The economics of the fertility market. Is it worth the try?

For those who pursue the path of becoming doctors it is a long ride, filled with obstacles, loneliness, sleepiness, loss of social life and challenges that sometimes make us reconsider if we took the right path. Then the very long career followed by a longer specialization, postgraduates, masters, doctorates and the headache of getting the job. No any job, I mean “the job” we worked so hard for.

 

Well, looking it this way even I would not have considered becoming a doctor in the first place.

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Fortunately the investment it is worth the try, definitely. But there is a catch, as always. What do geniuses and successful people have in common? Each one of them have something unique to offer to the world. That something unique is the secret to be successful, and it is easily accomplished proportionally to the level of commitment one has with their passion. When we decide to take any path in life, to do anything we want to become, passion plays a key role, because it is the force that drive us forward to make anything possible. Passion without fear is unstoppable, makes us become a high power rocket, and allow us to read people’s minds, to understand their doubts, fears, needs and problems. That way we will fix several problems at once, and trust me the world it is filled with problems.

 

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So, if we were going to invest years of our lives (specially the best years), time that represents a sacrifice itself, with stress and the huge economic investment to be where we want to be, there is a huge need of those two very important elements: passion without fear and understanding people’s needs.

 

The day I made the decision of getting into the Fertility Market business by myself was the day I realized the power of those two elements, the rest of the elements came along by themselves without me looking for clues. And it was one of the best decisions ever. I knew I had the knowledge, but it was not enough without resilience. The world is filled with clever people with the knowledge to change the world with their ideas but they lack passion without fear or understanding of people’s minds, so success it is not allowed into their world.

 

Many years have passed and I am still waking up every morning with the curiosity to read more about my work, to keep up to date and understand the changing world. Generations have changed and the needs for fertility guidance and treatments has increased exponentially in comparison with last years, no many new doctors have decided to pursue this path and the number of fertility clinics remains steady, it has not increased in the last 5 years. Some clinics have started and not succeed because they did not get the whole idea of working into this field, to understand people’s needs.

 

It is a huge investment in many aspects and the return won’t be quick, along with the risk of not having good results and lacking the patient’s trust when there is a reputation to build. I went through this and it was not pleasant, but I survived because of my resilience and perseverance. Anyone can do it. 

 

We are focusing on the new generation of future doctors, to make them realize they have something important to leave to this world. To make them see it worth the investment of time, money, and their lives to pursue the wonderful path of fertility and human reproduction. There is a lot more to be discovered and to understand. We are here for a reason, and our minds have the tools needed to accomplish success.

 

So welcome new generations of geniouses.

 

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The economics of fertility are increasing as the number of patients with reproductive issues continue to rise. It is not a secret that lifestyle, food, exercise, consumption of several medications, age, etc., have an impact in our fertility. More people are becoming stressed and anxious because the world has become harder each year. So the number of patients will continue to increase, and human reproduction and fertility will become one the main fields of study. Usually the return of this kind of investment is in the first two years. It is worth the risk. Anyway what would life be if we did not have the adrenaline of risking ourselves to something new?

 

It is definitely a field to be explored.

 

Thanks to Rosmary Ortiz for the lovely photos.

 

 

Fertility Market

Fertility Market
We have a range of products dedicated to people’s wellbeing. They can be used for fertility purposes, as well as many other purposes. You will find creative ideas and natural organic products like our famous Arnica Salve, which is our best seller. This salve has been formulated specially for every single symptom present prior, during, and after the fertility procedure is performed. It also serves for many other necessities. It has been popular among the Yoga community as to heal and relax sore muscles after stretching. Soon in our Fertility Market we will offer more products created originally to stand a difference.
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Fertility Spa.

It will be the ultimate, luxurious relaxing experience.

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As a fertility specialist I always though there was a gap in the field for patient’s wellbeing. I used to treat patients that underwent fertility procedures and asked me if there was a range of products dedicated to anxiety, stress-management and to help them prepare for the procedure, during the procedure and even after the procedure was performed. I decided to look for alternatives and none of them seemed to work well with the intention we had, which was offering the patient relaxation and wellbeing.

