Describe your experience with The Reproductive Medicine Group.
Strengths - experience, ART nurse communication
Weaknesses - the size
During treatment, did you feel like you were treated like a number or a human?
The group is a very large group, there is just no way for the physicians to know you individually. I have had an experience where my MD mixed up why I was there, or had to review my chart while I was there to confirm.
Describe your experience with the nursing staff.
We have two sets of nurses, the nurses from my office location - clearwater, and the ART nurses, who handle all of the IVF retrieval and transfer cycles. The nurse at my main office location actually made an error on my second cycle and ordered lupron as my trigger, this mistake carried down throughout the ENTIRE prep for my second cycle. Every single nurse would call and try to confirm I was using lupron trigger, which i was not. I was very upset with this, because I know using HCG would change the way I was monitored when it comes to OHSS, etc. So i really didn't want there to be even a single trace of a lupron trigger being used. Finally right before stims started I called and spoke with the ART nurses and was firm but respectful in requesting that they review my charts and make sure all traces of lupron were removed because I was worried that the physician would make decisions based off lupron and not HCG (especially since I said the practice is so large and there is no way for the MDs to remember individual patients). Thankfully the ART nurses appeased me and made sure all lupron traces were removed and never mentioned it again.
What specific things went wrong at this clinic?
- Failed to call in prescriptions to pharmacy
How was your experience with Samuel Tarantino?
We really liked Dr. Tarantino's personality, he is very friendly and jovial. He is easy for my husband to talk with from a man's perspective this is important, as it's such a sensitive subject to begin with. I think the hardest thing for us was just the fact that the practice as a whole was so large, you see the MD for consent signing and the procedure, but none of the monitoring throughout. I know this is par for the course for a practice this big, but sometimes I just wish we could have more one on one time.
For our first round we had all abnormal embryos, and from my own research I felt we should change the trigger, Dr. Tarantino suggested this as well, so I felt comfortable that he was making changes instead of just sticking with the status quo.
What one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Samuel Tarantino?
He is experienced and knows what he is doing, just make sure you know what you need and ask for it! Don't be afraid to question decisions, make sure you keep track of your meds and everything.
Describe the protocols Samuel Tarantino used in your cycles and their degree of success.
Cycle 1 - Antagonist protocol with lupron trigger - they use lupron for everyone the first time because it is safer. I agree with this, but for me it did not produce good embryos. We retreived 11, 9 mature, 7 fertilized, 3 blasts (2 BB and 1 BC, so not great quality) and NONE came back PGS normal.
Cycle 2 - Antagonist with HCG trigger, 14 retrieved, 11 mature, 8 fertilized, 2 blasts (but better quality, 1 AA and 1 AB), both were PGS normal!
Dr. Tarantino thought that maybe the Lupron trigger hadn't worked correctly on me. He said some women's brains don't have the appropriate reaction to the Lupron and the eggs and not matured correctly or fully, creating the abnormalities, which he said the PGS indicated were all maternal issues. This is why he switched to HCG. I agreed after reading, although I was surprised that I only had two blasts, but thankfully they were great quality and both normal, so it worked out!
Describe your experience with your monitoring appointments.
Pretty efficient, got there in the AM and they just take us one by one. The later you get there the longer it takes, so I try to get there before they open.
Describe the costs associated with your care under Samuel Tarantino.
a full cycle with PGS and meds was around 20K.