At RMACT all of our new patients who are attempting pregnancy receive a complete fertility testing work-up to determine if there is an issue that might contribute to subfertility, even when not initially suspected. We also need to look at certain factors, such as a blood test that indicates how well your ovaries are producing eggs, your age, and your weight (to name a few)in order to determine your best options in order to conceive.
Lesbian couples may choose to proceed with an In Vitro Fertilization cycle (IVF) in order to retrieve the eggs from one partner, inseminate the eggs with donor sperm, then transfer the embryo(s) into the other partner’s uterus who then carries the pregnancy. This is sometimes termed ‘Reciprocal IVF’ and gives both partners an active role in the conception process.
We strongly recommend that you verify your coverage with your insurance carrier. Some insurance carriers might cover diagnostic testing and doctors visits, but will not cover treatment cycles when there is no evidence of infertility. Our financial coordinators can assist you with what your out-of-pocket expenses would be once your insurance coverage is confirmed.
Some lesbian couples like to proceed with a natural intrauterine insemination (IUI) with donor sperm, where we follow the progression of your natural menstrual cycle, but help time the IUI so that it falls in the window in which the woman is most fertile. We will recommend several reputable sperm banks so you can have a choice of available donors. The sperm banks we recommend follow FDA guidelines when testing for infectious disease prior to releasing the sperm. Some couples will proceed with an IUI but also utilize gentle stimulating meds. These medications will usually generate more than one egg, giving the couple a greater chance of fertilization and implantation that cycle. Other couples might proceed with IVF and reciprocal IVF.
Prior to conception, we always recommend attempting to achieve a healthy weight. We also recommend starting a prenatal vitamin with DHA and at least 800 mcg of folic acid. If you smoke or drink, we recommend stopping prior to attempting to conceive. At the time of your consult, we will do perform several blood tests to assure your general health, such as testing your thyroid levels; testing for anemia and assuring that your important immunizations are up to date.