There is no need to buy expensive products with claims of increasing the chances of success, or to undergo stressful therapies for getting miraculous results.

The patient’s needs are specific and vary with each step of their fertility procedure. It is different a patient who is just coming to the clinic for consultation than one already being prepared for a procedure, and one that finished the procedure. The anxiety levels are different and their needs also are.

 

When patients come to the clinic they seem to have many questions waiting for the right answers. If they do not get the answers they wish, their anxiety and stress levels rocket. And 99% of patients feel the same way.

There are several interesting articles published online and serious magazines regarding this topic. Web MD says: “While doctors may not know the exact links between stress and fertility, a series of studies shows the impact is hard to ignore”. Also Human Reproduction’s magazine has good articles like this one: The impact of lifestyle factors on reproductive performance in the general population and those undergoing infertility treatment. It’s conclusion is: “Physiological stress may reduce female reproductive performance in various ways. Given that infertility and assisted reproductive techniques treatments are associated with stress, determination of whether stress contributes to or is a consequence of infertility and assisted reproductive techniques is problematic”. Also “decreased conception was associated with women who reported being most stressed”. In the journal Fertility and Sterility there is an interesting article: Infertility-related stress in men and women predicts treatment outcome 1 year later; it’s conclusions: “ Fertility problem stress was associated with a poorer treatment outcome in women and men”.image007

 

According to Web MD “body massage therapy may hold a key to reduce infertility stress”. This is also supported by an article in the Journal of Neuroscience: Cortisol decreases and serotonin and dopamine increase following massage therapy. There is also an interesting article about this in integrativehealcare.org: Massage therapy aids fertility treatments.

Being a fertility patient myself, I decided to test this technique of relaxation when I had my last fertility treatment (I’ve had several and reported poor outcomes). I designed my own oils and creams and had professional massages with my products several weeks before the fertility treatment, during and even after. I also combined this with a good nutrition and exercise. The results were astonishing.image003

Some patients decided to test my home made organic products and they showed a difference in their outcome. I chose patients who reported being anxious and stressed during their first attempt. This way I could compare the results before and after. There was a definitive improvement. Of course I am not claiming these products will definitely give you success in your fertility treatment, but you will feel more relaxed and calm for sure.

 

As requested by patients and infertility specialist colleagues I will launch Fertility Spa. The brand will have a range of natural based products dedicated to every specific needs prior, during and after the fertility procedure.

The products will contain Arnica, Lavender, Chamomile, Roses, Cinnamon, and Peppermint, with Argan, Olive, Coconut and essential oils. Every product will perform a role in every each step of the procedure.

The products will be available soon. I am intending to make them available for everyone out there in need of relaxation and stress-reducing tension. I am sure they will enhance your wellbeing and the results will improve. Your body will feel calmer and balanced, and will definitely be grateful for the feeling.image005

The products can also be used for non-fertility patients, as they will be very natural and contribute with several problems. Their properties will be described for each.

Stay tuned to participate in the brand opening!

 

Bibliography (in order of appearance):

1. Web MD: www.webMd.com
2. The impact of lifestyle factors on reproductive performance in the general population and those undergoing infertility treatment. Human Reproduction. Volume 3, issue 3.
3. Infertility-related stress in men and women predicts treatment outcome 1 year later. Fertility and Sterility, 2005, Jun; 83(6).
4. Cortisol decreases and serotonin and dopamine increase following massage therapy. Int. Journal of Neuroscience, 2005 Oct; 115 (10).
5. www.integrativehealthcare.org
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Biological and Non-biological causes of Infertility

 

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There is an extensive information regarding the main causes of infertility. There are biological physical causes related to our bodies and non-biological related to our energy and well-being.

Regarding to biological causes we can separate them in female and masculine causes.

The female causes are:

– Ovulation disorders: these ones can be related to hormonal disorders, which prevents the egg to be released from the follicle of the ovary. These hormonal disorders may be related to genetic predisposition, disorders in our diet, tumours, injuries. Causes of these disorders can be related to polycystic ovarian disease, hyperprolactinemia, hypogonadotrophic hypogonadism, hypergonadotrophic hypogonadism.

