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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Options, but not great ones

Well, our appointment was pretty uneventful and went basically as I expected.  We already knew that J had a varicocele from his physical exam during our first appointment and assumed that the doctor would recommend surgery.  Today we got the results of J's third semen analysis which was no different than the first two.  His bloodwork all came back normal, so the doctor made two basic recommendations.

1.  Surgery to repair the varicocele.
2.  Begin fertility treatments. 

I'm not sure that J will consider the surgery at all.  The doctor said about 60% of patients have improved results 6 months after the surgery.  He also said that sometimes varicoceles cause sperm quality to worsen over time too, so if we want to have more than one child, the surgery may be considered 'preventative.'  The doctor said that the surgery would be outpatient but would require about a week off of work to recover.  I wish we knew someone who had experience with this type of surgery just to hear what their experiences were. 

Fertility treatments of both IUI and IVF could work for us based on J's numbers.  However, I'm not sure that we are interested in IVF.  I would need to see an RE for any type of treatment.  I called my OB/GYN this afternoon to see if she could recommend a doctor or practice for me.  I'm thinking we should probably see an RE to find out what they recommend and then kind of weigh all of our options.  J and I each have separate insurance through the companies we work for.  Unfortuantely for us, his covers infertility but mine does not.  I'm wondering if it's possible to bill treatment through his insurance - I'm guessing it's not since technically I would be the patient. 

Wow!  I was totally expecting this, but it was still really tough to hear.  I guess we have some thinking to do.  I'm hoping I hear back from my doctor soon so that I can schedule an appointment since I'm assuming it will take a while to get one.    


  1. Are you guys married? If so his insurance will cover you. Im sorry you didnt get the results youd hoped for. I know a few ppl who have had the surgery and went on to have kids after. From what Ive been told the surgery really isnt too bad. Some Re's are againt the surgery too so thats something to find out. Good Luck hun. Hugs!!

  2. Yes, we are married, but have separate insurance coverage. I'm calling the place that my OB/GYN recommended first thing in the morning, so I'll be sure to ask them about that. Thanks for the help!

  3. Yes, check with the clinic and with his insurance. I haven't read your whole story, but from the sounds of things, this is a male factor case. If that is true, it could billed under his policy because it is because of his issues that the treatments would be warrented. I hope that makes sense! Good Luck!

  4. Sorry to hear you are also in the IF boat. I know that there are 2 treatment options for varicocele, one is less invasive and quicker recovery than the other, but I can't remember what it is called (I googled for it and Tx came up in the Wiki entry).

    Thanks for the comment on my blog! I hope you find your happy again!