Monthly Archives: October 2013

Canadian Fertility Consultants answers a common question, Should I have an epidural for the sake of my Intended parents?

Published October 25, 2013

Surrogate A surrogate mother considers pain management options during her delivery

Canadian Fertility Consultants

Q. Should I use epidural anesthesia during my surrogacy, I haven



Canadian Fertility Consultants- Understanding Infertility

Published October 20, 2013

Understanding Infertility

Canadian Fertility Consultants – There are many possible reasons why our clients may have difficulty conceiving. The assessment your Dr will do will involve an evaluation of the factors that contribute to fertility:

  • Quality of your sperm
  • Egg Quality
  • Health of fallopian tubes and uterus
  • Your hormone levels
  • infectious disease screening
  • genetic testing

There are many fertility options available to clients, such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF). Sometimes IUI or IVF therapies are used in conjunction with donor eggs or donor sperm. Many of our clients also consider the use of a Gestational carrier.

Many of CFC’s clients ask: When Should You See an Infertility Specialist (Reproductive Endocrinologist)?

If you are 35 years old or younger, and have attempted to become pregnant for one year or more without success.

If you are over 35 years old and have attempted to become pregnant for six months or more.

If you have had repeated losses when pregnancy has been achieved.

If you have had four or more unsuccessful cycles with Clomid.

If you are in premature menopause naturally or as a result of chemotherapy or other medical conditions.

If you have been told you will need assistance to conceive due to hysterectomy, blocked tubes, uterine damage, egg quality issues, or problems with ovulation.

If you want to have a baby after having tubal ligation or vasectomy.

If you have a family history of genetic issues, Huntington disease, Spinal Muscular Atrophy, sickle cell anemia, or cystic fibrosis.

How do we get a Referral to a Fertility clinic?

We suggest that clients speak to their family Dr about a referral to a Fertility clinic,as their family Dr will often be needed to run some of the routine tests, and then of course to care for you once you become pregnant.

Canadian Fertility Consultants also offers a Referral service. We research which clinics have had the best success in dealing with other clients, with similar fertility issues. We will then contact that clinic- whether in Canada, or the US, to book an appointment for you. During your treatment, we will be available to support you- helping you find outside monitoring facilities, pharmacies that stock some of the harder to find medications, as well as complementary therapists to support you through the treatment process.

For further information on Canadian Fertility Consultants fertility referral program, please email us at info@fertilityconsultants.ca or by calling our office at 613 439 8701.

fertility Canadian fertility Consultants offer clients referrals to clinics that will help them build their families



Canadian Fertility Consultants suggests Intended parents hire a Surrogacy lawyer

Published October 20, 2013

surrogacy

Canadian Fertility Consultants refers all clients to Surrogacy lawyer

Canadian Fertility Consultants always advises Intended Parents hire a Surrogacy lawyer to give them sound counsel when entering into a Surrogacy arrangement. The guidance of a surrogacy lawyer will be invaluable. The lawyers for both the intended parents, and surrogate will work to negotiate the specific terms of the Surrogacy contract.

The lawyer for the Surrogate Mother reviews the Surrogate contract and answers questions concerning the legal and financial process. The contract details the obligations and responsibilities of all involved parties to avoid any misinterpretations. It is imperative that the the Surrogacy contract is signed once each individual is satisfied with all the terms and conditions.

Further, Canadian fertility clinics require a legal clearance letter, to ensure that all parties have had independent legal advice prior to proceeding with an ivf cycle. This protects the parties from any feelings of being pressured, as being on medication prior to negotiating the contract can place undue pressure on all parties.

When the Surrogate pregnancy is in it’s 25th week, Canadian Fertility Consultants will refer Intended parents back to a lawyer to begin the process of obtaining a declaration of parentage which provides guidelines involving the birth, and parentage of the child. The intended parents lawyer will also right a letter of direction to the hospital that the Surrogate will deliver in, to ensure that the hospital is ready to care for all parties, and will treat the intended parents as the parents of the child, or children.

Each province in Canada has different legal guidelines, and so Canadian fertility Consultants always suggests speaking with a lawyer, or researching the province in which you will be selecting a Surrogate, to ensure that their laws work for your situation.

