Frequently Asked Questions

Midland Fertility

Success rates

Cost of treatment

Investigations, treatments and risks

Midland Fertility

Is Midland Fertility part of a hospital?

Midland Fertility is registered by the Care Quality Commission as an independent hospital, providing a full-range of fertility investigations and treatments from its clinic in Tamworth. All staff undertake regular training and are experts in their fields.

How long has Midland Fertility been established?

Midland Fertility was established in 1987 and was based in Aldridge from 1993 to 2014.  Midland Fertility relocated to a new super clinic based in Tamworth in September 2014.

Will a patient have to go to any other hospital as part of their treatment at Midland Fertility?

Not usually. All services and care for both male and female patients can normally be provided at Midland Fertility.

Will a patient always see the same nurse or doctor?

In addition to the team of doctors, Midland Fertility is a nurse-led practice, so many patients see the same doctor, fertility nurse specialists or clinical midwives for most of their appointments, but rarely a single individual nurse for all appointments. All Midland Fertility nurses are trained in ultrasound scanning, many of them perform IUI inseminations and embryo transfers, and some Midland Fertility nurses also do egg collections. This means that a nurse with whom the patient is familiar will usually participate in almost all stages of treatment, rather than simply relay information to patient.

Are appointments available at Midland Fertility out of normal office hours?

Appointments are available from 7.30am to 6.30pm Monday to Thursday and to 6.00pm on a Friday, although the ‘before and after office hours’ appointments are filled quickly. Morning appointments are available at the weekend for private initial consultations and also for time-dependent scans and emergencies. Initial consultations for private patients are also available until 9.00pm on Wednesdays. Midland Fertility is also open on most bank holidays.

How long is the waiting list for treatment at Midland Fertility?

  • self-funded patients

First visits are usually available within a week and there is no wait for subsequent treatment.

  • NHS-funded patients

Midland Fertility provides NHS funded treatment for some West Midlands’ Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). Each CCG has its own criteria for funding and waiting times can vary, from immediately to longer. For further information email Linda Tanner, Midland Fertility’s NHS contracts manager, or phone her at the number at the top of the page, 10.00am-3.30pm, Wednesday to Friday.

What is the procedure for making comments or complaints about treatment at Midland Fertility?

To enable Midland Fertility to monitor the treatment experience at the unit, some patients may be asked to complete questionnaires. Midland Fertility welcomes all feedback – both positive and negative – as patients’ experiences of Midland Fertility can help improve the services offered. Comments should be directed to: Anna Kavanagh, Director of Quality and Business, Midland Fertility , Tamworth House, Ventura Park Road, Tamworth, B78 3HL by post or, alternatively, may be sent by email.

Complaints may be addressed to any member of the Midland Fertility team, who will pass on the comments to Anna Kavanagh in her role as complaints officer. Any issues can then be investigated thoroughly and a summary of the investigation made available to the patient.

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • Patient Feedback infosheet

How is my personal information stored and used?

Any personal information Midland Fertility hold about a patient is held in accordance with HFEA Act 1990, Data Protection Act 1998 and the Caldicott Committee ‘report on the  review of patient identifiable information’ December 1997.  All employees are bound by confidentiality law.  This level of confidentiality and information security also applies to any third parties visiting the site.

For any personal information to be disclosed, patients must sign a ‘consent to disclosure’ form.

Success rates

What is the live birth rate for treatments at Midland Fertility?

Live Birth Rate (LBR) statistics in a clinic’s success rates give an accurate indication of the chances of having a baby after fertility treatment at any licensed clinic. Midland Fertility uses the method preferred by the HFEA to calculate the LBR, ie the number of live birth events (twins and triplets count as one live birth event) divided by the number of:

  • treatment cycles started
  • egg collections
  • embryo transfers

Treatment cycles started

The LBR per ‘treatment cycles started’ includes all relevant treatments (fresh stimulated IVF/ICSI using patients’ own eggs) given by Midland Fertility. This gives the lowest LBR of the three stages as it includes cycles where patients failed to produce eggs or treatment cycles that were abandoned before eggs were recovered due to the risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS).

