Mari Trevino Glass and Sophia Trieu are two Houston moms who represent a large statistic. They both are included in the estimated one in eight couples who struggle with infertility.
After four cycles of IVF, the Trieus had a baby girl three months ago.
The Glass family had baby Benjamin in 2020. Then this month, they tried again to give him a sibling but it didn’t work.
“We did have the failed transfer. We have four remaining em-babies, as we like to call them. So for frozen embryos, two girls and two more boys. So we’re going to regroup with our doctor, actually next week, and kind of just go from there and figure out what the best path forward is because we’re not going to give up quite yet and we definitely have some more options ahead of us,” Trevino Glass said.
There are always options, says Dr. James Nodler, a reproductive endocrinologist with CCRM Fertility. However, he said the most important factor in fertility is age. The later past 35, the harder it may become.
Dr. Nodler said a lot of women who have PCOS or struggle with a healthy lifestyle may start with a good diet and exercise to attempt pregnancy. He recommends eating more vegetables and less animal fat. Plus, learning to track ovulation is critical. That kind of education may be all a couple needs.
Medication and procedures
There are many cases where more treatment is needed.
For example, according to Nodler, medication is very common to jumpstart ovulation. If medication doesn’t work, he said an IUI or intrauterine insemination is the next step.
“For maybe more severe cases, like if the fallopian tubes are blocked, if a woman is older in her 40s, she’s had recurrent miscarriages or if the sperm count is severely low, then we are talking about the more advanced treatments like IVF or in-vitro,” Dr. Nodler said.
Not to mention, the LGBTQ population who may need to skip ahead in the process of using donors and/or surrogates.
Since one round of IVF can cost about $15,000 (and it often takes multiple rounds), more states are mandating insurance covers fertility treatments, but Texas is not one of them.
Although a growing number of insurance companies will cover some or all of the cost, both Trevino Glass and Trieu got help with insurance.
For others, there are popular loan companies to cover the medical procedures or egg freezing like:
“Be positive about it. It does go by pretty quickly. At the same time, it’s long. But when you do have that child, it’s all worth it,” Trieu said.