***For further information on the Legal process of a Surrogacy in Canada, please feel free to call our office at 613 439 8701 or email us at info@fertilityconsultants.ca and we will be happy to provide you with a referral to a lawyer who will be able to best answer all of your questions regarding the Legal process.*****



Surrogacy in Canada :CFC Unexpected Delivery

Published October 18, 2013

width=221 Canadian fertility Consulting An unexpected delivery

Surrogacy in Canada : it was last Thursday when I got the call from Anna, she was in labour, which of course is always the most exciting time for the Surrogate, as the finish line is in sight. Our office loves to get these calls, as we know that typically within the day, a baby/ies will be here. A family will be created, and a Surrogate will have given the ultimate gift.

I asked Anna if she had notified the intended parents, and if her Midwife was on her way to check her, prior to heading to the hospital. Both intended parents, and the midwife were in fact on their way to Anna’s house. During this call Anna seemed to be in quite a bit of pain, heavily breathing for most of the call, so I called the intended parents who were getting packed up, for the three hour drive to Anna’s. I suggested that they may want to get on the road a little faster than initially planned, as it didn’t sound like Anna was going to be in labour for long.

The day passed, and I became busy with other things, and had lost track of time. When I finally looked at the clock, several hours had passed, and I hadn’t heard back from Anna. I called to check in, and to see how labour was progressing. The Intended Mom answered the phone, which immediately caught me off guard. Shannon, is that you?? Yes, it’s me. I’m here with Anna, and our baby. Oh my goodness, that was fast. Yes, it really was. Shannon went on to explain to me that when she got to Anna’s to head to the hospital, it was too late, baby Matthew was already on his way into the world. Anna didn’t want to head to the hospital without her intended parents, and so she stayed put, with the midwife, and doula by her side. Shannon was in awe of her little miracle- Five years in the making, after countless rounds of iui, ivf cycles, he was finally here. She spent the next twenty minutes recounting every moment of his birth, including her husband cutting the cord, her immediately breastfeeding, it all sounded just amazing, but I needed to know how Anna was.

Shannon passed the phone to Anna. I could only imagine how tired Anna was, but I needed to know she was okay. Anna came to the phone, sounding tired, but so happy, I again heard every detail of the birth, and how amazed she was by the entire process. I was so relieved. It is in that pause of my asking how are you to the surrogate answering, I’m okay that panic sets in. I always want her to be okay. What if she isn’t okay?, then what? She was okay, thankfully!

It is in these moments, that I am truly inspired, that I am truly speechless. How could I not being doing this job? How could I not be sharing in this most amazing moment with intended parents, and the gestational carriers that give life to their dream.

Thank you Anna, Shannon, and Doug for allowing me to share in this most unconventional, and amazing journey.

For further information on Gestational Surrogacy, or how CFC can help you realize your dreams of parenthood, or blessings of Surrogacy, please email us info@fertilityconsultants.ca OR call our office 613 439 8701

*names have been changed to respect the confidentiality of all parties.



International Surrogacy - CFC offers advice for Canadians travelling abroad for Surrogacy

Published October 16, 2013

overseas_surrogacy CFC explores overseas surrogacy, and ivf costs

International Surrogacy – Canadian Fertility Consulting fields many calls each week from Intended parents wanting to know if we have information on Surrogacy abroad, as mainstream media outlets are covering stories of Canadians traveling to places like India, Thailand, and now Mexico to pursue Gestational surrogacy.

At CFC, we decided to do some research into these new Surrogacy Destinations (International Surrogacy) . During our research we looked at the following factors

*Success rates in these countries

*Cost/Length of stay for ivf treatments, as well as to travel for delivery and post birth stay

*Legal Process of getting back to Canada with your child/ren

*Ethical concerns of Surrogacy abroad

During our research it became very clear that there was nothing clear about the International Surrogacy operations. We contacted many clinics, as well as agencies who provide overseas Surrogacy programs to get information, and couldn’t get the clear picture that we needed to be able to provide a complete picture to clients, however we did learn a great deal about the processes abroad.

We asked these overseas agencies, and clinics numerous times for success rates of fertility clinics, as well as how, and if those results were tracked by any reporting agencies. In Canada, and the US, independent reporting agencies are used to ensure clinic transparency, and accurate success rates. In countries such as India, Mexico and Thailand, these reporting agencies aren’t in place.

