A Mom’s Guide to Fertility with IVF Michigan Fertility Centers

To those of you who may be walking a journey of wanting a baby but aren’t sure how to get there, have been faced with infertility, or are seeking other options for conception, we’ve created this guide just for you. For whatever twists and turns your journey may have thrown at you our Guide to Fertility is here to help you navigate adding a baby into your family. We are thrilled to partner with IVF Michigan Fertility Centers as they share their expertise, knowledge, and provide guidance on your unique journeys.

IVF Michigan Fertility Centers is sharing an insight into what your first steps inside your fertility journey will look like. With this guide we are hoping to take some of the unknowns out of your journey and leave you feeling prepared and educated. If you have any questions we would be happy to connect you with IVF Michigan Fertility Centers.

Dr. F. Nicholas Shamma is a founding member of IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers and one of the leading reproductive endocrinologists and infertility specialists in Michigan and Ohio. He has over 150 publications and abstracts in the fields of obstetrics, gynecology and infertility. Dr. Shamma’s professional interests include preimplantation genetics, recurrent pregnancy loss, assisted reproduction, third-party reproduction, polycystic ovarian syndrome, congenital uterine anomalies, ethical considerations and infertility, gestational surrogacy, and fertility preservation. Dr. F. Nicholas Shamma is a very caring and expert physician that understands not only the medical but also the emotional toll of infertility on his patients Dr. Shamma cares for patients in Ann Arbor, Bloomfield Hills, Grand Rapids, Toledo and Saginaw.

Dr. Ahmad Hammoud is the medical director at IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers. Dr. Ahmad Hammoud is an American Board Certified in Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. He is also National Board of Medical Examiners Certified. Dr. Hammoud’s professional interests include studying the effects of environment and diet on fertility, abnormal sperm testing, In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and reduced ovarian reserve. Dr. Ahmad Hammoud believes in providing medical and emotional support to couples dealing with infertility. Dr. Hammoud has received multiple local and national awards for excellence in clinical care, medical education and infertility research. Dr. Hammoud cares for patients in Bloomfield Hills, Dearborn, Grand Rapids and Macomb.

Dr. Hanh Cottrell specializes in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. She is American Board Certified in both Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. Dr. Hanh Cottrell has multiple published research studies within the reproductive field. Her professional interests include polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), oocyte preservation​
(egg freezing), ovarian and sperm quality, and In Vitro Fertilization (IVF). Dr. Hanh Cottrell believes that every couple and individual deserve a personalized touch and compassionate sound to their fertility care. She and her team care for patients in Ann Arbor, East Lansing and Toledo.

Dr. Andrea Starostanko is a physician specializing in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. Her research in the field of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility has been presented at numerous national conferences. Her clinical and research interests include fertility preservation, In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), diminished ovarian reserve, and the immunologic basis
of endometriosis.Dr. Starostanko looks forward to helping patients and couples achieve their fertility goals and believes her personal and professional experience with infertility treatments will enhance her ability to support patients during what can be an emotionally and physically challenging time. Dr. Starostanko treats patients in Grand Blanc, Grand Rapids, Macomb, and

Dr. Suruchi Thakore specializes in Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. She is American Board Certified in both Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. Dr. Thakore’s interests include polycystic ovarian syndrome, fertility preservation, management of infertility, and the use of third-party reproduction to create families. She believes that everyone has a right to build a family and that infertility is a journey. Dr. Thakore is honored to be a guide and advisor to her patients to help them achieve their family planning goals. Dr.Thakore cares for patients in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Maybe you’ve been trying to conceive for a while, maybe your journey is just beginning, or maybe you want to seek alternate options for conceiving. With every baby there is a story and IVF Michigan Fertility Centers are here to help.


One of the most important factors of your fertility is age. Age affects fertility in many ways. With age, the egg count and quality decline. This change starts around the age of 32. The common guidelines to follow when trying to conceive are:
 You are older than 40 and trying for 2-6 months or immediately
 You are older than 35 and trying for six months.
 You are younger than 35 and trying for one year.

Besides age, there are many other conditions that have an immediate effect on fertility. If you have been diagnosed or are experiencing any of the following symptoms, you should not wait any time before seeing a fertility specialist.

Irregular Periods:

You have a history of irregular periods: irregular periods could indicate that you are not ovulating. Women with irregular cycles generally do not ovulate or produce eggs frequently. This is referred to as an ovulation disorder. Fortunately, the majority of factors causing irregular menstrual cycles can be treated. A common example is having polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)


You have a history of severe endometriosis: severe endometriosis can distort the pelvic anatomy in a way making it harder for a healthy egg to meet the sperm.


You have a history of large fibroids: fibroids can deform the shape of the uterus and affect the implantation of the pregnancy.

Male Factor:

Your male partner has a history of Erectile dysfunction: Severe ED can affect the couple’s ability to achieve pregnancy at the time of ovulation. Your male partner has a history of undescended testis, surgery on the testicles, hernia surgery, taking testosterone, or exposed to medications or chemicals that can affect sperm.

Fertility Preservation:

Sometimes, seeing a fertility specialist helps prevent future issues with your fertility. For example, women who are delaying fertility for education, work, or lack suitable partners should consider seeing a fertility specialist freeze young healthy eggs. Also, freezing eggs before you have cancer treatments or other medications that can affect fertility.

To find out more head to the IVF Michigan Fertility Centers Website.

IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers provide a wide variety of infertility treatments, including in vitro-related procedures. With Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) and fertility services, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals and couples can successfully build their families. They will create a customized treatment plan that fits your exact needs and goals.

