Dr. Huang of Fertility Solutions Received the “Reproductive Health Champion” Award from Fertility within Reach

The following is a transcript from a presentation given by Davina Fankhauser, President of Fertility within Reach to honor Dr. Pei-Li Huang of Fertility Solutions. The presentation took place on March 16, 2015 and was held in our Dedham, MA location. We invite you to read the presentation and view more photos from the event below.

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“Fertility Within Reach (FWR) aligns with patients and providers to protect and further access to family building benefits. Together we act as champions for reproductive health parity. 

In 2012 Fertility Within Reach honored Senator Edward Markey with our inaugural Reproductive Health Champion Award for his long history of supporting women’s health issues and working with FWR as we strive to establish a Congressional Caucus on Infertility. This award is meant for those whose commitment to protect reproductive health is exceptional, despite challenges, demonstrating their inspiring actions.

We are honored to present Dr. Pei-Li Huang with the Fertility Within Reach Reproductive Health Champion Award for her work to gain support of infertility health benefits from the Massachusetts Medical Society.  

Davina Fankhauser, President of Fertility Within Reach notes, “Many do not realize that some medical professionals give less respect and interest toward infertility as they do other medical conditions. Pei-Li was a star who convinced the sun, she not only mattered, but the sun was better off from recognizing her brilliance.” 

In addition to Dr. Huang serving as a patient centered doctor, she took on the role of advocate to a champion reproductive health, specifically infertility treatment.  She utilized resources, gained support from other groups and presented effective testimony.  Her actions added security to the Massachusetts Definition of Infertility (otherwise know as the Massachusetts Infertility Mandate).  

Dr. Huang was one voice that hoped to make a difference, and she did. We are grateful for her efforts. We are proud to celebrate her as a champion for reproductive health. She is exceptional and an inspiration for patients and medical professionals.”

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Raising Awareness of Secondary Infertility

hWhy can’t I get pregnant again?” is a question many women who’ve already had a child ask themselves. Of the 1 in 8 couples who face infertility, 30% of those cases are due to secondary infertility.

Less well known, secondary infertility can be just as heartbreaking and require the same treatments as a standard infertility diagnosis, but it is rarely met with the same amount of empathy and support. Secondary fertility often comes as a surprise, with couples confused as to why a fertility issue has appeared after a previous successful pregnancy.

At Fertility Solutions, we strive to provide education and awareness for all aspects of the fertility spectrum, especially those that are less understood, such as secondary infertility.

What is secondary infertility?

Couples who face secondary infertility were able to conceive, maintain a pregnancy, and give birth previously, but experience difficulty attempting to have another child. This can be surprising, and couples often struggle to understand why a fertility issue is “suddenly” present. It’s important that those who have trouble conceiving their second or third child understand that they may need to undergo testing in order to determine if a fertility issue is present and if it is female factor, male factor, or unexplained. It is also important that couples remember that there are treatment options available.

When should I see a fertility specialist?

If you are 35 years or older, it is recommended that you seek the advice of a fertility specialist if you have been unable to conceive naturally without success for six months. If you are younger than 35 and have been unable to conceive successfully for over one year, then we advise scheduling an appointment with a fertility specialist. If you have additional questions on this topic, we invite you to read our blog post on When should I see a fertility specialist?

Why do I have secondary infertility?

In certain cases the cause of secondary infertility may never be totally clear, even after testing. However, doctors have been able to determine several factors that can potentially contribute to a new fertility issue, these include:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Medications
  • Complications from a prior pregnancy and/or delivery
  • Fallopian tube damage
  • Endometriosis
  • Certain uterine conditions
  • Ovulation
  • Sperm production (male)

Where can I find support?

Couples who struggle with secondary infertility can also have a difficult time finding the right support from family and friends. Many couples are met with the attitude that they should just be happy that they were even able to have one baby—that because they already have one child, it couldn’t possibly be as emotionally painful to be unable to conceive another one when compared with couples who are unable to have any children. Unfortunately, this lack of sensitivity is common, but there are a variety of resources couples can and should use while undergoing testing and treatment, such as local or online support groups. These support groups are filled with others who are going through or who have gone through secondary infertility themselves.

For more information on secondary infertility, please contact Fertility Solutions and ask to speak with one of our board-certified fertility specialists.

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Employee Recognition Series: Tanesha Walker, Medical Assistant

Tanesha WalkerTanesha moved to Massachusetts three years ago from Chicago, IL. During her early career in Chicago, Tanesha worked as a Nursing Assistant in elderly care – “I loved interacting with the elderly and taking care of them. I particularly loved to hear past histories from the patients,” says Tanesha.

