The Costs of IVF
IVF (in vitro fertilization) is an infertility treatment where the woman’s eggs are fertilized by the sperm in the lab.
Once the eggs have been fertilized one or more of them are inserted into the uterus where the hope is that they’ll implant themselves in the uterine lining and pregnancy occurs.
Many couples who are unable to conceive naturally may find that IVF is the next best option for them.
One of the factors that you’ll need to consider if you’re thinking about IVF is the financial and emotional costs involved with this procedure.
There are some states that mandate some type of coverage for infertility treatment, so some of your treatment costs may be covered. Coverage will also depend on your own health insurance plan.
Determining ahead of time how much you can afford can save you a lot of stress in the long run.
Is IVF for You?
There are a number of infertility causes that can affect your ability to get pregnant naturally.
Some of these causes include:
- Blocked or scarred fallopian tubes.
- Low sperm count.
- Low sperm mobility.
- Age. The older women are the less viable their eggs are.
- Severe endometriosis.
- Ovulation disorders.
- Ovarian failure. In this case, donor eggs would have to be used.
- Unexplained infertility.
Even though IVF has a high success rate it comes with some distinct disadvantages such as side effects from fertility medication, the discomfort of invasive procedures, and the high costs of each cycle.
There is also the risk of complications to the pregnancy such as premature birth and ectopic pregnancies.
Before undergoing IVF you and your partner need to consider the risks, advantages, and alternatives so that you have a complete understanding of what you’re going to be going through.
The Financial Costs of IVF
Once your fertility specialist recommends IVF, there are a few important decisions that you’ll have to make. One of these decisions is if you’ll be able to afford IVF.
There are some IVF costs that are covered by insurance and there are many fertility clinics offering financing options. Find out ahead of time what the exact costs are and what you can expect for what you pay.
Most fertility clinics have three different cost breakdowns of IVF:
- Medical consultation and testing. The consultation and testing fees will be anywhere from $1,500 to $3,500. Many of these costs will be covered if you have health insurance. Keep in mind that many clinics will charge extra for a semen analysis. The cost of this will be from $85-$350.
- Fertility Medications: The types of fertility drugs you take will depend on what type of IVF you’re undergoing. Medications usually cost anywhere from $2,500 to $4,000 for each cycle of IVF.
- IVF Treatment: The average cost of IVF is about $10,000 for each cycle and about $3,500 for each cycle of FET (frozen embryo transfer). The final cost of your IVF treatment will depend on each individual clinic, your age, and your own personal IVF treatment plan.
It’s very important that you realize most women undergo more than one cycle of IVF. One cycle of IVF will cost on average about $20,000.
This means that the financial costs can start to add up very quickly depending on how many cycles you need before you’re pregnant.
This is one reason that you and your partner need to discuss beforehand how many IVF cycles you can afford before it becomes too big an emotional and financial burden.
Financing Options for IVF
While many fertility clinics offer financing options these plans aren’t always as attractive as they sound. Some plans will require you to pay a reduced price in advance for more than one IVF cycle.
While the cost of three cycle plans may be less than the cost of three single cycles you’ll only be saving if you fail to get pregnant in the first two cycles and have success in the third.
Most of these plans won’t refund you any money if you get pregnant in the first or second cycle. If you need financing for your IVF treatments it might be a good idea to consider other options.
The Emotional Costs of IVF
It can be hard to deal with the emotional ups and downs of fertility treatment. If you’ve reached the point where you’re considering IVF, you’ve most likely been going through at least one to two years of trying to conceive.
The heartbreak of waiting every month to find out if you’re pregnant can quickly take its toll on both of you. When it comes to infertility treatment most women will have to undergo more than one IVF cycle.
It’s disheartening when you’ve just had an IVF cycle and you find out that you’re not pregnant. The entire process of IVF can place a lot of stress and anxiety in your relationship.
It’s advisable that you and your partner take part in the counselling services and therapy support groups that most fertility clinics offer.
Sharing with others who are going through the same experiences you are can be helpful during this trying time.