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DHEA Saizen and IVIG - Which Toronto Clinics?

dhea saizen ivig

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#1 quandry


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Posted 28 March 2013 - 07:05 AM

I am wondering which toronto clinics offer these as options to IVF.  DH and I have decided to do one more round of IVF, and my clinic (Mt Sinai) doesn't offer these options, so I will be looking to do IVF elsewhere...


Right now I am looking at Dr. Hannam and Dr. Virro...  Hoping to hear that at least one of them does these newer treatments...

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#2 Lisa1995

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  • Location:Toronto
  • Dx:Unexplained
  • My Clinic:was Lifequest, now Markham

Posted 28 March 2013 - 11:40 AM

Hi Camyan,


Dr Virro has been using IVIg with great success for years (the first RE in Canada to do so I believe). He also now works with the Alan Beer Center in the US for a full immune work-up to customize your immune treatment protocol (your blood can be shipped there for testing if you desire). I believe he is on the fence about how effective DHEA is but he is very open minded when you suggest alternative treatments to him. I have never heard of saizen however, so I can't comment on that one. Good luck!



  • gibasgirl likes this

TTC #1: starting in Feb 2005 "unexplained" (immune issues, elevated NK cells, 2 heterozygous MTHFR and 2 heterozygous thrombophilias - Factor XIII and PAI-1 mutations)
me-42, DH-42, married since 1995!
Tried: Naturopath, Chinese herbs, Acupuncture, Homeopathy
4 un-medicated IUI's BFN
IVF # 1 18 eggs retrieved, 16 mature, 8 out of 16 fertilized (1/2 ICSI, half IVF), 5 made it to day 5 blast, transferred two, froze 3
first ever BFP m/c
FET #1 medicated, transferred two, started spotting 2 days later, full blown AF 5 days later (decided I don't react well to Estrace, will do natural frozen next time) BFN
FET #2 natural (but still with progesterone (crinone) support, transferred last blast from IVF #1 BFN
IVF #2 16 eggs retrieved, decided not to do ICSI this time since cycle #1 showed eggs could fertilize on their own, only 3 fertilized! None made it to blast for transfer no transfer! Disaster!
IVF #3 decided to add some repronex to the stims and do all ICSI. 18 eggs, 17 mature and 15 fertilized, 8 made it to day 5 blast. Transferred two blasts, froze 6 BFN
FET#3 added 3 HCG booster shots and doubled up on the crinone to prevent me from spotting early (as I often do), transferred 2 blasts, no spotting but a BFN anyway
FET #4- added ovidral just before my natural ovulation so they could pin point it more accurately with the 36 hour window, HCG shots again, plus double crinone BFN
January 2009 Consult with new RE in Markham - he finds a small septum, resected April 29, 09 - tells me to now try my last two frozen blasts
FET #5 - ET scheduled for June 15 (natural cycle with trigger, HCG booster and crinone) - BFN
On to Plan B- Switch clinic to Markham for
#4 Fresh IVF with IVIg, exploring immune testing - start BCP Sept 20. ER around week of Oct. 25
9 eggs retrieved, 1 immature, 1 fractured. 7 to work with. 4 out of 7 fertilized (Day 3: 1 8 cell grade 1, 2 8 cell grade 2 and 1 morula). Day 5 transferred 1 great blast and 1 morula (1 morula and 1 10 cell did not make it to freezing).
Beta Nov. 11 - BFP! (550) I am in shock!
Issues with spotting, Nov 20, second beta 11,000 and early ultrasound: saw gestational sac and yolk sac in the right place but concern about a cyst or possible ectopic near my ovary as well, 4 more ultrasounds over a 10 day period, last ultrasound on Dec. 2 'cyst' has not grown and baby measuring on target at 7wks, 1day with a heart beat of 153bpm.
Now taking Lovenox due to 2 heterozygous thrombophilias
Ultrasound on Dec. 18 (9 weeks, 5 days) baby on track, hb 167
Ultrasound on Dec. 22 due to extra heavy spotting, baby still measuring on track, hb 167 and dancing
Ultrasound on Jan. 8 (12 weeks, 5 days) baby on track, hb 160, baby doing crunches!
18 week anatomy scan scheduled for Feb. 16 - they lost my blood work for the second part of the IPS so no results for that today (they took blood again) but the 18 week scan went great, baby looked awesome and even gave us a little wave in between sucking her thumb and inspecting her toes. Yes, I said "her" - it's a little girl!
20 week ultrasound at Mt. Sinai and they agree, so far so good.
IPS results are in and they are excellent!
EDD: July 19, 2010
Baby girl arrived at 39 weeks, 2 days! July 14, 2010 3:12 am, weighing 7 pounds even.
May 2013 - The IVF Journey continues...one last try to see if a sibling is in the cards...
Did LIT, IVIg, Lovenox and low dose aspirin. 5 eggs retrieved, 1 immature, 1 fractured, 3 to work with, 2 fertilized with ICSI.
June 5, day 3 transfer of 2 8 cell grade 2 embryos.BFN
April 2014, one very last try - natural IVF with intralipids this time, 2! dominant follicles, 2 mature eggs retrieved, both fertilize with ICSI, day 3 transfer scheduled for April 13, transferred 1 8-cell grade one and 1 6-cell grade one (also using Lovenox and low dose ASA) -BFN, we are really done, not sure if it is now my immune system, or old eggs now too.

