5 Years, 500 Babies: A Milestone For Zita West Assisted Fertility Clinic

This week has been a very special week for everyone at the Zita West clinic.

Because we held a momentous party to mark a very special milestone – 5 years and 500 babies.

Of course, I’ve been working in fertility for over 20 years, but it was 5 years ago that I teamed up with Dr George Nduwke and expanded out from offering just natural fertility and treatments such as acupuncture to the IVF clinic we have today.

Back then, I was referring lots of couples for IVF to other clinics but my vision was for a holistic integrated IVF offer doing things differently and looking outside of the box. Where every single aspect of a couple’s fertility, from lifestyle, mindset and stress was being addressed, and were the entire IVF plan and preparation took place under one roof.

It was here that we pioneered our holistic approach to IVF which brings together complementary therapies such as nutrition, acupuncture, counselling and hypnotherapy.

The philosophy of client care and support at every stage is what all of our staff strive to achieve and is so important to us.

The result is we truly do have a unique holistic approach and as a result, we have some of the highest success rates in the UK.

For all of us at the clinic, the feeling of seeing so many of our couples and babies all together yesterday afternoon was indescribable. Obviously, we know in theory we have created a hundreds of babies, but seeing them all playing together, and seeing those who are now 3, 4 and 5 years old was genuinely moving.

So many couples came up to us and said how our work has changed their lives, and I think we’re all going to be on a high for the rest of the year.

As anyone in business, particularly in the fertility business where you cannot guarantee the success of your work, will tell you, the journey is a rollercoaster, high days and low days. But fundamentally, there is nothing better in this world than making a positive difference, and reaching this milestone has shown us that our work is doing just that.

Here’s to the next 500 babies.

So many couples came up to us and said how our work has changed their lives, and I think we’re all going to be on a high for the rest of the year.

As anyone in business, particularly in the fertility business where you cannot guarantee the success of your work, will tell you, the journey is a rollercoaster, high days and low days.

But fundamentally, there is nothing better in this world than making a positive difference, and reaching this milestone has shown us that our work is doing just that.

Here’s to the next 500 babies!

Come and see me at the Fertility Show in Manchester

The Fertility Show, the UK’s leading event for fertility expertise comes to Manchester on March 25th and 26th. And I’ll be there on the 25th March, giving a talk called ‘How To Get Pregnant’ at 10.30am.

Whether you are just thinking about starting a family or have been trying for a while, The Fertility Show in Manchester is going to be packed full of advice, information and support to help you on your journey. You’ll have access to both seminars and exhibitors to explore all the best options for you and getting your questions answered. The Fertility Show is for everyone from those finding it difficult to conceive to adoption and fostering, from finding out how fertile you are to the alternatives available.

I’ll be talking about holistic approaches to fertility and IVF, all the things you can do right now to increase your chances of conception and how vital it is to prepare for pregnancy BEFORE you start trying to conceive.

Tickets are priced £10 in advance, or £13 on the door.

Get your ticket here: Book tickets 

 

Join us for our free ‘Secrets of Successful IVF’ online event, January 31st at 8pm

If you’re thinking about IVF, or about to embark on IVF, then we’d love to invite you to our first ever online open evening webinar.

Join us online on Tuesday 31st January for an insightful and informative webinar hosted by Zita West called ‘The Secrets of Successful IVF.’ We’ll be talking about the Zita West Clinic’s unique holistic approach to IVF, and how to prepare for IVF to ensure best result, and you can tune in right from the comfort of your home.

At the end of the live event, there will be a Q&A so you can get your questions answered there and then.

Our results speak for themselves. Many of our clients come to us having had failed IVF cycles elsewhere. We are specialists in why IVF fails, and consider the role of the immune system, with Dr Ndukwe being a world leader in the field of reproductive immunology, and many of those clients go on to achieve a pregnancy with us.

