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How much does IVM cost?
Generally is is hard to obtain good information about the cost of medical procedures. This is especially true of complex ones where there are costs of associated parts of the procedure that may not be under the control of the medical provider. What follows is an explicit description of costs for IVM together with a discussion to provide a basis for understanding all associated costs. Pricing is accurate for the time period listed. We have many patients for whom doing an IVF type procedure is a major sacrifice and who would benefit form this information in order to accurately plan for the costs involved.
How much will IVM cost?
(January 1,2015- June 30, 2015)
Our charges for IVM in this time period are $5000. This is a package charge that covers all the costs of doing IVM from the day of aspiration to the day of transfer. It covers no costs before aspiration or after transfer. It does not cover the cost of medications or anesthesia. This package charge applies to all patients undergoing IVM. There are no age restrictions. This offer provides a significant discount on the high tech services required for IVM.
Is that the total cost of an IVF cycle?
No. Other costs are the cost of medications, medication monitoring (ultrasounds and blood tests before the aspiration), and the cost of anesthesia. Sometimes patients will have some insurance coverage for these things even if IVF is not covered by their plan.
If the patient is entirely self-pay we offer her the option of pre-paying for cycle monitoring so that the maximum that monitoring will cost is $1300. Usually the monitoring that is required is less than this and patients will get a small refund from this fee.
The cost of anesthesia is $600. This fee is seldom covered if IVF is not covered by your insurance plan. There are not facility fees or extra charges related to being associated with a hospital.
Medication costs vary with the amount of medications you require and where you purchase your medications. We have found that online fertility pharmacies cost less than half of what retail pharmacies charge. Using fertility pharmacies, for most patients, injectible medications cost $327-$681 per cycle. Some patients may require more injectible medications than this. You may need to purchase medications so that you will have what you may need when such pharmacies are not open. You may have some left over medications.
What is the charge for ICSI (sperm injection)?
We do ICSI on all cases and the charge is included in the $5000 fee. Given that most programs charge $2000-$2500 for ICSI and we will likely perform ICSI two to three different times for each IVM case, this suggests how good a deal these IVM charges are.
What is the charge for assisted hatching?
We find that assisted hatching in not commonly required (5% require it). If it is required, it is included in the cost of the package.
Are there charges for cryopreservation?
Charges for cryopreservation (vitrification) are not included. About 5% of patents using IVM choose to use cryopreservation. IVM is not a procedure where a large number of good quality embryos are created as in the case of IVF where > 50% of patients use cryopreservation.
The cost of embryo cryopreservation, embryo storage, embryo defrost and transfer is not very different from the cost of a fresh IVM cycle. This is likely a major reason why IVM patients rarely choose cryopreservation.
Are there charges for genetic testing?
No. If you need genetic testing for a specific condition, multiple failed prior IVF cycles, recurrent pregnancy loss, or sex selection, you are better served by conventional IVF than by IVM.
Is there any testing required before doing IVM? How much does this cost?
Yes. Recommended testing will depend on a patient’s history and what testing she has already had. We generally recommend a few blood tests that either have an impact on our management or on the well-being of the baby. The number of tests we usually order is minimal compared to many programs and can be further pared down in the case of financial hardship. These tests can be run at the clinical lab of your choosing.
As a minimum, we need semen studies performed at a specialty sperm laboratory. (hospital labs and large labs like Quest are not adequate). If you haven’t had this testing, our lab charges $505 for it. If you have had testing at a different specialty semen lab, there may still be some tests on your sperm that we need, but the charges will be much less. Insurance often covers sperm testing.
We also need you to have had a recent saline infusion hystogram (SIS) or a hysteroscopy. A HSG does not provide adequate information on problems with your endometrial lining. An SIS is a water contrast transvaginal ultrasound. The total charge for an SIS visit is $765. It is commonly covered by insurance.
The third test that we need on everyone is a mock transfer. We need to create a strategy so that when we transfer embryos through your cervix into your uterus, the process needs to be a very gentle one. We perform a “practice” transfer to do this since every woman is unique. The charge for this is $460. It is usually not covered by insurance.
Is this really the least I can pay?
We also off a multi-cycle discount plan. This can help you save $500 on each cycle undertaken, but you have to pay for three cycles before starting. We offer this because the best way to leave pregnant is to be willing to do several cycles if required. If you get pregnant quickly, the cost of the excess cycles is refunded.
Can anyone do IVM?
The answer is yes and no. Technically we could obtain eggs from anyone prior to menopause, but the small cysts we use are hard to find eggs in and many of the eggs are not very good. To be successful, we need to work with someone who has a large number of antral follicles (small cysts in their ovaries). There are two groups of patients who have been the focus of most studies on IVM. On group is patients with more than 20 antral follicles in their ovaries. The other group is younger women (under age 30).
For patients not in these two groups, we generally recommend Mini-IVF or conventional IVF.