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Fertility Treatments Abroad: 5 MUST Ask Questions


Malaysia is hardly short on world-class fertility centres but sometimes for one reason or another, you may be considering undergoing the treatment elsewhere. There is nothing wrong with choosing to undergo your fertility treatment abroad, in fact, medical tourism has seen a boom in popularity worldwide for the past decade. After all, be it locally or abroad, what matters the most when you make your decision is your confidence in the chosen fertility centre.

Medical treatment abroad can be very overwhelming. If you are thinking about overseas treatment or coming to Malaysia for treatment, there are many things to consider before you can put your confidence and trust in any fertility centre. 

This article will address FIVE MUST ASK QUESTIONS that can help you build that confidence in your decision making.



Success Rates

Why does a fertility centre abroad have such high success rates? 


Source: Pixabay


Undoubtedly, all fertility centres will advertise a high success rate as part of their marketing strategy. This is not necessarily a false advertisement. You have to be cautious with this information as there are many different ways to present a success rate. Some success rates could only represent the type of patients being treated at the clinics. If the majority of the patients are women below the age of 35 with mild infertility, then the success rate only applies to similar cases. 


Another parameter to consider would be the success rate of the specific treatment that you are aiming for. For example, in IVF treatment, is the success rate measured by pregnancy or live birth? For patients who have had multiple miscarriages, a live birth success rate is more important than pregnancy chances and vice versa. 

The best tip in measuring success rate is to ask for your own success rate. Most fertility clinics abroad would offer online consultations for potential patients. Take the chance to present your medical history and ask for an evaluation of your own prognosis for successful treatment.




Is it really cheaper overseas?

Counting money

Source: Pexels

This all depends on the treatments that you are going for. For example, IVF is known to be costly but some clinics may advertise cheaper prices. You need to be certain that the price stated covers the whole treatment which includes medications, essential tests and consultations.Be sure to compare packages from local and and other fertility centres abroad so that you won’t be blindsided by extra charges later on.

Aside from the treatment itself, other costs that you must consider are accommodations, living costs, transportation and medical insurance (in case of emergency). Come up with a rough total cost for being treated abroad and prepare a contingency fund for the rainy days.




Can anyone just get treatment abroad? Is it safe to have fertility treatment overseas?

Source: Pixabay

Not all countries accept unmarried single patients or same-sex couples. The same goes for those seeking egg/sperm donors or surrogacy, you should get legal advice from your home country before starting the treatment. Islamic countries like Malaysia have tight legislation regarding the law of inheritance and citizenship. You don’t want to risk your baby being considered illegitimate or a non-citizen.


For Muslims, surrogacy and donors are haram (not permissible) as mandated by the Shariah Law. The child born out of surrogacy and through donors will become illegitimate as they are born out of wedlock. Other religions such as Christians also share the same view. For your own peace of mind, speak with your religious counsel on top of getting legal advice.

There are many patients who have had safe and successful treatment abroad. However, Malaysian law and governing have no power to oversee the facilities outside of the country. Do your research regarding the law governing their practices and ask the clinic for any national regulations or legislation that you need to follow while receiving treatment in their country.



Language Barrier

Do they speak your language?

It is important to be reminded that fertility treatment is a complicated healthcare. Fluent communication is important to ensure that both you and your doctor understand all the information correctly.

You are risking incomplete or misinformation if there are any errors in the language translation. Always ask the clinic if they speak your language, if not, do they offer interpreter/translation services?

Big brain energy

Source: Pexels

Language is also an important part when it comes to signing documents. Never sign documents in a language you do not understand or have a full understanding of. There are too many safety, financial and legal risks involved for you to be careless in this part of your treatment.





How long will the treatment take? Do you have to make multiple trips?


Medical tourism is not your normal tourism agenda. Therefore, you will need to consider the financial and physical burden of long travels coupled with a series of complex medical procedures. 




In the case of IVF treatment, one cycle of IVF will be around 15 or more days, excluding your travelling days. If your chosen fertility centre is a faraway location, take into consideration the burden of travel fatigues like jetlag. Furthermore, it is preferable to start any fertility treatment while you are in the pink of health for a higher chance of success.

Source: Pixabay

Most fertility centres even included travel plans in their packages. This can help their potential patients to have a rough idea of whether they can complete their treatment in one trip or multiple trips. Bear in mind that some procedures are too risky for multiple travelling within a short period of time.



Final Takeaway

It is always about you. So always ask questions with your best interest in mind and never settle for unanswered questions!


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