Friday, August 17, 2012

Playing Catch-Up

I've been slacking.
My life has been such a crazy whirlwind of activity, I don't really know where to begin!
The quick version:
In May we started the process to buy a house. We put in an offer, it was accepted, we had an inspection, everything looked good, closing was set for the end of July, we went into underwriting. We begin the IVF prep. Weekend before 4th of July we went to Chicago. On the 3rd, our lender calls to tell us there are issues, our loan is on hold. Two... Or was it three?... weeks (that felt like two months!) of stress, uncertainty, and craziness follow as we try to get stupid errors cleared. In the middle of this, we begin our IVF cycle. Finally, as we are faced with losing the house we love, along with the couple thousand we have already put towards it, and I'm about to lose my mind, by the grace of God, the final issues were resolved and we ended up in a better position than when we started.
My last two weeks:
This cycle I was on 20 units of Lupron, cut to 10 units when I started stims. They cut out the Repronex, and started me on 125iu of Follistim. The goal was to only get 10-12 eggs and get me to ET without having to freeze. The first few days were good, though I started off I bit slow. After 3 days of stims my E2 was at 91.2, at 5 days it was 180. They upped the Follistim to 150, I went back the next day, E2 was at 370. Kept the dose at 150, at day 8 it was 948, at day 9 it was 1909 (dose down to 75iu), on day 10it was 2550 (at which point the vein in my arm collapsed, and the vein in my hand blew when they tried it get blood there. Luckily they got enough blood in the tube to run my estrogen)
At that point they were only counting about 12 follies over 10mm, the biggest ones were around 14-15mm, so I was excited. The next day it was up to Dallas for my hopefully final sono before trigger. The RE counted a few more than 12 follies, a few were around 18mm, a few in the 14-16mm range, but most were under 12mm so I was still hoping for around 10-12 mature. they told me it was most likely trigger night.
Got the call later that my E2 was at 4200... Soooooo much better than the 5700 it was last time!...and that I would be triggering at 9:00pm for 9:00am retrieval that Saturday!
On Saturday they retrieved 27 eggs.
That's one more than my last cycle.
The doctor said they all looked really good, but that they wanted to cancel my ET again. He told me that with my E2 being over 3000, it cut my chance of success to 15-20%. He said they would freeze half the eggs, like last time, but this time they would grow the fertilized eggs to day 5 before they froze them, and he would let me cycle for my FET as soon as AF came since I didn't "technically overstimulate". I also wouldn't have to do BCP or Lupron, just go straight on the Estrace.
He said that if I waited, he gave me a 90% chance of being pregnant by Halloween.
I was upset. My last cycle kept replaying in my head like that damn "Call Me, Maybe" song. I didn't want to pay another $3000 for a worthless FET. I didn't want to take the meds and the painful PIO shots, only to find out my eggs didn't fertilize and my embies didn't survive the thaw or arrested. I didn't want to make a four hour drive to transfer one, slow dividing embie. I didn't want to get my hopes destroyed again. I didn't want the heartbreak.
I was close to tears and I know the doctor saw it. I told him I was worried about a repeat from last cycle. He said that ultimately it was my decision, but that I needed to go home and think it over and not to let my emotions overshadow my logic.
So I told myself to wait and see. I consoled myself with the fact that I had 5 days to tell them not to freeze, that I wanted to transfer. That if I felt we were going down the same path, I didn't have to wait.
This is how it compared.
Previous cycle                               Current cycle
26 retrieved                                   27 retrieved
23 mature                                      23 mature
11 eggs frozen                              12 eggs frozen
12 ICSI'd                                      11 ICSI'd
6 fertilized                                    8 fertilized
6 day1 embies frozen                   5 blastocysts frozen
I'm so excited by how much better we did, I can't even tell you!
In the end, I couldn't argue with the numbers. A 90% chance is much better than 20%... which, by the way, I did the research (googling) and the studies backed him up that estrogen levels over 3000 drop pregnancy rates to only 15-20%.
But back to my life... Quick version again.
Saturday was ER, Sunday we moved into the new house, Monday I started Heparin, Tuesday I went back to work, got the day3 update that 8 out of 8 embies were still growing and looked "perfect", Wednesday I expected to start feeling like poopy, but didn't, Thursday I expected to start feeling like poopy, but didn't, Friday I started feeling optimistic that I would not feel like poopy, got the report that 5 out of 8 embies made it to blast and were frozen and that they all looked "amazing". Saturday, a full week after ER, I was feeling amazing. Hardly any bloating, hardly any pain... Except when I over exerted myself moving the Sunday and Monday right after ER... Not AT ALL what I had last cycle! 
Fast forward a few days to Thursday (yesterday), 12 days after ER. I started spotting Wednesday night, so I had put on a pad before bed. I woke up Thursday to cramps and AF had come with a vengeance from hell! Heeellllllooooo, CD1!
Called the nurse to report my period, she asked if I had had a beta. Um, no...
She asked if I had stopped my meds. I'm only on the Heparin.
I reminded her that I had not had a transfer. She had to call me back.
She called back and said that the RE said I could have my baseline done in Houston, but he wanted me to get a beta done too. I told her I could have the baseline done the next day, with same day results. I reminded her that the RE also wanted me to have a CBC done the next day because I'm on Heparin, and I could have the beta done at the same time. She said she'd call in the orders and that I could stop the Heparin.
This morning I went for baseline. They normally do blood first, but instead they put me in the U/S room. U/S showed 4 cysts, 30 mm, 26mm, 24mm, and 19mm. I thought for sure it was BCP for me!
After the U/S they said there were no orders for B/W so they called to make sure and the nurse said they didn't need it.
I figured she had put my orders for B/W with LabCorp since I needed the CBC, so I made an appointment with them for later. Since Patrick took a half day at work, I drug him with me to LabCorp that afternoon. When I got there the lady told me they had no orders for me. She called my nurse, who was confused as to what I expected to be done. I again reminded her about the CBC and beta, which seemed to confuse her more. Um... We had this conversation YESTERDAY!!! ... But she agreed to fax the orders.
I get my blood taken and we leave. About 30 min- 1 hour later, the nurse calls me back and says that they don't need the B/W! I told her I've already done it so she says she'll call them and tell them just to dump it. Come on, lady! Get your shit together!
Good news... The doctor says my U/S looks fantastic! Only four cysts, considering I had 27 eggs retrieved only 12 days ago, he thinks is awesome. When you put it that way...
Since we aren't stimming this cycle, he says the cysts won't hurt anything, soooo... I start Estrace tomorrow!!!
Only one monitoring appointment on the 29th, if everything looks good I'll start PIO on the 31st, and transfer should be September 4! I can't believe it's already so close!
Now I just need to make it through the next few weeks of insanity!
Please, God, grant me strength and patience! Thank You, for all the blessings You have given us these past weeks!

1 comment:

  1. Well, that explains the lag in posting....goodness you've been a busy lady! I'm hoping all goes well for you. I'm going to be monitored from CD10 on for natural ovulation and then an hcg trigger with progesterone suppositories before a 5 day post trigger transfer. It's so weird how different every RE does things to get the same result! Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers...