In the last 10 years, I have struggled with my weight going up and down, having cravings, eating out of boredom, and just dealing with the issues of yo-yo dieting. Being diagnosed with endometriosis and needing hernia repair led me to having Laparoscopy surgery in April 2015. Even after a successful surgery, I continued to eat unhealthy. I was eating plenty of bad carbohydrates and gaining more weight, which in turn lead to me being even more unhappy with myself and my appearance. I finally decided after talking with Dr. Paschall about my weight gaining issues that something had to change. I finally made my mind up that the only person that could change my situation was myself and if I was going to do something different with my health I would have to become committed. I started to follow a low carbohydrate lifestyle on July 21st, 2015. My starting weight was 216 lbs.!
I also started walking and getting involved in local 5k events, which I believe was also a very good way to keep myself motivated and on track with my
new healthier lifestyle.
I have felt so much better since completely weaning myself from the addictive feelings that bad carbohydrates can make you feel, physically and mentally. As of now December 2015, I have lost a total of 43 lbs and I am only 8 lbs from my target weight. Yes, there are times that I still eat something that is not considered a good choice, but I continually tell myself that it is okay to mess up sometimes. However, I’m never going to quit.
I actually want to dress up now and I feel so good about myself. I just feel so revived and like a new person. I thank God every day that I received the opportunity to work with Jacksonville Center for Reproductive Medicine and meet the awesome physicians here at the practice. Dr. Paschall and Dr. Fox have helped me more than they will ever know and in turn it has made me a new person. A person that has wanted to make a change and wanted to help herself.
Just wanted to thank JCRM, this is the before and after 5 months of the pcos diet. It works! Thank you!
When I came to see you on November 30, 2012 my Husband and I had been trying to get pregnant for 3 years with no success. While my diagnosis of PCOS shook up my world, coming to see you has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. While I am not pregnant or had a baby yet, your continued encouragement and reassurance helps me confirm I am on the right track and that you are “not concerned with my ability to get pregnant now”. Even the day we met and I was diagnosed you stated that you weren’t worried about my ability to be pregnant we just had to treat my PCOS. On December 17, 2012, you placed me on the most strict diet I have ever been on. I kept to it religiously thereafter. I was loosing between 15 and 20 pounds a month because I was strict on myself. My motivation was having a baby. I continued to think that if this is what will make me get pregnant, then I have to do it no matter the level of difficulty. In June, my Husband and I had our third unsuccessful cycle treatment and decided we needed a break from the cycles. Your staff was supportive in our decision. They continue to make appointments to see me to maintain my diet. It was a relief to me when I was told that my chances of pregnancy are now in the “normal” percentage range, when I came my chances were less than 4%. I know I am continuing to do the right thing by staying on the diet. Your staff also rewarded me with a cheat a week. Even with the cheat I am continuing to loose weight and work toward my goal. In October 2012 I weighed around 230-240 lbs. I believe in December when I started the diet I weighed around 225-230 lbs. I weighed on October 9, 2013 at home and weighed 149. I have lost over 90 lbs since beginning the diet. I have more self confidence then ever and I feel amazing. I no longer criticize myself when I look in the mirror, I celebrate myself. I feel good, I look good and now, thanks to your help, I know it! While I may not have my child yet, I know it will happen. I have, at the very least, discovered self confidence and am lucky enough to have found such a wonderful and understanding support system in Dr. Fox and his team. Thank you for all you have done and will do!
