Frequently Asked Questions About Fertility & Appointments | Conceptia | Conceptia



Would you like to find more information about your experience at Conceptia or a certain topic? Check out most asked questions below.

Yes. In order for us to begin helping you in your fertility journey, you first need to be referred by a family physician, specialist or other healthcare professional. You can find more information on referrals on the dedicated page, and we encourage you to contact us should you need any additional information prior to booking your appointment.

We recommend that you check our Expected Costs page in advance.

Yes. At Conceptia, we take pride in providing a welcoming environment that respects human rights, and where lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, two-spirit and queer people, along with their friends, families and allies are supported like any other patients in their fertility journeys.

At Conceptia, our recommendation is to begin treatment before age 44 for IVF, and before age 48 for egg donations.

No. If you have been trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant for at least 12 months, you may want to consider starting your fertility journey and having a first consultation with a fertility specialist, including if you are under the age of 35. We recommend that you visit our When to Seek Help page, and keep in mind that the sooner we are able to diagnose and treat your fertility challenges, the better your chances of conceiving.

Once the referral from your physician is received, we want to book your initial consultation as soon as possible. The waiting period can be affected by multiple factors, including the time of year, availability of our teams (especially if you want to see a specific physician) and whether your assessments and results transferred by your referring doctor are up to date.

Our recommendation is to discuss these issues with your family physician, and get the recommended assessments, as outlined on our referral forms. For us, having access to recent test results during your initial consultation can be very valuable and beneficial.

Yes. Conceptia offers fertility treatments across the Atlantic Provinces, and we are also able to treat out-of-country residents for IVF provided they have a valid Medicare card.

Our teams understand that you may be unable to meet a scheduled appointment due to unforeseen events, and will do their best to accommodate your scheduling changes. We ask that you provide a 48-hour notice if you are unable to meet an appointment. If you miss an appointment without having contacted our office prior, a missed appointment fee of $50 will be charged.

Yes. We ask you however to keep in mind that all our physicians have different practice styles and patient loads, which explains the varying waiting times.

We do not encourage changing your physician during your course of treatment, but it can be considered for appointments, although it could affect your waiting time. For treatments, you may see any one of our doctors, as the results are shared between them, and their presence at Conceptia depends on their call rotation.

Ensuring that your experience at Conceptia is as positive as possible is at the core of what we do. If you have suggestions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us and we will ensure to address them as soon as possible.

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After the tests requested by your physician are submitted and reviewed, our office will send a letter to your referring physician’s office to outline your treatment plan. In general, your physician should expect a follow-up letter within a month of your appointment at Conceptia. If after a month, his office has not received this information, please contact our office.

Hospital semen analyses often do not contain the level of details a test performed at Conceptia directly will provide our physicians. For instance, these results do not always include the evaluation of sperm morphology (indication of abnormalities), or the presence or absence of antibodies (which can prevent the sperm from penetrating the egg and its fertilization). The absence of a forward progressive motility sperm count (sperm type A) is also often important missing data.

Although located inside the Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont University Hospital Centre, Conceptia is a private clinic. Costs cover the medical material used, services such as chart management, laboratory services, employee salaries, as well as the specialist physicians’ fees for medical procedures.

Your cycle day 1 is the first day of your menstrual flow, but it does not necessarily correspond to the day of your heaviest flow. Spotting doesn’t count in determining your cycle day 1.

Girls and boys of ages twelve to twenty-six are within the recommended target group for HPV vaccine. We encourage you to contact your family physician, pediatrician or gynecologist to arrange for the vaccination, which consists of three injections within a 6-month timeframe.

Routine pap screening are recommended every three years once you reach 18, or starting sooner if you are secually active.

It is recommended to begin mammograms at age 50 at the latest, and earlier if you have a family history of breast cancer. In any event, you should perform regular self breast exams and discuss any changes with your physician.

For females with regular menstrual cycles, your most fertile point is between cycle days 10 and 20.

You are most fertile in your late teens and early 20s.

Infertility describes a situation where you have been trying unsuccessfully to conceive for 6 to 12 months, with regular menstrual cycles. If you are over age 35, you should request a consultation with a fertility specialist after 3 to 6 months of unsuccessful attempts.

  • Male factor infertility

  • Ovulation disorders

  • Tubal factor

  • Endometriosis

  • Uterine factor

  • Age

  • Unexplained infertility

Visit our When To Seek Help section for more information.

It is recommended to take folic acid when attempting to get pregnant. This can be done either in a regular multiple vitamin or as a specific supplement, at a minimum daily dose of 0.4mg to 1mg.

