A Costly Road To Parenthood For Those Struggling With Infertility

The Stork® lands offering a new at-home conception aid to help Canadians conceive

TORONTO, Sept. 8, 2014 /CNW/ - For many Canadians, conceiving a child and becoming a parent is a dream come true; however, what happens when infertility issues arise? For the approximately one in six Canadians who struggle to conceive, the road to parenthood can be costly – not only financially, but also psychologically and emotionally, often taking a toll on intimacy.1

In fact, according to a recent survey of Canadian men and women aged 30-44 who had been trying to conceive for at least 12 months, the effects of infertility extend far beyond parenthood and the bedroom with one in four stating that they rarely talk about anything other than infertility.2 Further, over half of respondents (52%) say that they no longer have spontaneity in their sex life as a result of infertility and 41 per cent outline that all forms of intimacy in their relationship have gone down.2

Now, The Stork®, a new at-home conception aid is bringing together cervical cap insemination, a well-established technique used by healthcare professionals, with new innovative technology, to help couples conceive naturally and in the privacy and comfort of their home. The introduction of The Stork helps bridge the gap between natural intercourse and in-clinic, assisted treatments such as intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF) or clomifene.

"Starting a family is an important milestone for many Canadians, and for those trying unsuccessfully to conceive, the impacts can be devastating," says Dr. Michael Pelekanos, MD, obstetrician and gynecologist. "As healthcare professionals, we want to ensure our patients get support in their journeys toward parenthood, which can often be lonely, stressful and isolating. The practice of cervical cap insemination, for instance, is a viable first approach for us to consider for our potential moms-to-be."

Eighty per cent of those surveyed have already tried at least one treatment option; one-quarter of those experiencing infertility express a willingness to invest at least $10,000 in treatments. A majority of those experiencing infertility selected functional outlets for the money if it weren't to be spent on treatments – paying off debt, buying a home and saving for retirement. Currently, universal IVF is not publicly funded in Canada and only 15 per cent of couples affected by infertility can afford IVF treatment.3 Consider further that access to IVF services outside of major urban cities is often difficult and the average out-of-pocket costs of treatments generally range from $8,000 to $14,500.4

Combining science and innovation, The Stork offers a cost-effective, over-the-counter approach to the well-established practice of cervical cap insemination.5,6 The Stork is designed to be used as a "first-step" for couples when trying to conceive before advancing into further assisted reproductive treatments – and costs.7 Cervical cap insemination has a recorded success rate of between 10-20 per cent,8 which is comparable to IUI - with recorded success rates between 15-20 per cent.9 The Stork is favourable for couples experiencing common fertility difficulties such as low sperm count, low sperm motility, unfavourable vaginal environment, ovulation timing and unexplained infertility.9

"Research demonstrates that alternative options are highly welcome among Canadians with three-quarters of individuals struggling with infertility being likely to try an at-home conception aid available without a prescription," says Stephen Bollinger, President and CEO of Rinovum Women's Health and the creator of The Stork. "We're delighted to launch The Stork in Canada as it provides couples with a feasible, non-invasive option to support natural, at-home conception."

The Stork (containing one device to be used in one ovulation cycle) is available at Rexall™ and London Drugs® pharmacy locations. More information about The Stork, including demonstration videos and resources for couples trying to conceive, can be found online at www.storkconception.ca.

About The Stork 

The Stork works by collecting semen into a cervical cap, which is located at the bottom of a condom-like sheath. The applicator then delivers the cervical cap, containing the semen, to the entrance of the cervix. The cervical cap is left next to the cervix for four to six hours and then removed using a tampon like pull chord. The cervical cap keeps the semen as close to the cervix as possible, to allow sperm to swim up to the egg. Normal daily activities can be carried out whilst the cervical cap is in place. It is recommended that The Stork be used just before and/or during ovulation. 

Rinovum Women's Health

Rinovum Women's Health, Inc. is a privately held women's health company dedicated to bringing products into the market that will enhance women's lives and empower them to take charge of their health. Their first focus, The Stork, is a conception aid for reproductive health to assist in natural fertility and conception in the privacy of the patients' home. Rinovum Women's Health aims to provide products that are easy-to-use and safe, as well as a more economical way for a couple to address some of these issues. More information about Rinovum Women's Health, Inc. can be found at www.rinovum.com.  

NOTES TO EDITOR

The survey was conducted online between the dates July 7th to 18th, 2014 using Legerweb Panel. A sample of n=300 was collected targeting men and women aged 30-44 who had been trying to conceive for at least 12 months. A sample of this size would yield a margin of error of +/- 5.7% 19 times out of 20.

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References

1 Government of Canada. Fertility. http://healthycanadians.gc.ca/health-sante/pregnancy-grossesse/fert-eng.php. Accessed June 2014.

2 Leger Infertility Study. Completed with men and women aged 30-44 who had been trying to conceive for at least 12 months in 2014. Sponsored by Rinovum Women's Health.

3 CADTH. Assisted Reproductive Technologies in Canada. http://www.cadth.ca/products/environmental-scanning/health-technology-update/issue-10-september-2008/assisted-reproductive. Accessed June 2014.

4 Infertility Awareness Association of Canada. Fertility Facts. http://stream1.newswire.ca/media/2014/05/22/20140522_C9320_DOC_EN_40600.pdf. Accessed June 2014.

5 Coulson, C, et al. Randomized controlled trial of cervical cap with intracervical reservoir versus standard intracervical injection to inseminate cryopreserved donor sperm. Human Reproduction, Vol. 11, no.1, pp.84-87, 1996.

6 Mahony, M.C. Evaluation of the effect of a cervical cap device on sperm functional characteristics in vitro. ANDROLOGIA 33, (2001).

7 Rinovum. The Stork Canada. www.storkconception.ca. Accessed June 2014.

8 Flierman, Hendrikus, et al. A Prospective, randomized, cross-over  comparison of two methods of artificial insemination by donor on the incidence of conception: Intracervical insemination by straw versus cervical cap. Human Reproduction, Vol. 12, no.9 1945-1948, 1997.

9 Bergquist, C.A., et al. Artificial insemination with fresh donor semen using the cervical cap technique: a review of 278 cases. Obstet Gynecol. 1982 Aug;60(2):195-9.

Video with caption: "Video: A costly road to parenthood for those struggling with infertility". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20140908_C1098_VIDEO_EN_5372.mp4&posterurl=http%3A%2F%2Fphotos.newswire.ca%2Fimages%2F20140908_C1098_VIDEO_EN_5372.jpg&order=1&jdd=20140908&cnum=C1098

Image with caption: "The Stork Rinovum(R) Women's Health - Infographic (CNW Group/The Stork)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140908_C1098_PHOTO_EN_5369.jpg

SOURCE: The Stork

For further information: Jacqueline Zonneville, energi PR, 416-425-9143 x15, jacqueline.zonneville@energipr.com

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