Is anyone ready to start a new IVF cycle?
551 Replies
Brutus - September 2

Lila~Thanks for the info. I think you and I are on about the same schedule. This is our first IVF after 4 failed IUI's. I have been on Lupron since 8/7, started Gonal F and HCG on 8/28. I am due for another u/s on Monday with possible retreival on Wednesday or Thursday. You had mentioned pain in your shoulder. Was what just after shots were administered or more frequently? My pain has been in my lower back right behind my rock star ovary.
Does anyone know if a heating pad/tylenol are ok while awaiting retreival? I figured I would be a little uncomfortable but just not to this degree.
Thanks!

 

airframeangel - September 2

Hey Brutus, don't know if I can help bcuz I had 2 totally different reactions from both egg retrievals. The first time went without a hitch and I was doing housework and up and about the day they took them out, a lil drowsy at first from the anesthesia, but that was all. This time I have had a bit of a rough time. When I woke from my anesthesia I was in a moderate amount of pain, and it didn't get better until yesterday! I was bed bound for about 8 days. I had an estradiol level of 4100 2 days before my retrieval though, which was considerably higher than last cycle. I gained 8 lbs in about a week and couldn't breathe because everything in my belly was very swollen and irritated by the blood they found in my abdomen, so my diaphragm couldn't open enough to get me enough air. They think I had mild OHSS but I am finally feeling better. You have to eat lots of protein and salty foods after your retrieval if your estradiol is higher than the norm. Baby dust to all!

 

airframeangel - September 2

Brutus, I took tylenol without aspirin (my re didn't like aspirin I don't think!) and I used a heating pad. Take a nice warm bubble bath, it helps relax your muscles. I had some lower back pain and you just have to relax, it will be over soon! Also, my re gave me percocet for the retrieval, which I didn't use the first time, but I most certainly did this time. You will probably have to take steroids and antibiotics the same day so make sure you take some stool softners cuz our bodies don't like so many meds at once! I found that out the hard way the first time! Imagine sore ovaries and constipation on top of each other!

 

allison - September 2

Brutus, I am having severe shoulder pain. My RE said it has something to do with referred irritation from my diaphragm?!? I don't know what is causing it, but I am miserable!!! I have this every month with AF, but then it goes away...it has been nearly 2 wks now!! My RE said I could take Advil or Tylenol up until the retrevial, but I would check with yours first.

Armyangel, thanks for the input about the stool softners. I am prone to having problems already, so don't want to make anything more swollen and angry in there.

My RE just called and said he wants me to only do 150 of Bravelle with no Menopur tonight and he will see me in the morning. My estradiol level was 1800 yesterday. I really wish there was some literature somewhere so I could see if I am normal or near danger, etc...

So, I see from Lila's post that Catherine is a teacher. I would love to know what everyone does. I am a RN. Up until last night I worked post partum. Starting on Monday, I will be a labor & delivery nurse. Sorta bad timing to start a new job in the midst of retrevial, but I was upfront with my new boss and she was very understanding. No mater my results of this crazy roller coaster we call infertility, I cannot imagine working in any other area. Can't wait to hear about everyone else's jobs.

Allison

 

airframeangel - September 2

Hey Allison, I know that anything over 4000 on your estradiol is very high and puts you more at risk for OHSS. If they are reducing your meds, that is probably a good sign cuz your body is maturing your follicles more by itself and doesn't need as much help from stims. They had to reduce my meds this cycle because my body was doing a great job without them. My estradiol did exceed 4000 though and I was on watch for about 8 days. Your re should be able to manipulate your hormones for you. Are you on lupron or antogen?
Angel

 

Lila - September 2

UGGH - this is the second time I have written a long post and then I go to scroll back to check something and lose everything I have written. Why am I so stupid!!

OK I will try to think of everything I just wrote:

Shoulder pain: I have only gotten it once and Allison is correct it is likely referenced pain from the diaphragm. When I had my Lap surgery a month ago it was terrible. I had thought the lap was no big deal but it took me 48 hrs to get over the shoulder/neck/upper back pain and be able to get out of bed and act like a human again.

I did just read an interesting study on pain killers (all kinds) and birth defects. If the article was correct it sounds like we are fine to take whatever necessary for ER but after transfer takes place we would be better off dealing with the pain on our own. As I understand it transfer really should not be that painful so hopefully this is no big deal. Can any of the girls who just cycled in Aug give any advice about is they felt they needed any pain relief after transfer?

