Next month’s Fertility Forum promises to be an informative event for anyone who wants to know more about their fertility, tests and treatment options. The wide range of speakers will be covering topics across the board to ensure there is something for everyone whether you are just starting to think about your future fertility or have already had treatment. The full list of topics and speakers is now finalised:
Fertility specialist Raj Mathur will look at what can affect your chances of conceiving naturally, when and how to seek advice and will run through the tests you should have.
Miscarriage expert Professor Lesley Regan will cover the causes of miscarriage and why do some women experience recurrent miscarriage. She will discuss investigations and what can be done to help.
Fertility specialist Ertan Saridogan will give the low down on endometriosis and how it can affect fertility. He will cover all the options for treatment and how to choose between them.
Leading male fertility specialist Professor Allan Pacey will explain male fertility and how sperm are made. He will talk about what affects the number and quality of sperm that a man make and the tests that are used to diagnose male fertility problems, as well as the solutions that can be offered.
Director of the Donor Conception Network Nina Barnsley will explain what you need to think about when considering donor treatment, how to decide whether it’s right for you and will discuss openness around donor treatment.
Chair of the Association of Clinical Embryologists Jason Kasraie will look at the latest new techniques and technologies in the fertility world and consider evidence is as to whether they work and discuss the factors that influence the chances of successful treatment.
Fertility counsellor and Chair of the British Infertility Counselling Association Angela Pericleous-Smith will discuss the pressures on yourself, your relationships and your friendships. She will explore coping strategies and explain how to manage anxieties.
Fertility specialist Ephia Yasmin will be explaining all you need to need to know about egg freezing including the chances of success, as well as looking forward to future developments in egg freezing.
Women’s Voices Lead at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists Kate Brian explores why people chose to go overseas and looks at the risks and benefits. She will give some tips to consider when you are making a decision.
The HFEA’s Jo Triggs will explain what to look for when choosing a clinic, what statistics can and can’t tell you and will explore the other factors you should take into account.
Fertility Fest founder Jessica Hepburn will chair a session with Gateway Women’s Jody Day, authors Lesley Pyne and Yvonne John and the Dovecot’s Kelly Da Silva who have all helped to change the way we think about living without children. They will discuss how to find peace and happiness after unsuccessful treatment, and will talk about the societal attitudes to childlessness that need changing.
Professor Adam Balen is a leading specialist in PCOS and will discuss the causes of this common cause of fertility problems. He will discuss how PCOS should be investigated and treated and will also look at ways that you can help yourself.
If you want to know more about IVF, fertility specialist Jane Stewart will explain what assisted conception is and why it doesn’t always work. She will talk about the limitations of IVF and why it may not always be the right treatment.
One of the UK’s leading embryologists, Rachel Cutting will explain how embryos develop from fertilisation to blastocyst. She will look at how embryos are graded and selected, and will explore how time-lapse can help. She will also talk about embryo freezing.
Men often get overlooked when it comes to fertility support. Richard Clothier has been a leading voice for men’s experiences of fertility problems. He will focus on men and fertility, and the importance of talking as well as exploring tips for mitigating the grief.
Is your lifestyle having an impact on your fertility? Grace Dugdale is a reproductive biologist and nutrition scientist and will give evidence-based information about health, diet and lifestyle in relation to male and female fertility. She will talk about what can impact your fertility, and about preparing your body for pregnancy.
IVF treatment is usually more like a marathon than a sprint. Emotional and financial resilience are crucial to continuing the journey, and there can be pressure to pay for additional tests, drugs or interventions which may not increase the chances of success. Fertility specialist Professor Yacoub Khalaf will discuss what’s worth paying for and what isn’t.
Are you eligible for NHS funded fertility treatment? There are guidelines from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) on who should qualify, but these are often ignored. Sarah Norcross from Fertility Fairness and Aileen Feeney from Fertility Network UK will explain the current funding situation and what you should be entitled to.
Psychology Professor Jacky Boivin explains stress, and what evidence there is about the impact it may have on fertility. She will also discuss strategies for coping with stress.
What is ovarian reserve testing and what does it mean? Fertility specialist Melanie Davies will look at ovarian testing and what it can and can’t tell you. She will explain the realities of having fertility treatment when you are older and what this means for the chances of success.
One of the UK’s leading fertility lawyers, Natalie Gamble,will discuss the legal situation regarding parenthood for sperm and egg donation. She will explain surrogacy law and practice, recent developments and law reform.
You can choose which of these amazing sessions to attend – tickets for the day are now available at £25 which covers the costs of putting on the day. You can find out more and book your tickets here – https://bit.ly/FertilityForum
Did you know that the Fertility Show will be in Manchester next month? The event which has taken place at London’s Olympia for many years is spreading its wings and will be held at Manchester’s Central Convention Complex in Windmill St on March 25 and 26.
Tickets are now on sale here so do come along if you are nearby – I will be there too speaking about how to choose a fertility clinic and will be on the Fertility Network UK stand so come and say hello!
