Preparing for Nurse IVF Class

Nurse IVF Class

Video transcript with Dr. Bowling and Courtney

Dr. Meaghan Bowling:
Hi guys. I’m Dr. Bowling and this is Courtney, our nurse IVF (in vitro fertilization) coordinator. And today we are going to talk about the Nurse IVF Class. One thing we think is really important is that when you schedule your IVF class, you are ready to go. It’s not out of the ordinary that patients have questions. If this is the case, it’s really a great idea to schedule an appointment with your doctor to clear up any grey areas where we don’t have a clear-cut plan, and schedule an appointment with your doctor just to clear everything up before you schedule your nurse class.

The Nurse IVF Class is really just getting down to the nitty gritty, getting dates set, getting medicines ordered, and helping you understand the calendar of your treatment plan. So we want to know that we have all of our questions answered before we come to that appointment.

Here’s another great question we get asked. So say, I’m an IVF patient, I know I want to do IVF, but I’m not ready to start for a couple of months. Say, it’s the summer, I’ve got plans, I don’t want to do this until September. Should I go ahead and just make my class now so that I can get dates set? The answer is No. We actually want you to wait until you are right about to start your treatment cycle. So if you wanted to start treatment in September, you would want to schedule your class for late August or early September.

Birth control pills

So here are the next steps for IVF. First we are going to call in birth control pills for you, and we want you to start those on cycle day 2 of the period that you plan to move forward with IVF. So you start those birth control pills on cycle day 2, you have to be on those in order to schedule your class.

Now, you can know when your period is going to start and schedule the class in advance, but all that matters is that the class falls after the start of your birth control pills. You can schedule it ahead of time, but just know you’ve got to be on birth control pills by the time your class is happening.

Now you’re going to stay on these birth controls pills until you find out at your class when the last birth control pill will be. It’s usually give or take about a week after the class, but you just stay on them until your class.

IVF lab work

The other thing you need to have done by the time your class happens are what we call the IVF labs. This is easy. This is not a big deal, but what you have to do is go to Labcorp – both you and your partner if you’re doing this with your partner – go to Labcorp and have IVF labs drawn.

You just have to show up to Labcorp. You don’t need an order. We will have already put the order in the system for you. And basically we’re just testing basic infectious disease labs. Why do we need these labs? Because we are handling eggs and sperm and embryos, which are human tissue in a lab, we need to know infectious disease status for all patients going through the process. And this is true for all clinics throughout the country. So we just need to know HIV, HEP-B, HEP-C and syphilis status. So you go to Labcorp, get those labs drawn, make sure you get it done before your IVF class.

Saline sonogram

Your doctor will also tell you one other thing that we need before you do an embryo transfer. This is called the saline sonogram, and we like you to do it once you’re on birth control pills and after your period is over.

You can call and schedule the saline sonogram, which is just an easy ultrasound where we inject a little bit of water inside your uterus to rule out polyps or any other abnormal tissue that might be present that we’d want to remove before your embryo transfer.

If you’re doing a fresh transfer with IVF, you need to do the saline sonogram before your cycle starts. So you can do it during the window when you’re on birth control pills for those two or three weeks. If you’re doing a frozen transfer, you can do it after the egg retrieval and before the embryo transfer.

Alright, so, I’m an IVF patient. I’m on my birth control pills, and I have my class scheduled. What do I need to know before my class starts?

So one of the most important things to know before your class starts is that you are going to keep taking those birth control pills. You are going to take the active pills only, and you will keep taking those until we tell you to stop. So that is the number one most important thing to get scheduled for your class is those birth control pills.


We will also send you modules to complete. These are really important because they are going to teach you how to use all of these medications. And you will also need to watch those modules before you can fill out the consent forms. So these will all be sent to you through the patient portal and those have to be done before the day of your class.

Ok, so, it’s the day of my IVF class. What am I going to learn at my IVF class? The day of your class, it will be a 30-minute video class via We will send you the link to that class the morning of.

Scheduling your Nurse IVF Class

So another thing that we will do during your IVF class is set up your dates and your schedule. So if you have any work commitments coming up, vacation, travel plans, dates that you absolutely cannot come into the office, we definitely need to know those ahead of time. That way we can plan around your schedule for you.

In addition, we’d like to know what office you’d like to monitor at. We have our North Raleigh location, our main location, or we also do outside monitoring. Just keep that in mind so you can let us know and we can get you scheduled in the right location. [Our Wilmington clinic is now open.] We will also go over your medications with you. We will talk about the dosages and we will order them for you during your class.

It’s a great thing to look ahead of time and check with your insurance to see if they require a specific pharmacy for assisting with your medications or if they provide coverage at all and then we can help you order those.