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International Q&A 

Do I have to undergo IVF for gender selection if I don’t have fertility issues?

Yes, the IVF process is necessary to stimulate the growth of multiple eggs and to perform gender selection once the eggs and sperm have been combined in the laboratory.

Am I able to start the preliminary testing whilst breastfeeding? Does it have any impact on results? 

Yes, you can start the preliminary testing while breastfeeding.  Results are not impacted.   One should wean by the start of the IVF treatment.  

What is the reason for the preliminary tests?

The initial tests allow Dr. Kolb to analyze the following: overall fertility health, uterus lining and thickness, egg reserve and menstrual cycle.


What are the preliminary tests?

For women, the preliminary blood tests and ultrasounds are:

  • Ovarian Reserve

  • Anti-Mullarian Hormone (AMH)

  • Antral Follicle Count (AFC)

  • Estradiol (E2)

  • Uterine Evaluation

  • Sonohystoerogram

Men receive a semen analysis and infectious disease screening.


For how long are the preliminary tests valid?

Twelve months.


How long does the entire process take from preliminary testing to a possible pregnancy?

The entire process can be completed in two months; however, three to six months are recommended.


How long is the consultation with Dr. Kolb?

The consultation typically takes between 20 to 30 minutes via Skype or telephone.

Does removing a cell from the embryo to test PGS impact the quality of the embryo?

The PGS biopsy does not adversely affect the embryo.

Can you recommend accommodation options?

Yes, we are able to recommend accommodations for all budgets either close to the clinic or in Orange County near Disneyland.


How much time do I need to spend in California?

If you start your cycle in Australia, then you will need to spend 21 days in California. You also have the option of undertaking your entire cycle in California, which will then take about 20 days.

Does my partner need to be in LA for the full 13 days or at all (for international IP's)?

There are a couple of options for this:

  1. Partners can travel to LA a day prior to the scheduled egg retrieval and leave once the sperm sample has been collected for fertilization (3-4 day stay).

  2. Partners can have their sperm frozen at a local (where they live) clinic and have it couriered over to Dr. Kolb's clinic (at own expense).  

Please note:  HRC's policy requires a support person over the age of 21 to be available for the egg retrieval and embryo transfer procedures.  We have networked with a reputable local Pasadena company who are able to provide a reliable support person over the age of 21 for a small fee of approximately $30 USD per hour (minimum of 2 hours) paid directly through the 3rd party company.

As an international patient do I need to purchase the IVF medication in my country of origin (e.g. Australia, Europe, etc.) before I start my cycle?  

This entirely depends on where you live. Dr. Kolb will provide you with a list of IVF medication that in most cases can be purchased in your country of origin (please compare price) and in most cases will be less expensive than purchasing in the USA depending on currency exchange rates for your country of origin. 

How do I time my period in line with the start of my IVF cycle if I am an international parent and traveling overseas to see Dr. Kolb?

Depending on distance, most international intended parents will be given a tentative timeline of what your IVF cycle will look like and working towards an agreed targeted date to start your IVF cycle.  Dr. Kolb will put you on a short course of birth control pills (minimum of 12 days) that will usually start on approximately the 2nd or 3rd day of your period prior to your travel month. This allows Dr. Kolb to manipulate the timing and once you stop the pill a bleed will occur 2-3 days after just in time to start your IVF cycle.

Who gives the injections?

The injections will be need to be administered by either the intended parent or a partner. You will also receive demonstration material from Dr. Kolb’s team. And your personal nurse can guide you through the process.

What are Dr. Kolb’s first-cycle success rates?

Dr. Kolb’s success rates are in the top percentages in the US. He will be able to offer an individual success rate based on the intended parent’s age and other variables.

What is the average number of eggs retrieved?

This varies depending on individual variables and can be addressed by Dr. Kolb during your consultation.

Am I obligated to continue after the free consultation with Dr. Kolb?

There is no obligation to proceed. But after preliminary testing is complete, Dr. Kolb’s team will assume the intended parent is ready to move forward.

Is full payment required up front or is there a payment plan?

Intended parents can pay in full or may opt for a payment plan with monthly installments due prior to travel and medical procedures. A finance consultation will be scheduled to discuss this option.

What if I decide not to proceed after paying in full or starting a payment plan?

The amount paid would be refunded minus a 3% fee.

Is there an age limit for IVF and gender selection?

There is no age limit; however, the success rate for IVF diminishes for women starting at age 35 and decreases substantially after 40 due to the decline in ovarian reserve and egg quality. Preliminary testing helps determine this for each individual.

Does Dr. Kolb perform genetic screening along with gender selection?

Yes, Dr. Kolb tests for all 24 chromosomes along with tests for single-gene diseases such as cystic fibrosis. Only healthy, quality-grade embryos will be transferred.

What are the possible scenarios prior to embryo transfer?

There are three possible scenarios starting with the most common: a) one or more quality embryos of the desired gender necessary to proceed with the embryo transfer, b) one or more quality embryos not of the desired gender, in which case Dr. Kolb would discuss the possible options, c) no quality embryos, and again, Dr. Kolb would discuss the possible options moving forward.

Is it possible to store frozen embryos at the HRC clinic in Pasadena?

Yes, the cost for one year of frozen embryo storage is $750 USD payable up front; however, it will be refunded if not required.


What if a pregnancy is not achieved following the embryo transfer?

Intended parents can embark on a second embryo transfer using any frozen embryos stored at HRC in Pasadena. This would involve a five to six day stay in California and would not require the participation of a male partner.

Can you recommend accommodation options?

Yes, we are able to recommend accommodations for all budgets either close to the clinic or in Orange County near Disneyland. 


How long after I give birth am I able to start the IVF process and gender selection?

It is recommended to wait four to six months.

If I am breastfeeding, do I need to stop prior to the IVF process?

Yes, it is best to have completely stopped breast feeding at least three months prior to IVF.

When do I start birth control pills?

Your personal nurse will let you know in your medication chart and/or cycle plan.

Is it a problem if I don’t have regular periods?

This is not a concern as the preliminary testing will inform Dr. Kolb of where you are in your menstrual cycle.

Do I have to have a certain number of children before I am eligible for gender selection in the US?

No, gender selection is legal in the US and there are no eligibility requirements.

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