Welcome to Food Freedom and Fertility, this episode we have Dr. Laura von Hagen to discuss using reproductive technologies without shame or guilt. We hope today’s episode can help remove the stigma and shame out of couples want to use reproductive technology as the next step of their journey.
Dr. Laura is a nature path doctor who used IVF to conceive. During this episode you will hear Dr. Laura’s journey and how she and her husband went to get pregnant it just wasn’t possible to use natural conception due to her PCOS. She tried letrozole for 6 rounds with no response. They decided that the next best step for them was to start IVF. Dr. Laure thinks of our IVF treatment as an opportunity to help them grow their family. If you would like to learn more about her journey and learn more about PCOS and pregnancy her book is a wonderful blueprint. It is informative and personal to help you navigate your own personal journey. One important point that Sophia, Caitlin and Dr. Laura want to remind our PCOS listeners is that if you are going off the pill and you don’t see a period coming do not wait a year, and if your doctor won’t help you find a different doctor.
Being a professional in an industry where you are also the patient is difficult and she shares with us how taxing it was to navigate the emotional side of showing up to an IVF clinic as a Naturopathic Doctor. Not only did it take a toll on her relationship and her husband, but hearing from others in her field “have you tried this or that” was emotionally exhausting. Dr. Laura did enlist help and see a counselor and an acupuncturist and she highly recommends it for anyone else dealing with a similar journey. She personally did not attend any groups but does believe they are also extremely helpful.
The journey from letrozole to IVF seems to be the most difficult on this fertility path and Dr. Laura has learned that some patients are fundamentally against it, some feel that their career keeps them so busy that how will they handle all of the doctor appointments that come with IVF treatment. People are also very afraid of the unknown and then the thought that lingers in everyone’s mind… what if this also fails? Women tend to feel the most weight of the failure even though there are both egg and sperm factors that contribute to infertility. Women seem to carry a lot of shame because they feel something is wrong with them.
Caitlin, Sophia and Dr. Laura also how risk factors aren’t always discussed during IVF treatment or they chose to not ask questions about the treatment. It is also true that fertility clinics are very busy and unless you advocate for yourself and ask questions sometime risk factors aren’t necessarily brought up during the appointment. Dr. Laura helps her patients learn about the risk factors and what to expect through the entire process. If you would like to learn more about Dr. Laura please see her bio below. If you are out of her network her bio can also help you find a Naturopathic Doctor by giving a synopsis of how she works with her patients.
Dr. Laura von Hagen, MSc, ND has a strong clinical focus in PCOS, prenatal care, and fertility. As a Naturopathic Doctor, she has a passion for providing excellent, evidence-based integrated care. Dr. von Hagen, ND fundamentally believes in empowering her patients on their fertility journey and helping them achieve their ultimate goal, healthy pregnancy and baby. She shares her own personal IVF journey and expertise in her new book, My PCOS Pregnancy: Your Guide to Getting and Staying Pregnancy with PCOS.
Before becoming an ND, she completed an undergraduate degree in Kinesiology at Queen’s University and a Master’s in Clinical Anatomy at Western University. Outside of the clinic, she loves to spend time outdoors and in her kitchen.