What does the average IVF cost? That might be the first thing new patients want to discover after learning about fertility issues and how IVF treatment can help.
However, IVF costs depend on many factors, including local laws and regulations, clinic type, and individual treatment options. To find out about the cost of IVF, we contacted clinics in different states and countries. Read on to understand the Cost of IVF.
What Is IVF?
In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a procedure where an egg is removed from your ovary and combined with sperm in the laboratory. Then, a single sperm is injected into the egg. The fertilized egg, or embryo, can then be transferred to your uterus through the cervix during a minor surgical procedure.
IVF is often used when other fertility treatments have failed. In addition, IVF works well for women who ovulate regularly and are older than 40.
If you’re thinking about trying IVF, it’s essential to understand what it involves and whether it’s right for you.
How Much Does IVF Cost?
IVF costs depend on several factors, including age, insurance coverage, and medical history.
According to the American Pregnancy Association, the average cost of one IVF cycle is $12,000 to $17,000, which can vary widely depending on your individual needs and circumstances.
1. Costs Before the Procedure (Non-Donor IVF)
The initial consultation with your fertility doctor is typically free of charge. However, if your doctor recommends additional tests, such as blood work or ultrasounds, you will have to pay for these tests out of pocket.
Base fee: $12,000 to $14,000; That covers everything from start to finish — from your first appointment with your doctor through all procedures related to embryo creation and fresh embryo transfer. That includes:
- Consultation with your doctor about your fertility treatment options and medications
- Ultrasound exams and blood tests, if needed
- Treatment with hormones (with or without ICSI)
2. Costs of Embryo Creation and Fresh Embryo Transfer
The average price for embryo creation (fertility drugs) is $3,000 to $5,000 for each cycle. The price depends on whether you’re doing one or two rounds of fertility drugs and what type of medication you choose.
The average cost of fresh embryo transfer is about $4,000 per cycle. That price is for one embryo transfer only. If more than one embryo is transferred during a fresh cycle, there’s usually an additional charge for each additional embryo transferred beyond the first one.
The total price may vary depending on where you live and what kind of provider you choose.
3. Costs of Frozen Embryo Transfer
That method is often used when multiple embryos are created during IVF. Then, the embryos are frozen for later use when you’re ready to try again or want to have more than one child at a time.
The average frozen embryo transfer (FET) cost is $4,393 – $5,890, according to Forbes Website. FET costs more than fresh embryo transfer because it requires fewer visits to the clinic, and your doctor can perform it during office hours rather than after hours or on weekends when they are not in the office.
Mini IVF Cost vs. Full IVF Cost
Here is break down:
Mini IVF Cost: between $5,000 and $7,000 per cycle
The mini-IVF cycle is a less expensive alternative to standard IVF treatment. It’s usually recommended if you have few eggs or embryos left after multiple cycles of IVF or if you are over 35 years old.
In most cases, it takes fewer days and about half as many shots as standard IVF treatment, but it may be less effective since it targets only one egg at a time instead of multiple eggs at a time.
Full IVF Cost: between $12,000 and $15,000 per cycle
Standard IVF involves stimulating the ovaries with hormones until enough follicles (eggs) are in place to harvest them through a needle biopsy procedure performed under ultrasound guidance.
Once retrieved, they are fertilized with sperm in the lab and transferred into the uterus via an embryo transfer catheter 24-48 hours later. That process requires a lot more visits and appointments than mini-IVF.
Read Also: IVF Due Date Calculator
Costs of Using Donor Eggs
In vitro fertilization (IVF) with donor eggs is similar to IVF with frozen embryos, except an egg donor is used instead of your eggs. Many women choose that option if they cannot produce viable eggs or prefer to use a family member’s or friend’s eggs.
The cost of IVF using donated eggs also varies based on how many eggs are needed to produce a pregnancy and how many cycles it takes before a woman becomes pregnant.
Whether or not you need donor eggs for the procedure, Donor egg IVF can cost more per cycle because it requires multiple doctor visits. The average cost of using donor eggs is $3,925 per egg donation cycle.
Does Insurance Cover IVF?
Many insurance companies do not cover infertility treatment. For example, the Affordable Care Act requires that insurers cover preventive services like mammograms and birth control. But it doesn’t need to cover fertility treatment.
The American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists both say that insurers should cover infertility treatment because it’s medically necessary for women having trouble getting pregnant.
However, in some cases, insurers may cover only part of IVF and other assisted reproduction costs. The reason is that insurers typically consider several factors when deciding whether to cover IVF as medical care. For example:
- How long you’ve been trying to conceive
- What kind of infertility do you have, male or female, and how severe is it
- Whether you’ve attempted less expensive treatments first
How to Save Money on IVF
If you’re trying to conceive and are going through IVF, it’s essential to understand that the cost of treatment can be expensive.
So if you’re wondering how to save money on IVF, there are some things you can do. Here are some tips:
1. Find out if you have any insurance coverage for infertility.
If you have health insurance, check with your provider to see if they cover infertility treatment. Some plans will pay for IVF treatment, but others may not cover it.
So before beginning treatment, check with your provider to know what coverage will be available and how much it will cost.
