Single IVF Maybe Less Expensive Than Multiple IUIs Followed by IVF
A study confirms what Drs. Hummel and Kettel have known for many years.
In cases of unexplained infertility, going through IVF alone is a more cost-effective fertility treatment option and more likely to result in a pregnancy than going through IVF after multiple unsuccessful IUI cycles. Researchers at the Institute of Public Health in Cambridge, Great Britain examined the outcome of fertility treatment of 100 couples and determined the cost-effectiveness of IUI versus IVF via a mathematical model. Since fertility treatment is part of the public health plan in the UK, it is in the country’s special interest to save the taxpayers’ money. Even though one single cycle of IUI is less expensive than IVF, the couple has a much lower chance of getting pregnant with the first attempt. On the other hand, IVF together withICSI has a much greater success rate on the very first try.
Undergoing many attempts of IUI make it more expensive for couples, especially if the couple ends up undergoing an IVF cycle at the end anyway. “This fact is not always understandable to couples with a diagnosis of unexplained fertility”, comments Dr. Hummel. He adds: “It is gratifying that a study finally showed that we can save couples expenses by going through IVF right away.” The estimated cost savings calculated in the study wasn’t small – the amount of money that could have been saved by the 100 cases in the study would have paid for 54 additional couples’ IVF treatment.