Conceptia will ensure to continue providing you with the optimal care for your situation, and will transition your fertility journey to another clinic physician.

On average, there are less than four months between the diagnosis of infertility and the beginning of an IVF cycle. This time frame can however be affected by factors including patient volumes or scheduled lab closures.

Some health plans can cover fertility medications. We encourage you to check our Expected Costs page and submit your Drug Identification Number (DIN) to your insurance.

A number of lifestyle and environmental factors can impact both your fertility and chances at successful pregnancy. We encourage both males and females to stop smoking, follow a healthy diet and exercise to maintain a healthy weight, and reduce their stress, intake of stimulants including caffeine, and abstain from the use of alcohol and recreational drugs. You can find more information on our Fertility Wellness page.

Yes. There are no conclusive studies to help us understand how herbal supplements can influence the outcome of the infertility treatments that you follow. We therefore recommend stopping all herbal supplements. Vitamin intake can be continued, and it is recommended to take a folic acid supplement if you are attempting to become pregnant.

It is advised to refrain from strenuous physician activity during your treatment. However, regular, moderate exercise is generally beneficial to your health and can help you reduce stress.

Your physician may recommend not having sex or using condoms if the results of ongoing tests can be affected. During IVF treatment, intercourse can sometimes be uncomfortable due to the enlargement of the ovaries. If you are pregnant, you may resume sexual activites, unless it is causing cramping or spotting.

There is no evidence of significant differences in pregnancy loss rates between those resulting from IVF or natural conception. This rate however increases significantly as maternal age progresses.

Ovaries become enlarged as they are stimulated through the IVF process, and there may be bloating of the abdomen or pelvic area. Rarely, patients can also experience headaches, nausea or minor mood changes.

In those cases, your Conceptia team will arrange for a return appointment with your physician, which will be the opportunity to review your cycles, and discuss changes or other options.

Yes, but new embryo freezing techniques are making pregnancy rates for those transfers almost equal as that of fresh embryo transfers.

You will be able to empty your bladder and leave the clinic within a few minutes following your embryo transfer. You should rest for the following 24 hours and limit strenuous activity, and are recommended to maintain light activity for the first week, but do not need strict bed rest.

About 20% of IVF cycles result in multiple pregnancies. For females under age 37, a single-embryo transfer is recommended, while up to 3 embryos can be transferred for older patients. This is to limit the risk of multiple pregnancy.

Patients can experience occasional cramping, but it is generally a non-painful procedure.

Yes. Donors have to undergo rigorous screening and donor sperm must follow criteria set by Health Canada.

Conceptia, as well as the Canadian fertility and Andrology Society, think that the elective single embryo transfer (eSET) must be seriously taken into consideration by all person/couples who proceed to an IVF treatment, and particularly those that are more at risk of complications, such as with fertility health history of:

  • Uterine malformation

  • Previous premature birth

  • Incompetent cervix

It is recommended to avoid using tampons and menstrual cups during treatment to decrease the risk of infection and ensure the ability to visualize and assess bleeding.

It is quite common and should not worry you, but it is essential to stay on your birth control pill in order to best prepare your ovaries for your treatment.

Caffeine intake should be decreased during treatment, but decaffeinated herbal teas do not pose any issues.

It is safe to continue working during an IVF treatment, provided you avoid heavy lifting and strenuous activities. You should note that you will need to take off work during the day of egg retrieval, and that your Conceptia team may advise you to take a medical leave if your situation so requires.

For the initial 3 weeks of your treatment cycle, you will need to be seen regularly and should remain available. This includes your screening ultrasound imagery, and blood work at the beginning of your cycle. After your first week of medication stimulation, repeat ultrasounds and blood work will need to be performed, and then every couple of days until the confirmation of your egg retrieval and embryo transfer dates.

We encourage you to take the flu shot, which is safe for pregnancy. If you need to get immunized against rubella and varicella, there will be a 4-6 weeks waiting period before attempting pregnancy.

Conceptia follows the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (SOGC)'s statement on COVID-19 vaccination in pregnancy:

  • COVID-19 vaccination is recommended during pregnancy in any trimester

  • All available COVID-19 vaccines approved in Canada can be used during pregnancy, but the SOGC recommends following provincial and territorial guidelines on the type of vaccine to prioritize for pregnant and breastfeeding individuals.

Read the SOGC’s full statement here

Females and males attempting pregnancy are recommended not to increase their core body temperature for prolonged periods of time.



Infertility is defined as the inability to achieve pregnancy after 12 months or more of unprotected sexual intercourse.

Incidence of Infertility

15% to 20% of all couples of ideal age to conceive will experience difficulty achieving a pregnancy. In Canada, 1 in 6 couples are affected by infertility.