The length of stay, if Intended parents were cycling on their own averaged two weeks, and for those using an egg donor it was far less- on average 3-5 days. It also appears that shipping embryos from Canada is an option. When it comes time to attend the delivery/pick up the baby, that is where we had a lot of conflicting information- some agencies stating two weeks, while other agencies located in the same country gave us estimates of six-eight weeks. The legal costs post birth as well never became clear, nor did the post birth legal process. This was concerning to us, as the agencies weren’t comfortable with our speaking to their in house lawyer, unless we were referring clients immediately.

The cost for ivf was very low, on average seemed to be 1/3 of the cost of ivf, and surrogacy in Canada which I know would be a large draw to clients, as well as aggressive treatments- transferring a larger number of embryos than Dr’s in Canada, and in some cases transferring embryos to more than one surrogate at a time.

The legal process is still somewhat of a mystery to me, as I wasn’t able to speak directly to a lawyer, however was given many assurances that Intended parents travelling home to Canada, whether from Thailand, India, or Mexico wasn’t a legal obstacle at all.

As I spoke to the many agencies, and clinics abroad, my ethical concerns really faded. Many of the myths I had bought into were dispelled. Surrogates in other locations, have the same motivation as the surrogates I work with here in Canada- to help change the lives of another couple, by giving life to their baby/ies. Surrogates abroad were still looking for a connection with intended parents- whether by weekly skype calls, or emails. The surrogates don’t always stay at the clinics throughout the pregnancy, as many have families to care for, which I was glad to hear, as mainstream media often reports that these surrogates are kept women, as opposed to women continuing to care for their families, and maintaining their daily routines.

In conclusion, I would say that for intended parents pursuing donor egg ivf for themselves, there are definitely many interesting options abroad, from a cost perspective. I would also say that with the laws in many of these countries being fluid, meaning unsettled, I’m not sure that I would recommend intended parents go this route- yet!!!

I am hopeful that Canadians who are travelling overseas, will come back to Canada, and share their experiences with us. At this point we have no first hand knowledge, and have only been able to gain information through phone calls, emails, and connections we have made with US agencies offering support to those travelling abroad.

For further information on travelling abroad to pursue to ivf, donor egg, and/or surrogacy, please contact our offices by calling us at 613 439 8701 or by emailing us at info@fertilityconsultants.ca

width=300 Intended parents travelling abroad to pursue ivf, donor egg, and surrogacy cycles



Canadian Fertility Consultants celebrates Thanksgiving

Published October 14, 2013

This Thanksgiving was particularly exciting for us at Canadian Fertility Consultants. Leading up to the long weekend, we had two Surrogates deliver- One a singleton, and the other carried a set of twins. It was so fantastic, as both sets of parents were able to to get to the deliveries in time to be present for the birth, and to be a support to their surrogates, as they delivered.

On Saturday morning, I woke up to a text from one of our Surrogate mothers that they had gotten a positive home pregnancy test, and by Sunday, our Surrogate message board was lit up with news of two more positive home tests.

We are always very excited when Surrogates share their news with us, as it reminds us of why we are doing the work we are, and why connecting with our Surrogates is such a vital part of our business.

This past week we also had visitors to the Canadian Fertility Consultants office in Brighton, by a couple from Germany, as well as a couple from France. It is always such a pleasure for our office staff to meet with International intended parents, as we often don’t get the chance, at the early stages of the process. Both sets of intended fathers had a great time in Canada, and were able to meet with Lawyers, fertility clinic, and of course with the amazing woman who would help turn their dream into a reality. It was a true pleasure for us to watch these intended parents begin their journey to parenthood.

As we look at all of the things that we are Thankful for, as an organization, it always comes back to one thing- We are Thankful that Intended parents, and Surrogates allow us to share in their journey to parenthood.

Canadian Canadian Fertility Consulting is so Thankful for all of our clients

For more information on Canadian Fertility consulting’s programs, and services, please email or call our office to set up a free consultation.



Surrogacy - Q: From Intended parents. Is it okay that my Surrogate is a Vegetarian?

Published October 09, 2013

Vegetarian

Surrogacy: Many of our Intended parents ask us if it is okay that their Surrogate is a vegetarian?

Pregnant women who are vegetarian can still enjoy a carefully planned vegetarian diet. There are many health benefits to vegetarian diets, but women who are pregnant need to take extra care to get enough protein, iron, zinc, and vitamin B12.