At 29 years old, I was diagnosed with hypoglycemia and put on a low carb diet. At 42 years old, I was told I was pre-diabetic! At 49 years old, I got sick – lost 30lbs, got a yeast infection that would not go away and suddenly had high blood pressure! I was now DIABETIC!!!I got with the program – lowered my blood sugar by lowering my carbs, started exercising, started taking metformin, went on statins for high cholesterol and meds for high blood pressure. I did everything they told me! At first, I was better – held things together for about 5 years and then things just got worse. I finally ended up on 2 insulins – 5 shots a day of industrial doses of insulin and STILL my blood sugar was 170 to 250 all day. Now, I have been diabetic for 10 years and there is no hope in sight!I started a diet according to Dr. Richard Bernstein (Diabetes Solutions) – meat, fish, fowl, veggies and fats! No bread, no pasta, no desserts, no fruit, no fruit juices! In one week, I cut the insulin dose in half and by the end of the next week, I cut the insulin again in half. Then I had to find a local doctor to help me adjust my meds correctly! I found Dr. Fox on the internet and when I called his office he agreed to see me. It was love at first sight! He understood exactly what I was trying to accomplish and he followed the same diet himself which really impressed me! So, we began in November of 2010. I had already lost 10lbs and greatly improved my blood sugar. By May of 2011, I was down 30lbs and he took me off my insulin completely. He also stopped my blood pressure medicine and the statin drug for my cholesterol. I was TERRIFIED but he had such confidence that I followed his plan and now I’m down 50lbs, have normal blood pressure and cholesterol and only take pills to control my blood sugar. No More Insulin – No More Fat – I FEEL FABULOUS!!! Dr. Fox was my savior. He took time with me every month, going over my food diary, giving me great advice – basically “holding my hand” – and showing me great compassion and confidence. I could never have done this without him! Now, he has released me and again, I am TERRIFIED but now, I have a lifestyle – my blood sugar holds me hostage to the diet. I have started exercising regularly and am enjoying my new wardrobe. I feel that this is just how I should eat and am enjoying it. I converted my husband and though not diabetic, he has also lost 50lbs. Dr. Fox runs a beautiful office – organized, friendly and always the same – another good confidence builder for successful treatment. I am so grateful for this change in my health and so grateful to Dr. Fox for his help in my health journey. Also, kudos to Susan Baker for her help in organizing my hormones and encouraging me with my weight loss! I leave you with this – before this diet, I always felt hungry and agitated. Without the sugar in my food, I have a calmness that really sustains me in my everyday life.
Pam Pounds, 61 years old and counting
After Sarah won the IVF cycle at our infertility seminar, we talked to her about improving her metabolic system prior to IVF. She had already lost about 60-70lbs using traditional methods of low-calorie / low-fat, with drug assistance, but had never been able to keep going or keep all of the weight off. Since she switched to the low-carb / high-fat nutrition plan we recommend to our patients, she now eats plenty of calories and doesn’t feel hungry. Despite the fat intake, she has lost an additional 35-40lbs, to put her total weight loss now over 100lbs, and she continues to see weight loss. We will be starting her IVF cycle soon with anticipation of great results. Congrats to you, Sarah!Nutritional Management of Hyperemesis Gravidarum
Dear Dr. Fox, Last year I communicated with you regarding using your VLC diet for the prevention of hyperemesis gravidarum, and you were so kind as to send me your diet sheets. I wanted to write to you to let you know how it turned out!Unfortunately, my results are mixed – partially due to my own error, as you will see. This turned into an extremely confusing pregnancy, with a lot of unknowns!I kept detailed notes throughout this pregnancy, which I will condense into the main points:
- I began the diet in April 2011.
- I found out that I was pregnant on Day 40 of being on the diet (during which time I lost 20 pounds). I did Stage 2 strictly during those 40 days – the entire time, no cheating.
- Here is how the pregnancy progressed (and you’ll see why it turned so confusing):
- 3w6d – I started to feel nauseated during the evening.
- 4w0d – I continued to feel more and more nauseated, and started Unisom/B6 and Zofran. That night I woke up at midnight dry heaving. I also got a weak positive pregnancy test.
- 4w1d – I woke up nauseated and was getting very, very sick – losing the ability to swallow. However, during the late morning I mysteriously started to feel better. Over the next hours and days, I continued to feel better and better.
- 4w2d – Felt better and better. That evening, I started to experience menstrual-type cramping and blood-tinged cervical fluid, so with that and the weak test and resolving symptoms, I concluded that a miscarriage was on the way.
- 4w3d – Felt well enough to discontinue medications. By the next day I was feeling mostly fine, with just occasional twinges of nausea.
- 5w2d – Still felt fine. And this is where I have to confess – I started cheating on the diet, figuring that I was just waiting for a miscarriage to complete. (I’m sorry!)
