In Between Two Lines
What to Expect | The doctors
A quick note…
If you ask anyone in Charlotte who they would recommend for fertility treatments most would say that they have heard of REACH. REACH stands for Reproductive Endocrinology Associates of Charlotte and they are the original players in the fertility game here in Charlotte. Now I am bias because of a few reason but what I want to talk to you about today is a different doctor with a different model and approach. I want to tell you why and how we choose our Dr. and things I would recommend know what I know now.
Where to invest?
Yes, this is 100% an investment. An investment where the dividends are spit up and dirty diapers, eventually college and weddings. This is an investment where financially you will never get into the black. But it is an investment in life and love. Which the payouts can never be quantified. So how do you choose a practice and a doctor to assist you in creating a life? Great question! One that I can only answer having nailed it on my first try finding the best fit for us. We started at our OBGYN – there are so many in Charlotte I do not even want to start on how to choose an OB. From there they had to give us a referral and they defaulted to REACH. I had already done my homework before this appointment and I threw my OB for a bit of a loop when I asked for the referal to be sent to CFI (aka Carolinas Fertility Institute). He didn’t have any issues sending it there but he kept mentioning they had never had a patient go there. Which honestly made me like CFI even more. I knew we did not want to go to a baby factory and that we wanted something smaller and more personal. Heck this is the most personal of all the things. So we started our journey at CFI.
We were off to the races. The initial appointment is really a get to know you appointment. As much for you as for the doctor. I made Shawn go because I wanted to make sure he was comfortable as well. After all he had to be comfortable enough to make what we affectionately call a “donation” while there.
Right off the bat – Dr. Mesen doesn’t sugar coat anything. He gave us the stats and where we stood on the spectrum. They can tell you A LOT from a simple blood test, age and history. So we walked out feeling overwhelmed but armed with the information we needed to make the next move. Which for us was an IUI. The IUI didn’t work but by some miracle (and probably all the hormones I was on) we got pregnant the month after. Which ended in a miscarriage but we learned sooooo much from that. And so did the CFI team. So then we really knew what we needed to do which was IVF.
I want to focus on the Dr and his team for a minute. During one of the hardest things I have even been through they treated me with honesty and respect. I was at my lowest and super sensitive which still may be less sensitive than most but more than anything I appreciated their honesty and their quick approach to helping us through the miscarriage. I honestly thought that I would never be able to go back (all procedures happen in Winston-Salem) but I had to for the retrieval and the same anesthesiologist and nurse were there for both. It was comforting because I was like I am back! That didn’t break me. I am here to try again.
Dr. Y who is in the W-S office is very kind and super supportive. He is the one that does most of the procedures but monitoring will be done by Dr. Mesen in Charlotte. Honestly if you go out there and read reviews about Dr. Mesen you will see stuff like, cold, not bedside manor, hard. Guys and Gals – I am not sorry when I say this, I am glad Dr. Mesen was all of these things. I didn’t go to him to make a friend. I went to him with the most important investment of my life. And he took it seriously. If you need to feel warm – snug up with your partner. But if you want to feel empowered and confident – Dr. Mesen is your guy. He is a straight shooter – he is always going to tell you the truth even when it hurts – and he is going to do everything he can to help you get pregnant. I appreciate his laser focus and I am hoping he will make us another baby in 2021!
This is getting long…
But I would be remissed not to touch on why we landed at CFI vs REACH. Please please please do your own research! But here is what we learned. REACH sells you a package…something like 2 retrevials and 3 transfers for $40K. They also have a horrible reputation for billing. I didn’t learn much about the Drs because that was enough for me to decide that is not what I wanted. At CFI there is not package because it is not one size fits all. We would have been out sooo much money if we had bought a package. Because of the knowledge of the CFI team we tested our baby from the miscarriage because of those results the IVF was covered by insurance. I AM SOOO GLAD we didn’t buy a package. We literally would have lost $40K. So just do your homework. It is not all about finances but my best advice is to make sure you are asking the hard questions with your fertility team and judge their answers not their tone of voice!
PS. I was not endorsed to write this. But I hope the CFI team sees it one day!