Egg collections

The LBR per egg collection reflects a number of factors including:

  • ovarian stimulation
  • the number of eggs recovered
  • fertilisation rates
  • the quality of the embryology
  • the embryo transfer technique

Embryo transfer

The LBR per embryo transfer rate (regardless of the number of embryos replaced) reflects only the quality of the embryology and the embryo transfer technique. The nearer this rate is to the LBR per egg collection, the better.

Cost of treatment

What is the cost of treatment at Midland Fertility?

See the current list of charges for treatment costs and use the Midland Fertility Cost Estimator© to estimate the total cost of the investigations or treatments being considered.

Is NHS funding available for treatment?

Midland Fertility provides NHS funded treatment for some of the Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in the West Midlands. Criteria and waiting times for funding vary between CCGs. For further information on criteria for funding email Linda Tanner, Midland Fertility’s NHS contracts manager, or phone her on the number at the top of this page, 10.00am-3.30pm, Wednesday to Friday.

Investigations, treatments and risks

What services does Midland Fertility offer?

Midland Fertility offers a full range of fertility investigations and treatments.

Investigations include:

Treatments include:

Other services and procedures include:

Midland Fertility also offers counselling services to help patients during their treatment.

How long does treatment take?

The length of time depends on the type of treatment. As a rule, if a patient is able to proceed immediately, funding is available and no additional tests are needed, from first visit to pregnancy test:

  • IUI: eight weeks
  • IVF or ICSI: approximately two to three months

How many appointments are required?

The number of appointments depends on the type of treatment the patient is having, but including initial consultation, treatment assessment, follow-up appointments, monitoring scans, and the IUI, IVF or ICSI procedure itself, allow:

  • IUI: three to four appointments
  • IVF or ICSI: eight to ten appointments, depending on the progress of treatment

What tests are required before treatment starts?

Both the man and woman will require a treatment assessment before treatment can begin, including:

  • blood tests to check for infectious diseases HIV and Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C
  • blood tests to measure the woman’s hormone levels – and occasionally the man’s too
  • BMI check on the woman to ensure it falls between 19 and 30 (and some CCGs require a male partners’ BMI to be below 30 to satisfy funding criteria)
  • a vaginal ultrasound scan of the woman
  • a sperm sample for analysis from the man

Can Midland Fertility use the results of tests a patient has previously had to avoid having to repeat them?

Very occasionally Midland Fertility can use the results of tests recently conducted elsewhere, but usually these tests will need to be repeated at Midland Fertility and analysed in either in one of the Midland Fertility laboratories or in one of the off-site labs that conduct specialist tests for Midland Fertility. A Midland Fertility nurse or doctor will be able to advise each patient.

Do husbands,wives or partners have to attend every appointment?

Husbands and partners must attend the initial consultation and, if they are providing the sperm for the treatment, should also be available for the treatment assessment, follow-up appointment, egg collection and insemination. A doctor or nurse will be able to advise exactly which appointments are necessary for husbands or partners. Of course, they are welcome to attend any other appointments too.

What counselling services does Midland Fertility offer?

Counselling support is provided by members of the clinical team and also by counsellors trained in infertility counselling. This service is available to all patients during and after treatment, for fertility related issues, and is included in the charges.

What are the risks of fertility treatment?

  • OHSS
  • ectopic pregnancy
  • multiple pregnancy
  • death

– OHSS

The drugs prescribed to help a woman’s ovaries produce more eggs may cause harm if they work too well. This over-response can develop into ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS). Clinical staff at Midland Fertility monitor ovarian stimulation very carefully to help prevent OHSS, and so it occurs in only 0.3% of all treatment cycles at Midland Fertility. Symptoms of mild OHSS include:

  • a swollen stomach or abdomen
  • stomach pains
  • vomiting

Indications of more severe cases include:

  • breathlessness
  • feeling faint
  • passing dark discoloured urine

OHSS is potentially very serious, so if a patient starts to experience any of these symptoms, she should contact Midland Fertility immediately on the number at the top of this page, even out of clinic hours.

