Heartland Center for Reproductive Medicine:

Our Response to COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

HCRM is dedicated to keep our patients and staff safe and healthy during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. HCRM has policies and guidelines in place aligned with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and local and state health authorities to help prevent the spread of illness. We are also adhering to recent guidelines that have been published by the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) regarding the treatment of current and new patients.

Please review the new procedures we have put into place at HCRM:

1. All patients will receive a phone call 24-48 hours prior to the appointment and complete a prescreening questionnaire with questions regarding their travel history in the past 14 days and the presence of respiratory symptoms (fever of 100.4 or higher, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath) within the past 14 days.

2. All patients and visitors will complete the same prescreening questionnaire with a HCRM staff member prior to entering the clinic on the day of the appointment. Please allow for an extra 5 minutes prior to your appointment to complete the prescreening. It is possible that a patient may need to reschedule his/her appointment based on symptoms or travel history.

3. HCRM requests that patients come to the clinic unaccompanied, leaving their partners/support waiting for them at home or in their vehicles when feasible. We request that patients do not bring children to their appointment.

4. With the use of Telemedicine, we hope to continue to provide care to our new and current patients.

5. HCRM will reduce the frequency of clinic appointments during treatment cycle monitoring.

6. HCRM will frequently enforce infection control processes within the clinic, including good hand washing hygiene, frequent disinfecting of patient rooms and surfaces, and social distancing.

We at HCRM appreciate your ongoing support as we work together and do our part to "flatten the curve." Please contact our office at (402) 717-4200 for more information or any questions.

For current travel advisories and up-to-date information on COVID-19, please visit the CDC’s COVID-19 website.

What Is Fertility Preservation and How Does It Work? By HCRM on September 15, 2016

Cryofreezing for fertility preservationHere at Heartland Center, we want to help all patients start the families of their dreams. This involves tailoring treatments to their needs and ensuring that everyone who visits knows what their treatment options are. This focus on the patient has helped us become leading specialists in fertility treatments in Omaha.

In some cases, the ideal treatment for a patient involves preserving their ability to have a child at a later time. With that in mind, let's explore the issue of fertility preservation.

What Is Fertility Preservation?

Fertility preservation refers to various techniques used to ensure people can have children in the future. In many cases, this means preserving genetic material through the use of cryofreezing techniques. This freezes genetic material a very low temperatures in order to prevent degradation of the the cells. These preserved genetic materials can then be used in fertility procedures, typically through in virto fertilization (IVF) and/or surrogate carriers.

Fertility Preservation for Cancer and Cancer Treatment

Cancer treatment is a very common reason why people turn to fertility preservation. The cancer itself can lead to issues with infertility or sterility, particularly when the reproductive organs or the pelvic region are affected by cancerous cells. In addition, undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy can result in lower fertility or general infertility.

Other medical conditions and diseases can similarly prompt people to consider fertility preservation techniques.

Fertility Preservation for Personal and Social Reasons

In addition to medical conditions, people tend to consider fertility preservation for personal and social reasons. There are myriad reasons to consider these options, some of which may include:

  • Indecisiveness about having children right now
  • Social stigma of having a child
  • Issues with age and agism
  • Significant age difference in a couple
  • Concerns about spouse or significant other
  • Spouse or significant other works in dangerous profession
  • Spouse or significant other is in the military/armed forces

In all of the above cases, there is a personal risk or a social issue to consider when it comes to fertility, childbirth, parenthood, and having a child. These are all important to consider when it comes to matters of fertility preservation and the issues related to starting a family of your own.

Options for Female Fertility Preservation

The most common options for female fertility preservation include:

  • Egg Freezing (Oocyte Cryopreservation) – During egg freezing, ovulation is induced using fertility drugs so fertility doctors can then take healthy, viable eggs to be frozen/preserved for later use.

  • Embryo Cryopreservation – Similar in many ways to egg freezing, this process freezes embryos. Embryos are fertilized eggs that are beginning the process of cellular division.

  • Gonadal Shielding – This process is used during cancer treatment and involves the placement of special shields that reduce the amount of radiation exposure to a patient's reproductive organs. You'll note that this does not involve cryofreezing but rather protecting the reproductive organs themselves.

Options for Male Fertility Preservation

The most common options for male fertility preservation include:

  • Sperm Cryopreservation – Similar to the egg and embryo procedures we mentioned above, sperm freezing involves preserving sperm taken from a male patient. Sometimes sperm extraction techniques are used to obtain viable sperm if a man experiences issues with low sperm count (azoospermia). This is the same process that sperm banks use to keep genetic material viable.

  • Gonadal Shielding – As with women, this process protects the reproductive organs from radiation exposure during cancer treatment.

Learn More About Fertility Preservation

For more information about fertility preservation and how it can help you, be sure to contact our team of experienced fertility specialists today. The team at Heartland Center will go over all of your options in full detail and discuss these procedures carefully so you understand which may be most ideal for your needs.

Related to This

Heartland Center for Reproductive Medicine

Heartland Center for Reproductive Medicine

Dr. Stephanie L.F. Gustin, Dr. Elizabeth Constance, and Dr. Elizabeth Weedin are skilled reproductive endocrinologists who offer state-of-the-art fertility treatments. An open and inclusive environment, the Heartland Center for Reproductive Medicine can address different causes of infertility and help LGBTQ couples build loving families.

Contact our practice online or call us at (402) 717-4200 to schedule a consultation.

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