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Postby hlloyd » Sun May 01, 2005 7:41 am

Hi Tiger

Glad to see you arrived home safely. We are using Monash IVF as well and we had to pay roughly $3k up front for an IVF cycle. This included all the drugs, etc. We had to pay another $450 for the anaesthetist for egg collection. I am also in top private health but I am not sure that anything was claimed against this. We got back about $1400 thru Medicare, thanks to the safety net. Our next treatment will be even cheaper as it will all fall into the safety net. I think we are fairly blessed in this country that our treatment is so cheap. Women in the US can pay up to $20000 per treatment which would be very limiting without health insurance. My sister had 3 IVF cycles in the US but thankfully the Australian Govt picked up the tab as her husband is posted there as a defence civilian. I now have an adorable yankee niece who will hopefully be returning home for good towards the end of this year.

Good luck tomorrow. I hope you get some answers to your questions.

Cheers
Heather
Me 39+4 DH 41
4th IVF May 06 - +ve
Natural conception Sep 07
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Postby BelB » Sun May 01, 2005 9:41 pm

Hi gals,

Is lovely having our very own special post isn't it!!

The issue of IVF costs seems to vary widely from centre to centre. My experiece was fairly closley alligned with Heathers though, maybe 'cause we're both Queenslanders?. The private health insurance we have (top cover) really just covered the theatre and anaesthatist fees, all other fees (doctors visits etc) were only covered by medicare. I would say we spent roughly (very roughly) $3000 per cycle??. QFG, the fertility clinic that I go through is very open and transparent about their fee structure. They update (increase!!) them frequently, and always advise patients prior to starting a cycle what their out of pocket expenses will be. Agree though that we thus far have a reasonable medicare coverage, though this may all change come the federal (feral) budget on the 10th of May..2 days after mothers day..what bastards!! :evil:

Tiger, the access site is very much worth visiting. They have a news link that takes you to a stack of really good information on the proposed legislative changes to IVF funding. They have a page of "key points", stats and key messages to include when writing to your local members or senators. Very much worth a visit. The CEO of access is a previous IVF consumer herself, so she is excellent, incredibly proactive and has a very clear insight into our situation/s. Will be thinking of you for your clinic appointment tomorrow!, and don't hesitate to be really clear about articulating your need for information, paicularly in relation to costs!

Jo, good luck with the sniffing, it's the first step to your beautiful baby. PMA and baby dust to you!

Deanne, I also have an embarassing puppy school story, my cavalier (beautiful but not terribly bright!) was the only one to fail in her puppy class. She was just so cute anfd shy, she kept wanting to hide in my jumper and would refuse to come out to do all of the socialising. The instructor made a big deal about telling the class that I was far too soft, I was so mortified I never ever went back!!, hopepfully your experiences were better than Heather and mine!!

Miss Molly, are you counting down until the 23rd of May??, I know I used to nxiously await appointments..

Take care all, enjoy our fabulous weather 'cause it's winter soon
Belinda :D :D
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Postby Deanne » Mon May 02, 2005 12:39 am

Hi ladies, hope you're all well.

Heather, I'm glad you and your DH had a good weekend and are feeling strong. I'm sure it won't be long til you can start again.

Jo and Tiger - all the best with your appointments today.

Re costs, our cycle with IVF Australia in Sydney is going to be about $3,300 before medicare rebates apply. Our private insurance will only cover hospitalisation and part of the anaesthetist's fees. As Heather said, the subsequent cycles should be cheaper once we've passed the safety net.

Ahh the joy of puppies! Thanks for your stories Belinda and Heather. We've got a 13 week old cavalier boy (Yoshi) - he's black & tan with a white chest and one white paw. He's the cutest little thing and has been a great distraction for DH & me. I'm working from home now and Yoshi keeps me company through the day. Puppy class went OK - he hid behind DH's legs for the first half hour but then got stuck into the action. He's a real people dog and kept going up to all the other owners for cuddles - was more interested in people than the other dogs :)

A big hello to all the gals in the northern hemisphere - at least summer's coming your way soon!!

