The ARC Fertility Blog

ARC® Fertility Blog

20 Years Of Progress And Millions Of Babies: Milestones For Infertility

Advances made in the treatment of infertility over the past 20 years are impressive, ranging from radical new techniques to edit embryonic genes to incremental changes that improve IVF outcomes and are less invasive for patients. Treatment now extends to encouraging healthy lifestyles to improve fertility before trying to become pregnant. And societal attitudes have changed, too, with non-traditional families actively seeking advanced reproductive techniques (ART) to have babies. As the organization I founded celebrates our 20th anniversary, it seemed timely to review the field’s major milestones.

IVF – first live birth (July 25, 1978)

The major fertility advance begins within in vitro fertilization (IVF) and the successful birth of the so-called “test tube baby” Louise Brown. More than 60 failures beforehand serve as reminder that translating research to widely accepted medical practice takes time.

More

If IVF, Then PGD Or PGS? What Genetic Testing Can Tell You About Your Embryo

If you’re a candidate for in vitro fertilization (IVF), you’ve probably learned a lot of new information before making the decision, and that likely includes a whole new vocabulary. There are a few more acronyms you should know if you don’t already: PGD and PGS, which are pre-implantation genetic tests. Although these terms may be used interchangeably, they are actually different.

More

Please Ignore The Celebrity Hype, Fertility Really Does Decline With Age

Fertility is one hot topic and that means it gets a lot of media coverage. The good news is that there’s so much valuable information now widely available – in the news and online – to help couples learn about fertility and the factors that affect their ability to get pregnant. The bad news is that there’s a lot of misleading information, too. In fact, it’s hard to go a single week without hearing about someone famous who just had a baby at 46. While you might want such a medical miracle to be true and commonplace, in fact, pregnancy at this age is very much the exception, not the rule.

More

Success with ARC Fertility

Success with ARC Fertility

Trying to get pregnant using in vitro fertilization (IVF), or other assisted reproductive techniques, usually requires a sizable investment of time and money. Still, if a baby is the result, could there be any better return?

Getting and paying for fertility treatment can be complicated. The majority of patients don’t get pregnant the first time. So, to keep trying involves the purchase of a separate cycle of treatment each time the cycle doesn’t work. Many patients choose to finance their treatment, but if they only finance one cycle at a time, they face the potential of less favorable financial terms or even failure to qualify for a second loan. To learn about your individual chance of becoming pregnant, check the SART Patient Predictor tool.

More

Family Building Is For Anyone Who Aspires To Be A Parent

This month as we celebrate Pride, we also embrace diversity in families. Parents – and parents-to-be – come with all types of backgrounds – partnered, single, straight and gay/lesbian. And, today, the path for building your family is diverse, too, with access to a variety of assisted reproductive techniques (ART) including in vitro fertilization (IVF).

More

Can You Make Your Sperm Better? Probably

Everyone understands that healthy eggs and sperm are required to conceive, right?

So, it shouldn’t be a surprise when couples have trouble starting a family that male fertility plays a role – more often than most people realize. In fact, male factor infertility is the primary medical issue in about 25% of infertility cases and a contributing factor another 25% of the time.

More

Be an Advocate for Supporting Infertility Awareness May 18th and Every Day

The goal of Advocacy Day is to bring people together to communicate directly with policymakers and gain media attention to raise awareness of infertility as a disease – one affecting far more men and women than is widely known. Increasing awareness and laying out the facts on infertility is critical to understanding it as a medical condition with available treatment. Advocacy Day is also about working to secure greater resources, including funding for government program health benefits and iPart of Advocacy Day activities will also to continue work in opposing several “personhood” bills that have been introduced in Congress. Although the primary goal of such bills is to make abortion illegal, they would, ironically, negatively affect those trying to have a baby who must rely on ART to conceive and build their families. To learn more, read “What does personhood mean for IVF?”.

More

National Infertility Awareness Week – A Chance to Support Those Facing Infertility

National Infertility Awareness Week - ListenUp

This year’s NIAW theme is “Listen Up” and it’s important to those who are coping with infertility. We can all probably do a better job of listening to others – everyone is busy and it’s easy to focus on whatever problem might be right of front of you. Many individuals and couples trying unsuccessfully to conceive often suffer in silence – and they shouldn’t have to. When someone listens, it’s support. You don’t have to understand all the clinical issues that might be causing the problem but understanding the emotional and financial toll can make a difference.

More

What Does Personhood Mean for IVF?

What Does Personhood Mean for IVF?