Brutus good luck on Monday I just got my call and am going back in Mon for another check as well. How many follies do you have? What sizes? Where is your Estradiol level?

Armyangel how many did you put back in? Do you know if your clinic graded them or anything? I think you said you did a 3 day transfer - is that correct or did you do blast? Gosh from your symptoms it does sound like you had OHSS I am glad to hear you are much better now and recovering.

Allison I think your numbers sound great - I thought I had read somewhere on Dr Jacob’s posts that when you trigger you should have something like 200 units per mature follicle so with as many as you have and the size they are it seems like you are in good shape. I forget when do you get checked again? My fear is the opposite end of your concerns in that as I said I only seem to have the 9 follies and my Estradiol level today is 449 and that seems so low compared to everyone. I am on 450 IU of Bravelle and they did not change it after testing today so like I said I fear that my follies are moving along and growing in size but somehow not producing the proper amount of Estradiol. Isn’t it amazing that it seems no matter what your experience is with IVF it is still capable of causing you fear worry and anxiety that it is not working correctly? I would say not to worry about your numbers but I know now worrying is probably not a realistic option and I do not want to sound patronizing so I will say the other IVF mantra “keep the faith” and hope that helps.

By the way that is awesome about your job – very inspiring. I was just whining on another thread that I have a client (I am an interior designer) that I just found out is pregnant. Her project is quite big and I meet with her at least twice a week and now I know I will be helping her plan her new nursery. When I first found out I held it together while with her and then came home and had a complete emotional breakdown wondering how I was going to be able to handle all that if this IVF did not work. The fact that you can do your work in a maternity ward is amazing and as I said inspirational. I think I just need to get over myself and these concerns and deal with it.

Since you asked about personals I think I have mentioned most of mine – I am 38 married for 8 years, ttc for 5 years (with some breaks and seriously ttc for last 18 months with charting, timing, clomide IUI blah blah blah), I am an interior decorator in wash DC area, and DX is “unexplained” . Would love to hear personal info from anyone else who wants to share.

 

airframeangel - September 2

Hey everyone. Hope everyone is doing well this holiday weekend. Lila, since you were interested, I am a Staff Sergeant in the United States Army and have been in service for 8 years now. Been all over the world, including one tour in Afghanistan (6 months), Iraq, (1 yr), and Korea (1 yr). I am somewhat irritated with army medical service bcuz we have been ttc for 7 yrs and it took them 5 yrs to find out I had bilateral tubal blockage, just one stupid test that they had to order for me and it took so dang long. There was no explaination and I wonder if they had noticed earlier if something could have been done. I don't know, but I have been back and forth to Washington DC because the best army docs are there and they did my invetro and the surgery to remove my tubes. You might have heard of it, the ART Institue - they work out of Walter Reed. They do grade the embries 1 to 4 and I had 2 grade 2's put back in. 1 was the best grade. They took out 14 eggs, but only 9 were mature and only 6 fertilized, so that scared me. But they were good grades. Last cycle we had 9 fertilize but only one of the bunch was a grade 2, the rest grade 3. Our IVF (since it is an Army program) doesn't do 5 day transfers and rarely accepts anything to freeze, but they told us it was cheaper than doing it in the civilian world.

I hate to pry, but can anyone tell me how much they have paid for their cycles and meds? I have spent over $8000 just for the IVF (2 cycles this year!) and that is not counting the weeks that we spent in DC in hotels. I think if I get a BFN this time then I would want to do it again but locally so I can come home every night. When you sit in a hotel room day after day you get yourself all wound up thinking and also at Walter Reed we see all the patients that are missing arms and legs and it kills me to see these young troops that have such a rough road ahead of them. It makes me wonder why I want so badly to bring another life into this world when everything is so messed up right now. But, if we wait for peace, I will die waiting. LOL. Sorry this post was kind of negative but I am not really feeling too well. I feel like I am having AF cramps and it scares me so. I am going to go for now. BABY DUST FOR ALL
Angel

 

allison - September 3

Angel, all I can say to you is THANK YOU!! Thank you for protecting our freedom, thank you for risking your life for me. I am so sorry to hear military insurance is so terrible and to make you have to go to that hospital and see what you described is awful. Is your DH also in the Army?