– Endometriosis: which is presence of endometrial tissue outside the uterus. This can be painful and affect the function of the ovaries.

– Fallopian tube damage or blockage: caused by pelvic inflammatory disease and damage of the cilia who are involved in the transport of the embryo from the tubes to the uterus, this can be a result of sexual transmitted diseases (most frequent Neisseria gonorrhoea and Chlamydia trachomatis), endometriosis or adhesions.

– Endometriosis: the presence of endometrial tissue outside the uterus can occasion anatomical damages that can produce limitation in the mobility of the cili in the fallopian tubes, also obstructions and adhesions. This can be very painful and its presence is related to infertility in 48% of patients.

– Anomalies in the cervix or uterus (or both): these anomalies might affect their shape and cause obstructions which can prevent the migration of the sperm into the uterus and alterations in the implantation of the embryo.

– Primary ovarian insufficiency: it happens when the ovaries start showing alterations on their function before the age of 40.

– Thyroid alterations: caused by problems with the thyroid hormone, hyperthyroidism (too much thyroid hormone)or hypothyroidism (too little thyroid hormone), and this is caused by malfunctioning of the thyroid gland.

– Medications: some medications can impair the functioning of the reproductive system.

– Immunological: this is a broad field, can be genetically related. They will cause several disturbances on the reproductive system.

– cancer treatments: most of the treatments used for cancer will affect the reproductive system. It depends on the duration and type of the treatment this can be reversible or irreversible.

– Genetics: some unexplained infertility causes can be related to genetic. Also, patients carrying mutations and deletions in certain genes may face a challenge to conceive.

 

The male causes of Infertility:

– Ejaculatory dysfunction: this occasion a problem for the delivery of sperm. It may be caused by trauma, surgery, medications, metabolic (diabetes) or psychologic.

– Varicocele: it is very frequent. It affects the sperm production, morphology and delivery. There are many publications relating it to the increase of temperature of the testis which occasion a damage in the area where the sperm forms and delivers. This cause a decreased number of sperm formed, morphological alterations and difficulty during delivery of the sperm because of their poor quality.

– Infections: sexual transmitted diseases or other infections.

– Overexposure to toxins and chemicals, such as pesticides, marihuana, tobacco smoke, alcohol, steroids and radiations like ionising and electromagnetic, radiologist are very exposed. Also people who work with cadmium, mercury, lead, anaesthetist gases, and exposure to heat.

– Cancer treatment: some therapies and treatments for cancer will impair the sperm quality, quantity and morphology. However, some new research have concluded that men have more change to recover their normal sperm functioning after exposure to cancer treatment, more than women.

– Immunological: some alterations in the immune system may affect the reproductive system, like the production of anti-sperm antibodies.

– Psychological: some psychologic alterations will occasions disturbances in the patient’s capability of ejaculate or even production and delivery of sperm.

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Non-biological causes of infertility:

Medicine has been mostly focused on the diagnose and treatment of diseases that affect human bodies.

Infertility can have biological causes, but there are occasions I like to call “non-biological”.

There is a powerful source of energy that resides inside our physical bodies. That energy has the power of transform and provide all what is necessary to sustain life. Since we were embryos that energy (named soul/spirit) came to this physical universe to live life experiences. The energy is so powerful that gave our cells the chance to divide and grow. However, there is non-stopping clock from the moment of birth to the moment of death. It is important to live experiences, learn and grow in several ways.

The non-biological area I will explain with detail later in another article. However, I would like you to understand the fact that most of the unexplained infertility named in the biological area, it might not just be biological. There is a non-biological area worth to have a look at.

Scientists have dedicated their entire life to study this area. Some very credited professionals discovered there is something else than just look for physical causes, diagnosis or treatments. All futile in most cases.

Because of this, I have developed a system that will help the patients to prepare for their infertility procedure, during and after. Focusing on my “non-biological” infertility causes.

 

Oncofertility. When is the right time to do something?

