Albert Einstein said it best, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result”.
While fertility treatment offers hope and the ultimate gift of life to thousands of couples in Australia every year, it can also lead to an unresolved cycle of frustration, disappointment and heartache.
Senior Monash IVF Specialist Dr Ong says the emotional, physical and financial toll of multiple, failed IVF treatments can be devastating, and unanswered questions add to an extremely stressful situation.
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Working from the Gold Coast’s first all-encompassing fertility treatment centre, Dr Ong says patients should be mindful that repeating the same IVF process without a clear idea of what’s happening is not the best approach.
“Our ultimate goal is to break the cycle of infertility and help patients conceive as quickly as possible. Treatment does not always have to end up with IVF and the right investigations can lead to patients falling pregnant naturally or through less invasive measures,” Dr Ong told myGC.
35-year-old nurse Katrina Howley was told by her NSW fertility clinic her dream of having a baby was “a numbers game” and that she should “hope for the best”.
With questions left unanswered, Katrina followed strong recommendations to continue down an identical treatment path.
Thirteen months and seven failed IVF attempts later, her specialist told her she could do no more.
Determined not to give up, Katrina sought a second opinion with Dr Ong via a Skype call that would change her life.
“Getting to the bottom of the underlying cause as quickly as possible is the cornerstone of good fertility management,” Dr Ong said.
With an endocrinologist and naturopath on board to treat an autoimmune disease, Dr Ong decided further investigations were required. Following laparoscopy surgery, Katrina underwent one fresh IVF cycle and with an individually tailored treatment plan, fell pregnant from a frozen embryo transfer.
“Dr Ong was determined to find a way, was willing to investigate every possible cause and tried different methods to ensure I would have the best chance and the best outcome,” Katrina said.
Now proud mum to baby Finn, Katrina is urging other women to quit the numbers game.
“Women must not be afraid to take a proactive approach to their treatment and make sure they’re exploring every possible cause. Ask questions, seek second opinions and don’t be afraid to embrace new things,” she said.
Dr Ong says patients must seek to understand the treatment process better, be prepared to ask questions about why things are not happening and explore what can be changed to achieve better results.
The much-respected Doctor is adamant fertility is not a numbers game.
“It’s an all-encompassing and holistic approach that has helped thousands of patients just like Katrina win the long, tough battle against infertility.”
Dr Kee Ong is based in Southport at Level 2, 2 Short Street, and also conducts appointments from Homeworld Helensvale Medical Centre every Tuesday. For appointments and general enquiries, please call 07 5519 1602 or visit www.goldcoastfertilityspecialist.com.au