Most cases of OHSS settle with mild pain killers such as paracetamol, drinking more water or dilute juice (but not tea, coffee or alcohol), and gentle exercise. Midland Fertility staff will monitor the development of OHSS in any patient over the days before any scheduled embryo transfer. If the risk of OHSS developing is high, Midland Fertility clinicians may suggest admission to hospital or that the embryo transfer is postponed and the embryos are stored for a future frozen embryo transfer (FET).

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • Ovarian Hyper-Stimulation Syndrome (OHSS) infosheet

– Ectopic pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy is one that implants outside the endometrial cavity of the uterus, most commonly in the Fallopian tube, but occasionally an embryo can implant on an ovary or elsewhere in the abdominal cavity. These pregnancies are not viable and may need to be removed urgently, possibly with surgery, as they are a considerable risk to a woman’s health. Symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy include:

  • intermittent lower abdominal pain
  • abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • tenderness on one side of the pelvis

Infertile women have an increased risk of ectopic pregnancies, particularly those with tubal damage, a uterine abnormality, or if an intrauterine contraceptive device has been used in the past. In the UK, one in 200 pregnancies implants outside the uterus. In IVF or ICSI treatment, ectopic pregnancies can still occur in 2-4% of treatment cycles.

An ectopic pregnancy can usually be identified at the first pregnancy scan which is carried out two to three weeks following a positive pregnancy test. If a patient has unusual bleeding or pain after a positive test, but before her first scan she should call Midland Fertility or go to the A&E of her local hospital.

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • Ectopic Pregnancy infosheet

– Multiple pregnancies and births

Multiple pregnancies and births (twins, triplets or more) are the single biggest risk to mothers and babies during fertility treatment and are at risk of many complications compared to a singleton pregnancies.

To achieve a balance between reducing multiple births and maximising a woman’s chance of having a healthy baby, all clinics including Midland Fertility, adhere to a ‘Multiple Birth Minimisation Policy’ or an ‘Embryo Transfer and SET Policy’.  The aim is to help couples achieve their dream of having a healthy baby and this is more likely with a singleton pregnancy rather than twins or triplets.  For more information:

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • Embryo Transfer Policy and SET infosheet

– Death

Since 1978 tens of thousands of women have received fertility treatment in the UK and according to the HFEA, two deaths have been attributable to OHSS during this time (in 1991 and 2004) throughout the UK. Fortunately, nowadays, pregnancy and childbirth are very safe in the UK but, OHSS, an ectopic pregnancy, a multiple pregnancy or multiple birth, all carry a very small risk of death to the pregnant woman. If a Midland Fertility patient thinks she is has the symptoms listed in the sections above, she should call the telephone number at the top of this page.

What if a patient needs to speak to someone urgently about their treatment outside of clinic hours?

If a patient feels unwell as a result of their on-going treatment or if they have a question about their treatment that needs an immediate answer, they should call the number at the top of this page at any time, any day of the year. Out of office hours a message will give the patient a mobile number of a senior member of the Midland Fertility team who will deal with any concerns. Please note that these calls will be taken outside of the office and so patient notes will not be available to refer to, and the diary will not be available to book appointments. Calls are taken via a mobile phone and so may be disturbed by background noise, although every effort is made to keep this to a minimum.

How many embryos can a woman have transferred at Midland Fertility?

To achieve a balance between reducing multiple births and maximising a woman’s chance of having a healthy baby, all clinics including Midland Fertility, adhere to a ‘Multiple Birth Minimisation Policy’ or an ‘Embryo Transfer and Single Embryo Transfer (SET) Policy’.  The aim is to help couples achieve their dream of having a healthy baby and this is more likely with a singleton pregnancy rather than twins or triplets. More information:

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • Embryo Transfer Policy and SET infosheet

Who are the egg, sperm and embryo donors at Midland Fertility?

