Costs in the U.S. for in vitro fertilization typically range from $10,000 to $18,000 inclusive of medications. Added potential costs include intracytoplasmic sperm injection (severe male factor) $500 – $2000, assisted hatching (patients 38 years and older) $500 – $2000, as well as costs associated with cryopreservation of embryos $500 – $2000. Costs for subsequent thawing and transferring of cryopreserved embryos typically range between $1000 and $3000. Costs most often are not covered by insurance. At the Florida Institute for Reproductive Medicine, our costs have always fallen around the lower end of these ranges. We always strive to provide IVF at the lowest cost possible, making this therapy available to the greatest number of patients.
Infertility patients faced with in vitro fertilization are primarily interested in their chances of taking home a baby from all their IVF embryos. Given the very real concern over multiple pregnancies, i.e. potential significant morbidity and mortality, along with the cost and social difficulties associated with a multiple pregnancy, limiting the number of embryos transferred is appropriate. At the Florida Institute for Reproductive Medicine the majority of our patients are transferred no more than two embryos. Additional embryos are cryopreserved. This brings up the issue of pregnancy rates associated with fresh as well as cryopreserved embryos. IVF programs practicing in the United States are required by law to report their pregnancy data to the CDC each year (http://www.cdc.gov/art/ARTReports.htm). One of the greatest differences in IVF programs is their cryo embryo pregnancy rates. Many programs have very poor results with cryopreserved embryos. For younger patients, less than 35 years of age, who likely will have embryos to cryopreserve, this represents a big disadvantage. Generally, fresh pregnancy rates will be somewhat higher in any program due to selection bias, i.e. when embryos are created, typically the embryologist will select the best looking embryos to transfer fresh, cryopreserving the remaining embryos. At the Florida Institute for Reproductive Medicine our fresh and frozen pregnancy rates have been among the highest in the country. Therefore, when trying to determine the value that a particular IVF program offers, it is important not only to take into consideration the cost, but also the pregnancy rates obtained from both fresh and frozen embryos.
A further consideration is the total number of embryos obtained. This number will vary depending on the patient’s age/ovarian reserve as well as the stimulation protocol, retrieval, and laboratory efficiency. At the Florida Institute for Reproductive Medicine, given the new and aggressive stimulation protocols used, the majority of our patients less than 35 years of age have embryos for at least one cryo IVF transfer, many have embryos available for a second cryo transfer. Therefore, total reproductive potential is the sum of the fresh transfer plus all cryo IVF transfers. Looking at the total reproductive potential in the context of IVF costs, we believe that the Florida Institute for Reproductive Medicine offers one of the greatest IVF values in the country.