's authoritarianism (the balance between following a patient’s needs and the ability to insist on compliance).
- How much risk are you willing to take on?
- What difficulties is your family willing to go through for the birth of a child?
- What is the doctor's opinion regarding the contribution of patients to the program?
It is recommended to carry out a cycle of interviews with several specialists to have enough information and make a choice.
How do you know when to see another doctor?
Infertility treatment takes place against the backdrop of increased emotionality, which is why patients often experience problems with an adequate assessment of their doctor. Remember that you have the right to seek help from another specialist if you are in doubt about receiving proper treatment.
Here are some signs that indicate the need to change doctors:
- Pregnancy did not occur after 3-4 courses, but you are offered to continue the course of treatment;
- You do not have the opportunity to ask all the questions that worry you, or the doctor does not pay attention to them;
- You often have to remind the specialist about the treatment plan or ask for the required tests;
- Treatment is not controlled by blood tests and ultrasound.
Protect your interests
Even if you choose a good doctor from the first time and work with him, remember your right to protect your interests by asking as many questions as you like and monitoring adherence to the treatment plan.
Some patients of reproductive clinics had complaints about the lack of proper attention to them from the doctor. This was expressed in the need to independently draw up and control the schedule of procedures, for which it was necessary to deeply dive into the study of the medical subtleties of the infertility treatment process. Such neglect of the interests of patients is especially fraught if the woman is over 40 years old, when time is very precious. There were also quite egregious situations when a doctor went on vacation without taking care of the necessary permits for undergoing tests and procedures.
Do not neglect the study of information about the process of infertility treatment, follow the schedule of procedures and tests - if you get a negative experience with the chosen doctor, you can quickly take a decision and turn to another specialist.
If you dream of a reliable doctor who will be in contact with you from the first contact, will guide you through the entire pregnancy until you leave home with your baby, Feskov Human Reproduction Group offers any of its doctors.
Our careful attitude to patients, as well as the success of infertility treatment, is confirmed by a series of video reviews from happy parents from all over the world. Check out our YouTube channel and see our reliability.
We will not only surround you with care, but we will guaranteedly make you parents. You will definitely have a baby!
Our doctors are ready to be interviewed and answer all your questions - request a consultation from the manager on our website!
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