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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.

Celebrities and Surrogacy

You've probably seen their stories reported in popular magazines and websites. When celebrities choose to publicize their surrogacy journeys, people listen. This spreads awareness and gives the public a greater understanding of the challenges of family building for both same sex and heterosexual celebrities who want to have babies--just like the rest of us!

Turning to Surrogacy

Regardless of their fame, prospective parents may need to use the services of a surrogate mother, also known as a gestational carrier, for a variety of medical and social reasons.

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Preparing For Mother's Day 2018

Dr. Frederick prepares you for Mother's Day
Getting your body ready for a baby

Are you hoping to become pregnant by Mother's Day 2018? If you and your partner have made the life-changing decision to try to have a baby, here are some steps you should take in 2017 to ensure you will be receiving a Mother's Day card and flowers in the future.

Schedule an appointment with your primary care physician

It is important to know if you have any pre-existing medical conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension, which might affect your pregnancy or those influencing fertility, including sexually transmitted diseases or a thyroid condition. Also, this appointment will be an opportunity to discuss with your doctor the prescription medications you are taking and whether to continue them when you conceive, as well as to update your immunizations and get a flu shot.

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A Millennial Woman's Guide to Egg Freezing

To freeze or not to freeze?

That is a question many millennial women are asking themselves. Should they freeze time and their biological clock by undergoing oocyte cryopreservation, the medical term for egg freezing, or will Mr. Right come along before their fertility is reduced?

At HRC Fertility, we are seeing an increased interest in "social" egg freezing as the technique becomes more popular and improves in effectiveness. Some employers, such as Google and Facebook, have even begun offering this benefit, realizing their female employees want more reproductive choices.

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Fertility Preservation Options for Cancer Survivors

Fertility Preservation for Cancer Suvivors

A light at the end of the tunnel

 

According to the American Cancer Society, an estimated 1,688,780 Americans will receive the dreaded diagnosis of cancer in 2017.

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Getting the Most out of a Fertility Seminar

Are you excited? You've finally decided to attend an infertility seminar!

You're not alone in wanting to learn more about infertility and how you can be helped by an infertility clinic like HRC Fertility. But you also might be nervous to attend a public venue where you will be "outed" about your infertility or think you'll be pressured into making a decision to seek treatment.

Like many couples, you may be wondering why you cannot get pregnant on your own or are feeling frustrated because you're not making progress at your OB/GYN or another fertility specialist. So it's good to be looking at other options.

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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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Five Facts You Need to Know About Endometriosis

In addition to wanting to have a baby, a large percentage of the female patients we treat at HRC Fertility have something else in common: endometriosis. This reproductive disease is one of the most frequent causes of infertility, affecting approximately 40 percent of patients. Many are not aware that the menstrual cramps and generalized pelvic pain they have experienced for years are symptoms of a medical condition preventing them from becoming pregnant.

In observance of Endometriosis Awareness Month in March, we want to educate our readers with some important facts about this very common reason for female infertility.

Endometriosis affects millions of women

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OB/GYN or Infertility Specialist: Who is Best for You?

doctor blog

If you’re frustrated that you’re not getting pregnant, you may be wondering about your next step. Should you make an appointment with a gynecologist, or is it appropriate to seek the advice of an infertility specialist, especially a board-certified in reproductive endocrinologist?

At HRC Fertility, we work with obstetrician/gynecologists (OB/GYNs) who refer patients to us. Many are experienced in providing first-step infertility treatment such as ovulation induction with oral or injectable medications that may be combined with intrauterine inseminations. They have the staff and expertise to successful guide patients who have been diagnosed with mild endometriosis, problems with ovulation, mild male factor infertility and cervical factor infertility.

If you are confused about the best choice, here are some guidelines to help you make your decision.

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Tubal Factor Infertility: Go With the Flow

hsg test results

The fallopian tubes play an important role in reproduction. Sperm and egg must meet and fertilize in one of the tubes; the fertilized egg then moves to the uterus for implantation. Fallopian tubes must be patent (open) and flowing to allow for normal functioning.

Here are some important facts about the tubal disease infertility.

An HSG can determine the health of your fallopian tubes

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Cervical Health and Your Fertility

The cervix is the lower part of the uterus, above the vagina, where sperm travels through to the uterus. It widens during childbirth and also is where menstrual flow passes.

Every year, 13,000 women are diagnozed with cervical cancer and, tragically 4,000 will die from it. However, against the backdrop of these sobering stastistics is encouraging news about early detection. Women who have contracted cervical cancer who have received regular pap smear screenings have a 92% suruvival rate over a five-year period. In addition, the HPV vaccine given to young women before they are sexually active can help prevent the transmission of many HPV strains, the leading cause of cervical cancer.

January is Cervical Health Awareness Month and an opportunity to shed light on preventing, diagnosing and treating cervical conditions, many of which can compromise fertility.

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New Year: New Fertile You

New Year - New You Yoga

After (perhaps) overindulging during the holidays, many of us resolve to do better in the coming year: losing weight, exercising more, quitting smoking (important) or spending less. If you are struggling to get pregnant, however, your New Year’s resolution probably involves becoming a parent in 2017.

But combining a personal resolution with your desire to get pregnant could potentially help you achieve two goals.

Quit smoking

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Can Elective Single Embryo Transfer Help Decrease Preterm Births?