Take care,
Deanne
Me 33 (endo), DH 32 ttc 2 years
1st IVF cycle June 05 +ve
Due 21st Feb 2006 :)
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Postby hlloyd » Mon May 02, 2005 5:05 am

Snap Deanne!!

My collie is a tri-colour (black, tan, white) and her name is Yoshi also. DH is a nintendo freak!

Cheers
Heather
Me 39+4 DH 41
4th IVF May 06 - +ve
Natural conception Sep 07
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Postby Deanne » Mon May 02, 2005 5:24 am

Oh Heather that's so funny! My DH a Nintendo fan too. I got to choose the type of dog, he got to pick the name - that was our deal :) I'd love a collie one day too. How old is yours?

Speaking of coincidences, I picked the cavalier breed not realising it was the one that featured in Sex & The City - Charlotte gets one while ttc. A friend told me about it and I borrowed the episode over the weekend. I had to laugh!

Cheers
Deanne
Me 33 (endo), DH 32 ttc 2 years
1st IVF cycle June 05 +ve
Due 21st Feb 2006 :)
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Postby hlloyd » Mon May 02, 2005 12:16 pm

Hi Deanne

I love Sex and the City...MissMolly is a bit of a fan too I believe! My Yoshi will be 10 in October. A bit of a granny really but still really healthy and just as keen on ball play as ever! I highly recommend collies. They are really sweet dogs albeit not particularly bright (I think Lassie was a con) and she has never had a sick day in her life....unlike our boxer (the vet told us that boxers must have been invented by a vet). Cavaliers are beautiful dogs also, really nice nature and exceptionally cute puppies. Glad to hear the class went well and I think it is great to have a people dog, they make the best pets. :D

Have a great day.
Heather
Me 39+4 DH 41
4th IVF May 06 - +ve
Natural conception Sep 07
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Postby missmolly » Tue May 03, 2005 12:15 am

Good Morning everyone!

I am also a total dog freak!!!! I LOVE my dogs. We have two - a weimaraner called Rupert & a mini schnauzer called......Molly (get the nick name!!!!). They have both made the whole IVF experience so much easier. When a was crying after the bad news, they both came and layed on me and cuddled - so cute. When we took Rupert to puppy school, he was the only puppy to get locked in the 'sin bin' during classes for being naughty!

In regards to IVF cost, we paid $2500 upfront & our nurse told us we should get back about 85% (thanks to the safety net). But who knows what will happen in the future?????

When I had my lap, D&C & tubal cannulation I was out of pocket about $800. I am glad to have gone private, as I could not stand being on a waiting list.

Heather - you sound fantastic. DH and I also have a load of questions to ask next time around. Although we did a lot of reading prior to our 1st cycle, its amazing how much you don't know. We had no idea about the quality of the embryos, or the stats relating to the amount of eggs collected equalling viable frozen embryos etc. I was also unaware of the pain associated with EC. The info in the booklet said 'mild discomfort' - yeah right!!!!!!!!

I can't wait to the 23rd May - I can't wait to get started again :) :)

Have a great day!!
Missmolly
1st IVF 04/05 -ve
2nd IVF (FET) 06/05 -ve
FET July - cancelled as embryo did not survive
3rd IVF (stimulated cycle) - no embryos!
4th IVF 02/06 -ve
January 07 - went interstate to a new clinic and got BFP!!!!!!!
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Postby Deanne » Tue May 03, 2005 12:44 am

Hi girls,

Miss Molly I totally agree with you about the comfort that having a pet can bring. I think they help provide us with an outlet for that need to nurture that we all have. And they're so entertaining...

On a totally different topic, can I ask how many of you have told your friends and colleagues that you're undergoing IVF treatment? We're telling our family and close friends, but for now I've told my work colleagues/friends that I'm just having some minor medical treatment. I guess because I didn't tell them all this time that I'd been ttc! Anyway, I'd appreciate any thoughts you may have about it.

Cheers
Deanne
Me 33 (endo), DH 32 ttc 2 years
1st IVF cycle June 05 +ve
Due 21st Feb 2006 :)
Deanne
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Postby BelB » Tue May 03, 2005 10:51 am

Hi gals,
Am back on line after our broadband (new) connection didn't work today..GRRRR..DH came home from work, jiggled a cord (I'm sure I had already done that!!) and hey presto!!