During the webinar we will talk you through what you can do to prepare for IVF success on every level, not just the medical level, and how a plan of action covering every aspect of your health and well-being can help to optimise your chances of conception and pregnancy, including:

  • How lifestyle, nutrition and psychological factors can impact on success
  • How to manage your mind-set for IVF success
  • Why IVF fails and what can be done
  • Simple steps you can take to increase your chances of successful IVF

Sign up for the webinar here

12 days of Christmas babies

This year at Zita West clinic we’ve been lucky enough to have supported many couples through their fertility journey and nothing makes us happier to share some of our client’s success stories with you.

Meet our 12 babies of Christmas and hear what their parents have to say about their experience with the Zita West clinic below.

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Eleanor and baby Alyssa

Eleanor and Russ’s IVF journey started in July 2013 but following three unsuccessful frozen cycles with another clinic, Russ and Eleanor chose the Zita West Clinic to continue their treatment.

Eleanor says, ‘We started with the Chicago tests which showed several possible reasons why we might have been unsuccessful on prior occasions, all of which could be overcome using various techniques that the Zita West clinic offer. After two more heartbreaking cycles in 2015, Russ and I decided to have one more go in January 2016.  This time, two of the embryos failed to thaw but a third embryo was successfully defrosted and implanted, the result of which was a very anxious 8 months, supported throughout by the wonderful team at Zita West and the fantastic Fetal Medicine team at the John Radcliffe Hospital.  

Our beautiful daughter Alyssa Louise Hope arrived safely in October 2016. We are so incredibly grateful for the amazing support we received from the Zita West Clinic and we can never thank them enough for the miracles they made happen. We hope our story will provide hope and inspiration for others who are going through their own challenging fertility journeys at this time.’

 

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Esma and twins Emir and Ema

After 7 years, and about the same number of miscarriages, two failed IVFs and two failed IUIs, Bosnia native Esma Kreso-Beslagic and her husband were desperate to conceive. After hearing about a successful Zita West clinic story from a friend in London she contacted Dr. George Ndukwe via Skype.

Esma says, ‘He gave us faith, and at the end of the call he said “give me a year and you will have your baby”. After a short trip to London, we came back to Sarajevo and I convinced my doctor in Sarajevo to agree to follow the protocol of Dr. Ndukwe. In January and after various tests and a two week wait, Beta HCG levels came back in hundreds! HUNDREDS! The pregnancy went extremely well and October 2 2015 just 10 days shy of the year Dr. Ndukwe had asked for, Emir and Ema were born. Our whole family was thrilled!

I can never thank Zita West and Dr. Ndukwe enough, for giving us hope, for their kind words and sympathy, for giving us a family and for giving us our broader Zita West family of miracles.”

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Liz and baby Madison

Liz and Chris have been together since 2008 and have always wanted to have children. At 40, Liz is 7 years older than Chris so when they failed to get pregnant as quickly as they hoped they begun fertility treatment. After two unsuccessful rounds of IVF on the NHS, Liz contacted the Zita West clinic.

Liz says, ‘I’d heard great things about Zita West. Their holistic approach to health and well-being while being focused on the ultimate goal of getting pregnant really appealed to me. After meeting Dr George we knew we wanted to go ahead again, just one last time! We were fortunate enough to be able to afford one round of IVF privately and I did everything to make sure I was ready, however it turns out I have a very overactive immune system and my body was rejecting my embryos. But knowing all this meant we could formulate a plan.  

I’m not going to lie. It was hard work and hard on me – the hormones, injections, diet, transfer process, two week wait and then the pregnancy itself.  My placenta tried to detach at 22 weeks and 31 weeks but, we held on and the result of all that hard work is Madison, our little monkey.  Madison is nearly 14 months old now, walking and causing general havoc but she is our little miracle baby. She’s completed our little family.’

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Sarah and baby Harry

Sarah 35 and Matt 37 met in 2005 and a year later Sarah stopped the contraceptive pill with the idea of if it happens it happens. But it didn’t.

After months of trying, the couple were referred for IVF. Following three difficult and unsuccessful NHS funded rounds Sarah was recommended the Zita West Clinic, who drew up a tailor made treatment plan for Sarah. After another failed round and a miscarriage, Sarah and Matt waited another year before deciding to try again for the sixth time. And this cycle worked.

