Things to consider before undergoing IVF in Taiwan

It has been almost a month since our baby Hiro celebrated his 1st year birthday. He is now officially a toddler and can now express his likes and dislikes. I thought it would be a hard 1st year for us especially with us not having a “yaya.” He is relatively healthy (except for some bouts of diarrhea) and is usually happy. He eats well and seldomly cries. I guess we’re just blessed with a happy baby but I believe it will change a few months from now especially now that he is approaching the terrible two’s.

Last month, we finally decided to have a baby number two through IVF. We’re almost 36 years old and I don’t think we can still wait for another one. A woman’s fertilty rate rapidly declines at the age of 35 so we need to rush a little bit.

After deciding to have another round of IVF, we immediately emailed Lee Women’s Hospital regarding the schedule and the payment needed for the treatment. It’s our second time doing the treatment with them so there’s no need for additional testing so they told us to send 290 USD through their bank account so they could send us the medicines needed. We’re now waiting for the medicines to arrive and we’re excited to go back to Taiwan.

Here are the list of things to consider before going to Taiwan for the treatment.

  1. Ask your local doctor first for their opinion and options. You can also consider to have your APAS checked. I’ve heard a lot of women having what they call ” natural killer cells.” Some say that it doesn’t affect the embryo in an IVF procedure but it is better to ask your doctor about it.
  2. Apply for a medical visa. The current visa free entry is good only for 14 days. You need to allot a month in Taiwan for the entire process unless the embryo will undergo PGS or if you need additional cyle(s).
  3. Email for an appointment and visit Lee Women’s Hospital first before sending any money. On our first day in Lee Women’s Hospital, we just wanted to check out the hospital to see their facilities. After the consultation with Dr. Lee, we were immediately scheduled for several tests that include blood tests, sperm test, chromosome test, thyroid test etc. We’re lucky that my parents wanted to accompany us and brought extra money for the test. They didn’t inform us beforehand about the tests so be prepared. In my opinion, it would be wasteful to take any medicines if you don’t have any idea about what could be wrong with our bodies.
  4. In case you’ve decided to pursue IVF in Lee Women’s, you can buy the initial medicine and leave a deposit in the hospital. You will be bringing in a lot of money to Taiwan and you’re only allowed to bring in 10,000 USD or 100,000 NTD. So it’s better to split your money on your initial visit and the main treatment.
  5. The husband is generally not needed for the entire treatment. They are just needed for the sperm test and the sperm collection so they are not needed to stay in Taiwan for the whole month BUT it is highly appreciated if they can accompany their wife for moral support and be someone that can help out their wife with the injections. It is not an easy process and it gets to be lonely when you’re alone in a foreign country undergoing this type of procedure.
  6. We rode the bus on our entire stay in Taichung because it’s free. Invest in an Easy Card. It’s cheap and you can also use it in 7/11 or Familymart.
  7. Prepare at least P500,000 for the entire treatment.
  8. The success rate varies and this is a very emotional process so be prepared emotionally and financially. The success rate for first timers is relatively low. It will be higher on the next cycles. The doctor will eventually know your body’s reaction to the medicine given which in turn will help them make the necessary adjustments.
  9. PGS is another thing you can consider. It is costly but it will make sure that the embryo implanted is a healthy one and lessen the risk of miscarriage.
  10. Check out Lee Women’s Hospital facebook fanpage πŸ™‚

 

Photo by Janko Ferlič on Unsplash

 

 

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