We know that taking this first step is one that involves anxiety, a ton of questions, and hopefully a little excitement for what lies ahead. To help you feel more at ease and prepare you for your first visit, we’ve put together a step-by-step list of what to expect.
Before your appointment, you will need to collect all relevant medical data for your reproductive endocrinologist to review. The more information you can provide, the better and quicker your doctor can plan your next steps.
Examples of relevant documents may include (for both partners):
- Menstrual cycle tracking information (when cycle began, duration of cycle, cycle history)
- Month/year when you started trying to conceive
- Dates of any pregnancy losses, and the circumstances
- Documentation of any prior fertility treatment received (this includes ovulation induction with an Ob/Gyn)
- Documentation of any medical diagnoses for both partners that can impact fertility potential (e.g. cancer diagnosis, PCOS, endometriosis)
- Test results pertaining to fertility potential for either partner
Prior to your appointment, you will need to complete the New Patient Information received in your appointment confirmation email for both partners. This paperwork includes most of the information listed above. You will need to bring your driver’s license, insurance card, and a doctor’s referral if required.
You will also want to speak with your employer and/or insurance company to confirm insurance coverage. Click here for a step-by-step guide on how to determine your coverage. We also have a team of Insurance Benefit Verifiers to help.
Meeting With Your Doctor
Now that you’ve completed all of the prep work, it’s time to meet with your physician to discuss your history and your fertility treatment plan. You then are asked to share every detail, concern, and experience you’ve had on your journey to parenthood with your doctor. You won’t be rushed during this meeting – you are encouraged to take as long as you need; your doctor is there to listen and answer all of your questions.
Once all of your information has been reviewed and discussed, your physician can recommend the best treatment options for you and explain the treatment process.
Your doctor will order fertility testing, if you haven’t done any previously, such as a semen analysis, or having key female hormone levels such as anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH) and Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) tested. The AMH and FSH tests are done on day 2-4 of the menstrual cycle along with additional bloodwork. A saline sonogram is completed on day 6-10 of the menstrual cycle.
After your test results are received, you meet with your physician again to review and discuss your course of treatment for the best outcome. After your treatment has been decided you will begin treatment on your next menstrual cycle.
At Fertility Centers of Illinois, we have a wonderful team of dedicated employees that assess your fertility coverage and advocate on your behalf with insurance companies. Should you not have fertility coverage, our team will discuss financing options with you such as fertility financing with CapexMD, payment programs, and discounts for self-pay patients. To learn more about financing options and available discounts, click here.
Patients can also access discounted, or free, treatment by participating in a research study if they meet study eligibility requirements. Grant programs from the LIFE Foundation and CADE Foundation can reduce the cost of treatment.
You do not need to be a patient of Fertility Centers of Illinois to receive our support. Our Fertility Empowerment Series is free and open to the public. We offer roughly 100 free events each year that can include webinars, workshops, group sessions, and classes led by fertility behavioral specialists, counselors, alternative medicine experts, nutritionists, acupuncturists, registered yoga teachers, massage therapists and more. Click here for our events calendar.
- Monthly Infertility Support Group
- Achieving & Maintaining a Healthy Weight
- Fertility Enhancing Massage
- Support Group for Single Women
- Yoga for Fertility
- Girlfriend’s Guide to a Cancelled Cycle
- Nutritional Support for Conception
- Holistic Hacks to Relieve Stress
We look forward to meeting you and working with you to achieve your dream of parenthood.
Author: Dr. Meike Uhler, Fertility Centers of Illinois