You may have heard that there are several “personhood” bills that have been introduced at the state and Federal level. You may be wondering what personhood is and how it might impact you, particularly if you are among the one in eight individuals that are affected by infertility. The primary goal of the personhood bills is to make abortion illegal, but, ironically, it would also have negative effects on those who are trying very hard to have a baby and have to rely on ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) to build their families.

More

Injured Vets Finally Gain IVF Coverage from the VA

Vet holding child's hand

Every couple dealing with infertility faces challenges. This often includes problems with access to affordable infertility services such as in vitro fertilization (IVF). For one group – wounded American veterans – an outdated 30-year ban on funding for IVF made family-building a distant dream for those already dealing with devastating service-related injuries.

More

Is Your Infertility Due to Endometriosis?

You’ve probably heard of endometriosis since more than 7 million American women – and 176 million women worldwide – have the condition. About 25-50% of women dealing with infertility have endometriosis, according to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM). All stages of endometriosis can potentially contribute to infertility, probably for different reasons in different women, depending on the amount of endometriosis and other individual health characteristics.

More

The Benefits of Infertility Coverage for You and Your Employer

The Benefits of Infertility Coverage for You and Your Employer

How family friendly is your workplace? It depends on your perspective. If you and your partner are among the 1 in 8 American couples facing infertility, you’d give your employer a high score if they offered a benefit package that covers treatment for infertility services. After all, it’s the employer that decides your benefits, not an insurance company.

More

New Year, New Healthier You, New Baby?

New Year, New Healthier You, New Baby?

At the start of every New Year, most of us pledge to do better to meet healthy lifestyle goals. For some, the stakes are especially high given that evidence shows good health positively impacts fertility. For those of you trying to get pregnant, there are positive, proactive steps you can take now to improve your potential.

In general, the healthier you are, the better your chances for getting and staying pregnant and delivering a healthy baby. Evidence shows adopting specific healthy behaviors are relevant to both future mothers AND fathers.

More

Healthy Holiday Tips to Survive the Holidays and Enhance Your Fertility

Healthy Holiday Tips to Survive the Holidays and Enhance Your Fertility

This time of year, there’s an abundance of advice telling you how to remain healthy and avoid the stress of the holidays and the New Year. For couples trying to start a family and coping with infertility, the advice takes on special meaning as lifestyle choices – no matter the time of year – impact your fertility in major ways. And, for many, holidays without children – when you’ve been trying to have a baby – adds stress and sadness that make keeping health resolutions even more challenging.

As part of our wish for a happy, healthy holiday and year ahead, we share advice from RESOLVE, The National Infertility Association, with tips designed to keep your equilibrium when regular “baby blues” can turn into intense “holiday baby blues.”

Find Childfree Forms of Celebration and create your own holiday ritual without children: Do plan your own two-person holiday – consider taking a trip to ski or a spa getaway. Don’t put yourself through the extra stress of being around others who may not understand your challenges dealing with infertility. 

More

Want to Predict Whether IVF Might Work for You, and What it Costs? To Calculate Your Success Rate and Affordability Log On…

twothumbsup

Want to Predict Whether IVF Might Work for You, and What it Costs? To Calculate Your Success Rate and Affordability Log On…

Trying to predict the future and whether it might include the patter of little feet is now a little easier with a breakthrough combination of tools that link assessment of your individual chances of getting pregnant using in vitro fertilization (IVF) with an estimate of what it might cost based on your unique chances of pregnancy. It’s where hope and reality meet.

To show couples that IVF treatment may well be within reach, ARC Fertility developed The ARC® Affordability Estimator that uses personal data-driven results from the ART Patient Predictor developed by the Society for Assisted Reproductive Therapy (SART). While the Patient Predictor calculates the probability of IVF success based on key factors, the Affordability Estimator produces a snap-shot of ARC multicycle treatment and financing packages – with estimated monthly payments – tied to those estimated outcomes. The result is financing that aligns affordability with the likelihood of success.

More

The Kids Are All Right and So Are Moms and Families Using ART

kids-are-all-right

The Kids Are All Right and So Are Moms and Families Using ART

Some things are universal – like worrying about your kids. That’s true no matter how you became a parent. Still, some moms and dads who gave birth with the help of medically assisted reproduction (MAR) or assisted reproductive technology (ART). may worry a bit more given the lengths they’ve gone to have children. Like all parents, they also have lots of questions. This brief summary of research shows that the kids are all doing fine no matter what specific technology was used – MAR (e.g. donor sperm) or ART (e.g. in vitro fertilization (IVF), intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), donor egg, gestational carrier or surrogate).

More