2. Load up your HSA/FSA to pay for the treatment with pre-tax dollars.
If you have an HSA or FSA at work, you can use pre-tax dollars to pay for fertility treatments.
If using an FSA, ensure that the expenses will be reimbursed before choosing them as a reimbursement option; otherwise, the money will be lost if they’re not reimbursable.
3. Shop around a few clinics to compare prices.
The first step is shopping for the best deals within your state or city. Next, you can contact several clinics and ask them about their IVF packages and prices.
The main thing to look out for is whether or not they offer discounts for uninsured patients or those with low incomes, and some clinics may even offer a sliding scale of discounts based on income levels or insurance coverage.
4. Apply for infertility grants.
If you have trouble finding enough money, several organizations offer grants to help pay for infertility treatments like IVF.
Some organizations provide financial assistance directly through grants, while others require applicants to apply through an organization that provides grants before offering further assistance.
Research which organization works best for you before applying for grant-based financial aid.
5. Label a savings account to keep you focused.
Your goal may be far in the future, but that doesn’t mean it should be forgotten. Instead, please create an account specifically for fertility treatments and label it accordingly.
That way, every time you deposit money into the account, you’ll remember why you’re doing so, and it will be easy for you to make changes if necessary.
6. Cut out spending habits that negatively affect your fertility goals.
To save money on IVF treatments, you must start cutting out spending habits that negatively affect your fertility goals.
If you can cut these expenses, more money will be available to save up for IVF treatments. Here are some common spending habits that can affect your fertility goals:
Smoking has been linked to several health problems, including infertility. Research shows that smoking can cause hormonal changes in women and men alike, which makes it harder for women to get pregnant naturally or through IVF treatments.
7. IVF Guarantee or Refund Programs
If you’re worried about being treated by a clinic that needs to be more reputable, consider a program that offers refunds if your procedure needs to be revised.
Some clinics offer guarantees if they fail to produce results in several cycles. Other programs will refund fees if you’re unsatisfied with the care level or the clinic closes before your treatments are completed.
8. Medical Tourism
Medical tourism may be worth considering if you’re looking for the cheapest IVF. Medical tourism is when people travel abroad for medical care because it is cheaper than in their home country.
For example, many couples choose IVF in Thailand because it is much more affordable than in Europe or North America.
What include in IVF costs
IVF can be expensive, ranging from $12,000 to $17,000 per cycle. The cost of IVF depends on several factors, including:
Ultrasound testing is used to monitor the growth and development of the embryo in the uterus, and it may also be used to confirm no abnormalities in the uterine lining. Some doctors may charge extra for ultrasound examinations.
Medication costs vary depending on the drug and dosage prescribed by your doctor. Commonly prescribed drugs include Lupron, which suppresses ovulation; FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone); HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin), which stimulates ovulation; progesterone, which helps prepare the uterus for pregnancy; and estrogen and progesterone supplements following egg retrieval.
3. Lab tests
Lab tests are done to check your hormone levels before starting treatment. They include blood tests for progesterone, estrogen, FSH (stimulating follicle hormone), LH, and TSH (stimulating thyroid hormone). These tests are necessary to determine your treatment options. These tests range from $500 to $1000, depending on what other tests are ordered.
4. Sperm prep
The cost of sperm preparation varies widely. Some clinics offer that service for free, while others may charge up to $530 per round. That fee can vary depending on how many rounds of sperm preparation are required before fertilization.
5. Egg retrieval
In vitro fertilization can be performed with fresh eggs or frozen eggs. If you opt for fresh eggs, your clinic will likely require you to undergo an egg retrieval procedure before starting your IVF cycle.
The cost of egg retrieval will vary from clinic to clinic, but it typically costs between $600 and $1,500.
6. Embryo culturing
That is the process by which embryos are grown in the laboratory before they are transferred back into the uterus.
The longer embryos are cultured, the higher the chances of success; however, it also increases costs.
7. Embryo transfer
Both fresh and frozen embryos can be transferred during an IVF cycle. However, frozen and thawed embryos require more time to recover before being transferred back into the uterus than fresh embryos.
That can add to your overall expenses and lengthen your overall cycle time.
What are the side effects of IVF?
IVF side effects can include:
1. Mild cramping
You may feel mild cramps or pain during the egg retrieval procedure, and the doctor will numb the area with a local anesthetic before removing your eggs.
You may also experience mild cramping after the egg retrieval if you take medication to stimulate the ovaries to produce multiple eggs.
2. Mild bloating
After egg retrieval, you may experience bloating and swelling in your abdomen, especially if you take hormone medications to help produce multiple eggs.
However, that should disappear within a few days or weeks after your treatment ends.
3. Breast tenderness
Some women experience breast swelling and tenderness during treatment, which usually subsides within a few days after egg retrieval.
That may be due to the increased hormone levels caused by the stimulation medications or ovulation induction drugs in preparation for ovulation.
High doses of estrogen that are given during ovarian hyperstimulation can cause constipation. Your doctor may prescribe laxatives or stool softeners for that condition.
IVF costs vary greatly based on the treatment cycle, infertility stage, and the woman’s age. Considering these three aspects will give you an estimate of the average cost of IVF.
If you find yourself in a situation where IVF may be your only alternative for having a child, it is good to know that there are resources like grants and more to help make it more affordable.