#3 My_time


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Posted 28 March 2013 - 01:04 PM

I have been through a round of REs in Toronto and my 0.02 advice: Go straight to Dr Virro in Markham centre. The wait is now till September 2013 but you won't regret your choice.

I am not sure if he does Saizen but he does IVIG and to my knowledge Markham is the only centre right now in Toronto which actively treats with IVIG.
  • gibasgirl likes this

Diagnosis: Repeated Pregnancy Loss + DOR + Advance maternal Age.

So far no luck with IVF attempts. Hope things take a turn soon.


#4 Graceland

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  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Ottawa
  • Dx:Other
  • My Clinic:Hannam (now)

Posted 28 March 2013 - 06:11 PM

I'm a patient of Dr. Hannam's and am currently using Saizen with my latest IVF cycle. I don't think he does IVIG. I believe he used to recommend DHEA but didn't see any improvement in patients that were using it. Good luck with your decision!

Twin girls born December 2017 after 7 years of TTC

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#5 Gemgirl

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  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Barrie, ONT
  • Dx:Unexplained
  • My Clinic:CNY Fertility New York State

Posted 28 March 2013 - 07:04 PM

I too live in Barrie and I am currently 29 weeks pregnant. My clinic was CNY Fertility in Rochester and Syracuse NY. With CNY you don't need to do the expensive $3500 Alan DeBeers testing that Dr. Virro's clinic requires before you can have IVIg treatments. I don't know if CNY does Saizen treatments but I would be surprised if they don't. They will make their recommendations for treatment and you can ask or tell them that you would also like to add X & Y & Z and they will tell you there opinion. They really make you feel like you are in charge of your own treatments.


I did my monitoring in Newmarket at what use to be Northern Reproduction Therapies but have now been bought out by Procrea and would travel to Syracuse for retrival and transfer.


For me to finally be pregnant my treatment included DHEA, Endo Biopsy, IVIg, Neupogen, Lovenox, PIO, accupunture and after transfer HCG booster injections. I called it everthing plus the kitchen sink treatment plan. If you have any further questions about CNY feel free to pm me or send me and e-mail.

  • gibasgirl and torontogal like this

#6 Trippleb

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  • Dx:Endometriosis

Posted 31 March 2013 - 09:10 PM

Gemgirl, how did you use the neupogen, injections or wash?

Me=43, Endo, AMA,DOR
DH=40, Low everything, Currently on Clomid to boost T levels - seems to be working
Lap 10/09 Removed endometrioma, stage IV endo and adhesions 
Lap 2/10 Endometrioma cysts & adhesions returned. 
Ivf #1 4/10 Antagonist, ET Cancelled. 
IVF #2 2/11 A/ACP+E2V C/P
IVF #3 6/11 Letrozole/Antagonist BFN
IVF #4 11/11 Low stim Antagonist BFN
Lap 3/12 Lap & Selective HSG
Many cycles of Letrozole and LP HCG w/TI and LDN
IVF #5 8/12 Low stim BFN
IUI #1 10/12 BFN
IVF #6 3/13 EPP+HGH, Low stim.  G-CSF wash

#7 sprbaby

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  • Dx:Tubal
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Posted 11 February 2014 - 11:54 AM

London Health Sciences Centre uses growth hormone and DHEA. I'm not sure about the IVIG. If you're GTA rather than smack in the heart of Toronto, it might be worth looking at. There is also a reasonably priced hotel near the clinic that offers a hospital discount, if the driving got to be too much.


Dx: Tubal

Me (38) DH (37)


IVF Cycle #1

Dec 2013 13 retrieved, 11 fertilized,

day 3: 7 great embryos

day 5: no blasts; transferred 1 morula

day 6: still no blasts, nothing to freeze

day 13: spotting

day 14: BFN


IVF Cycle #2 - March 2014

*added 3 months CoQ10 and omnitrope with stims*

Mar 2014: 14 eggs retrieved, 13 fertilized

day 5: two early blasts, both transferred!

day 6: one more blast frozen!

day 14: AF arrived, BFN confirmed on day 16.


FET cycle - Nov 2014

transferred one and only frozen blast - BFN

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