Sarah says: ‘Harry peck born 27.02.2016 at 04.24 weighing 7lb 5oz. He is so perfect and we love him to bits. We can’t thank the team at the clinic enough for all their hard work, support and kindness. I would recommend the zita west clinic to anyone, and advise to get tested if problems with fertility. I would say if you are to embark on this journey, keep an open mind, try to relax as much as possible, really watch your diet, take vitamins and above all else, stay strong in your relationship and don’t  give up.’

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Tamara and baby Harry

Tamara and her husband started trying for a baby at 37, and after two years without success, went to her GP and was referred for IVF.

After 3 cycles on the NHS, Tamara was told at the end of her third cycle that she had a 1-2% chance of having a baby.

Tamara refused to give up. She says: ‘I was recommended Zita West by my acupuncturist who said they had very good success rates with women over 40 years. My first attempt I got 3 or 4 eggs and did get pregnant but unfortunately I had a miscarriage. But at least I’d fallen pregnant. I knew I wanted to try again and this time I got 9 eggs, I got 2 embryos implanted and that resulted in Harry. He’s so gorgeous and everything I could have ever wished for.’

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Victoria and baby Phoebe  

Victoria and her husband Lee went though an emotional rollercoaster during their 5 rounds of IVF and repeated miscarriage, which caused Victoria to become very low and have to leave her job. The couple found their way to the Zita West clinic after reading an article in a newspaper and met our medical director Dr George Nduwke.

Victoria says: ‘We had four cycles on the NHS, two with fresh embryos and two using frozen embryos. Those resulted in two miscarriages, another miscarriage with twins and one was unsuccessful. It was very emotional. After coming to the Zita West clinic, we underwent reproductive immunology treatment. I fell pregnant with Phoebe on our first cycle, and we still have five frozen embryos. We strongly believe that the NHS should offer RI, we have no doubts it worked for us and could have saved us so much heartache if we’d had it earlier.”

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Francesca and baby Bartholomew

After a significant period of time trying to conceive naturally and two failed rounds of IVF, Francesca and Scott were told it could take multiple rounds of IVF to result in a baby, and began to search for an alternative solution.

Francesca says, ‘It was at this point that a friend told me about the Zita West clinic and gave me a copy of Zita’s Pregnancy companion book – I think I devoured the book in about twenty-four hours!  So, armed with a healthy body and a positive mental attitude we began our round of IVF with the Zita West Clinic. Throughout the process, everyone at the clinic made us feel as if it was a team effort. Small things made all of the difference to us. Everyone knew our names, they knew where we were in our treatment cycle and I didn’t feel as if we were just another couple going through this. We were made to feel valued and important.

On embryo transfer day, Dr. George was very reassuring and the entire experience was totally relaxed. Nine months later, we had a bouncing baby boy. No words will ever be able to convey how grateful we are to George and the Zita West team. They have made our dream come true.’

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Tanja and baby Elkie

It took Tanja nearly for 6 years and the experience of multiple miscarriages to conceive, but she never gave up. In total, she underwent three rounds of IVF, two which ended up in miscarriage, one that didn’t work, one natural pregnancy which also ended in miscarriage before her fourth round of IVF resulted in little Elke.

She recalls: ‘I reached the point where I was just getting stressed about not getting pregnant basically, and also then recovering from every miscarriage. It was just heartbreaking. You start having people telling you all these stories of, “Oh well, these people tried six times and they still got pregnant.” You’d think that’s not very helpful because that’s them and this is me. I started actually thinking about what if it never actually happens?

Each time I fell pregnant I’d lose the baby. I just wanted to find a clinic that did things differently so I came back to Zita West and after 6 difficult years, 3 rounds of IVF 4 pregnancies and 3 miscarriages –  my 4th round of IVF with Zita West clinic resulted in little Elke.’   

Tanya, who had been diagnosed by her GP with unexplained infertility and first underwent IVF on the NHS and at another private clinic says: ‘For my final round, I just wanted a clinic that did something differently. I wanted to try Reproductive Immunology and that made me come  back to the Zita West clinic (where I’d previously had one private round of IVF). I thought ‘I don’t want to do the same thing over again. I want someone to try something different’ – and baby Elke was the result.