It’s next weekend and if you haven’t booked your tickets yet, there is still time. It’s true that the Fertility Show can feel a bit like some kind of Ideal Home Exhibition for fertility problems, but it’s well worth visiting for the amazing seminar programme alone where you can catch many of the country’s leading experts and benefit from their wisdom and advice.
Talks on Saturday include:
How To Get Pregnant (and to have the best possible pregnancy) with Zita West
Innovations in embryo selection. Do they really make a difference? with Rachel Cutting MBE, Chair 2010-2014 of the Association of Clinical Embryologists and Principal Embryologist at Jessop Fertility in Sheffield
Stress and its impact on fertility with Jacky Boivin, Professor of Health Psychology at Cardiff University and Lead Researcher at Cardiff Fertility Studies
Surrogacy in the UK with Sarah Templeman, Nurse Manager at Herts & Essex Fertility Centre and Helen Prosser from Brilliant Beginnings
Natural Cycle and Mild IVF – fertility treatment without the drugs? with Professor Geeta Nargund, Medical Director of CREATE Fertility
The Basics. What you need to know to get pregnant and how to prepare for pregnancy with George Christopoulos, Subspecialty Registrar in Reproductive Medicine and Surgery at IVF Hammersmith
Next Generation IVF? with Professor Simon Fishel, CEO of CARE Fertility
Dealing with recurrent miscarriage with Dr Vidya Seshadri, Consultant Gynaecologist & Specialist in Reproductive Medicine at The Centre for Reproductive & Genetic Health
Reduced ovarian reserve: Is anyone too difficult to treat? with Sam Abdalla, Director of the Lister Fertility Clinic
Factors to consider when choosing a fertility clinic with me! (Kate Brian, journalist, broadcaster, author of bestselling The Complete Guide to IVF, mother of two IVF children, Lead of Women’s Voices at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists and London Representative for Infertility Network UK)
Going abroad for treatment? Question time featuring 2 overseas clinics with Dr Bruce Shapiro of The Fertility Center of Las Vegas and Dr Natalia Szlarb from IVF Spain.
Counselling through infertility with Tracey Sainsbury, member of the British Infertility Counselling Association.
Boost fertility and prevent recurrent miscarriage with nutrition with Dr Marilyn Glenville
Immunology – potentially hazardous treatment or your best chance of success? with Mr Mohammed Mahmoud, Consultant in Reproductive Medicine of The Newlife Fertility Clinic and Siobhan Quenby, Professor of Obstetrics and Director of the Biomedical Research Unit in Reproductive Health at the University of Warwick.
Improving the odds of IVF working for you with Yacoub Khalaf, Consultant Gynaecologist and Medical Director of the Assisted Conception Unit at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS
Coping Strategies with Wendy Martin, specialist fertility counsellor with Bristol Centre for Reproductive Medicine NHS
Testing your fertility and the value of your ovarian reserve with James Nicopoullos, Consultant Gynaecologist at the Lister Fertility Clinic.
Freeing your mind to improve fertility with Russell Davis, Cognitive Hypnotherapist.
Dealing with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) with Adam Balen, Professor of Reproductive Medicine and Surgery at Leeds NHS Centre for Reproductive Medicine and Chairman of the British Fertility Society.
Issues for families created with donors with DC Network founding member Olivia Montuschi.
What men need to know about their fertility – testing it, boosting it, treating it with Allan Pacey, Professor of Andrology at the University of Sheffield and former Chairman of the British Fertility Society.
Complementary Therapies – can they boost your fertility? with Dr Gillian Lockwood, Medical Director of Midland Fertility Services and ethics spokesperson for the British Fertility Society, Andrew Loosely who practices herbal medicine and Barbara Scott, chair of the Association of Reproductive Reflexologists.
Fertility treatment for older women with Tarek El-Toukhy, Consultant in Reproductive Medicine and Surgery at Guy’s and St. Thomas’ Hospital.
How to keep costs down – do you really need those add-ons? with Dr, John Parsons, part of the team that established the first IVF pregnancy to deliver at the Hammersmith hospital.
Sperm and egg donors from the UK with Laura Witjens, egg donor and former CEO of the National Gamete Donation Trust, and Venessa Smith, Donor Services Co-ordinator from the London Women’s Clinic.
Can acupuncture improve fertility? with Michael Dooley, Medical Director of Poundbury Fertility and Emma Cannon, acupuncturist.
The arguments for travelling to the USA vs Portugal vs Norway with Dr Angeline Beltsos of Vios Fertility Institute, Dr Vladimiro of Ferticentro and Dr Jon Hausken from Norwegian Klinikk Hausken.
Steps to choosing the right adoption agency with First4Adoption’s Gemma Gordon-Johnson.
