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Patient Blog

Christmas with my Rainbow Baby

13 Dec 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
When the holidays come around, we unpack the numerous boxes we’ve accumulated over the years, each one full of memories from past Christmases. Preparing the house for the holiday season is a fun and exciting time for our family. Christmas 2012 was a different story, as that year marks the year I lost my baby. So when I hold our daughter’s “Baby’s First Christmas 2013” ornament, something stirs deep inside me. That little ornament holds...
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Continuing the Journey of Closure…

13 Nov 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
Every October, raw emotions about my miscarriage rise to the surface with the remembrance that it is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month. During the past year, I have written quite openly about my story and gained additional closure after receiving the results of my miscarriage testing at CombiMatrix. So, when October approached again this year, I wondered: “Will having answers about the reason for my loss impact how I face this October? Most Octobers,...
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Support Behind the Sadness: Seeking Resources Following a Pregnancy Loss

02 Nov 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
Since writing about my miscarriage last October, I’ve come into contact with many women who have also suffered a miscarriage, stillbirth or loss of an infant. After hearing their personal stories, I recognized a common theme of the emptiness and loneliness they all felt, feelings with which I’m all too familiar. What struck me most was that it seemed they had little social support while grieving. Of course, they had their significant others, family, and...
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The Financial Side of Infertility and Ensuring the Best Results Through PGS

28 Aug 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
I am constantly blown away by the cost of raising children today. Diapers, clothes, school, and after-school activities all cost a pretty penny. But what if you already had a mountain of bills just from trying to become a parent? Few may realize that infertility not only takes a toll on people emotionally, but also greatly impacts a family financially. In researching the cost of infertility, I found there are many options. The goal is...
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A Shoulder to Lean On…Supporting Friends Through Their Infertility

07 Jul 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
As I’ve become older, I’ve watched my circle of friends grow and change. Marriage, children, and jobs: all these play a huge role in our friendships. One aspect I did not see changing some of my relationships was infertility. In nursing school, I was taught how to help others cope with miscarriage, death, and disabilities, but we never learned how to support someone struggling with infertility. Looking back, I find it would have been extremely...
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An Emptiness Remains – A Different Perspective on Infertility

08 Jun 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
I remember when I was a teenager and shopping with my friend on Mother’s Day weekend.  As we left the store, I told the woman working, “Happy Mother’s Day.”  My friend turned to me and asked, “What if she isn’t a mother?”   From that day on, my approach to Mother’s and Father’s Day drastically changed.  With her simple statement, my friend made me realize, even at such a young age, that not everyone is a...
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Finding Closure to my Miscarriage (Part II)

04 May 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
When you last heard from me, I was awaiting test results on a child I miscarried nearly 5 years ago but never got answers to as “why”. Finding out about CombiMatrix and having this opportunity fell in my lap, so to speak. I wasn’t looking for answers at the time, but when the chance presented itself to learn why I suffered such a tragedy, I felt the need to pursue it and was eager to...
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Finding Closure to my Miscarriage?

04 Apr 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
As I stand in my backyard, I am processing the fact that in the weeks to come I’ll have answers for which I’ve waited years and that I never imagined possible. These answers revolve around the unborn baby I lost nearly 5 years ago. I lost this baby with no real explanation as to why the miscarriage occurred and I’m flooded with emotion realizing that soon I’ll actually know more about this child. It’s surreal...
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Loss in the Eyes of a Nurse…

02 Mar 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
As I write this entry, I am reminded of being in the hospital, holding the hands of all those patients who were experiencing one of the worst days of their lives. I had not yet experienced my own miscarriage, however, I found a way to be there and nurture so many families when they were faced with this horrible news. I think two things can occur from caring for patients who suffer loss: either you...
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Too Young for Options

01 Feb 2017
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
As a nurse, I consider myself a well-educated individual when it comes to my medical options. When I found out my pregnancy was no longer viable, I was aware of various diagnostic tests available that could give me closure to this horrible time in my life. Unfortunately, I was surprised to encounter roadblocks as soon as I inquired about such testing. I was shown the exit to the emergency room without being given any information...
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Controversies Regarding PGS/PGD

26 Jan 2017
Brian D. Acacio, MD
One of the most common misuses of terms in the field of Reproductive Genetics is “PGD”. PGD stands for Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis. This pertains to the genetic testing of embryos for a specific known genetic condition, most commonly single gene disorders. This requires two things: the first is to know what specific condition we are looking for such as cystic fibrosis, BRCA1/2, or sickle cell disease. The other thing that is required is to have...
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A New Tradition

17 Dec 2016
Stefanie Castro, RN, BSN, CD, CPD
At a Loss During the Holidays… It’s hard not to reflect during the holiday season. My mind constantly reverts back to past celebrations, when it was just my husband and me, or when our son first experienced this magical time of year. But the Christmas that stands out the most for me took place 4 years ago. That Christmas was different for my family for many reasons. The biggest reason was the fact that the...
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