At this point, I’m actually 16 weeks pregnant and safely into my 2nd trimester! However, I really should start at the beginning of this incredible, emotional journey . . .
In 2005, at age 33, I went to my ob-gyn and told her I wanted to have a baby. Unfortunately, she found a dermoid cyst on my ovary and I had to have surgery and 99% of my right ovary removed. After recovering from the surgery, she recommended IUI (interuterine inseminations – or artificial inseminations), so I started on Clomid. Clomid is an awful medication, in case you didn’t know! I was so moody when I was on it that no one could stand to be around me! Anyway, tried Clomid, had to add a hCG trigger shot since we found out I don’t ovulate on my own, then added injectibles (Repronex) to the Clomid, the injectible meds with Femara and then progesterone support also – and tried IUIs for 3 years with no luck, despite my doctor’s reassurances (and no family history of infertility) that it would the next time we tried. Found out later that if it doesn’t work within a few months, it’s time to move onto a more aggressive method and that I wasted way too much time. Hindsight, huh?
In the February of 2008, I was frustrated, getting older, and ready to move on, so I transferred to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics for in-vitro fertilization (IVF). At my first appointment, I had an awful experience with the doctor. He insisted that I had PCOS, despite my previous doctor saying I didn’t have it and all of the tests indicating that I didn’t – he even pulled up my gown in front of some students and a nurse to prove he was right and that I was covered in hair. You should’ve seen the look on his face when he realized he was wrong! So, they ran some more tests (no, I don’t have PCOS but do have diminished ovarian reserve) and I got signed up for an IVF cycle in June. Well, I had a cyst (really, it’s an unruptured follicle since my body doesn’t release the eggs on it’s own) on my ovary and had to cancel that cycle, but I got into the July cycle (and had to fight with the pharmacy since the meds they had sold me had already expired! Fortunately, I won that battle.) Well, after being on meds with the microdose flare protocol for a week, they canceled my IVF cycle since I wasn’t responding to the meds. That came as a big surprise and was truly devastating for me.
Well, got ready to try again with a different protocol in September, but they found another cyst so that cycle was canceled. I got a great letter from them telling me that they’d try one more time, then they were giving up. Things were not going well! Well, I talked to the doctors and we found a way to get rid of the cysts using ganirelix before the cycle started, so I was back on track. In November, I finally completed an IVF cycle using the antagon protocol. I had 10 follicles, 8 eggs retrieved, 6 were mature and 4 fertilized normally using ICSI. We transferred 2 of the embryos (an 8 cell and a 6 cell) on day 3 and I held my breath during the 2 week wait (2ww) – and got a BFN (big fat negative), found out the remaining 2 embryos weren’t good enough to freeze, and I was out of insurance money. Wow! Lots of bad news all at once.
See the next post for what my next steps would be!
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