Glossary of Abbreviations

ART: Assisted Reproductive Technologies

Assisted reproductive technology refers to all treatments that involve handling eggs or embryos outside the body and in a specialized lab.

AHT: Assisted Human Reproduction

Activities used to aid human reproduction. Examples of AHR include taking prescription fertility drugs, in vitro fertilization, and donor insemination.

CRYO: Cryopreservation/Freezing Process

Cryopreservation is the process of freezing biological material at extreme temperatures; most common -196 °C/-321 °F in liquid nitrogen (N2). At these low temperatures, all biological activity stops, including the biochemical reactions that lead to cell death and DNA degradation. This preservation method in theory makes it possible to store living cells as well as other biological material unchanged for centuries.

D&C: Dilatation and Curettage

A procedure to remove tissue from inside your uterus. Doctors perform dilation and curettage to diagnose and treat certain uterine conditions or to clear the uterine lining.

DSA: Detailed Sperm Analysis

Semen analysis, also known as a sperm count test, analyzes the health and viability of a man’s sperm. Semen is the fluid containing sperm (plus other sugar and protein substances) that’s released during male ejaculation. A semen analysis measures three major factors of sperm health:

  • the number of sperm

  • the shape of the sperm

  • the movement of the sperm, also known as “sperm motility”


A human organism during the first 8 weeks (56 days) of its development after fertilization or creation, not including any interruptions such as cryopreservation, and includes (for purpose of the Assisted Human Reproduction Act) any cell derived from such an organism that is used for the purpose of creating a human being.

FET/FBT: Frozen Embryo or Blastocyst Transfer

A frozen embryo transfer (FET) is a cycle in which the frozen embryos from a previous fresh IVF or donor egg cycle are thawed and then transferred back into the woman's uterus.

We use the term FBT when the embryo is cryopreserved in the blastocyst stage.

FSH: Follicle Stimulating Hormone

Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) is a gonadotropin, a glycoprotein polypeptide hormone. FSH is synthesized and secreted by the gonadotropic cells of the anterior pituitary gland, and regulates the development, growth, pubertal maturation, and reproductive processes of the body.

HSG: Hysterosalpingography

Hysterosalpingography (HSG) is a radiologic procedure to investigate the shape of the uterine cavity and the shape and patency of the fallopian tubes. It entails the injection of a radio-opaque material into the cervical canal and usually fluoroscopy with image intensification.

ICSI: Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection

An IVF treatment that involves injecting a single sperm into an egg with a microscopic needle. This treatment is used, for example, when the male partner has few and/or poor quality sperm.

IVF: In Vitro Fertilization

An assisted human reproduction technique in which fertilization happens outside a woman's body. IVF is a process where a woman's oocytes are exposed directly to sperm in a laboratory dish so that the sperm are more likely to be able to fertilize the oocytes.

IUI: Intrauterine Insemination

Procedure in which sperm are injected directly into a woman's uterus through the vagina.

AH: Assisted Hatching

Laser-assisted hatching is a process whereby a low energy laser beam is used to thin a part of the Zona Pellucida (the outermost membrane that surrounds an embryo). The purpose of assisted hatching is to allow the embryo to hatch more easily from its “shell.” Hatching must occur in all pregnancies, whether naturally occurring or as a result of in-vitro fertilization to enable embryos to implant in the lining of the uterus.

LH: Luteinizing Hormone

Luteinizing hormone is a hormone produced by gonadotropic cells in the anterior pituitary gland. In females, an acute rise of LH triggers ovulation and development of the corpus luteum.


An immature egg cell, found in the ovaries. An ovum is a mature oocyte, and is usually released during a woman's monthly ovulation cycle. Although the oocyte and the ovum are at different stages of development, the two terms are often used in place of one another.

Fertility Clinic | Monday - Friday: 7:30am - 4:00pm

Nursing Team | Monday - Friday: 7:30am - 3:30pm

Weekends & Holidays: Prescheduled appointments only

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Inclusion of all gender and sexually diverse people is an important value of Conceptia. We are continuously striving to create an environment of compassionate belonging where all of the 2SLGBTQ2SIA+ community are supported, valued, and respected.

Conceptia is situated within the traditional unceded territory of the Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) and Mi’kmaq Peoples. This territory is covered by the “Treaties of Peace and Friendship” which Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) and Mi’kmaq Peoples first signed with the British Crown in 1725.

We are a proud partner in The Fertility Partners network, Canada’s largest coast-to-coast network of fertility practices. Together, we collaborate on growing access to care, research, and innovation to advance the reproductive medicine field, and delivering leading patient outcomes.