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No AccessUrology PracticeBusiness of Urology1 Jul 2016

Out-of-Pocket Costs for Men Undergoing Infertility Care and Associated Financial Strain

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    Introduction:

    We determined the out-of-pocket expenses, measures taken to finance these expenses and associated financial strain for men seeking fertility care.

    Methods:

    In this retrospective cohort the patients completed questionnaires recording the total amount of money spent on infertility care and on what aspect of care the money was spent. Participants also recorded measures taken to finance these costs, the amount of financial strain experienced, and how this strain impacted decisions to seek and continue care. Multivariable logistic regression was performed to assess the relationships of fertility characteristics to financial costs and financial strain.

    Results:

    A total of 111 participants completed the full survey. During the course of care 16% of patients spent more than $50,000 dollars. 16% spent between $30,000 and $49,999, 32% spent between $15,000 and $29,999, and 37% spent less than $15,000. Procedures comprised the largest component of costs. Of the subjects 47% reported financial strain. On multivariate analysis patients who used savings and went into debt were significantly more likely to experience financial strain (p = 0.03 and <0.001, respectively).

    Conclusions:

    This study elucidates the previously uncharacterized economic hardships of male infertility care. Overall 64% of men who pursued fertility treatment had out-of-pocket expenses exceeding $15,000 dollars. Almost half reported financial strain and limitation of treatment options due to these expenses. These data give men and their partners a realistic expectation of the cost of pursuing fertility treatment, the extreme measures that many patients take to finance care and the financial strain associated with such options.

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