After moving to Massachusetts, Tanesha decided to further her education and went back to school to earn her Medical Assistant degree. After graduation, Tanesha decided to direct her career toward the “Family Building” area of medicine.

As a medical assistant with Fertility Solutions, Tanesha “… enjoys the everyday, all-day interaction with patients, and working with each individual or couple to achieve their goals of having a family. I have learned a tremendous amount about fertility, and this knowledge has enabled me to grow personally as well as in my career.”

Outside of work Tanesha is an avid shopper and loves to spend time with her family.

Carol Anania, owner and physician at Fertility Solutions states, “I walk in everyday to a great big smile. Tanesha’s excitement to work with our patients and staff is infectious. She has been a great addition to our team!”

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3 Ways to Talk to Someone Struggling With Infertility

Even though one in eight couples struggles to conceive, if you are not familiar with the fertility community it can be difficult to understand and empathize with those who need assistance to build their family. You can strive to be supportive, gentle and open, but knowing what to do and say if your friend or family member faces an infertility diagnosis can be a real challenge. Even those with the best intentions can inadvertently upset or offend someone they were trying to comfort. If you know someone who is having trouble conceiving, we recommend the following approach to encourage an environment where he or she is comfortable.

Be available.

We all lead busy lives with schedules packed with activities and appointments, so it’s understandable that you may be caught up in your own routine and don’t realize your friend is in need of an outlet. Let your friend or family member know you care, that you are available, interested, and open to supporting them in whatever way they need. Offering to help out with household duties or other chores while they attend appointments, or attend appointments with them to show that you care about their experience. If you find that they seem overwhelmed or are unwilling to discuss fertility, encourage him or her to join a support group.

Remember that special events may be difficult.

Holidays, birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day can all be challenging when you are trying to start a family but are unable, or if you are currently undergoing fertility treatment.

It’s easy for your own excitement for special days to trump your friend or family member’s emotional state, but simple reminders that you care, that you are thinking of them, and that you are there for them will make all the difference. Many infertile couples dread special occasions, especially when they are asked personal questions about when they will have a baby, or if they have tried this or that tactic for getting pregnant—having friends and family who understand that these questions are invasive and potentially hurtful will make any event easier and more enjoyable.

Don’t make assumptions, and be careful with your words.

Not every infertility diagnosis is due to the female partner—one-third of infertility is because of the female partner, one-third is because of the male, and the other one-third is simply unexplained. If you make the assumption that infertility is due to the female partner, you put a couple in the uncomfortable position of having to explain their personal fertility situation.

Additionally, a lot of people have instinctual reactions to tell those facing infertility to “calm down and relax,” and they’ll get pregnant, or that they should enjoy being childless because it means they’ll have a large savings and more sleep. These conversations can be very painful for someone who desperately wants a child but requires treatment to conceive.

At the end of the day, you know that your intentions to be a supportive figure are genuine, but sometimes conveying these intentions in a compassionate way can be easier said than done. The more you learn about the infertility community, the more helpful you will be.

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Get to Know Your Fertility Specialist: Dr. Carol Anania

Dr. Anania (casual)Dr. Carol Anania, Partner and Founder of Fertility Solutions, was kind enough to offer her time to answer a few questions about how her interest in the field of fertility first developed, her work with colleagues at Fertility Solutions, and how she spends her time outside of the center. Get to know Dr. Anania by reading her responses below.

Did you always know that you wanted to be a fertility doctor?

I knew from my first rotation in Labor and Delivery as a medical student that OB/GYN was the field of medicine that I wanted to specialize in.  As part of my OB/GYN residency, I worked in an IVF lab and after seeing my first amazing “egg” under the microscope and watching the progression to the point of a pregnancy, there was no doubt what I wanted to do.

What about working in the fertility specialty appeals to you most?

I enjoy meeting people from all cultural backgrounds and life experiences. I think it is important to get to know those individuals and couples that I work with to better be able to guide them through a process that at times can be stressful, but ultimately very rewarding.

What’s your favorite part about your daily work?

Working with colleagues and staff members at our center.  It is with everyone’s combined effort, working as a team, that enables me to be able to make the special calls at the end of treatments that will impact and change people’s lives forever.

And lastly, how do you spend your free time?

I love the outdoors and all that comes with it.  I have been skiing for most of my life, and with my family, I began rock climbing and wake surfing a number of years ago.  I love to travel, photograph and explore the different activities and people that countries around the world have to offer.  With all that being said, another favorite pastime, is simply being at home with my family, a favorite book/or show and our dog, Dylan.