- 5w5d – In the evening, I very suddenly started to feel awful again. I immediately repented and reformed (i.e. went back on the diet), as well as starting Unisom and Zofran again, and started slowly to feel better over the next week. However, the pregnancy nausea did give me a bad four months, and continued in lessening amounts until the birth.
- After my several days of straying, I stayed strictly on the diet through about week 11, and then gradually tapered off. I kept a strict eye on how carbohydrates made me feel, and I noticed that they always made me feel worse – that is, better for a short time and then worse. You are absolutely right about the low-carb diet being helpful for pregnancy nausea.
- Baby Giles Edward was born on February 12, 2012 (40w5d) – our third home-birth and another water-birth! He was our biggest baby ever, at 9#9oz, and is growing and thriving.
Here’s the summary: This was the easiest pregnancy that I have ever experienced. My first pregnancy was uncontrolled hyperemesis. My second was controlled with drugs, and was much better. This, my third, was controlled with drugs and the VLC diet, and was much better even than the last. The nausea did put me out of commission for 3-4 months, but nothing like either of the previous times. Had I stayed faithfully on the diet, who knows what could have happened for the better? The main unsolved mysteries are: (1) What happened during the beginning weeks, when I experienced sudden and severe nausea that resolved (mostly) 36 hours later, and (2) Would I have had an even better experience had I not strayed from the diet those three days. I wonder if I even could have avoided having to use medication?I send you many, many, MANY thanks for your communications last year, and for all of the help. I have shared this experience with many HG mothers, and I hope that the information can get out there to help other women. Many thanks!D.J.
Update: We welcomed Baby Margaret in November 2014!
Pelvic pain from Endometriosis can be very debilitating…at least I know that it was for me. I have suffered from this type of pelvic pain since 1998. When I realized I couldn’t ignore the pain any longer, I began discussing it with my Primary care doctor and then with my OB/GYN. After several ultrasounds and blood tests, nothing was found to be causing this pain and I was sent on my way. For the next several years, I quietly dealt with the pain from this disease for almost three weeks out of every month.
Finally I went back to my OB/GYN and described the pain I was feeling in further detail. It was concluded that I may have endometriosis. I had my first of three laparoscopies with two different surgeons – in 2003, then in 2006, then finally in 2008 with Michael Fox, MD. By the time I made it to see Dr. Fox I was in excruciating pain almost all the time and I also had a lump that I could physically feel on my right side just under my cesarean incision from where I had twins in 1996. It seemed that every surgeon I went to ignored this lump and I wasn’t sure that Dr. Fox wouldn’t ignore it either. However, during the first consult I had with him, he listened to my every complaint of pain and watched as I showed him specifically where I felt the lump. In January, 2008 Dr. Fox operated on me and removed almost all of the stage III endometriosis he found internally. He also removed the lump that I felt which turned out to be an enlarged endometriosis lesion that had grown on the outside of my cesarean incision under my skin. Now I am almost completely pain free and my quality of life has improved 100% than before. I have had the privilege of having such a skilled & knowledgeable surgeon who took the time to really listen to the problems I was having and help me overcome the pain I was dealing with from endometriosis. I can only hope that if you are reading this and you’re feeling the same way that I did, that you would consider letting Dr. Fox help you.
Thank you, Dr. Fox.
Dr. Fox Will Ease my Pain
After undergoing surgery with Dr. Fox in 1998, I moved out of state. There I went through roughly 13 IVF cycles and 3 miscarriages. Another doctor performed a laparoscopy in early 2005 and removed my left tube. After more failed treatment, I began having pain again and was referred to a gynecologist who recommended I consider a full hysterectomy. I am only 40 years old and would like to keep my organs as long as possible. My gynecologist told me that no one in the state would attempt a laparoscopy on me given my history. After reading Dr. Fox’s operative report my physicians said Dr. Fox did more for me than many could and referred me back to him. I am encouraged with Dr. Fox’s experience that he will be willing to do a laparoscopy and only a hysterectomy as a last resort. I am now eagerly awaiting my surgery with Dr. Fox and look forward to the pain resolution I know he can bring.
HOW I WAS FOXATIZED?
