Meet Dr. Katharina Spiesfertility specialist in Vida Fertility Madrid
At Vida Fertility we want you to meet Dr. Katharia Spies, gynecologist and Medical Director of Vida Fertility. And put a face to the entire team of professionals who will accompany you in the most important decision of your life: to form your family.
Closeness and warmth are important for the patient to feel understood and find the connection they need in their fertility treatment. That is why we want you to get to know us and know a little more about us before coming to visit us at our home.
Let’s start this series of interviews with the Medical Director of our fertility clinics, Dr. Katharina Spies. A woman dedicated to her work and devoted to her patients.
Why did you choose to specialize in Assisted Reproduction?
I studied Medicine at the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg (Germany). But my first contact with Assisted Reproduction (AR) would not come until my fourth year of residency in Gynecology and Obstetrics, already in Spain.
From the very first moment, I was fascinated. It was the first time in my entire medical career that it was not about curing disease, but about creating life.
I am moved by the excitement of getting the positive pregnancy test, of seeing the heartbeat in the first ultrasound. And the hope you give to your patients.
Shortly after that first contact with Assisted Reproduction, I returned to the same clinic where I started my training in AR, but this time from the other side, as a patient.
The dedication and care with which they helped me get pregnant completely convinced me. At that moment it was clear to me that I wanted to dedicate myself to Assisted Reproduction when I finished my residency.
Is it what you expected?
When I began to dedicate myself 100% to reproduction, I discovered all that it entails.
It is a team effort: without a good laboratory, without a good patient care team, and without the right facilities, success is rarely achieved, no matter how good the doctor is.
These are highly protocolized processes, but they must also be humane and personalized, in order to transmit this to patients.
What continues to surprise you most about your work?
It is a world that is in constant change, new techniques are coming out all the time, there is a lot of research.
The technical and biological advances are impressive, especially genetic research and the additional tests that we can ask patients to undergo.
We are currently using artificial intelligence programs to analyze the quality of the oocytes before vitrification. It’s amazing!
Dr. Katharina Spies, How has Reproductive Medicine advanced since you were at the University?
The changes are abysmal. Here are just a few:
- In the past, transfers were made on day 2 or 3 of development. Now we reach the blastocyst stage (day 5-6 of development). This allows us to obtain the maximum information about the cellular development of the embryo.
- Fewer biopsies were taken for genetic analysis. And if it was done, it was done with embryos of 8-10 cells. Now, thanks to the genetic analyses, we are able to lower the rate of repeated miscarriages or implantation failures.
- There were no techniques such as Time-Lapse or tests to verify the window of implantation. Now we seek to implant the best embryo at the right time, and thus optimize the chances of achieving pregnancies.
What do you think the future holds?
Perhaps the most innovative are endometrial and ovarian regeneration techniques, and the use of artificial intelligence to analyze the quality of oocytes and embryos.
These are new practices that are just starting, with great potential that can undoubtedly help our patients. However, it will require the support of a good human team behind it.
What would you say about the bond that is created with patients?
It is such a close and intense process that you live it with the patients. In fact, there are many patients with whom I still keep in touch after the treatment is done.
One of the most special moments for the whole team is when they come to present their babies to us and we see the “result” of our work.
What advice would you give to patients who are starting their fertility treatment?
Don’t give up!
The process of assisted reproduction is sometimes a long and difficult road. But in the end it is almost always successful.
We are here to help them get there and to accompany them along the way.