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Huntington Reproductive Center - Blogs

The HRC Fertility Blog is a resource for patients and those seeking infertility related issues and articles. Check back often or subscribe to this blog as it is changed weekly by the HRC staff.

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

rainbow baby blog
There is hope for those who have suffered a devastating loss

Do you know there is no word in the English language describing the status of a parent who has endured the unbearable loss of a child? We doubt this word exists in any other language either. The pain and sorrow experienced by these parents are indeed indescribable, as well as universal. 

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Month. Parents around the globe use this occasion to honor the babies lost during miscarriage and stillbirth. On October 15, many lit a candle and released a balloon into the skies in memory of their lost dreams and babies.


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Making the Leap to Donor Eggs

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Beginning a new dream

When is the right time to consider using donated eggs? We often are asked this question by patients who are at a crossroads in their treatment. Deciding to use the genetic material of another woman to have a baby is typically made with a lot of thought, deliberation, and soul-searching.

Resolving to use donated eggs is often described as a ‘leap’ or transition. Most couples go through a deliberate process before taking this step. If you are at that turning point, here are some questions to consider as you move forward on your family building journey.

Do you have a pre-existing condition?

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Weighty Matters Can Signal Problems for Your Fertility

Weight and Infertility

Weight is a sensitive subject, especially for women. Aside from how weight affects physical appearance and self-esteem, an unhealthy weight can impact a woman's fertility, how she responds to treatment, the course of her pregnancy and the health of her child. An unhealthy weight means being either overweight or underweight.

What is considered a healthy weight?

Clinicians use the Body Mass Index (BMI) to determine whether someone is underweight, overweight or "normal." BMI is measured by dividing a person's weight in kilograms by the square of the person's height in meters. The normal range for a BMI is between 18.5 to 24.9; less than 19 is considered underweight, 25 to 29 is deemed overweight and greater than 30 is categorized as obese.

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#ListenUp for National Infertility Awareness Week

NIAW Listen Up

#ListenUp! In honor of National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW), April 23-29, our infertility specialists are trying to make infertility treatment more accessible for new patients. Often, taking the first step to schedule an appointment with a physician is a difficult one. Patients don't know what to anticipate during the initial meeting. They may be intimidated and confused.

Drs. Jane Frederick, Daniel Potter, Sanaz Ghazal and Mickey Coffler hope to break down some of these barriers by providing the following specials during NIAW. New patients can respond on the doctors' individual Facebook pages.

Dr. Jane Frederick and Dr. Daniel Potter: Raffles for a $500 gift certificate toward fertility treatment with the first 10 people responding getting a free "new patient" consultation voucher.Dr. Sanaz Ghazal: offering a $500 gift certificate and five free "new patient" consult vouchersDr. Mickey Coffler: providing a $250 raffle

#ListenUp: So what happens during the initial consultation? Here''s what you should know:

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PCOS and Pregnancy

You've had irregular periods for years. Maybe you've experienced acne, weight gain and excess facial hair. Now you can't get pregnant. But until you started trying to conceive, doctors never put two and two together to confirm you had polycystic ovary syndrome, also known as PCOS.

PCOS is the most common form of female infertility. PCOS prevents ovulation by stopping the ovaries from making the hormones needed for an egg to mature. The follicles, however, continue to grow and fill with fluid, eventually become cysts, which we confirm by ultrsound. In addition, the ovaries produce male androgens, like testosterone, instead of progesterone, the female hormone necessary for having a period.

A PCOS diagnosis, however, does not mean you cannot get pregnant. In fact, there are several effective treatment strategies, ranging from relatively simple remedies, such as dietary and lifestyle changes, to medication regimens to undergoing more advanced treatments like in vitro fertilization.

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Fresh Versus Frozen IVF Cycles


For more than 30 years, frozen embryo transfers (FETs) have been successfully utilized when patients have had excess frozen embryos remaining from a fresh cycle. But with older freezing methods, success rates were not as impressive. In recent years, however, several studies have demonstrated the increasing effectiveness of frozen IVF cycles. In fact, most IVF centers are now conducting more frozen cycles for certain types of patients, making FETs the first line of treatment for many.

Factors Improving FET Success Rates

There are several reasons for the improved success. First, embryologists are now freezing embryos through vitrification, a rapid form of cryopreservation. Because of vitrification, more embryos are surviving the thawing process. Second, many experts feel frozen cycles more closely mirror a natural uterine environment since a woman's hormone levels return to normal after being stimulated for an egg retrieval.

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Dr. Daniel Potter Interviewed on "Heather Dubrow's World"

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Heather Dubrow discusses her IVF story and invited Dr. Potter onto this week's #podcast to talk infertility facts and when couples should seek help in their attempt to conceive a child.

Click here to listen to the full podcast.

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Dr. Daniel A. Potter speaks on "Choosing the sex of your baby has become a multimillion-dollar industry" on

Dr. Daniel Potter

Megan Simpson always expected that she would be a mother to a daughter.

She had grown up in a family of four sisters. She liked sewing, baking, and doing hair and makeup. She hoped one day to share these interests with a little girl whom she could dress in pink.

Simpson, a labor and delivery nurse at a hospital north of Toronto, was surprised when her first child, born in 2002, was a boy. That’s okay, she thought. The next one will be a girl.

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Article on Tay-Sachs: Featuring Dr. Potter

Dr. Daniel Potter

Kira Tabakin, 3 months, was born healthy, even though her parents, Melanie and Dudley Tabakin, carry the Tay-Sachs gene. Kira was conceived using in-vitro fertilization and a pre-implantation genetic diagnosis.  Click to read the full article.

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Dr. Daniel Potter has been selected as a Castle Connolly Top Doctor

Dr. Daniel Potter

Dr. Daniel Potter has been selected as a Castle Connolly Top Doctor.  For more information about this prestigious award, please click here.

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60 Minutes Australia: Dr. Potter and Gender Selection

Just imagine it. Seven kids and every one of them a boy. You'd give up trying for a girl wouldn't you?

Well not Andrew and Jodi McMahon. They wanted a daughter so badly they decided to have one more go.

But this time, there was no rolling the dice.

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Having a Baby when you have Endometriosis

Can I still have a Baby with Endometriosis?  

If you have been diagnosed with infertility associated with endometriosis, you probably have a lot of questions. What is it? What caused it? What are my treatment options?  And more importantly, can I still have a baby? 

The answer to the last question is—yes! Natural conception is still very possible with endometriosis-especially if it’s mild, but your chances of conceiving may drop considerably if you have a more severe form of it. Unfortunately, there is no cure for endometriosis but it is treatable. However, treating infertility associated with endometriosis requires a highly specialized physician since treatment is often complex. 

Endometriosis is a disorder that occurs when cells from the lining of the uterus grow in other areas of the body, most commonly the fallopian tubes, ovaries, bowel, and on the linings of the pelvic area. The condition usually effects women in their reproductive years and may cause painful periods, pain with intercourse and infertility. The cause of endometriosis remains unknown but there are theories that suggest it may be from retrograde menstruation, genetic predisposition or autoimmune activity. It is estimated that between 20-50% of women being treated for infertility have endometriosis.

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