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Fertility Doctor of the Month: Joseph HIll, M.D.

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Joseph A. HIll, III, M.D., Fertility Centers of New England, Boston, MA

December 2011

FertilityAuthority is pleased to recognize Joseph A. Hill, III, M.D., a renowned expert in reproductive medicine and recurrent pregnancy loss, as Fertility Doctor of the Month. Dr. Hill, a reproductive endocrinologist with Fertility Centers of New England in the Boston, MA area. Prior to Fertility Centers of New England, Dr. Hill had a long career in academic medicine. He was the Director of Reproductive Medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, and an Associate Professor in Ob-Gyn and Reproductive Biology at Harvard Medical School.

Board certified in both Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Dr. Hill has also been named as one of "The Best Doctors in America" in three national consumer publications annually since 1994.

His treatment philosophy is akin to the Golden Rule: "To treat my patients the way I would like myself or my family to be treated — with honesty and integrity," he says. And he brings a unique aspect to treatment of his fertility patients. "[I have] the ability to empathize with patients due to having experienced similar agonies and ecstasies in my own life and by having the good fortune to have been well-trained by my many gifted mentors."

Medicine or Archeology?

Dr. HIll might have ended up uncovering artifacts instead of the causes of infertility. In high school, he was interested in two career choices: medicine and Meso-American Archeology.

"I applied to two colleges, The University of Wisconsin and The University of Arizona, and told myself that the one who accepted me first would determine which career I pursue. Medicine if I got accepted to Wisconsin first and Meso-American Archeology if I was accepted first to Arizona," he explains. "I was accepted to both, but received the letters of acceptance one week apart. Needless to say, I received the letter from The University of Wisconsin first!"

Dr. HIll began his pre-med curriculum at the University of Wisconsin, but he ran out of money and returned home to Georgia where he worked and put himself through school. "I was accepted to medical school at the Medical College of Georgia, and during my third-year rotation in Ob/Gyn, I spent several weeks in reproductive endocrinology with Dr. Paul McDonough and his fellow, Dr. Richard Reindollar," he says.

He became intrigued by the reproductive cycle and reproductive surgery. "At the time, IVF was just beginning and also fascinated me," he says. "I did a research elective my senior year of medical school with Dr. McDonough and wrote my first medical paper under his tutelage, which spawned my interest in recurrent pregnancy loss (RPL) and infertility."

An Interest in Recurrent Pregnancy Loss

Dr. Hill became interested in recurrent pregnancy loss through personal experience and interaction with his early mentors. He says that advances in molecular genetics are helping in the understanding of this aspect of infertility, and he recommends that a woman have an evaluation after two miscarriages.

"It is reasonable to begin investigation for potential causes of loss after two miscarriages," he says. He explains that women often don't realize they still have a good chance for a successful pregnancy after multiple losses. "What most women do not understand is that their chances of success are quite high even after four miscarriages," he says. "The chance of a successful pregnancy after four consecutive losses is approximately 60 percent."

Career Highlights

As a leader in reproductive endocrinology and infertility, Dr. Hill has received several academic scholarships; published more than 150 scientific and clinical papers and textbook chapters; and presented at numerous medical and scientific meetings in 22 countries. He is also a member of many professional associations, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Gynecological and Obstetrical Society, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, the Society for Gynecologic Investigation, and the Society for Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility. However, with all of these accomplishments, he points to three career highlights:

"To have participated in helping thousands build healthy families, to have participated in the training of many talented young physicians throughout the world, and to have helped point the way to some of the potential mechanisms for reproductive failure," he says.

What is the most challenging part of reproductive endocrinology? "Understanding the "why" so the "how" can be implemented."

For his expertise in the field of reproductive medicine, his empathy and his compassion for his patients, FertilityAuthority congratulates Dr. Joseph Hill.

Nominate Your Fertility Doctor features a dedicated fertility doctor (reproductive endocrinologist) each month. You can nominate your favorite fertility doctor by clicking here. We will contact you if your fertility doctor is chosen to be our Fertility Doctor of the Month.

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