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FAQs

Here you will find answers to the most frequently asked questions of our patients.

General information

Do couples have to be married to undergo infertility treatment?

No. For procedures such as insemination or IVF treatment unmarried couples have to set up a notarially certified agreement that explains the legal consequences of reproductive medicine. Married couples also have to bring this certificate when undergoing treatment with donor sperm.

What are the first steps towards having a child?

First, arrange an initial consultation with us, during which we will look at your previous results and work together to create your ideal treatment plan.

Are we always looked after by the same doctor?

Whenever possible, we try to guarantee that a couple will be looked after the same doctor at all stages of treatment.

How long does treatment last?

This depends on the kind of treatment. An intrauterine insemination (IUI) is carried out within one menstrual cycle, whereas an IVF therapy, including pre-therapy, usually lasts 2 menstrual cycles. Some IVF protocols provide a preparation time that lasts up to 3 months.

How many times does a couple need to appear in person during treatment?

During an insemination cycle the couple has to be at our clinic at least for the insemination. During IVF treatment their presence is required for the oocyte aspiration (or egg retrieval) and the embryo transfer. All monitorings during treatment can be carried out by the woman's resident gynaecologist or in a laboratory near the couple's home. While our approach may require a little more organization, the aim is to make treatment as easy as possible for the patients. Appointments at our clinics generally happen in the morning, and for patients from abroad the initial consultation can also be held via Skype. 

What are the costs for fertility treatment?

It depends on the type of therapy chosen. Couples who undergo IVF therapy are usually covered by the Austrian IVF-Fund, which takes over 70% of the costs for an IVF cycle so long as they fulfil certain requirements: there is an age limit (40 years for women, 50 for men) and there has to be a medical necessity for doing IVF (low sperm count, blocked fallopian tubes, endometriosis or PCO syndrome). Both partners have to be Austrian or EU citizens. For non-EU citizens a residential permit is required. They have to be covered by the Austrian health insurance system or, in exceptional cases, by a private (foreign) health insurance.

Patients who are not covered by the Austrian IVF-Fund have to pay fully for their treatment. The same goes for couples who undergo insemination or monitoring cycles.

Which are the first steps to get infertility treatment at Sterignost clinic?

First, we would like to do a personal consultation with the couple, to look through their medical documentation and to prepare the best therapy program. Depending on the menstrual cycle of the female partner, as well as on our monthly agenda, treatment can be started right away. 

Initial meeting

Which medical documents should be brought for the first consultation?

Preferably the female partner has recently done an endocrinological blood test (hormone report) during the first 3 days of the menstrual cycle and the male partner a semen analysis. If there has been done IVF treatment in the past, as well as reproductive surgery, please bring along all relevant documentation. The costs for the first consultation are covered neither by the Austrian IVF-Fund nor by regular health insurance and have to be paid by the couple. Married couples should also bring their marriage certificate.

How long is the wait time for an initial consultation?

Various specialists in gynaecology and IVF work in our fertility clinics. The wait time usually varies between 1 and 4 weeks, but it is also possible to get an initial consultation at short notice. Please contact the clinic of your choice by phone if you would like to make an appointment with us.

Do all results have to be available at the initial consultation?

The primary purpose of the initial consultation is to precisely determine the possible factors for the unfulfilled desire to have children. Ideally, the woman could present a hormone report from the start of her cycle, and the man could present a semen analysis report. The semen analysis can also be done in one of our fertility clinics directly before the initial consultation, in which case the results would be available during the conversation. If you do not have results yet, that is also not a problem—you can simply submit them at a later date. During the conversation, a gynaecological check-up is performed on the woman. Then we will explain all possible fertility treatment methods to you.

Do both partners have to be on site?

An unfulfilled desire to have children is usually an issue that concerns both partners to the same degree. Ideally, you should come to the consultation appointment with your partner.

On which day of the woman's cycle should the initial consultation be?

The initial consultation appointment is independent of your monthly cycle. It is also not a problem if this appointment takes place during the menstrual period.

Will I receive a time confirmation for my employer?

Yes, you can receive time confirmations for all appointments from us, but no sick notes. Only your general practitioner or specialist may issue these to you.

Is classic pregnancy care possible in the fertility clinic?

No, the last ultrasound check-up is scheduled for one week after a positive pregnancy test. Your gynaecologist will then take over further care.

IVF-Fund

Which services are included in the IVF-Fund?