Deanne, DH and I were very open about the whole IVF experience. I personally found the support from friends and family to be largely very good. You certainly get a few people who are completely clueless and make stupid insensitive remarks about, ie "yeah, I had loads of trouble getting pregnant too..it took us three months and I cried every time I got my period"..GRRRRRRRR :shock: But I would say that overwhelmingly people were very supportive, this was particularly useful after our miscarriage when we really needed kind shoulders to cry on..Is a tough call though..

I lurve Sex and the City, Desperate Housewives has filled somewhat of a void, but not quite...
B
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Postby hlloyd » Tue May 03, 2005 10:33 pm

Hiya Girls

I agree with B, I love having this thread! It is the first place I check for updates. Thanks Tiger.

How was your appointment Tiger? Hope everything went well.

Jo, how are you finding the sniffing? For me, this was the worst part of the treatment.....my nose didn't take too kindly to having foreign substances forced into it! In saying that though, I can't wait to start sniffing again!

MissMolly, a very german theme going on with the dogs there. Is that coincidence or do you have german origins? Both fine breeds though and I love my german dog.....I always thought he had selective hearing but maybe there is a bit of a language barrier there! I took a break from the real world a few years ago and opened up a dog grooming business. I absolutely loved it but had to close the business when we moved up here. I have thought about starting up again but at the moment I don't have the energy and it is so nice to have a 9 to 5 type job and a regular pay cheque. I agree with you about the printed material from the clinic. Mild discomfort my foot! I had the advantage(?) of having a cyst aspirated prior to treatment so I did not believe their propaganda. (I did think getting rid of the cyst would be a walk in the park and only took one day off work....I spent 4 days in bed!!!).

B, don't you hate technology. I thought it was supposed to reduce stress but I find the reality to be completely the opposite. Fortunately for me, DH is a computer nerd so I have my own personal help desk!

Deanne, hope you are ok. Not long to go now. Yay! Have you picked up any meds yet? This is where you find your obsessive compulsive disorder coming to the fore....reading and rereading the instruction leaflets, and then scouring the internet for even more info...just to make sure you haven't missed something!

Hope you are all having a great week. Roll on the weekend!

Cheers
Heather
Me 39+4 DH 41
4th IVF May 06 - +ve
Natural conception Sep 07
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Postby Deanne » Wed May 04, 2005 12:07 am

Hi there girls,

Belinda - glad you're back online. Don't you hate it when the guys manage to swoop in at the end and fix things ;)

Thanks for your advice. I think you're right - most people are very supportive, and there'll always be a few who are a bit insensitive. The trouble with me is I tend to let those people affect me more than I should! That's why I'm finding this forum really helpful - 'cos no matter how empathetic even your best friends are, they can't quite know what it's like unless they've been through it too. And that goes for any life experience really. Two of my closest girlfriends are both single, and while I try to be as supportive as I can, I know that I don't quite understand what it's like for them either, since I haven't been single myself for many years now.

Heather, wow, having your own dog grooming business must have been hard work. I've watched a few groomers and am always so impressed with how they manage to calm the jumpiest of dogs. You must be a real pro.

I pick up my meds on Friday morning, and think I'll be starting to sniff on Monday. So Jo, I'd also like to know how you're finding it so far! I noticed on some of the other threads the girls were talking about changing their diets when starting the cycles. Are there any foods you folks were advised to give up? I've been trying to wean myself off Diet Coke for a few months, but have been back to a can a day for the last couple of weeks. I don't drink tea or coffee though so try to convince myself that it's ok...

For all you Sex & the City fans, I noticed that some shops are now selling the individual series for about $30 each (much cheaper than before). Yeah, Desperate Housewives is good but not quite the same. My TV habits are really bad at the moment - I'm hooked on reality shows like Survivor and the Amazing Race. They're probably not too bad - but I also loved all The Bachelor shows!! Any other reality tv addicts out there?