Travelling to the USA for egg donor treatment – the patient’s perspective and the clinic that treated them with Sarah Esdaile and her partner who had treatment in the USA and Dr Michael Levy, Director of the Donor egg programme at Shady Grove Clinic.
A patient’s experience of the fertility rollercoaster and what to expect with Jessica Hepburn, trustee at Infertility Network UK and author of The Pursuit of Motherhood.
Why should I give it another go? with Tim Child, Associate Professor and Subspecialist in Reproductive Medicine, University of Oxford and Honorary Consultant Gynaecologist, John Radcliffe Hospital.
Planning Treatment abroad? The arguments for travelling to Greece vs Spain vs Russia with Dr. Dimitrios Dovas of The NewLife IVF Centre in Greece, Dr Ramon Aurell, IVF Unit Medical Director of Hospital Quirón Barcelona and Dr Yulia Gurtovaya, a consultant at West Middlesex University Hospital who speaks on behalf of Russian IVF clinic CRM MAMA.
Single women and lesbian couples – options for conceiving with Dr Raúl Olivares, Medical Director of Barcelona IVF.
An overview of the common causes of infertility and the main approaches to treatment with Kamal Ojha, Medical Director of Concept Fertility and Honorary Senior Lecturer at St George’s Hospital.
Fertility treatment for older women with Dimitrios Nikolaou, Consultant Gynaecologist, lead clinician at Chelsea and Westminster NHS Hospital’s Assisted Conception Unit and Medical Director of Fertility for Life.
Options for adoption with Jan Fishwick, CEO of PACT
Unknown donor vs known donor vs co-parenting with fertility lawyer Natalie Gamble and Erika Tranfield of Pride Angel.
What to think about before going abroad for treatment with Ben Saer, who with his wife Becky had successful fertility treatment in the Czech Republic, Dimitris Kavakas of Embryolab based in Thessaloniki and Dr Carlos Doscouto of Spanish IVF clinic Women’s Health Dexeus.
Dealing with and treating, endometriosis with Haitham Hamoda, Consultant Gynaecologist in reproductive medicine and surgery at King’s College Hospital.
Top Ten ways to cope with infertility with Anya Sizer, rregional organiser at Fertility Network UK.
Surrogacy arrangements with Helen Prosser from non-profit UK surrogacy agency Brilliant Beginnings and Natalie Gamble, campaigner and founder of leading fertility law firm Natalie Gamble Associates.
Single woman in your 30s or 40s? Thinking about having a baby on your own? with Caroline Spencer, trustee for the Donor Conception Network.
New technologies in IVF with Lucy Richardson, Senior Embryologist at the UK’s Herts & Essex Fertility Centre and Dr Elizabeth Barbieri from US-based Oregon Reproductive Medicine.
Getting your head around treatments, clinics and statistics with Juliet Tizzard, Director of Strategy and Corporate Affairs at the HFEA
.Men Matter Too with fertility Counsellor Anthony Ryb.
Fertility treatment on the NHS? with Anil Gudi and Amit Shah, Consultant Gynaecologists who run the NHS fertility service at the Homerton Fertility Centre in East London.
Nutrition to help with PCOS, endometriosis and fibroids with Dr Marilyn Glenville.
How to deal with the diagnosis of unexplained infertility with Dr Jane Stewart, Consultant in Reproductive Medicine at the Newcastle Fertility Centre.
How to keep costs down – do you really need those add-ons? with Yacoub Khalaf, Medical Director of the Assisted Conception Unit at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS.
Overseas egg donors. Who are they and how are they chosen? with Dr Israel Ortega of IVI Madrid in Spain and Nancy Block of Fertility Source Companies in the US explain.
As you can see, there is something here for everyone and having access to so many experts under one roof presents a unique opportunity to learn more about fertility and the treatments which may help. You can buy tickets from the website www.fertilityshow.co.uk
Nature or nurture? It’s one of those eternal questions – but one which has particular importance to anyone considering donor conception. The idea of passing on our genetic heritage is part of our expectations when it comes to parenthood, and finding out that you will only be able to get pregnant if you use donor eggs or sperm involves thinking again about some of those preconceptions. But should it? Are genes really as important as we imagine?
I went to an event last week organised by Progress Educational Trust titled Do Genes Matter? There were presentations from leading fertility lawyer Natalie Gamble, from Pride Angel’s Erika Tranfield and Professor Carol Smart, a sociologist from Manchester University who has studied donor families. For me, some of the most thought-provoking ideas came from the geneticist on the panel, Professor Anneke Lucassen, who explained just how little of who we are comes from our genes. She showed that contrary to our beliefs, the variation in our genetic make-up is miniscule and that most of what we are is down to our environment rather than our genetic heritage – so choosing an Oxbridge-educated donor won’t impact on your child’s intelligence, but the environment in which he or she grows up will do.
Could it be that the way we think about genes is actually more folk culture than scientific reality? Are we all far too worried about the importance of genetic heritage when in fact it is largely irrelevant? What do you think? Do genes matter?