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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.

Two Women, One Dream to Create A Family

create a family blog

In the last several decades, lesbian would-be parents have increasingly sought reproductive assistance to have babies. It is estimated that approximately one-third of lesbian households have children, having achieved motherhood either through non-assisted insemination, fertility treatment, adoption or through prior heterosexual relationships.

While two women trying to make a family together equals double the set of reproductive organs, they still may encounter obstacles on their way to getting pregnant and having a baby.

If you are part of a same sex female couple, here are some important issues you should consider as you embark on your family building journey.

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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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This Couple Used an Egg Donor (and Dr. Jane Frederick) to Expand Their Family

Amy, a 48-year old marketing executive, and her second husband Diego were eager to give their young daughter a sibling, but were unable to conceive naturally.

Recommended to Dr. Jane Frederick, the couple underwent one round of IVF to see if Amy could produce any of her own eggs. When she couldn't, Amy recalls, "We were disappointed because we'd been so hopeful, but Dr. Frederick was also hopeful that egg donation might be a solution."

Within a week, the couple was matched with a donor. Out of the four viable fertilized eggs, they chose a male embryo and became pregnant on their first donor cycle. Amy gave birth to little brother Sam last March.

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Finding Dr. Right with Dr. Jane Frederick

As a same-sex couple, Anna Marie and Michelle Carreno-Bolong knew they would need assisted reproduction to fulfill their dream of becoming parents. Married for two years, the thirtysomething women love kids and are surrounded by them as owners of a children's gym in Redondo Beach.

In 2014, they excitedly decided to start their journey to parenthood and made several appointments with an Orange County fertility specialist. They were disappointed, however, when they did not feel the compassion they were seeking from a fertility practice. They decided to switch doctors after hearing about HRC Fertility and finding Dr. Jane Frederick after researching doctors.

"Right from the start, I knew we'd made the right choice," Anna Marie recalls. "Dr. Frederick exuded warmth and kindness."

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The Zika Virus: What You Need to Know

zika

You’ve probably seen the frightening news reports of hundreds of Brazilian babies with microcephaly, a serious birth defect characterized by abnormal smallness of the head and incomplete brain development.

Infectious disease experts have attributed their condition to the Zika virus, carried by two species of mosquitoes as well as through sexual intercourse with an infected person. The Zika virus can affect pregnant women and their babies at any point in the pregnancy, and currently testing for Zika is complicated and not readily available. Still, the risk of catching Zika, particularly in the U.S. and southern California, is very low and research is rapidly ongoing—especially for a vaccine.

In April, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine issued a document developed from CDC and FDA reports to help infertility physicians counsel patients about Zika’s impact on reproduction. Key takeaways include:

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Options for Surrogates and Intended Parents

When Robyn decided to become a surrogate, she looked into options that included going through an agency or doing it privately. She compared the earnings for a surrogate and the agencies, and researched how much intended parents were going to have to pay an agency. She gathered the same data going the private route.

Robyn discovered that intended parents can pay as much as $100K, which includes all treatment and medications. Surrogates, meanwhile, only make a certain amount.

By going privately, surrogates and intended parents negotiate the contract and agree on the surrogate's payment. Typically, this amount is less than the agency price, but it means hiring lawyers and negotiating directly with the surrogate. 

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True Infertility Success Stories: Our Donor Process was Worth It


When P and A (couple chose to remain anonymous) decided to pursue fertility treatment to overcome their unexplained infertility diagnosis, they weren’t taking any chances. They decided to try in-vitro fertilization (IVF) with a donor egg.

As soon as Dr. Frederick connected the couple with a donor agency, A was checking out profiles on the website.

“We went from ten years of trying on our own to not taking any chances and finding a healthy donor,” explained A. “It was a process. We spent many days and hours researching profiles, trying to find someone who fit. Neither one of us were emotional about only having half a genetic connection. We knew that if P carried the babies, they were our babies.”

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