When you’re a single, career-oriented woman without children people tend to think, something must be wrong with her, instead of, she’s creating her dream life before she has kids. Dr. Jerisa Berry was that highly-motivated young woman from Chicago focused on her goal to become an ER doctor. But little did she know, something was actually wrong with her. At 35, she met her now husband, Dr. Adam K. Berry. The couple got married three years later, but they struggled when it came to getting pregnant.
“For almost three years, my husband and I tried to conceive,” said Dr. Jerisa, who suffers from fibroids. “We were told we would have less than a 10 percent chance of conceiving naturally. No woman wants to hear they will need help becoming a mom, even if help exists through assisted fertilization.”
After hearing that news, the Berrys went through a grueling and emotional process to conceive: two rounds of intrauterine insemination and two rounds of in-vitro fertilization (IVF).
“I had a miscarriage, but with the last IVF sequence we had three embryos and two still remaining. We still plan to move forward with pursuing parenting, likely with the assistance of a surrogate, as my fibroids grew larger after surgery and IVF,” Dr. Jerisa explained.
While this experience took a toll on Dr. Jerisa, her husband was equally devastated by their fertility struggle. But after doing some research, he discovered many couples were dealing with the same issue. He and his wife then began to seek solutions to not only help themselves, but others.
“You wish you can take pain away from your spouse, but it’s something you just have to go through together,” Dr. Adam shared.
As owners of Vital Care Clinic in South Florida, The Berrys were able to directly partner with labs and doctors across the country to bring about a solution. Out of her own experience, Dr. Jerisa founded SecureYourFertility.com, where she helps single ladies and career women take control of their fertility. With the assistance of her husband, she created an app that’s ideal for women who prefer to delay motherhood. With the app, available on Android and Apple systems, any woman waiting to become a mother can check her egg reserve directly and then make informed decisions about prolonging or pursuing motherhood.
Dr. Jerisa’s approach to helping women know when they are most fertile is focused on knowing their Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH) level. AMH is a protein hormone produced by cells in the ovary. Various levels of AMH in a woman’s body can influence her chances of conception; the lower it is, the harder it is to get pregnant.
“Adam and I are grateful for assisted fertilization, but we want women to also be concerned about their fertility early, while waiting and building their career so they could potentially avoid some issues later.”
The couple agrees that this hardship has made them much stronger as a couple, and while helping other women hopefully avoid the struggles they’ve had, they look forward to having a bundle of joy soon.