Posts

14
Jul

The Importance of Vitamin D in Recurrent Pregnancy Loss

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sunrise_01_406x304A recent article from Human Reproduction, Vitamin D deficiency may be a risk factor for recurrent pregnancy losses by increasing cellular immunity and autoimmunity, highlights the interesting role of adequate vitamin levels during early pregnancy.  Researches have found that a high proportion of women with recurrent pregnancy loss also have a vitamin D deficiency. The study also found that women with RPL and a vitamin D deficiency were also at a higher risk for auto- and cellular immune abnormalities.
So what does this mean for our clients?  It indicates that the simple blood test for vitamin D levels is an important screening factor for potential fertility challenges, especially miscarriage. A lower than normal vitamin D level (very common in Upstate NY!) can often be resolved with simple supplements, or sometimes a stronger prescription dose of vitamin D.
We provide vitamin D level testing at our center, and if you have had a consult within the last few years, we have likely drawn your levels.  However, as these levels may fluctuate over time, we would be happy to redraw these for you.  If you have any questions about your vitamin D level, and how it may positively or negatively impact your fertility, please don’t hesitate to contact us at any time.
Request Consultation or Appointment
If you are a new patient and would like an initial fertility consultation, in-office or over the phone, please visit this link and fill out our New Appointment Form or call us toll free at 800-539-9870.

11
Oct

Hexagard May Replace IVIG Therapy for Treating Autoimmune Deseases in the Future

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imageIVIG therapy is used by fertility patients who have recurrent implantation failures or recurrent pregnancy losses. IVIG therapy is thought to repress a woman’s immune system, which may be attacking the embryo or fetus, mistaking it for a foreign body. IVIG is made up of human antibodies, derived from washed and processed donor blood. During the treatment, IVIG Therapy is meant to reduce the amount of natural killer (NK) cells in the body, and/or may absorb or block a woman’s antibodies, which are causing the body to attack the pregnancy.
Women who have tested positive for natural killer cells and have experienced multiple miscarriages or implantation failures, may opt for the use of IVIG therapy to increase their chance of conceiving and carrying a pregnancy to term.
During a treatment session, IVIG is introduced to the body very slowly through an intravenous drip in the arm, possibly taking several hours. It is recommended that IVIG be administered prior to embryo transfer, and then two additional times following a positive pregnancy test.
Currently the cost of IVIG therapy is upwards toward $3000 per treatment for medications, and on average $150 for monitoring costs at CNY Fertility. The nursing costs can be submitted to insurance; however, IVIG therapy is seldom covered by insurance.
Because this medication is so costly, and autoimmune diseases affect 9 million UK citizens alone, it’s capturing the attention of public health officials in developing countries. Recently, Professor Richard Please won the Universal Biotech Innovation Prize 2013 for a project that deals with the development of Hexagard, a biomimetic to replace IVIG Therapy which would be much cheaper and approximately 50 times more effective. Read more about Hexagard here.
NOTE: Prices are always subject to change and medication costs can always vary.

24
Sep

Intralipids

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CNY Fertility Center in Syracuse, Rochester and Albany now offer an innovative new treatment called Intralipids to help women who have had recurrent miscarriage, multiple failed IVF cycles or multiple failed IUI cycles. Intralipids deactivate natural killer cells in a woman’s body which may prevent embryos from implanting and growing properly in the uterus.
New research has suggested that women who have experienced
recurrent miscarriages or multiple failed IUI or IVF cycles as a
result of natural killer cell activation may benefit from the use of
intralipids. Intralipids are synthetic and made from 1.2% egg
yolk phospholipids, 10% soybean oil, 2.25% glycerin and water.
It is administered through an IV 4-7 days before embryo transfer
or insemination.

Natural killer cells are regulated by the immune system. In
women who have autoimmune issues, the natural killer cells can
react abnormally to an implanting embryo, treating it as an
invading cell and signaling for the body to attack it. Studies
have found that intralipids can help to deactivate the natural
killer cells, allowing the embryo to implant on the uterine wall
and grow normally. Intralipids are re-administered 4-5 weeks
following a positive pregnancy test, to keep the natural killer
cells deactivated until the pregnancy can override the signals
being sent by the immune system.

Intralipids (approximately $100 per administration) are far less
expensive than Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIG) (approximately
$2000 per administration), and initial studies show
comparable efficacy for deactivation of natural killer cells and
pregnancy rates. Intralipids are well tolerated by patients with
few side effects and are created synthetically, unlike IVIG which
is a blood product. It takes about an hour and a half to two
hours for the intralipids to be administered through the IV.

For more information about intralipids call CNY Fertility Center or
ask your nurse if you are a candidate at your next appointment.

25
May

IVIG Therapy

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IVIG therapy is used by fertility patients who have recurrent implantation failures or recurrent pregnancy losses. IVIG therapy is thought to repress a woman’s immune system, which may be attacking the embryo or fetus, mistaking it for a foreign body. IVIG is made up of human antibodies, derived from washed and processed donor blood. It is not clear exactly how IVIG works, but studies suggest that it may reduce the amount of natural killer (NK) cells in the body, and/or may absorb or block a woman’s antibodies, which are causing the body to attack the pregnancy.
Women who have tested positive for natural killer cells and have experienced multiple miscarriages or implantation failures, may opt for the use of IVIG therapy to increase their chance of conceiving and carrying a pregnancy to term.
During a treatment session, IVIG is introduced to the body very slowly through an intravenous drip in the arm, possibly taking several hours. It is recommended that IVIG be administered prior to embryo transfer, and then two additional times following a positive pregnancy test.
Currently, ASRM suggests that IVIG therapy be considered experimental treatment because studies have reported inconclusive results on the positive effects of IVIG therapy for recurrent pregnancy loss patients.
The cost of IVIG therapy at CNY Fertility Center is $1500 per treatment for medications, plus $500 for nursing costs. The nursing costs can be submitted to insurance; however, IVIG therapy is seldom covered by insurance.
NOTE: Prices are always subject to change and medication costs can always vary.