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Fleur and baby Estella

Fleur and David’s IVF journey started with the NHS but they found the process slow and were keen to start a family immediately. A friend recommended Zita West clinic and their first round initially seemed to go really well, but didn’t result in pregnant. As part of the process, the couple tried some of the pioneering treatments we offer, including reproductive immunology and genetic screening.

Fleur says, ‘For us genetic screening was perfect because we had twelve embryos and only one of the twelve was viable (that one was Estella). If we hadn’t done the testing we would probably be waited a long time to get pregnant, maybe even years, and who knows if we would have carried on. When things went well, or didn’t go well, everyone at the Zita West clinic was so lovely and professional.’

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Alice and baby Jack

Alice had previously undergone 3 failed IVF cycles prior to coming to the Zita West clinic. In addition, NHS staff had previously said that their chances of success through IVF was barely 15%.

Alice says: ‘My husband and I regard our son as an example of what amazing things science can achieve. I have no doubt that his life was made possible by the cutting edge reproductive immunology based treatments I underwent, plus the holistic medical approach provided by the team at Zita West.

The couple first came to the clinic for nutrition & holistic treatment after their IVF cycle on the NHS in a bid to improve their egg quality.

Alice says: We then had 2 cycles elsewhere and embryo quality massively improved based on Zita West’s support. However, I was still rejecting high quality blastocysts & could not get pregnant.  It was only when we opted to have full immune testing with Zita West on my 4th IVF cycle (1st with Zita) that immune issues were properly treated and 2 top quality blastocysts were transferred, leading to us getting little Jack. Jack is now a healthy and happy 10 month old.

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Hayley and twins Isabella and Samuel

Hayley, 36 and Kujan, 37, had been trying to conceive for over a year, before undergoing fertility tests on the NHS four years ago. Hayley was told that she had high follicle stimulating hormones and therefore they were unlikely to conceive, even with IVF, and they would have to go with donor eggs if they wanted children.

Hayley says, ‘We were devastated to hear we would have to use donor eggs, and decided to go down the alternative route with acupuncture. Our acupuncturist was the person who told us about Zita West.’

‘At the Zita West clinic, Dr George Nduwke didn’t even mention donor eggs. We underwent 3 cycles using our own eggs, the first one was unsuccessful. We then had the natural killer cell test and I opted to have intralipids. In the second cycle we ended up pregnant with twins but at about 20 weeks we found out our babies had twin to twin transfusion syndrome we ended up losing them. It was a terrible time, but we wanted to try again. We started the 3rd try, a few months later, and fell pregnant with twins again. From this came our beautiful babies Isabella and Samuel. We still can’t believe they are ours!’

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Natalia and baby Jasmine

Natalia has had 10 cycles of IVF, at a cost of almost £50k, and Jasmine was her lucky cycle number 10. Natalia needed IVF as a result of a burst ovarian cyst in 2005 that left one fallopian tube blocked, and then an ectopic pregnancy in 2009 resulted in the other being removed.

Natalia says: ‘We’ve funded IVF by remortgaging our house, but we’ve got Jasmine so that is ok! We still can’t believe how lucky we are.’

After 9 failed cycles, Natalia heard about the Zita West clinic via a friend.  Natalia says: ‘I also read about the clinic in a newspaper and their work with immunolipids for natural killer cells. We went ahead with Zita West for our 10th cycle and baby Jasmine was the result.’

‘Jasmine has a little smile that fills her whole face. We can’t imagine life without Jasmine. She completes us. I can’t even put into words how happy and grateful we are. Zita West is our fairy godmother.’

 

If you are looking for a fertility specialist then Zita West and her dedicated and industry leading team are on hand to provide you with the best medical and complementary therapy support available.

 

Victoria’s story: The NHS should offer Reproductive Immunology to women like me

We were so pleased to have Victoria, her husband Lee with their baby Phoebe come back to visit us here at Zita West Clinic.