If a couple is eligible for support from the IVF-Fund for fertility treatment, the following services are included:

  • Consultations and outpatient visits in our fertility clinic from the start of the treatment

  • Ultrasound examinations until the end of the treatment

  • Laboratory tests during hormonal stimulation

  • Psychological counselling

  • Egg retrieval by follicular puncture, during which an ultrasound probe is inserted into the woman's vagina and a needle is guided through it into the follicles

  • Sperm processing

  • Fertilization

  • Blastocyst culture (growing the embryos in the laboratory for two days)

  • An embryo transfer

  • Pregnancy tests

  • Follow-up treatment during the luteal phase (stage of your menstrual cycle after ovulation, before your period begins)

  • Embryo cryopreservation (freezing and storing embryos)

  • Storage of the cryopreserved embryos for twelve months

  • Medical devices and drugs required for the treatment

How many attempts are supported by the IVF-Fund?

Each pair has 4 attempts at their disposal. However, not only stimulations are counted, but also cryotransfers.

Treatment

Must Thrombo ASS and prednisolone still be taken one day before the puncture?

The Thrombo ASS should not be taken before the scheduled puncture. The prednisolone can be taken as planned.

Do I have to pay attention to anything during treatment? (Sport, alcohol, food supplements, sun, etc.)

During the treatment, you can consume all drinks and food and do normal sporting activities. Alcohol is allowed in healthy proportions.

Do I have to have an empty stomach for the blood draw/ultrasound?

You do not have to have an empty stomach to complete the blood draw and ultrasound.

When will I receive the therapy plan (if the first day of the cycle is on the weekend)?

In this case, you will receive your therapy plan on the next working day.

What time do I have to inject the medication?

The medication must always be injected at the same time using syringes. For example, the Puregon and Meriofert in the morning and the Ganirelix in the evening at 10p.m. Small time differences are not a problem.

Where should I inject the medication?

The syringes should be injected in the stomach and changed daily.

How long does the follicular puncture/egg retrieval take?

The puncture takes about 20 minutes and is performed using sedation and local anaesthesia. You need to be sober and take this day off. Your partner has to give up the semen for fertilization that day.

When will I be informed about when the trigger syringe should be injected?

A second check (made up of ultrasound and blood sampling) must be carried out during the treatment. Once we have these results, we will decide how to proceed.

By when do the results of the controls have to be available?

All results should be available by 2p.m. on the same day. If this is not possible, the fertility clinic must be informed in good time.

Will the medication be sent to me automatically?

No, the fertility clinic must be explicitly commissioned to send the medication and a deposit must be made. Private patients must transfer the bill for the medication and the deposit in advance.

How, when and from whom do I get the referral for the laboratory tests?

You can get a referral for laboratory tests from your specialist or family doctor before your first consultation. It is also possible to send it through us, but only as a private service, as we as a private hospital do not have a health insurance contract.

Where can I get the prescriptions from? Do I need a prescription for folic acid and vitamin D?

You can get the prescriptions at the fertility clinic or from your general practitioner or specialist. You don't need any prescriptions for folic acid or vitamin D3.

Why do I need a notarial act?

In order to regulate the rights of partners and children in the case of unmarried couples or in the case of special issues.

Which dietary supplements can I take as a man?

The man can take Fertilovit.

Can I take additional medication during treatment, e.g. if I am sick?

Yes, e.g. medication containing paracetamol can be taken at any time. Only after the transfer should additional medication be discussed with your doctor.

What happens if I forget the medication for a day or take too much?

If you forget one or more tablets, please contact us to discuss how to proceed.

What are the side effects of the drugs?

In principle, hormone therapy is well tolerated. However, an unpredictable allergic reaction can occur. Other side effects include breast tenderness, an increase in waist size, and water retention in the legs.

Can I drink alcohol during treatment?

A healthy amount of alcohol is allowed during treatment.

Can I have sex during treatment?

Yes. It is recommended that sex during treatment be performed using a condom.

What do I do if I have spotting during the treatment?

If spotting occurs during treatment, this should always be communicated to the fertility clinic.

Which hormone preparations are for what?

The Puregon and Meriofert are endogenous hormones (hormones that originate within the organism) that lead to follicle growth, while the Ganirelix prevents premature ovulation.

What happens if I overstimulate?

Overstimulation occurs when more than 18 bubbles grow during treatment. This leads to an enlarged ovary and a buildup of fluid in the abdomen, or belly. This leads to pain in the lower abdomen and an increased risk of thrombosis, when blood clots block veins or arteries.

Before puncture

What happens during the puncture?