I have heard of a lot of women who have exact AF symptoms, but she just never shows up. Praying this is the case for you. Do you have endo or just the blocked tubes? I have severe endo and sometimes when they did the HSG my tubes were open, sometimes closed, sometimes barely open. It really made no sense, but my fembria are terribly adhesed to all the wrong parts of my body, so they can't catch an egg.

Were you on bedrest for the 8 days you were being watched? Was this after the retrieval? (I can't seem to spell that correctly) I am a little worried. My Left ovary hurts terribly. RE said it is really high, probably stuck up there.

Brutus & Lila, good luck on Monday, let us know how many & what sizes ya'll have. We will probably be retrieving about the same time.

I am just ready to be done. I have waited so long to get to this point, but I just want it over. I go in the morning, so maybe he will tell me what day this week we will be doing the "baby dance", well atleast my eggs and DH's little guys will be. DH may not touch me, or even look at me at this point :)

Good luck to everyone, where ever in the cycle you are. Baby dust to all and sticky thoughts to those who are in the terrible wait!

By the way, I live in Texas, near Dallas.

Allison

 

allison - September 3

Oops, forgot a few things...sorry.

Lila, from someone who is decoratively challenged, I think interior designing sounds pretty awesome. I imagine you get to set your own hours and be your own boss too huh?

The best part about my job is I get to take care of couples just like us. I get to see the end result and they are always just a little more grateful. It keeps me going.

Angel, you asked about cost. Fortunately, my insurance is picking up 80% of everything. This is the first time in 10 years any of my insurance companies have paid one penny. In TX, insurance companies have to pay to diagnose infertility, but they don't have to pay for anything else. My sister did IVF a couple of years ago and paid over $12,000, with no result. My RE, however, has a cash price plan. He charges $4,600 cash, but it does not inclued meds ($2,000-$3,000 more) or lab work. Other clinics in town charge $8,000-$10,000 just for the IVF part. My RE has really high success rates too.

I think that is all for now, will be seeing RE in a few hours.

Allison

 

airframeangel - September 3

Allison, my dh is also in the army - but he has been in over 21 years now! And I am not sure exactly what was wrong with my tubes because I only had 1 hsg and they decided to take them out. I still can't believe I didn't get a second opinion now but they really scared me and told me that we wouldn't even be able to get pregnant with invetro if my tubes were there because since they didn't know why they were blocked it might be bacteria or something that would kill the embies. The 8 days that I was being watched was after the retrieval because my estradiol had gotten so high 2 days before the retrieval. Both my ovaries were way down, unlike your one that is stuck! Gravity pulled mine bcuz they got to be so heavy and they were like 6 and 7 cm across the middle on wed, which is pretty big considering normally they are between 1 and 2. They wanted me on bedrest because they didn't want me to get torso something or another. That happens when it twists the blood vessels and cuts off blood supply and ovary dies :( I wasn't going to risk it. Just be careful and listen to what your RE tells you even if it sounds stupid! LOL. I am quite stubborn but I am doing fine.

Does it hurt to have endo? They said they found traces of endo on my tubes when they took them out.

Lila, The actual transfer is no biggie. It is just a catheter they put in and while they ultrasound on top of your belly they look for top of the lining and put them through the catheter! Easy simple. It is a bit uncomfortable because you have to have a full bladder for the u/s and then they are fishing around in there, but it isn't any worse than af cramps, and goes away as soon as they remove the catheter and speculum.

Allison, my advice after retrieval, eat lots of salty things and food with protein - it will help shrink your ovaries. So the one that is stuck can go back to its home!

Baby Dust To All!
Angel

 

allison - September 3

Well, they found another one today, so that makes 18 follicles. They are ranging from 11-17mm, uterine lining is 11, estradiol is 3000 and progesterone is 1.1. The nurse says everything looks good number wise. RE said he won't cancel me even if my estradiol # goes way up because my ovaries look good, not too many little cysts. He said probable retrieval Wed or Thurs. I go again tomorrow.

 

Lila - September 3

Angel - Wow I did look up the ART stats in the just released SART data and their success rates are awesome. I think it is terrible that you do not get better coverage for the costs of IVF being in the armed services but at least you do have access to an excellent clinic and excellent REs. I thought Walter Reed was slated to be closed do they know where they will move the ART clinic when that happens? Is that soon? I hope you will have your BFP and not have to worry about where they are moving or needing them again!