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Cancer. This difficult and complicated disease that has increased its onset of presentation, having affected millions of people worldwide, and it does not discriminates between age, race, religion, sex. It is simply a disease that we all come to live with, and our genetics predispose each one of us of having it active at any moment during our life, specially when we have a family history of this disease.

 

Oncofertility is a field that bridges fertility with oncology in a way to provide options for cancer survivors and giving them the chance of becoming parents in the future using their own gametes. It is known that treatments for cancer (chemotherapy, radiation and surgery) can destroy completely the gametes of female and males, making them impossible for them to conceive children in their future. And the number of cancer survivors has increased with the onset of new technologies for diagnose and treatment of the disease. For this reason, having an increased number of cancer survivors and their desire of become parents, oncofertility was created as a perfect alternative to preserve gametes for future use.

 

It is known we do have technologies to cryopreserve human gametes and tissue. They can be frozen for many years and then being used in the future with no harm or possible complications. Every year, thousands of cryopreservations are made, providing patients with the opportunity to use their gametes in the future.

 

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In case of a severe cancer that needs to start an immediate treatment, there are options of tissue cryopreservation. This technique was not possible 10 years ago with confidence. Today, we can use this technique which has provided good results with the later re-implantation of the healthy-thawed-cancer free tissue, and viable eggs can be obtained. If we do have enough time to perform a hormonal stimulation (which requires 10-15 days of hormonal treatment) it is possible to obtain eggs. These can be frozen or embryos can be created by using the partner’s sperm. 

 

In case of male cancer, there are even more chances of freezing the sperm, because the process os made through masturbation. It makes it easier to be obtained and stored for future use. Always before any cancer treatment is initiated, no later.

 

Each person signs a consent form to declare in writing what they wish to do with their samples in the case of absence, incapacity to make decisions or death.

 

Because cancer does not discriminates between age, we do know more than 20% of patients fighting this disease are on their reproductive years, most of them less than 40 years old.

 

The main problem today is the cost of these treatments. Unfortunately they are not accessible to everyone. The techniques used are in their starting onset and most countries do not provide coverage for cost in the oncofertility field, being this one of the major disadvantages of this area.

 

Much more needs to be accomplished for patients to receive the right guidance and advice throughout their disease, to know exactly what the right steps are, and the fact that an impulsive response when diagnosed from cancer can alter the course of their future if they do not take the right measures before starting their treatment. Not many oncologists advice their patients about this area of oncofertility, and most of them discover, after having survived their cancer, that their fertility has been severely compromised. Most of them were not informed of the secondary effects of their cancer treatments before they underwent the procedure.

 

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The right time to do something is immediately when the cancer has been diagnosed, not later, not even when the first treatments have started, because it might be too late.

 

I know this because of the increased number of patients we receive, cancer survivors, wanting to become parents using their own gametes. It has not been an easy task to inform them the fact they can not longer have their own genetic inheritance.

 

Oncofertility is a reality today, exists for a right purpose and it is to provide cancer patients with the hope of having their descendants safely preserved.

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10 things patients undergoing fertility treatments should not listen to.

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It is already hard to decide to undergo a fertility procedure. Long waits at the clinic, facing difficult tests, questioning your lifestyle, making assumptions of the percentage of success, giving personal details about your sex life, etc. There are so many things that we can mention here and the list is endless. However, there are recommendations I provide based on experience with other patients, and based on my own experience as a fertility doctor. There are things that you need to avoid listening to once you become a fertility patient. It is highly recommended you follow my advice.

 

  1. What is your diagnose? this is a very common one when patients wait at the clinic. The room is filled with patients undergoing fertility procedures, filled with doubts and questions, and a good form of validation is to listen they have been given the same diagnose or treatment as the others. Remember, every patient is different and you might not receive the same treatment as your colleague patient waiting. You can ask politely not to make comments about your fertility procedure during a conversation.

 

  1. In case you do not have a positive result you can always adopt: This is a very difficult one to face, especially because in most cases comes from family and friends looking to alleviate the suffering.

 

  1. I think you should change the clinic and go somewhere else: If a patient has already established a good relationship and communication with their doctor it will be hurtful and difficult for him/her to listen to this recommendation. This has to be a decision that just the patient should consider, not anyone else.

