Does anyone know what the general range of costs are for surrogacy in Ca? We are approaching a friend who successfully surro'd before, though I do not think she wants to do it again, but if she did, I think we could bypass the agency fee...
Just curious. Is it really $100,000 for an agency surro cycle? Does the donor get around $40-$50K? That's what I thought.
We want to have all options lined up for these last two frozen embryos...
I see the RE Tuesday morning.
My poor DH was more heartbroken last night than I was...he really believed we could overcome that low beta after the clinic was so hopeful that it might work...which makes me angry...I knew not to stop meds, but I also knew it was a shot in hell that a beta of 10 - 18 DPR would ever work out.
Just trying to line up the next steps and do them right...
I feel like I am reliving 2008, when my friend donated and we were given the same odds of success, the same outcome (though it was a more definitive bfn)...DH says he feels even more devastated this time.
He told his family, and now we have to share this latest failure with them...
I spoke to Agency For Surrogacy Solutions and Center For Surrogate Parenting, both of which are in the LA area. I used one of them but both were good (and expensive).
The surrogate, if she is a first time, gets only about 21K, then on subsequent surrogacies she gets a few thousand dollars more. There are also additional expenditures, such as if she is carrying multiples, or if she has to have a C-section, go on bedrest, and her psych and medical testing, etc. Also there are miscellaneous costs like babysitting, gas and time to get to and from appointments, etc. I often joked that I was paying for my surro's Kleenex, tissue by tissue! The agency got the same amount the surrogate got, which seems like a rip. Then there are legal fees and medical fees. For a surro who has her own health insurance, you have to be certain that her policy does not exclude surrogacy (most do but a few are still in the dark about it so don't specify, and none will state that they DO cover it). Usually you have to buy a catastrophic insurance policy and again, looking for one that does not name surrogacy as an exclusion. This was the hardest part of the whole thing for us. In the end, we were able to negotiate a cash deal with both the obstetrician and the hospital and not use the insurance at all (which is good because the f@ckers tried to invalidate her policy on some trumped up charge, which we could have gone to court over but who has the time, energy, or resources to do that?)
If your friend is willing, she should ask her OB office not to divulge that this is a surrogate pregnancy to the insurance company. There is really no need to do so anyway and it is not fraudulent unless the insurance company specifically excludes surrogacy in their written policy. But you don't want to "wake them up" and give them cause to find ways to deny payment.
Our surrogacy cycle cost about 110K but that included 30K for the donor end of things. So I would say it was really around 80K just for the surrogacy part (including the costs I've outlined above: surrogate, agency, legal fees, medical fees, and incidentals). It's pretty hefty.
You can certainly get those costs down if you don't use an agency and if your friend can use her own insurance. Then you are looking at FET costs from your RE, medical copays, and legal fees.
Minniet, am I to understand that you got 4 embryos total? If I may ask, how many eggs did you start with? I am wondering about your husband's sperm quality. I know you've probably answered this before, but did he have the DNA frag test (SCSA)? We had done several cycles with so-so embryo production and quality and it wasn't until we did TESE and obtained sperm directly from the testes (necessitating ICSI as part of that process) that we got a large number of high quality embryos. Please take care that you don't chase after the eggs and uterus when it's the sperm all along. That is what happened in our case so I always feel compelled to issue a warning about that. Also I think most REs do the same thing. Maybe it's the brotherhood or something, but many REs never want to look at the sperm very closely.
Wow, yes, those expenses are about what I thought. I am not sure if my friend is willing now, but we her approaching it carefully.
The insurance part is scary, but you know, I have my own company, so technically, I could add her on to our group policy...
My husband is the only part of the equation we are certain about -- he has had every test in the book by a top urologist, including the SCSA, and was rated "super sperm", and I also have had him out of any hot bath, wearing boxers and taking Total Fert for Men for 2 years.
It is quite possible that the donor was no good after all...
That is great about your DH! Well, I guess - sometimes I would be so frustrated when tests would come back normal because it meant we still hadn't found the problem.
With only two blasts left, it isn't worth it to do this, but if you do another donor cycle, I really highly recommend CGH. We decided we would take our chances on the fresh transfer of our last cycle but had planned that if that also failed, then the remaining frozen embryos would get CGH tested. If you remember, that's what Wilson finally did and was able to identify the two normal embryos she had in her remaining batch and she had success. I just think there are far more abnormalities in donor egg embryos than we realize. It gets complicated too because sometimes an abnormal embryo can "recover" in utero and go on to be a healthy baby. It makes it hard to know what to do.
I think CGH will become the gold standard for all IVF cycles in the future and we will look back on current practices and say "wow, why did we just transfer embryos blindly not knowing their makeup?"