Take Mesmerized and combine it with Hope and you have “Foxatized.” I was condemned to a childless future with imminent Hysterectomy and no options when I landed in Dr. Fox’s office on January 9, 2009. Three weeks later, I had my second surgery in 6 weeks and my whole life changed. For the first time in my history of 4 surgeries, I had a pain free and vomit free post surgical period. Fear of these complications had paralyzed me in the past but with Dr. Fox’s expert care, these were a thing of the past. I can ever thank him enough or say enough to express my gratitude for what he has done for me. I am now a believer in the Michael Fox way. As I tell everyone in his office and anyone else who will listen, I have been “Foxatized!” Michael Fox is The Doctor’s Doctor. He brings hope and promise to situations others deem hopeless. Thanks to him now I have a chance – the one thing I did not have before seeing Dr. Fox.
Maryam Pasha, MD
You Changed my Life
My life changed forever when I turned thirteen years old. I began having severe, crippling migraines that left me literally deaf, dumb and blind. My migraines ultimately mimic or mirror stroke symptoms. With the migraines followed severe abdominal pain and very heavy periods. Throughout my teen years my migraines and abdominal pain were unbearable. I would have periods so bad that I wouldn’t be able to stand up, I would literally lay on the floor, vomit, shake from low blood pressure and bleed. This happened to me several times between the ages of sixteen and eighteen. During my teen years, I consulted with many different doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners and family doctors. I was either ignored, told it was all in my head, I was too young to have such pain or I was put on birth control.
At the age of twenty-three, I was exhausted and quite ill all the time; I was so frustrated because no one would listen to me. Then one of my regular doctors handed me a pamphlet on the endometriosis association; he speculated that i may have endometriosis but had never looked into it. I called their hotline and asked for a specialist in my state, the gave me the name of Dr. Michael Fox in Jacksonville, FL. I made an appointment immediately and within a few hours of seeing Dr Fox and his staff, I finally had a diagnosis and surgery was imminent. I had endometriosis, three hernias, some blockage of my fallopian tubes and lesions on my lower intestine. Granted, I was nervous before my surgery, but the results were amazing. For the first time in ten years, I woke up a different person. I felt health almost immediately despite the fact that I was sore from the surgery.
My recovery is slow and I’m alright with that. I can honestly say that my life has been restored. I have energy, I’m completely migraine free, and I have absolutely no abdominal pain. I have seen a significant difference in my periods as well. They’re much lighter and went from seven to ten days down to only four days. I really owe it to Dr Fox and his team for giving me my life back. I never thought i would ever feel healthy again; I am truly thankful.
This is my story ~
I just want to thank all the staff for everything you have done for me and my family. I didn’t find out until I was 32 that I had endometriosis, and at that point it was stage 4. I had already had emergency surgery for an endometrioma causing an ovarian torsion and 6 months later the endometrioma had returned. We hadn’t been trying for a baby at the time but Dr. Michael Fox was kind enough to sit with us after the surgery to explain future problems that may arise (and eventually did). 6 months of trying after that I was able to conceive my older son Jason naturally. Unfortunately once we decided for baby number 2 we didn’t have success and lost 2 with early miscarriage and an ectopic pregnancy scare. With the help of the doctors on staff and fertility treatment, I just gave birth to my second boy Julian. I went from being afraid I may never have children, due to a diagnosis I never knew I had until I was older, to having 2 beautiful children. The staff at your office is so kind and understanding and I knew I was in good hands. You made a frightening time in my life, full of hope. So thank you for everything. Thank you for giving me the chance to be a mother!
