FAQs The ARC Fertility Program

What is Fertility?

The quality or state of being fertile – the ability to get pregnant through sexual intercourse within one year

What is Infertility?

A of the reproductive system condition defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.

What is Fertility Care?

The care a patient receives during fertility treatments. Patients under age 35 should seek care after 12 months of attempting pregnancy, those 35 to 39 after 6 months, and those 40 or more after 3 months.

What are Fertility Clinics?

Medical clinics that help women and men who want to become parents but for medical or other reasons have been unable to achieve this goal via the natural course.

Who are Fertility Physicians?

The physicians who work with couples undergoing fertility treatments.

Who is a fertility specialist?

A physician specializes in obstetrics and gynecology (OB-GYN) with 3 years of additional training in endocrinology and infertility, a published thesis, two years of clinical practice and has passed rigorous written and oral examinations. Fertility Specialists are also called Reproductive Endocrinologist.

What is Fertility Treatment?

The collective procedures couples undergo to treat their infertility. Common types of fertility treatments include in-vitro-fertilization (IVF).

What is follicle stimulating hormone (FSH)?

FSH is a hormone that stimulates tube-like structures in the ovaries, called follicles, to grow.

What is follicular phase?

During the first half of a woman’s menstrual cycle, three things happen: the uterus thickens, eggs mature inside the follicles, and estrogen levels increase. Collectively, this stage is called the follicular phase.

What is gamete intra fallopian transfer (GIFT)?

A medical procedure in which a surgeon removes eggs, mixes them with sperm, and inserts them back into the woman’s fallopian tubes. In GIFT, fertilization happens inside the woman’s fallopian tubes.

What is hCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin)?

pregnancy hormone often used to stimulate ovulation during in-vitro-fertilization (IVF). hCG is injected at mid-cycle in controlled ovarian stimulation cycles.

What is HEPA?

Hamster Egg Penetration Assay (H.E.P.A.) is a test that measures semen quality. It determines the percentage of hamster eggs in a petri dish which are penetrated by the sperm. Also allows analysis of sperm motility and morphology. Now rarely performed.

What is Hysterosalpingogram (HSG)?

A radiology procedure that examines the health of the uterus and fallopian tubes. A radio-opaque fluid is injected into the uterus and fallopian tubes and photographed via x-rays to check the shape of the uterus and tubes, and whether they contain any infections or injuries (such as fibroids, or scar tissue).

What is in-vitro fertilization (IVF)?

A fertility treatment in which a surgeon removes eggs from a woman and injects concentrated sperm into the eggs inside a petri dish. The entire procedure happens outside of the body. After the eggs are successfully fertilized, the surgeon re-implants the embryo back into the woman’s uterus.

What is intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)?

A form of IVF which involves injecting a single sperm directly into a mature egg. A surgeon then transfers the fertilized egg into the woman’s womb.

What is intra uterine insemination (IUI)?

A fertility treatment in which a surgeon uses a small tube to inject sperm directly into a woman’s uterus.

What is anovulation?

A disorder in which there is an absence of ovulation. Anovulation can be caused by problems in the hypothalamus at the base of the brain, the pituitary gland, the ovaries, other hormone producing organs, or general health problems such as obesity.

What are Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART)?

A generic term encompassing all medical procedures that help a woman have a baby. They involve removing the egg from the woman’s body and treatment of the egg in the embryology laboratory. For example, in-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a type of ART.

What is artificial insemination?

A fertility treatment in which a surgeon places sperm directly next to the cervix inside the vagina. People often undergo artificial insemination while taking ovulation medicines to help improve the chances of successful fertilization. The procedure is now called DI for donor insemination.

What is azoospermia?

A medical condition in which a man has no detectable levels of sperm. Low sperm production or blockages of a reproductive tract can common causes.

What is basal body temperature (BBT)?

BBT is your lowest body temperature within a 24 hour time-frame. Since your BBT alters according to your ovulation cycle, it can help predict time of ovulation. Usually, your BBT slightly increases when your follicles start to release eggs (ovulation). Tracking your BBT using a chart is a useful way to predict time of ovulation and create an ovulation calendar.

What is cervical mucous?

A sticky fluid covering the cervix. It changes in consistency throughout a woman’s menstrual cycle. During ovulation, the cervical mucus becomes more watery and stringy so sperm can pass through more easily.

What is clomiphene citrate?

A common ovulation medicine available under several commercial names such as Clomid and Serophene.

What is Clomid?

A fertility medicine, which triggers the levels of two follicle-promoting hormones to increase in the body: follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH).

What is a Corpus Luteum?

A glandular structure that forms after the follicle releases the egg (ovulation). The corpus luteum releases progesterone in the second half of the menstrual cycle. Progesterone helps prepare the uterus lining ( the endometrium) for egg implantation.

What is Dysmenorrhea?

Abnormal pain during menstruation.

What is Dypareunia?

Pain that occurs during sexual intercourse.

What is an ectopic pregnancy?

An ectopic pregnancy happens when an embryo implants anywhere outside of the uterus. It usually occurs inside the fallopian tube.

What is Egg Retrieval?

A surgical procedure done during fertility treatments, in which eggs are extracted from follicles. The specialist passes a small needle through the top of the vagina into the follicles. The eggs are then removed and placed into a test tube. An embryologist then looks for eggs under a microscope.