Women who donate eggs and embryos are non-smokers, aged 18 to 35, with a normal BMI and with no personal or family history of inherited illnesses or abnormalities. They may donate their eggs altruistically or as part of an egg share scheme in exchange for reduced costs of their treatment. Couples who donate embryos have usually had successful fertility treatment and want others to benefit from the generous gift of their additional embryos. People who donate their eggs or embryos receive no payment from either Midland Fertility or the recipient.

Sperm donors are aged 18 to 41. They are screened for infectious diseases HIV and Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C, as well as for sexually transmitted diseases and genetic abnormalities. A sperm sample is checked for quality, frozen, quarantined for a minimum of 181 days and then thawed to check it can survive the freeze/thaw process. Sperm donors are screened again for infectious diseases after this quarantine period. Only if the sperm is suitable and the results of all the tests are satisfactory is the donor’s sperm used in fertility treatment. Midland Fertility uses samples from local donors and also those obtained from elsewhere in the UK and abroad.

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • IUI: Intrauterine Insemination infosheet
  • Purchasing Sperm infosheet

What should a patient do if she gets pregnant?

A woman will know if she is pregnant two weeks after her IUI insemination, or ten to 14 days her IVF or ICSI embryo transfer. She should contact Midland Fertility as soon as she knows the result of her pregnancy test – not only are the staff excited to know if the treatment has been successful, but Midland Fertility also has a legal duty to inform the HFEA of the outcome. She may also need to continue taking hormones prescribed by Midland Fertility and so should check with an Midland Fertility nurse or doctor before discontinuing these.

She will have a pregnancy scan 10-14 days after her positive pregnancy test, when she is classed as six weeks pregnant. At this very early stage of development, the Midland Fertility ultrasound scan should show a gestational sac containing the developing fetus with a beating heart. This scan is important to ensure that the pregnancy is developing normally within the uterus.

After this early scan, the woman can visit her GP and begin antenatal care like any other pregnancy. She may also return to the clinic for additional 2D, 3D and 4D scans, from six to 32 weeks, at the See My Baby pregnancy scanning and pre-natal service.

Midland Fertility staff will look forward to the news on the birth, as again, the clinic must advise the HFEA on the outcome of the pregnancy.

What should a patient do if she doesn’t get pregnant?

If a patient has a negative result for her pregnancy test, she should contact Midland Fertility to advise the clinic of the treatment outcome. Staff will be available to offer support and to give best advice at this difficult time and Midland Fertility also has a legal duty to inform the HFEA of the outcome.

As with all forms of fertility treatment, the process can be emotionally, physically and financially challenging and staff at Midland Fertility can give support and, when the patient feels ready, can talk to her about the treatment and give advice on the available options. The clinical and laboratory teams are also usually able to learn something from a failed treatment cycle and can use this information to increase the chance of success for any future treatment.

If a patient decides that she no longer wishes to pursue fertility treatment, she may wish to explore other ways of achieving a family. Stopping fertility treatment can be a difficult decision and Midland Fertility staff are able to help a couple through this process and give you contact details for support groups and other agencies.

Go to the Midland Fertility Patient Treatment Information page and download:

  • Following Unsuccessful Treatment infosheet

 Does Midland Fertility offer a pregnancy scan service?

See My Baby is Midland Fertility’s private 2D, 3D and 4D reassurance and bonding pregnancy scanning for all pregnant women following fertility treatment or after natural conception, from six to 32 weeks.  In addition, See My Baby offers the latest non-invasive pre-natal testing (NIPT) – a non-invasive method to screen the baby for genetic and chromosomal disorders, via testing the mother’s blood.

See My Baby offers Midland Fertility patients the opportunity to return to clinic throughout their pregnancy – something we know our patients appreciate!

LU: 12/1/16/JAA