 

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Free Fertility Seminar Re-cap: January 19th with Dr. Moragianni & Kristen Darcy

Moragianni and Kristen Darcy

Kristen Darcy & Dr. Moragianni

Each month, Fertility Solutions offers a free fertility seminar. During our January seminar we had the pleasure of hosting guest speaker, Kristen Darcy, author of Love and Fertility. Kristen added a new dynamic to our group’s discussion on of the impact of what it means to receive a fertility diagnosis. Some questions that seminar attendees asked include:

How can I not get depressed in the process?

What can we do to make sure the process is smooth?

Kristen emphasized communication between partners and keeping an open understanding toward how each person handles life’s challenges. An important idea that was made during the seminar suggested that everyone should create a daily “What I am happy for…” list to remind us of all that has been accomplished in our lives and what we are grateful for – even during tough times.

From Fertility Solutions point of view, we suggest that patient education is the key to understanding your diagnosis, and we will work with you to create a smooth journey for every individual or couple. Our Board Certified Reproductive Endocrinologists have created a clinic’s whose focus is “all about the patient”. This philosophy is apparent from your very first call to Fertility Solutions which will be received by a person, not a machine.  We are always available to our patients.

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Maryanne Gaffney, Dr. Moragianni & Laura Palmatier

Other questions discussed during the seminar include:

What is the timeline from start to finish?

The process begins with a consultation with one of our four female physicians. During this consult, a plan will be established for your journey to parenthood. Since each individual and couple is unique, the steps through fertility testing and treatment will be different for each situation. Though, on average, after the consult, the IVF process can be completed in 10 – 12 weeks.

Is Fertility Solutions LGBTQ friendly?

Yes, we at Fertility Solutions believe that every person has the right to “build a family” and we are highly supportive of the LGBTQ community.

Why is Fertility Solutions different from the competition?

Our goal at Fertility Solutions is to provide a personal experience for each person who is on the path to creating a family. We are very proud of our personalized attention to each patient and, of course, our success rates. However, one aspect of Fertility Clinics that is often overlooked is our in-house IVF laboratory – our IVF Lab Director, Mike Lee, created our nationally renowned ART laboratory with a focus on success for our patients.  One distinctive addition to our lab is the micro incubator. The micro incubator creates a singular environment for the growing embryos.

Additionally, during our free patient seminar, we offered a tour of the Dedham, MA facility where our IVF laboratory resides.

We love hosting patient seminars and we hope others will take advantage of our monthly offer in the future.

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When Should I See a Fertility Specialist?

Couples who are having trouble conceiving may be unsure as to when they should seek care from a fertility specialist, often wondering if they’ve tried conceiving naturally for a long enough period of time or if an unknown fertility issue may be accountable.

It’s important that couples stay calm. Added stress will not help fertility concerns and has been known to exacerbate difficulty conceiving. At Fertility Solutions, we advise that couples seek the advice of a fertility specialist if:

  • The female partner is over the age of 35 and you have been trying to conceive without success for 6 months.
  • The female partner is under the age of 35 and you have been trying to conceive without success for 1 year. If you are under 35 and are unable to conceive after trying for 1 year, we suggest a visit to your Ob-Gyn as a first step in determining if an issue is present.
  • Any of the following medical conditions are present: recurrent miscarriage, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, irregular menstrual cycle and low sperm count (oligospermia).

A fertility specialist will be able to address your concerns through testing, diagnosis and treatment.

Not every couple with a fertility issue will seek the assistance of a fertility specialist. Some couples will visit a fertility specialist prior to attempting to conceive because they need genetic testing. Genetic testing, also referred to as preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), is used in cases where there is a concern over passing a genetic or chromosomal issue on to children. PGD is commonly used to detect conditions such as cystic fibrosis, Huntington’s disease, Tay-Sachs disease, sickle cell anemia and more.

Should you require the help of a fertility specialist for any of the situations listed above, your first consultation with Fertility Solutions will include a personalized plan for your individual fertility goals. We realize every patient is different, and each dream of building a family deserves our personal time, effort and attention. Please contact Fertility Solutions to schedule a consultation today.

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Get to Know Your Fertility Specialist: Dr. Vasiliki Moragianni

Vasiliki MoragianniDr. Vasiliki Moragianni was kind enough to offer her time to answer a few questions about how her path led to working in the field of fertility, her work at Fertility Solutions, and how she spends her time outside of the center. Get to know Dr. Moragianni by reading her responses below.