What is an Embryo Transfer?

The process of placing fertilized eggs (embryos) back into the woman’s uterus. The embryo transfer is painless and requires no anesthesia.

What is an Endometrial Biopsy?

A procedure in which a small sample of the uterine lining is removed and sent to a laboratory for evaluation. It is now rarely used.

What is Endometriosis?

A condition in which uterus lining cells grow outside the uterus causing inflammation, pain, adhesions, infertility and other pelvic problems.

What is Estradiol?

A female hormone produced by the ovary.

What is a Fibroid?

A fibroid is a benign tumor of the uterine muscle. It is also called a myoma.

What is Laparoscopy?

A minimally invasive surgical procedure that examines pelvic organs through a small telescope (laparoscope).

What is Luteal Phase?

The second half of the woman’s menstrual cycle (post-ovulation), marked by elevated progesterone levels..

What is luteinizing hormone (LH)?

In women, LH helps activate egg production. In men, LH triggers an increase in the levels of testosterone, a hormone which stimulates sperm production.

What is Male Infertility?

Male infertility occurs when men have a less than normal semen analysis or other reproductive problem that reduces their chances of getting their partner pregnant. About 50% of infertility cases are reported to be associated with male infertility.

What is an Ovarian Cyst?

A fluid filled sac in the ovaries. Temporary cysts are related to hormonal abnormalities often associated with ovulation disorders. They almost always resolve on their own. Benign ovarian cysts are not caused by hormone abnormalities but by the growth of new tissue. The vast majority of these cysts are benign.

What is Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS)?

A condition that results from over stimulation of the ovary during controlled ovarian (COS) .About 10% to 20% of women experience mild OHSS because the ovaries are enlarged, causing them to be painful and sensitive to pressure. There are many different ways to manage OHSS: reducing the dose of gonadotropin stimulation, bed rest, cancellation of the in-vitro-fertilization (IVF) cycle or the embryo transfer. Severe OHSS occurs in 1% to 2% of women undergoing COS, and may required hospitalization.

What is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)?

A disease diagnosed by at least two or three of the following conditions: 1) irregular or complete absence of ovulation 2) excess androgen levels 3) 24 follicles in both ovaries. Often associated with infertility and other medical problems.

What is a Post Coital Test (PCT)?

A test that was once thought to predict pregnancy rates. It is no longer performed. It involves collection of cervical mucus from the cervix within a couple of hours after a woman has had intercourse. The mucus is then analyzed to look moving sperm.

What is Progesterone?

A hormone produced mainly during the second half of the menstrual cycle to trigger uterine lining growth so the embryo can implant.

Who is a Reproductive Endocrinologist (RE)?

A physician specializing in obstetrics and gynecology (OB-GYN) with 3 years of additional training in endocrinology and infertility, a published thesis, two years of clinical practice and has passed rigorous written and oral examinations. Fertility Specialists are also called Reproductive Endocrinologist.

What is a Resistant Ovary?

Ovaries that have a low or no response to ovarian stimulation with gonadotropins follicle stimulation hormone (FSH) and/or lutenizing hormone (LH).

What is a Semen Analysis?

A test that analyses sperm quality by evaluating ejaculate volume, appearance, consistency, sperm shape, sperm motility, sperm concentration and presence of certain antibodies.

What is Sperm Morphology?

The shape of ejaculated sperm. Strict morphology involves the use of very rigorous criteria for normal sperm shape.

What is Spermatogenesis?

The process of sperm production.

What is Testicular Biopsy?

A minor surgical procedure typically performed by an urologist to determine cause of testicular problems.

What is a Vasectomy?

A surgical procedure for male sterilization that involves severing the sperm-transporting vessel ( vas deferens tubes).

What is Zygote Intra-Fallopian Transfer (ZIFT)?

A procedure in which eggs are retrieved from a woman’s uterus and then fertilized in a specialized laboratory. The fertilized eggs are placed back into the fallopian tubes the day after. ZIFT is now rarely performed.

How do I use ARC Fertility’s packages?

We offer customized packages that you can combine with various financing options to make it easy and affordable to receive care. To provide unique care tailored to your needs, you can choose between a variety of treatment packages. We also provide the latest medical procedures shown to help people overcome infertility. Through our robust, national network of reproductive specialists, we connect you to fertility clinics close to home.

Can I finance my medications?

Yes, you can finance your treatment package over several years through the ARC Pharmacy Plan.

If I don’t need financing, can I still use ARC Fertility’s packages?

Yes, you can purchase any one of our packages using cash or a credit card.

Can I finance part of my in-vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments through ARC, but pay my doctor directly for other treatments?

Yes, when you use our financing plan, you must purchase certain defined services included in your IVF package through our program, but some services and medicines may be paid for directly. Ask our service representative about details of plans available through your ARC physician.

Which treatments offer a refund?

Our Success Program can be used with either the Two-Cycle PlusTM Program or Three-Cycle PlusTM Program. If you get pregnant and have a live birth, you will receive a refund for any remaining cycle(s).

What if I purchase a Two-Cycle Plus™ Success or Three-Cycle Plus™ Success and become pregnant on the first cycle, do I get a refund?

Yes! With the Success Program, if you have a successful live birth, you receive a refund for any unused cycle.