Protein is essential to promote normal fetal growth, so it is an important nutrient for a healthy pregnancy. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for women and men is 0.80 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. During pregnancy, most doctors suggest women increase their daily protein intake by 6 grams (about the amount in one 250 mL glass of partly-skimmed milk, one cup of broccoli, one egg, or one-third cup of dry-roasted almonds). Vegetarian sources of protein include grains, legumes, seeds, nuts, and egg or milk products. Keep in mind that the protein in vegetables is less concentrated and less easily absorbed so you may need more or larger portions to get the required amount of protein.

The Vegetarian Food Guide published by the Dietitians of Canada suggests that pregnant women consume the following amount of these foods daily:

vitamin B12-rich foods: 4 servings

beans/nuts/seeds: 7 servings

calcium-rich foods: 8 servings

What about vegans? The Alberta Health and Wellness During Pregnancy Guide states that vegan diets can be low in calories, iron, zinc, vitamin B12, B6, calcium, and vitamin D. If you are vegan, talk to your doctor or a dietitian about ensuring you get enough essential nutrients during pregnancy.

We often suggest that our Surrogates see a dietician during pregnancy to address any concerns that they may have regarding their eating habits, or dietary restrictions that may be imposed by the Intended parents. CFC’s surrogates are often quite open to this idea, as they too are interested in what is in the best interest of the baby/ies that they are carrying.

For more information on Dietary guidelines for pregnancy, we suggest that you visit http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/nutrition/prenatal/index-eng.php

Surrogate



French Surrogacy - French services now available at Canadian Fertility Consulting

Published October 08, 2013

French Surrogacy – Canadian Fertility Consultants is so excited to announce that French Services are now

baby_surrogacy_surrogatemother French intended parents through surrogacy now have French services available

available for our clients. This year we have had a large number of French speaking clients interested in working with us. We of course love to work with clients from overseas, however have found the language to be somewhat of a barrier.

CFC is now the First Fertility consulting firm in Canada to offer services in French, and we are so excited to help any future French clients build their families.

Over the past few months, we have been interviewing candidates for a new position- French program administrator, and we have the perfect fit!!! Sylvie is a fantastic Mom, who like us, has a passion for family building- like us. We are so glad to have Sylvie as a part of our team- as she is available to work with our French speaking clients, providing them with translation services, as well as day to day management of their Surrogate journey.

Sylvie is very excited to begin working with our current, and future clients, educating them on our programs, services, as well as supporting them through their journey to parenthood.

Our French website, www.fertilityconsultants.fr is now up, and running, and will be a great resource for prospective French clients.

We look forward to building relationships with many French family building organizations- providing outreach, and support to those building their families through alternative means.

Please feel free to email Sylvie- Sylvie@fertilityconsultants.ca with any questions that you may have regarding our French language programs, or services.



Surrogate Mothers - Bring on the Two Week wait!!!

Published October 01, 2013

Surrogate Mothers – yesterday I had the great pleasure of being able to attend an embryo transfer, with my one of my surrogates Melissa. Her intended parents weren’t able to come, so she had a friend, and me to be her cheering squad. We sat and waited for her to be called, all the while making idle chit chat, talking about possible due dates, upcoming pregnancy tests, and of course the DREADED two week wait.

For those of you who are new to the ivf world, and wonder what I mean by the Two week wait, here is my best explanation. The two week wait is the two weeks between the embryo transfer, and pregnancy test. It is an exciting, but often agonizing time, as both the Surrogate, and intended parents are on pins and needles, wondering if every little twinge is embryo implantation, or on the flip side, embryos being rejected.

The lead up to the embryo transfer is filled with various medications, both oral tablets, and intra muscular injections that the surrogate must take, and continue to take for the first twelve weeks of pregnancy. The embryo transfer itself only took five minutes, after we all got settled into the room. Dr Librach came in to quickly review the plan, number of embryos, as well as the what if’s that can occur with more that one embryo being transferred. After Melissa signed off on the procedure, we all watched with held breath, the embryos on the screen, intended parents name on the petrie dish, and then on the other flat screen TV, the embryos being inserted into Melissa’s uterus. It was that quick, a five minute moment, that seemed to stop time, and take hours, as we concentrated on how amazing this process truly was.

The procedure ended, and Melissa laid their quietly for another while, catching her breath, and giving those embryos a little time to settle into their new Nine month home.

Thank you Melissa, for allowing me to share your special moment with you,