Cheers
Deanne
Me 33 (endo), DH 32 ttc 2 years
1st IVF cycle June 05 +ve
Due 21st Feb 2006 :)
Deanne
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Postby BelB » Wed May 04, 2005 1:02 am

Deanne,

Love the sound of getting the Sex and the City vid's, I could get my fix on a regular basis..I am a huge Carrie fan!!, mainly her shoe collection to be honest, OK I am a tad fickle!..Re. diet changes when you've started your cycle, I remember I dropped tea and coffee (not a prob for you though!), really cold things ie ice cream, on the advice of the accupuncturist I was seeing at the time and chocolate ('cause of the caffeine). Other than that though I just ate what I wanted..Once embie transfer had occurred though I was a lot more cautious (maybe a little over the top really?!?). My rules:

1. Don't get your body temp up too high, ie no saunas, spas, really hot showers. One of my clinic nurses even advised to shower standing backwards so that your tum isn't getting the full force of the hot water.
2. No strenuous activity, lifting etc.
3. No home pregnancy tests. They are notoriously inaccurate and can give false negatives (though not false positives I believe!).
4. Take it easy and let DH treat you like a princess.
5. Lots of crap television..Big Brother is starting up again soon..this would be ideal!!

Maybe the other girls have more to add?
Belinda
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Postby josiemack » Wed May 04, 2005 10:35 am

Hi all you dog lovers out there.... I used to really think the world was divided into dog people and cat people and that I was definitely never going to cross the divide into cat territory, but my son found a stray kitten early last year - of course it was saturday afternoon at the beginning of the long weekend, so we couldn't take it to the local vet which accepts strays until the Tuesday - after making all of the standard 'no, we are not keeping the cat...yes, I know it is cute, but we are NOT keeping the cat...' comments, on the first night we left it in the garage to sleep in a box with jumpers in it - of course DP and I were sitting on the couch looking at each other, 'poor little kitten' - in comes the cat, and by the Tuesday it had a name, a bowl, and numerous toys from the supermarket.

About four months later, after saying for about two months 'we must take the cat to the vet', we started saying 'isn't the cat looking a little fat??' - so four new kittens later..... we now have a total of two cats living with us, both of which have been to the vet!!! So rather than having crossed the dog/cat divide, I think I'd rather say that I'm straddling the fence - we had red setters when I was growing up - beautiful dogs.

Well, Monday finally came along - Sunday night, went to get out the spray - could we find it? Looked everywhere - all of the other meds are in the fridge, finally found this at the back of the drawer in the bedroom after half tearing the place to pieces...

The actual sniffing is fine, I've been doing it around 6.30 each morning and night, have had to do two at work, but thats been ok, as I have an office. I get a chemical taste in the back of the throat and was amazed about four hours after the first dose that I was getting hot flushes - I wonder if that is a placebo-type effect - just reacting because that is meant to be one of the side effects - but it has been happening on and off since I have been taking the spray. No other effects, although I am incredibly tired at the moment - not sure if this is the spray, or just work, which has been really full on - tonight is the first night this week that I have had dinner with the family.

Pain?? what is this about pain at EC???/ No-one told me this!!!! We are having a general anaesthetic - is it still painful????

Favourite shows - ER, Survivor, super nanny - not a spot of intellect or culture, which is just perfect for when you get home at the end of the day!!

We have hardly told anyone - just a couple of close friends - are waiting to see how we go first, I don't want the pressure of everyone else wanting to know how things are going. Haven't said much at work, I can fit the appointments around meetings etc, but will have to lodge a 'sick' day for EC (or by the sounds of it, maybe more than one...)

I should start injecting in about a week and have to travel interstate - has anyone carried their Puregon pen in carry on luggage? I will be travelling with a colleague and don't want to be going through the security section and having it pulled out etc - any thoughts?

Tiger - how did the appointment go? Are you still in Australia?

Sorry for such a long post - hope you are all still awake!!

ps - read somewhere the other day that pineapple juice is supposed to help conception - has anyone else heard this???? good news for those from QLD!!
DP vasectomy 10 years ago; both have children from previous marriages
1st ICSI late May 2005 +ve
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Postby hlloyd » Wed May 04, 2005 11:25 am

Hi Jo

Glad to hear everything is ok. With regard to the puregon, I would stick it in a small cooler bag with an ice pack and pop it in your suitcase.....unless you are taking carry on luggage only....then I don't know. I am sure the security staff won't bat an eyelid as diabetics use a similar device.