They sat down to tell us all about their treatment with the Zita West clinic, and also the emotional rollercoaster they’ve been through with 5 rounds of IVF and repeated miscarriage, which caused Victoria to become very low and have to leave her job.

And can we firstly say, just look at little Phoebe’s face when her mum starts crying.

Victoria says: ‘In these three years, we were trying and not successful, so we went to our GPs, spoke to them and they referred us to an NHS specialist for fertility. We went to an NHS local clinic, where we had four cycles, two fresh and two frozen. In that we had two miscarriages and one miscarriage with twins and one was unsuccessful. It was very emotional.’

The couple found their way to the Zita West clinic after reading an article about us in the Daily Mail, and met our medical director Dr George Nduwke.

Victoria fell pregnant with Phoebe on their first cycle with us, and they still have five frozen embryos.

Watch Victoria’s video in full

 

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Consultations are available at our Clinic in London or via Video Conferencing from the comfort of your own home.

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Call us on 0808 196 4060 or email us at clinics@zitawest.com

Long may the discussion on Reproductive Immunology continue

We’d love you to read this article in the Guardian magazine about reproductive immunology, in which our clinic and our medical director Dr George Nduwke feature.

The Guardian reporter, Sophie Hardach, who herself has experienced fertility treatment got the situation spot on when she said:

“After years of infertility and miscarriage, I decided to put my faith into the reproductive immunology field that is either fantastically promising or utterly bogus depending on who you ask.”

Reproductive immunology is one of several pioneering methods we offer here at the Zita West clinic. We pride ourselves on being the clinic that does things differently, and on looking to the future. We believe some of the techniques we use today will become commonplace for fertility treatment in the future.

Yet leading the charge does not come without its controversies. And the Guardian were accurate when they stated:

“A controversial treatment that has divided medical professionals is offering hope to women who have suffered multiple miscarriages.”

Yet their article remains balanced, and shows all sides of a complicated argument as well as the industry turf wars which interest only a few and yet go on inside the medical world.

At the Zita West clinic, our focus is on our clients and our results. Many of the couples we see every day are disillusioned with the treatments they have received with no answers as to why they are miscarrying and having repeated IVF failures.

Of course, not all women have immune issues, and we know that age is still the biggest factor in fertility.

There is a need for more evidence and research, but what we do know for sure is that we sit – every day – with couples who are lost, hopeless, depressed, looking for answers. Patients feel let down by their bodies, nature, the system, the NHS, other clinics and they want to try a new route.

We look to those around the world who are pioneering new developments, and leave no stone unturned in our search for the actual cause of what is wrong.

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That is why our treatment protocols have so much depth, from methods such as reproductive immunology, or our holistic approach which combines acupuncture, counselling, stress management, and nutrition. At the heart of our ethos is our desire to explore all angles and all opportunities so that we can give our clients what they truly want – babies.

And we do a really good job. That’s why our clinic, small and boutique compared to many, has become well known and highly regarded.

Our results are up- there with the very best in the UK, despite the fact that many of our patients should, statistically, due to many previous failed cycles at other clinics, have a below average chance of success.

The late American physician Dr Alan Beer is at the heart of the work surrounding the idea that a woman’s own immune system might be responsible for repeated miscarriages. In layman’s terms, he argued that natural killer cells, or NK cells, which usually destroy cancer cells and viruses, could get out of control and target the pregnancy.

Our medical director Dr George Ndukwe trained under Beer and is one of the pioneers of his methods in the UK.

We’re proud of that fact, and we’re proud of Dr Nduwke’s work, and our success rates, which speak for themselves.

We loved George’s quote in the Guardian, which read:

‘It does not matter what people say. If what you’re doing is working, there are more babies. If it’s not working, there are no babies. There’s no half-baby, no quarter-baby, only a full baby.’

And that’s what so many of the couples we see know only too well to be true.

So with that, thank you to the Guardian for shining their spotlight onto this issue, for writing a report which I highly recommend that you read.

Read now: https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/nov/12/can-mayonnaise-cure-infertility

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