Sincerely, Kimberly Fajardo
My husband and I went to JCRM after two failed IVF cycles at a different fertility clinic. We made the choice to switch to Dr. Fox and it has turned out to be the best choice we ever made. Dr. Fox worked diligently with us to get the answers to our infertility problem. We did 3 more IVF cycles, but no pregnancy. Each cycle we got closer and closer. Finally we got our BFP in December 2014 after our first FET in November. Unfortunately this pregnancy resulted in a miscarriage, but gave us hope at the same time. We figured out FET just might be the ticket to our success. In February 2014, we did an egg retrieval and 5 days later froze 3 perfect embryos. On March 30 2014, we transferred 2 of those embryos. On Easter morning, 6 days after the transfer, I took a home pregnancy test and got a positive!!! Of course we were excited but very guarded at the same time. Our Beta came back and it more than doubled. At 5.5 weeks pregnant, I started to bleed very heavy. I went my OBGYN and was expecting the same news we received in December. I went into the ultrasound prepared for the worst. Then on the screen I saw a flickering and the doctor said “Well there is a heartbeat!” I immediately started to cry and felt a huge weight lifted. Then she looks at me and says “ There is another heartbeat!”. I could not believe it and turned into a sobbing mess. Two heartbeats!!! At 14 weeks we found out it was a boy and a girl. How absolutely perfect! I had such an easy pregnancy and on December 1st 2015 at 38 weeks, we welcomed our son and daughter. Daylin Sylvia Hamm was born at 4:22 pm weighing 6 pounds 3 ounces at 20.75 inches long. Hulan James Hamm was born 17 minutes later at 4:39pm weighing 5 pounds 4 ounces at 18.75 inches long. They were just beautiful and we were just over the moon. I can never find the words to thank Dr. Fox and the staff at JCRM for all the did for us and getting us our miracle babies.
Bayne and Bryce were born on April 11, 2009. We went to Jacksonville Center of Reproductive Medicine after a year and a half of not getting pregnant. That was the best decision we ever made. We had our first appointment with Dr. Lipari. We did not know a lot about infertility or what could be done but Dr. Lipari took the time to educate us and together reached the best route for us to have a family. We decided in vitro was best for us. I remember getting my big box of medical supplies, syringes, medicines, a bio hazard container. I quickly said “There’s no way I can do this” it was very overwhelming. The staff was there for me every time I had a concern, had a question and guided us every step of the way. A few short weeks later it was egg retrieval time. We had 20 eggs! Out of those 20, we were able to fertilize 10, out of those 10 we made 5 embryos. We transferred 2 embryos. We chose to transfer 2 based on statistics and odds given to us by Dr. Lipari based on our age and health. We felt very confident with our decision and the possible outcomes. We had Bayne and Bryce 35 weeks later. We put our trust in these Dr’s and their team, we didn’t stress, we let what will be will be and could not have been more blessed. We are truly thankful for their care and knowledge and for giving us a family. Bayne and Bryce are 6 now. They are active, smart, caring, and all around amazing!
Thank you, Joe & Crissy Thibodeau
I went to JCRM due to a recurrent pregnancy loss, all in the first trimester. A few of my co-workers who also had fertility issues were referring me to Dr. Fox & Dr. Lipari way back then. And I truly regret that it took me five pregnancy losses and a misdiagnosis from another fertility doctor before I decided to come to their office. I met Dr. Lipari and he diagnosed me instantly with Endometriosis due to the symptoms I had described to him when I was a teenager. He ordered some tests and found that I also had low progesterone and polyps in my uterus which, he said, were causing my miscarriages. Dr. Lipari performed a surgery to remove the polyps off of my uterus in Sept of last year. Two months after, I got pregnant again, only this one was going to stick throughout the entire pregnancy. Nine months later, I have a beautiful healthy baby boy in my arms! Had I known better, I would’ve came in earlier and saved myself from all the pain of those losses, and the time and money wasted trying to find some answers from other doctors.
Newly married at the age of twenty-one the decision to start a family seemed like the next natural step. Little did we know what that journey would entail. Once I was referred to JCRM for my initial diagnosis of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) we were devastated. Looking back, becoming part of the JCRM family was a blessing and I now consider myself lucky to have had them with me during my journey. Once established with all of the initial tests and bloodwork it was recommended we proceed with intrauterine insemination (IUI).
After two unsuccessful attempts we were ecstatic when the next cycle was a success. That excitement quickly turned devastating when at 9 weeks there was no longer a heartbeat. After recovering from a dilation and curettage (D&C) we returned for another IUI round. Sadly, that cycle also ended with a miscarriage at 5 weeks. More bloodwork was ordered along with different medications, injections and suppositories. On our 5th IUI cycle, we were blessed with a healthy pregnancy that resulted in a beautiful baby girl. The decision to try for a second child was difficult because we were now aware of the heartbreak that comes with trying. Keeping in mind of our ultimate goal and understanding the joy in the end outweighs the heartbreak we made the call to return to JCRM.
