Lexie Magyar with Niece Scarlett
I often get asked why I started IVF Options and I tend to glaze over the answer. I focus on industry problems or market growth rather than sharing my own story, because, well, it’s easier than being vulnerable. Lately I’ve realized that there’s strength in vulnerability so I am sharing my story.
A few years ago I was going through the hardest break-up of my life. I was in my early 30s, madly in love, and planning to start a family with the Aussie man of my dreams – or so I thought. Going through heart-break is never easy, but for a woman, in her early 30s that really wants to have babies, it strikes a deep fear. “What if I never get to have my own kids?” was ringing in my mind.
Two weeks later, I got a call that sent me further into a despair. I had been diagnosed with HPV a year earlier, and while most people clear it on it’s own, mine had progressed to LSIL or mild dysplasia, which in simple terms means pre-cancerous cells were forming on my cervix. I had to undergo a colposcopy to biopsy the cells to determine if they were precancerous, and if so, what form of treatment to undergo.
(Side note, we have had thousands of patients use IVF Options across Australia and the US who have had far worse medical conditions than mine. I am not comparing myself to them, I am simply telling you what I was going through and what led me to start it).
Like most people who are new to fertility treatments, I went down a rabbit hole on Dr Google and started learning about the differences between IUI, IVF, egg freezing, and all of the treatment variations and protocols one may undergo. In doing so, I found the process highly confusing, and found it difficult to get clear information on treatment costs, success rates and doctor options near me.
At the time, I was running comparison websites for the largest telecommunications company in Australia and I thought to myself, why is it that you can compare everything online, except medical treatment? I began calling clinics to get consult prices, wait times, treatment prices and success rates for myself. In the process, I was made to feel cheap for asking how much it would cost, like doctors were somehow above my questions.
On one fateful night, I went to see a specialist who was recommended by my general practitioner. He said he was “the best” and so, I waited 3 hours in his waiting room and paid hundreds of dollars out of pocket, for 5 minutes of his time, for him to tell me I needed to spend thousands more on another test, after having barely listened to me. It was on that night that I decided that I would spend my life putting the power back in the hands of patients, which I felt was ripped from me.
Thankfully my mild dysplasia ended up clearing itself in the coming months, but the diagnosis and scare had changed my life forever. I set out to build IVF Options in Australia to make treatment more transparent and affordable for everyone who needs it, regardless of their situation.
But my story doesn’t stop there. Up next, I’ll share why I ended up moving to the US and some of my adventures along the way.