Sorry about the EC discussion. It is different for everyone. I had a general anaesthetic and didn't feel a thing throughout the procedure. I did have some discomfort afterwards and was bloated, crampy and sore for a few days. Others that have posted, have been fine afterwards. I guess it just depends on each individual. My EC was on a Friday so I had a few days to recover plus I took the following Monday to Wednesday off as I was not sure which day ET would be....very glad I did and will probably take even more time off following my next treatment to save my workmates from my vagueness!

We haven't told anyone that we are going through IVF. We just thought it would be easier to deal with our anticipated disappointment (we really are pretty positive people) without having to contend with a barrage of well wishers. Much easier to deliver surprise good news than constantly relive the pain by relaying bad news to the masses. I have come really close to telling my sister that has been through IVF herself as I am sure she would be a great support. However, I come from a large, close knit family and if you tell one, you tell 'em all! I look forward to swapping stories with her when this is all over.

I haven't heard that about pineapple juice. It does contain a substance that is great for arthritis....mostly concentrated in pineapple cores....fortunately I'm not in need of that, yet! I have done a lot of product development work with pineapple producers in the region so I will have to get the scoop on it's conception aiding properties!

I have two cats also....one rescued from the RSPCA and one rescued from a pet shop (not that I condone pet shops selling animals but the poor thing had been there for such a long time that I felt sorry for him). Just a sucker for a cute face.

I do waffle on......sorry.

Keep well :D
Heather
Me 39+4 DH 41
4th IVF May 06 - +ve
Natural conception Sep 07
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Postby Tiger » Wed May 04, 2005 11:25 am

Hello Hello!!

First time proper internet access in last two days - yay!

Firstly I want to thank you all for providing me with the costing for your IVF, very helpful :wink: a-ri-ga-tou-ne.

Our consultation with the doc on Monday went really good. He first started off by giving me a detailed explanation of the operation results for endo lap. We did ask about possiblity of unblocking them (Hi MissMolly!!) but he said that in my case they are not appropriate to be operated on as my tubes are blocked at the uterus end...... . Anyhow, he then continued on by telling us that although my tubes are blocked at both ends it does not mean that miracles can't happen.... He said "All you need is a small gap".... I thought that was really nice of him to say that - just gave me that little bit of hope, however, he did continue on with "but my medical recommendation is IVF"...... AGH! With regards to IVF the doc clearly understood our issue with OZ & Japan thing so he made an urgent appointment for tests following the consultation for us; we are very thankful that we have such a wonderful doctor. So after we saw him we went to pathology for blood tests and my hubby had his sample taken and frozen (no problems there). The following day we saw the nurse and the counsellor as well. AND, picked up all my medication including sprays too. It was a busy couple of days but basically we can start IVF anytime we are ready. My program by the way is Pill-Down one, Heather I think it is same as you? As far as the timing goes, my hubby's next big break is in Sept so we are hoping to time OPU and ET when he is here. So I will be starting the program in August? .... the doc just said he wants me in Melbourne by the time I start on my spray.

Oh, Belinda, I found out that Melb IVF will pay our first year subscription to access.org when we start the program 8) - so yea, I am looking forward to accessing the information and support available from them.

In summary - I am much more happier now that I have seen the doctor and a nurse. I must say the injection looks bit scary though :shock: .

Tomorrow - fishing on Port Phillip Bay!! Our BIL was kind enough to take half a day off to take us fishing on the boat - excellent. I hope you all have a lovely day too.

Cheers,

PS We are not allowed dogs in our apartment but we love dogs too - very very envious of you all!!! I have 9 little tropical fishies, I wanna come home.

PPS My costing so far -

Dr consultation (post op & IVF) $75 (less medicare $30.95)
Sperm analysis & storage $198 (no medicare)
Spray $95 (get some back from private medical???)
Pill $34.45 (get some back from private medical???)
Last edited by Tiger on Wed May 04, 2005 12:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Blocked tubes due to endometriosis.
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