Cautiously optimistic we jumped right back into the same cocktail of medications and procedures. After 2 failed IUI’s (one resulting in another m/c) we moved on to in vitro fertilization (IVF). Again, I was optimistic that this was going to work. Our first attempt was unsuccessful but trying to look on the bright side we focused on the fact we had 14 embryos to freeze! The next cycle was also unsuccessful followed by a cycle being cancelled the day before the scheduled transfer date due to my lining being too thin. I learned a cancelled cycle is just as heartbreaking as a failed one. Thankfully, the next transfer resulted in a positive pregnancy test. We were once again overjoyed only for that feeling to come crashing down on Christmas day.
After suffering my fourth miscarriage I was mentally and physically drained. I was on the verge of throwing in the towel and accepting the fact that our beautiful daughter would be an only child. Knowing that was not our ultimate goal and we still had frozen embryos I couldn’t give up until we had exhausted every option. We decided to take a break and enjoy a few months without the stress of infertility cycles. A few weeks after my fourth miscarriage we received the biggest surprise of our lives, a natural healthy pregnancy! To this day, I cannot explain it. The tears we shared with the staff as we all watched the perfect little heartbeat confirmed that they were just as shocked, excited and amazed as we were.
Amazingly that pregnancy resulted in another beautiful little girl. Seven years after walking through the JCRM doors we finally had our two perfect miracle babies. Our journey was long and painful but in the end the outcome is what matters and the pain eases every time I look at my babies. Dr. Lipari, Dr. Paschall, Tina S. and Katrina S. along with many other staff members have cried many tears of happiness and sorrow with us and not a day goes by without us thinking of them and being thankful for the part they played in our journey. JCRM will always have a very special place in our hearts. Lisa M.
Just wanted to share with you that Avery Elizabeth arrived this past Friday March 6th. 7lbs 11oz of beautiful baby. Thank you again for being so wonderful during my cycles. I will bring her by the next time I am in Jacksonville so you can meet her.
Never Stop Chasing Your Dream! Where do I find the words to tell you about my experience at JCRM? My husband & I have been blessed beyond words with beautiful twin girls. They mean everything to us and every tear along the way was worth it. As I think back to our journey: countless negative pregnancy tests, many tears, surgeries, loss, time to heal our hearts, IVF, positives, 2 heartbeats, the love in my heart, the feeling of their little kicks, to the birth of our beautiful baby girls. I am often reminded of Dr. Lipari and his wonderful staff. He never would give up on us. He is the doctor that is more than just your doctor because he really wants this for you. I remember waking up from surgery after I suffered an ectopic pregnancy and the loss of one of my fallopian tubes and he was at my bed side. He told me the outcome of the surgery and I could truly tell he was sad for me on that day. I was devastated that we lost the baby and now my chances of pregnancy were even lower but he was still so upbeat for us and knew we would be parents one day. And that was exactly what we needed. We took a break for a couple of years and then moved forward to IVF and it was successful! If you want a doctor that will be more than just a doctor this is the place. We will always have a place in our heart for Dr. Lipari, Sabrina Smith (our nurse) and the entire staff at JCRM. I look into the faces of my girls and think of all the times we wanted to just give up and I am so thankful we didn’t. I am thankful we had not just a doctor, but a friend in Dr. Lipari that wouldn’t give up on us either. Never stop chasing your dream of becoming parents.
With love, Michael & Erin
To Dr. Fox & All The Staff,
I just wanted to send a note to all of you to thank you for the little girl we get to cuddle today. Whenever I started the IVF process I was scared and had a lot of questions. Everyone was always there for me throughout the whole process and you all became a part of the family. The most precious moments were spent in your office looking at the first ultrasounds of our little miracle and watching her heartbeat for the first time. Moments I will not forget for the rest of my life. I am so thankful that I went to Dr. Fox as he knew exactly what type of protocol to put me on that was right for me. This was our first and only attempt and thankfully it worked. Again, thank you all for your expertise and compassion. Because of it I will have a lifetime of memories of our little girl!
Jennifer and John McNamee