Did you always know that you wanted to be a fertility doctor?

My love for the field of reproductive endocrinology and infertility (REI) began during one of my rotations in medical school. I worked with two amazing physician-mentors, who introduced me to the intricacies of the female reproductive system and its pathophysiology. I have enjoyed every minute of it ever since!

How did you find yourself working in the fertility field?

After completing my Obstetrics & Gynecology residency at Abington Memorial Hospital in Philadelphia, I was accepted at the prestigious three-year REI fellowship program at Harvard Medical School & Boston IVF. The clinical and academic skills that I acquired there have laid the foundation of my career in this field.

What about working in the fertility specialty appeals to you most?

Working with individuals and couples as they navigate through the very challenging, but often rewarding journey of fertility is what I enjoy most. Building long-term relationships with these patients and becoming their strongest ally and supporter is invaluable to me.

What’s your favorite part about your daily work?

Interacting with my colleagues and patients. The work environment at Fertility Solutions is very enjoyable and highly collegial, which in turn translates into us, as a team, providing outstanding care to our patients.

What new technology or advances excites you the most?

Constant technological advances in the area of diagnosing optimal embryos for transfer is what helps us improve our success rates and keep offering more and more patients the realistic hope of parenthood.

And lastly, how do you spend your free time?

I have been Greek folk dancing since I was a little girl and feel really fortunate that I have the opportunity to continue doing this in Boston with my group of dear friends. Furthermore, my husband and I love watching movies, taking day trips when the weather permits, and spending time with each other and our friends.

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Employee Recognition Series: Latonya Turner, Medical Assistant

latonya turner photoLatonya Turner is a great asset to our team here at Fertility Solutions.  Latonya began her career as a phlebotomist for 12+ years at the Beth Israel/Deaconess Hospital in Boston, MA. Latonya joined Fertility Solutions this past summer, and has proven exemplary interpersonal skills.  She works in our Dedham and Woburn locations.

Our patients “light up” when they encounter Latonya and her beautiful smile.

As a Medical Assistant at Fertility Solutions, I am rewarded everyday by our amazing patients and the very caring and dedicated staff I work with.  The outstanding service Fertility Solutions provides creates endless possibilities for individuals and couples interested in building a family” – Latonya on Fertility Solutions

Latonya may be one of our newest employees but she is already a patient favorite. She never fails to give  a personal compliment, a smile, and an sincere wish to have a great day to every single person she comes in contact with, including her fellow colleagues. It is a joy to work with someone with such a warm personality.”Dr. Pei-Li Huang

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Affordable Fertility Treatment: 2 New Packages from Fertility Solutions

Fertility Solutions is proud to offer patients two new affordable fertility treatment packages designed with your budget in mind. We realize that fertility treatment costs can be daunting, and may cause some to put their dreams of having a family on hold or choose to abandon the concept altogether.

The entire team behind Fertility Solutions strongly believes that everyone deserves the chance to have a family. Our physicians work tirelessly to support coverage for fertility treatment in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  In addition to encouraging insurance coverage, we’ve prepared two exciting new fertility care options designed with your financial concerns in mind.

Egg Freezing: Option starting at $5,400

Egg freezing is steadily becoming a consideration for more and more women who are simply not in the place they want to be when they start a family. With the average age of a woman giving birth to her first child increasing and egg freezing available as a viable option, the so-called “biological clock” is less of a concern. Egg freezing provides women with the opportunity to have a baby at the age when they are ready to do so. Regardless of your motivation for doing so (career, partner, etc.), freezing your eggs for future use does not have to lead to financial concern. We are simply offering a choice for you and your future dreams.

Fertility Solutions is now offering patients a new egg freezing package that starts at just $5,400 for the first egg freezing cycle, and your first full year of storage is completely free.

We encourage patients who would like to learn more about egg freezing to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced fertility specialists.

IUI & Clomid: Two new packages

Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is often the first step fertility specialists recommend to patients experiencing difficulty with conception. IUI can be used in cases of mild male factor infertility, women who are using a sperm donor, and when unexplained infertility is diagnosed. The process is relatively quick and minimally invasive.

Fertility Solutions offers patients two new IUI package options, ranging from $750-$2500 for treatment. Our packages offer patients options regarding monitoring, medication (Clomid) and more.

Fertility care should not break the bank. As support for fertility insurance coverage grows, Fertility Solutions will continue to lead those actively seeking coverage and to provide affordable options for each and every patient. The stress of an infertility diagnosis is more than enough cause for patient’s concern – worrying about how to pay for s well.

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