I am so sorry that you also have to deal with the added stress of cycling in a situation like Walter Reed where I can only imagine how difficult it must be to have served in Iraq and see those fellow soldiers return wounded. I am sure it is gut wrenching and sad in many ways yet also inspiring to see them fight their way back from injury, but I can not fathom how difficult it must be on you to see that and deal with it while you are actively also dealing with your own IF and all the stress that entails. As I said to Allison the other day one of the great side effects of a board like is you can see what other women are dealing with while going through their cycle and you can get perspective on what you are dealing with, what is (and is not) manageable, and above all what is important. Thank you so much for sharing your stories - they are important to be told and they have really helped me re-think and deal with my own stress and issues.

That is great about the Grade 2 embies – excellent reason to be hopeful. It is interesting about the issue with freezing do you know what is behind that logic? If you have extra embies go to blast and look good for freezing will they do it or is it policy to never freeze? Sorry to be nosy I am just curious if politics are at play in making those determinations. And again to repeat what Allison was saying I think those AF symptoms are not something to get too concerned about everyone (doctors – pregnant women) all say that the symptoms for each are really close and not indicative of one or the other. So try and stay positive (I know that is right up there with “just relax”) and that Beta test will be here soon.

Thanks for the advice on the transfer I have been a little nervous about that as my IUIs had been very difficult and extremely painful – for two different DRs (and I have a fairly high pain threshold). Glad to hear your transfer went well and I will try to cross that worry of my list. Also thanks for the food tips I will definitely keep those in mind after retrieval.

Allison things sound really great for you – I am jealous of all those embies, way to go! It must be a relief to know you are good to go and have an approx date for everything to happen. I forget did I ask if you are planning a 3 or 5 day transfer or does your clinic wait till they see how things progress and then make the call. Either way good luck.

Sorry as usual I have written a book – will chat with you all later.

 

allison - September 3

We will be doing a 5 day transfer. I do have lots, but won't know quality and fertilization until it happens. This is all so very stressful. The hours are not passing fast enough.

 

airframeangel - September 4

Lila, they are slated to close DC in 2011 so there are a few more years left. I just found out yesterday that they are going to do IVF right here at Fort Bragg starting in 2008 so I was super excited. If we get a BFN this time I will deploy in Feb 07 to Feb 08 with my DH and when we get back they will have IVF right in our clinic! So no more Walter Reed and stinky hotel rooms. LOL.

I am staying positive though, I am praying every 5 minutes that we will get a BFP on Thurs! It isn't coming quick enough! I am kinda upset though, because my DH will be going to Afghan with or without me in Feb and I am worried that he is going to miss the birth if I don't make it full term. Well, if it isn't worrying about getting a BFN it is worrying about something! LOL.

I have become somewhat of a worry wart and I have a feeling it has something to do with all these damn hormones I have put into my bloodstream! I cry at the commercials for those lil ethiopian children with their big ole bellies and they are just starving and it kills me! It is hard for me that so many children are dying around the world and I am dying to have one!

We have a brand new 2500 Sq Ft house and we spend so much money on "toys" to keep ourselves amused. But then I think to myself how lucky I am to have all that I do, but then I remember that no matter how many "things" I buy, I still have an emptiness that I want filled with a darling baby! I have not lost faith, I know that God doesn't say NO but he says NOT RIGHT NOW. I am sure I will have my bundle of joy when he is good and ready! Sorry, hormones! LOL. Talk to yall soon!

Oh yeah, Allison, that is great about your counts! I hope they are all mature and they fertilize beautifully!

Good luck and baby dust to all!
Angel

 

Fortyfour - September 4

Hello to newcomers and thank you for all your kinds thoughts. Good luck armyangel. My hubby is a retired marine- put in 27 years. Thank you and your husband for serving our country.


When I had my hormones checked on Day 3 of my cycle my estrogen was 54 and my progestrone .1. Does anyone have any of their levels at that time to share with me. I felt that they were low but the doc says its fine.

I started my estrogen shots on Friday and dont see the doc until 2 weeks for u/s and bloodwork.

 

Lila - September 4

Hey 44
Hope you are doing well. Not sure if I can be of much help but here is the levels I know about - my Estradiol level this cycle (with Lupron suppression) was 14 on day 2. On my last two day 3 tests on a normal cycle the levels were 42 (in June) and 59 (last Novemebr). I have never been given my progesterone levels so I am no help there. How goes the plans for the FET?

 

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