Fertility Options for Lesbian Patients
 IUI with donor sperm
 IVF with donor sperm
 IVF with donor egg + donor sperm
 IVF with donor embryo
 Reciprocal IVF (Co-IVF)
 Fertility Preservation
 Gestational Surrogacy

Head to the Michigan Fertility Centers Website for more information.

IVF Michigan Fertility Centers offers a donor program/third-party reproduction. They have in-house donors and work with Fairfax Eggbank. Fairfax EggBank is a leader in advanced techniques for frozen donor eggs.

IVF Michigan Fertility Centers premier donor database showcases their diverse selection of highly screened and vetted egg donors. Their commitment to quality leads to exceptional donor egg success rates.

Thousands of women apply to become donors, but less than 1% of all donor applicants meet the strict requirements set IVF Michigan Fertility Centers. Advancements in the initial screening process allow the team to add dozens of new donors to our database each month, while maintaining high standards.

You can check out the following for more information, Fairfax EggBank, Sperm Donation Recipients, Egg Donation Recipients.

Wondering what will happen at your first appointment with IVF Michigan Fertility Centers? Most of us don’t know what this path entails so we’re sharing all the information for the first appointment from how to schedule to what you can expect.

How to Schedule

In order to schedule your first appointment you’ll want to visit the IVF Michigan Fertility Center website to request your telehealth appointment. Once your paperwork is completed you will be contacted for an appointment. If you’re in need of assistance, don’t hesitate to call!

Pre-Telehealth Call

Before the telehealth happens, a patient will receive a phone call from the nursing staff regarding obtaining a New Patient History. This history is vital to help make their initial telehealth appointment with the physician more effective, as it helps the clinical staff ensure they have all the appropriate records needed, or detailed history, so the physician can spend the time discussing treatment options and navigating next steps.

What to Expect

Their first telehealth appointment is with the physician. He/She will be on the zoom call and go through your medical/fertility history in full. They then will discuss some tentative fertility options that may be available to you according to your fertility history/medical history. They will also discuss any fertility
testing they would like you to get done. At that point, the call will end and everything will be transferred to the nurses.

What to Expect Post Call

After the call, telehealth notes are forwarded over to the appropriate nursing staff. The nurses will start gathering requisitions forms, order forms, pricing requests, etc. They will then contact the patient regarding the telehealth consult and review any questions the patient may have from their meeting with
the physician. On that same call they will review all the upcoming fertility testing the physician wants them to have done and help navigate them through to the next stage of this process. They will also send a detailed e-mail with all the information as well so you have it for reference.

Your initial appointment finished and you’re wondering what’s next! For your second appointment there are a variety of things that will need to be done in office. We’re breaking it all down for you here!

Post First Appointment Telehealth Call Labs and Testing

After your Telehealth appointment, the nurse will navigate you properly on how to proceed. Your follow up steps may consist of bloodwork needing to be done (some clinics offer the ability to come into the office to have done and some refer patients to outside labs), where you have this done is up to you as the patient and the clinic. You may also need to have diagnostic ultrasounds done. These will be done with the physician for further diagnosis and evaluation prior to any fertility treatment. The ultrasounds that are common for the physician to recommend for patients is the Saline sonogram. This helps evaluate the uterus and makes sure it is the right environment for a potential pregnancy in the future. This test is timed around a patients’ menstrual cycle and their clinic will give instructions of when to call and schedule this appointment base on the patients’ cycle start date.

Next Steps

Once your ultrasound and bloodwork tests are complete, you will discuss the next steps with the physician. This will be a telehealth zoom call to review all testing, bloodwork, and sperm analysis (if applicable). At that point, the physician will give the final recommendation for fertility treatment, medications involved, and answer any questions you may have. Once that telehealth is complete, the doctor will send the notes to the cycling nurses who will reach out to you to discuss their next steps. The cycling/clinical nurse will give you full instructions of how to proceed with their fertility treatment, review any medications you will need for the process, and answer any questions you may have. From there you will start your treatment with the cycling nurses providing you with a hand-holding experience to help minimize any stress throughout your journey.

With so much information out there it can be hard to navigate. IVF Michigan Fertility Centers has broken down their treatment options for you here. You can of course always find more information on their IVF Michigan Fertility Centers Website.

 Artificial Insemination- IUI
 Preserving Fertility
 Gender Selection
 Genetic Testing
 Male Infertility
 Ovulation induction
 Third-Party Reproduction

You may be wondering what the cost of your procedure is. While costs vary from patient to patient there are many things that IVF Michigan Fertility Centers can provide information on.

Fertility Evaluation or Diagnostic Testing:

Couples dealing with infertility will meet with a specialist at IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers to determine all testing needed to diagnose the cause of infertility. Most insurance will cover this step after patients have paid their copays and deductibles. The fertility specialists at IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers are contracted with most insurances operating in Michigan and Ohio.

Most Major Medical Insurances Accepted:

Patients should carefully read their insurance booklet to understand their infertility benefits. Please talk with your insurance agent to help you understand your coverage, or you can ask our financial specialists to call your insurance and confirm your benefits prior to your appointment.

First Steps Financial Assistance Program:

IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers offers discounts to patients with qualifying income criteria. Patients may be eligible to receive up to 50% off treatment.

Fertility Financing Options:

We participate with financing companies to help with the financial cost of fertility treatments. These options may help you on the journey to turning your dream into a reality.

Special Offerings for our Patients:

IVF Michigan & Ohio Fertility Centers offer discounts for teachers, medical professionals, the military, and the police. We offer discounts when treatment is prepaid in full. We have an in-house financing option for patients who qualify.

For more information on Finances head here.

Lansing Mom strives to provide up-to-date information for our community. If you would like to be part of our Pregnancy + Postpartum Guide please email [email protected]


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