One of the most important questions in the infertility field is how to reduce the number of premature births. The March of DImes has identified multiple gestation pregnancies--twins and triplets--as one of the three risk factors for preterm labor and early birth. Additionally, a history of premature births and uterine and cervical problems, which can be applicable to infertility patients, are also significant reasons for this serious and costly health problem.

Every November, the March of Dimes conducts a public education campaign to promote prematurity awareness. In 2016, for the first time in eight years, the U.S. saw an increase in the preterm birth rate. According to the Premature Birth Report Card, the U.S. earned a "C" grade--primarily because of the growing disparity in prematurity rates across different rates and ethnicities.

A Healthy Singleton Pregnancy

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Sperm: Can They Take the Heat?

Can sperm take the heat?

The testicles are located in an ideal spot in a man's body, external to the rest of the male reproductive system. Sperm, created inside these organs, need a cool environment for reproduction, and the temperature of the testes should be lower than a man's core body temperature to function effectively.

Often our patients have questions about the effects of various heat sources on the male reproductive organs. For many, it can be confusing to separate the myths from the reality. But one thing is certain: don't overheat your testicles!

Boxers or Briefs: Does it Make a Difference?

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Breast Cancer Awareness and Infertility

breast cancer awareness

Breast cancer is a diagnosis that strikes fear in the hearts of most women. But there are many reasons to be optimistic about the future for the one in eight females (12%) affected by it.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Advocates wear pink ribbons to symbolize support and education. Women are encouraged to undergo mammograms and breast self-exams. Early detection, prompt care, and advances in treatment have contributed to significant increases in remission and cure.

Despite these inroads, many women of reproductive age are not aware of the options for fertility preservation if the unthinkable happens and they are diagnosed with this disease. Doctors, too, need more education abuot how to counsel patients so they can get timely and accurate and accurate information.

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Infancy and Pregnancy Loss Awareness Month

In October 1988, President Reagan proclaimed October as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. This month is an occasion to recognize the grief and sorrow patients experience when they suffer a miscarriage, pregnancy loss, stillbirth or death of an infant. It also is a time to remember and celebrate the hopes and dreams parents had for their lost angels.

In announcing this commemorative month, President Reagan poignantly described the need to understand the unique heartbreak bereaved parents feel:

When a child loses his parent, they are called an orphan. When a spouse loses his or her partner, they are called a widow or widower. When parents lose their child, there isn't a word to describe them." (October15th.com)

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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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PCOS by the Numbers

PCOS Awareness

September is designated as PCOS Awareness Month. PCOS, polycystic ovary syndrome, is the most common female reproductive disorder. It can start affecting women from around the time they begin to menstruate, but generally subsides around menopause. If left untreated, PCOC can have long-term health repercussions throughout a woman's life.

To give you an overview of the impact of PCOS, here is a rundown of PCOS by the numbers.

Five million, One in Ten and 12 Percent

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Can Surgery Help Me Get Pregnant?

Infertility Surgery

Surgery can sound scary. Thinking about anesthesia, recovery time and potential pain can send anyone into a full-fledged panic attack. For some infertility patients, however, we recommend surgical intervention as the best option for both the diagnosis and treatment of your condition. The good news is that side effects and recovery times have significantly improved and benefits vastly outweigh the risks.

Here are several reasons why surgery may be the best approach before proceeding with intrauterine insemination or in vitro fertilization (IVF):

Both women and men can benefit from surgeries that will allow natural conception now and in the futureSurgery is an effective way to diagnose and treat endometriosis, polyps, fibroids, pelvic infections and/or uterine or tubal abnormalitiesSurgery can help alleviate some of the symptoms of these conditions, such as heavy menstrual bleeding and painSurgeries can provide a more comprehensive diagnosis before proceeding to IVFModern advances in surgical techniques are significantly reducing its invasiveness, the side effects of anesthesia and recovery time

For patients trying to get pregnant, some of the more common gynecological surgeries performed by reproductive endocrinologists are:

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Couple's Four Year Infertility Journey Ends with Dr. Jane Frederick

Worth The Wait sm

Lori and Sean's path to parenthood included treatment from her OBGYN and two local fertility clinics, an ectopic pregnancy, one failed IVF cycle and three heartbreaking miscarriages.

Others might have given up, but Sean's online research took the couple from Phoenix to Orange County California and Dr. Jane Frederick.

Right away, Lori and Sean knew they had found the right doctor. Said Lori, "We were so impressed by Dr. Frederick's confidence and compassion. She reassured us we could make our efforts work. It was the first time we felt we'd met a doctor who understood our pain."

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The Vicious Cycle of Stress and Infertility

‘Relax and it will happen’ is advice most infertility patients hate to hear. For many, it implies getting pregnant may be their fault. This, in turn, only makes them feel more stressed, leading to a vicious cycle of self-blame. This statement can be especially hurtful for couples with a diagnosis of male fertility, blocked fallopian tubes or another condition where they will not get pregnant without a doctor’s help, regardless of their stress level.

One of the most perplexing issues confronting the infertility field is the true relationship between stress and infertility and stress and IVF success rates. Even a review of the peer-reviewed literature on the subject does not yield a conclusive answer. While it is unclear about the role of stress, we know alleviating stress levels and learning coping techniques can help patients feel more in control and better about themselves, their bodies and their treatment plan. It is also beneficial to your overall health, including blood pressure and heart rate.

Your Stress is Real

Groundbreaking research from Dr. Alice Domar*, a world-renowned psychologist in the infertility field, has shown that the stress of infertility is comparable to the stress experienced by cancer patients and those with other serious illnesses.

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