During the puncture, the female patient is put into a twilight sleep—allowing for a drug-induced insensitivity to pain without loss of consciousness—and follicles in the ovary are punctured using ultrasound guidance. The puncture itself takes about 15 minutes. On the day of the puncture, the patient should appear accompanied and sober. She should not drive or go to work on the day of the puncture.

Does my partner have to pay attention to anything regarding the semen analysis for the puncture day?

We recommend 2-3 days of sexual abstinence for the best semen quality. Of course, you should also make sure that you eat as healthily as possible in the time for the puncture.

When should we be in the clinic?

It is enough if you come to our clinic 10-15 minutes before the appointment. The preparatory meeting for the puncture takes place exactly on the agreed date.

What do we need to bring to the puncture?

For the puncture, it is enough for you to bring any missing documents (notarial act, results, treatment contract) with you. It is not necessary to take special clothing with you as everything is provided on site.

How long do I have to stay in the fertility clinic after the puncture?

After the puncture, you will stay in the clinic until you feel well again and your circulatory system makes a discharge possible. As a general rule, the couple leaves the clinic after about an hour.

Does my partner have to be present at the puncture?

If the treatment is homologous, your partner must be present at the puncture, as he will have to give the semen sample that day. In the case of heterologous treatment, we absolutely need a declaration of consent from the partner including a copy of identification in the event of non-appearance.

Are there accomodation options nearby?

Yes, many. Feel free to speak to your fertility clinic. The accommodations are to be organized privately.

After puncture

What do I have to consider after the puncture? (Sport, lifestyle, flight, etc.)

After the puncture, you should not engage in excessive exercise for a week. Then you can resume light activities that do not require a lot of energy or effort. You should not drive a vehicle yourself right after the puncture.

When do I have to start the other medication?

If a fresh transfer is planned, start with Estrofem and Utrogestan (vaginal) on the day of the puncture. If cryotransfer is planned, then only ingest the Utrogestan.

Transfer

What happens during the transfer?

During the transfer, the embryo is inserted into the patient. A thin guide catheter is placed in the cervix, or the lower end of the womb, and the embryo is inserted under ultrasound guidance.

How long does the transfer take?

The transfer takes about 15 minutes. Your bladder should be half full before the procedure. The transfer is not painful and therefore takes place without sedation and local anaesthesia. You do not have to be sober.

Do I have to pay attention to anything after the transfer? (Flight, train, long journeys, rest, etc.)

After the transfer, you should get on with your life as usual. You can work, travel, and do normal sporting activities.

What medications or painkillers can I take?

You shouldn't be in pain after the transfer. If you need pain relievers, you can take ibuprofen and paracetamol.

Does my partner have to be present for the transfer?

Your partner does not have to be present with you. If they cannot come with you, you would need to bring a power of attorney including a copy of your partner's identification, in which your partner agrees to the embryo transfer. You can get this document from our staff on request.

Can you do sports (swimming, etc.) after the transfer?

Sports are allowed after the transfer.

Can you have sex after the transfer?

Sex is allowed after the transfer.

What happens after a positive pregnancy test?

If the result is positive, the medication can be tapered off after a fresh transfer. After a cryoembryo transfer, they are taken until the 8th week of pregnancy.

What happens after a negative pregnancy test?

If the test is negative, the medication can be stopped. Your menstrual period will follow within 1 week. If this does not take place, an ultrasound check-up must be held in our clinic or at the attending gynaecologist.

What happens after a negative pregnancy test?

If the test is negative, the medication can be stopped. Your menstrual period will follow within 1 week. If this does not take place, an ultrasound check-up must be held in our clinic or at the attending gynaecologist.

New trial

When can I start a new attempt after the birth?

You must have weaned and it is recommended to give your body a break of 1 to 1 and a half years.

When can I start a new attempt after a negative test?

After a transfer, you can in principle start again with preparing for the next bleeding. After a fresh transfer, we recommend taking a break of at least 1 month.

When can I start cryopreparation after an abortion after puncture?

In principle, we recommend waiting a cycle after the puncture. Except for special medical circumstances, 2-3 cycles are recommended by your attending physician.

Billing

Is there any support available from health insurance companies?

Yes, health insurance companies also pay into the IVF-Fund, among other things.

Does my private supplementary insurance pay anything for treatment?

Only if the item "Desire for children" is explicitly mentioned in your policy.

Can I use the invoices for my tax return?

Yes, these fall under the heading "Special expenses," but we do not accept any liability for their eligibility.

Is an installment payment plan possible?

No, unfortunately this is not possible.

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