 

  1. Let’s start a group chat so we can all be in touch and follow each other’s procedure: Please do not become part of a group chat to listen to everybody’s problems, treatments and results; this will definitely interfere with your own treatment and the results might be not satisfactory after all. The same applies with reading other stories in fertility blogs.

 

  1. You should get pregnant now because you are having IVF: who said that undergoing IVF is 100% guaranteed you will get pregnant?

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  1. If you do not get pregnant then you should not keep trying: that is again a very personal decision that needs to be made by the couple only, not suggested by any other person. Remember every case is totally different.

 

  1. Your medication is different than mine, perhaps one of us is not getting the right treatment: this situation is also very common. You need to remember every patient’s response to hormonal replacement is different so the dose that every patient will get.

 

  1. You might get cancer after all these hormones you are receiving: the only person that can explain you better the consequences and implications of your treatment is your doctor. Do not listen to others relating this or any other disease with your current treatment.

 

  1. I do not understand why you are going through all this, there are plenty of couples conceiving naturally and having healthy babies: Every case is different. It is a fact that infertility has been increasing worldwide, and many couples have been affected by this condition. You are one of these couples, so now you need to deal with it.

 

  1. I got pregnant! Well, good for them if your case was negative, better if you got pregnant too. But if you did not get pregnant please try not to get too frustrated with your result and speak to your specialist to find out what the causes might be. Remember your doctor is the best person to ask those questions to.

Surrogacy. The true gesture of kindness.

There is a whole lot of information regarding this procedure online. There are books informing patients and doctors experiences with it. Leaflets can be found in fertility clinics explaining about it. However, we do receive many weekly emails asking about the procedure, what does involves, how is it done, the risks, tests needed, etc., and it makes me think there is still too much more to be known.

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I can start by saying surrogacy is a kindness gesture a human can shown to life. It is the way a woman collaborates with other in order to make possible the growth of a baby. A woman gets pregnant with the future known intention of handing over the child to someone else after gibing birth. It is usually done using someone else’s gametes.

 

Today several patients need surrogacy, because of many reasons, they might not have uterus, they have a disease, they are a same sex couple, etc. A team of professional experts in surrogacy evaluates the need of the procedure and will advice the steps to follow next. Usually patients need to undergo an IVF procedure to obtain viable embryos, which will be frozen or transferred in fresh to the surrogate’s uterus. It is important to consider the legal aspects of surrogacy because they vary in different areas of the World. Some patients prefer to look in countries where surrogacy is allowed/legal or non-regulated, as they can benefit of not having to go through the adoption procedure which can take months.

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I do work with a surrogacy team of experts to provide patients with the information of the best options of treatment. Costs also vary depending on the location, it can cost between 70,000 USD even to 150,000 USD in countries like USA. India 50,000 – 60,000 USD, Thailand 60,000 – 40,000 USD, Ukraine 70,000 – 50,000 USD, Mexico 50,000 USD, and Venezuela 40,000 USD (including the IVF procedure).

 

In many countries surrogacy is not illegal, but there are no regulations to support it or not. For that reason some patients chose to go to countries where they feel it is safer, even if is more expensive. Other patients take the low cost option. Experiences vary a lot.

 

Other places can be very strict regarding offering surrogacy to single patients or gay couples, which can be very discriminatory.

 

This procedure also implicates some risks for the intended parents and the surrogate. The intended parents can suffer from the anxiety and uncertainty of not having control over the pregnancy and the legal rights for the future baby; some countries make them wait months before being possible to take the baby home. And for surrogates the uncertainty of being the legal mother of a baby that needs to be claimed. I have seen the worst cases scenarios happening with surrogates that are family members or friends, also with surrogates found in websites, blogs or social networking. It is advisable to avoid doing this because there is no guarantee of the safety of the procedure that can be easily provided by a team of experts in the matter.

 

Our team is used to deal with surrogacy cases in a safe way.

 

If you need more information regarding surrogacy, and low cost-safe alternatives please email my team [email protected] to get more information regarding options of treatment and guidance through Skype.

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