Forgive me if I've also asked this before and you've already answered - my brain is fried from sleep deprivation, stress, and menopause! But have you done the Dr. Kliman endometrial phase test? If you haven't, you can do his protocol regardless because it's one of those things that won't hurt you if you don't have a problem, but will help you if you do. All it really is is a more graduated ramp up of progesterone in preparation for transfer, but it seems to be the ticket for a lot of women. Too much P4 too quickly will make endometrium inhospitable.
You might recall that I did the endo biopsy testing in November and with this cycle I used his modifyed progesterone protocal. Certainly I have a long way to go but I'm at least in the running with a strong beta at the first test. I don't even want to count how many fresh and frozen DE transfers I have under my belt but this is the best I have ever achieved. All prior transfers were BFNs or else very low levels of under 20 that petered out.
I've added everything else you could think of in the past: prednisone,doxycycline, lovenox, intralipids (which I still used this cycle too) but this progesterone change just might be the winning ticket for me.
I did have an endo biopsy with another University of Ca doc last year, and he was sure that would net info...but nada. There are so many endo biopsy tests, I can't tell you what he was looking for in terms of specialized testing, he just said "inflammation."
I will add Kilman to my list. Do you have a link or more info on it?
So far, my list is:
- Kilman protocol (slow progesterone intro)
- Is there a potential hydrosalpinx? I had an HSG years ago, and one tube seemed to contract or crimp. No one has been at all concerned, but I would like to have input on that tube.
- Is there possible undiagnosed Asherman's since I have had 3 D&Cs and now multiple chemicals? Do I need to have Dr. March in LA do an evaluation?
With all the above, I can't help but wonder if we should just try with a surrogate and stop wasting time with my body. Maybe it's the donor, but my body seems to have an awful lot of bad luck. At least ONE of my OE or DEs should have stuck. We thought the clotting and immune stuff would have solved it.
I can't tell you how many "beautiful" embies and blasts have been wasted in my uterine dump.
See below for the link on the Yale University web site that has information for doctors and patients about the Endometrial Function test. Check out the link to the gradual p protocol. It looks a lot like the protocol I just did for this cycle. I can dig up my instructions to confirm but I wanted to share the link right away.
Just a slight correction: there were more than 2 "normals" resulting from her CGH testing. She had 10 frozen blasts at CCRM left after already doing 2 transfers from that batch. Because there were so many she was unwilling to go forward with more FETs until they were tested first. It turned out that 6 out of the 10 were normal. She had 2 transferred and had twins, with 4 more normals remaining.
I am really mixed about CGH, particularly the self correcting part.
Also, I have visited one of the major companies who do the CGH and I don't like to say too much publicly, but they freaked me out. Not what I would expect of a lab doing precious work. More like a den of D&D players...nuff said.
We'll never know now. Maybe the donor was problematic.
This cycle, I had heparin, dex (several weeks of use, now weaning), intralipids and prescription folic acid. Also, my thyroid was the best it has ever been - tsh a tick below, all other thyroid levels looked great.
I did those (sub high EPA fish oil for intralipids) last time but did one more thing...
April 21 2012, 12:15 AM
I decided to score some good karma points with the universe and rescued and fostered a special needs dog - he went to his adoptive home as my 2ww was winding down. Not that you are not seriously owed some good karma already. I know it's not entirely rational (ok, remotely) to think that I tilted the cosmic scales in my favor by saving Jude but sometimes a little magical thinking helps you keep on keeping on.
A good friend of mine used a surrogate in Canada because it was much less expensive than the states. He is gay and he and his partner live in LA and used a donor egg from Georgia and then used the same surrogate twice who was in Toronto. They had a singleton and then 3 years later twins. The only tricky part was getting there for the delivery. Both pregnancies, they got false labor alarms and ended up flying back and forth a couple of times, but managed to be there for both births. I'd me happy to check with him if that is something you would like to explore to see what agency they went with. They were very active with pop luck club, which is a group for prospective gay fathers. Obviously they all had to use surrogates, so they were pretty up on where to get the best deals. My e-mail is kittygirltx AT yahoo DOT com.
Hi, there. If you separate out the IVF costs, the costs are nowhere near that high. I'd be happy to send you information offlist. I use an agency in California that another active member of these forums also uses and recommends. I'm fairly new here - is there a way to send private messages or exchange email?
this is a long shot but a while back my best friend was considering doing surrogacy she has children and she is in the medical field. She was chosen by a couple but she declined because she does not wish to carry twins. Which, is, a sticking point.
nonetheless, she is an amazing woman. I don't know about money or anything. But she is in a Surrogacy friendly state. if you want, email me and I will bring it up with her, if not her, she may know someone. She is a medical professional.