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Your IVF Journey Starts Here: How to Find a Trustworthy IVF Clinic
September 20, 2023

If the world were perfect, then every IVF clinic would be as good as any other IVF clinic. You could take IVF treatment in the nearby local clinic, and be confident that you would get equally good medical care, even if you had traveled to New York or Mumbai. But the sad truth is that not all IVF clinics are created equal, and this is true for many reasons.

Not all IVF laboratories are well equipped, and this is especially true because a lot of the doctors are not really qualified to do IVF. Many IVF clinics are run by gynecologists who call themselves IVF specialists but are really not because they don't have the required training experience or expertise.

These doctors usually wear multiple hats, and do many other surgical operations along with doing IVF, such as laparoscopies, hysterectomies, and cesarean sections. Obviously, because IVF is just another procedure for them, the amount of expertise they have is much less as compared to a full-time IVF specialist, who does nothing else other than IVF. But patients aren't sophisticated enough to understand the difference, and they blindly and unthinkingly go to the nearby clinic run by a gynecologist who they know because he has also done a hysterectomy for their mother!

The problem is much worse when you examine the IVF laboratory facilities in these IVF clinics. Most labs are not manned by experienced, expert IVF embryologists, even though everyone knows that it makes a world of a difference to the IVF outcome as to how good the embryologist is. A good embryologist will nurture your embryos with a lot of care, while a bad one can kill them with greater ease. But patients don't know how to differentiate between the two - and the irony is that patients only learn the difference between a good clinic and a bad clinic after they've failed an IVF cycle! It’s only after their cycle has failed that they realize that a lot of medical details were not shared with them, and they were deliberately kept in the dark.

This is because when a new patient signs up for an IVF cycle, the clinic lays out a red carpet for them. Everyone in the clinic is on their best behavior, and they keep on promising them high success rates, which is why patients are fooled into believing they are in good hands. However, once the treatment starts ( after they have paid their fees in advance !), they realize to their dismay that a lot of key medical information is being hidden from them. They have no idea how many follicles are growing, or what their E2 levels are, and even after a pickup, they don't even know basic stuff like how many eggs were retrieved, or what their quality was. Most clinics don't bother to even share embryo photographs, which means patients are completely in the dark and have to rely purely on what the doctor says.

Most doctors are extremely paternalistic, and most patients are very compliant, and they're happy to believe what the doctor tells them because they know no better! However, when the cycle fails, they finally wake up - especially when the doctor starts adding insult to injury and blames them for the cycle failure by saying things like – Your IVF cycle failed even though we provided top-quality treatment because your eggs were bad, or your sperm was poor quality. They upsell the patient into using donor eggs or donor sperm for the next cycle – and it’s only when these patients ask for a second opinion that they realize they were taken for a ride!

By this time, the harm has already been done, and because they have been cheated by one IVF clinic, they refuse to trust any other IVF doctor. The tragedy is that patients seem to learn the truth the hard way! The good news is you can learn how to find a good IVF doctor without burning your fingers by doing your homework and educating yourself about IVF before paying a single paisa to an IVF clinic.

The right way to do this is to arm yourself with information therapy, and the good news is there's tons of high-quality content that is available free on our website at www.drmalpani.com which is designed to help you do this! This includes comic books, as well as videos, and because this is content that I have authored, I can assure you that it's authentic, updated, accurate, and reliable. Armed with this background knowledge, you will be able to choose a good clinic for yourself!

The reason we provide this information is not to tell you to come to us for your treatment, but to help you to identify a good clinic, and stay away from bad clinics, which give all IVF doctors a bad reputation! A good clinic is one which will share a treatment plan with you in advance; will share photographs of your embryos with you; and will transfer only one single top-quality blastocyst for you at a time. I do hope that this information, which we're happy to provide for free, will help you become a parent, and get the baby you so deeply desire

Authored by : Dr Aniruddha Malpani, MD and reviewed by Dr Anjali Malpani.