Friday, January 20, 2012

Three Bags Full

So sorry that I couldn’t post yesterday – so much was going on!  At our financial consultation it was a little bit of information overload.  If we do have to do IVF it definitely won’t be cheap.  There are two types of IVF/implantation.  When most of the paperwork mentions IVF it is referring to fresh transplantation.  In a “fresh cycle”(my term) superovulation is induced, the eggs are retrieved, they are fertilized by sperm, and then after developing to a 3 day embryo or 5 day blastocyst they are implanted into the uterus.  The other implantation method, referred to as FET (frozen embryo transfer) in which embryos previously retrieved and fertilized are frozen and then thawed for transfer.  The biggest costs are associated with fresh cycles which costs $10,000 plus an average of $4000 for the medication but you have to do at least one fresh cycle to get the eggs for frozen embryos.  FET or “frozen cycle” (my term again) costs about $2100 plus an average of $500 for medication.  Those are the costs if we go on a per cycle treatment plan. 
Our clinic is part of the Attain IVF network which offers two plans that give multiple cycles for a flat fee.  The benefit to these plans is that you save money if you have to do more cycles the drawback is that if we were to achieve success (defined as a live birth) the first time we would have paid more than the cost of one treatment.  There are two plans offered by Attain IVF, the multicycle plan and the refund plan.  The multicycle plan costs $18,000 and covers two fresh cycles and two frozen cycles.  The refund plan costs $24,000 and covers three fresh cycles and two frozen cycles and offers a 70% refund if none of the six cycles are successful.  Neither of these plans cover the medication for each cycle and all plans including the per cycle treatment plan includes a cost of $300 per year to freeze and store the embryos.  So my husband and I have requested another consultation with the doctor to find out what he thinks our chances are (previously said >50 -55%) and why.  We need more information on success from fresh vs. frozen, and other questions I am sure we will think of.  We also have to consider what will work best for us in terms of money and how many times we want to try before we decide enough is enough.  There are lots of factors to consider such as a cancelled cycle counts as a full cycle in the Attain IVF plans while you get a prorated refund for cancelled cycles on the per cycle treatment plan. 

So lots to think about but I am sure I will find some way to put this all in an excel spreadsheet to help us gauge our options.  BUT that isn’t everything that happened yesterday to delay my post.  After the appointment I played some Halo with Handsome (I’m not very good but he loves playing with me), went to physical training with Sparkles (more about him later perhaps) and then I went home to get ready for my birthday dinner.  For my birthday Handsome took me for an early birthday dinner at Quiessence, my favorite restaurant.  We did the “Brick Oven Table” which was a secluded table outside near a brick oven and a meal of 9 tasting courses prepared by the chef.

Moving left to right and top down the courses were as follows
·         Started with a shared meat sampler plate including head cheese, salami , and others.
·         Second course for me was mussels and clams in a creamy seafood soup while Handsome had bacon wrapped venison tureen (kind of like meatloaf but cold).
·         My salad was shaved carrots, onions and greens with blue cheese and pecan vinaigrette while my husband had beets with crème fresh but we switched as he doesn’t care for beets.
·         The fourth course, pasta course was delicious I don’t even know what Handsome had because I was too involved with my cheese gnocci.
·         The fish course followed and was salmon over winter greens for both of us.  At this point we were a little nervous because we still had 4 courses left and were filling up.  It also had gotten cold outside so we moved inside.
·         Our 6th course was an intermezzo and as good as everything was it was probably the highlight of the meal.  It was a spoonful of citrus sorbet and it was crisp, clean and small and refreshed our tastebuds without filling us up.
·         The meat course delivered sausage for me and pork loin for Handsome.
·         Our 8th course was a cheese plate that I forgot t take a picture of but included a dry sharp cheese and blue cheese.
·         Finally our last course, dessert, was chocolate cake, ice cream and pear for my husband and a delicious citrus tart for me.

Everything was delicious but dinner wasn’t over until almost 10 and I was exhausted.  We went home and I fell into bed and into sleep as soon as I got undressed and washed my face.  So busy day yesterday and planning for a fairly busy weekend.  ttyl  J

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