Thursday, June 24, 2010

A really boring post unless you have my body

I started this blog because I was so moved by the beautiful things written in The Real Blogs.  I needed to respond and I wanted to be a real person (Okay, kind of real.  You might have guessed Roccie isnt my real name, but it is a nickname.)

I also couldnt remember what the deal was as I started IVF3.  When did the Lupron manifest itself?  What day was it when I came home and fired the cleaning service before I even took my coat off?  When did I tell the Director of Finance she was acting like a child at work?  How did I not get fired?  I wanted to be able to look back and "do the math" on the dates to warn my friends to run for the hills.

My head is exploding with information, so I must get it down while it is still fresh.  Remember, this has an uneducated patient spin on the data, so read with a grain of salt.  It turns out to be a standard protocol, but it was new to me.

Follicle news

  1. What is my resting/antral follicle count?
    No ultrasound at WTF session.  I seem to hover right in the 5-10 range.  Not a great place to be, but it is better than the 0-5 range RE tells me.  I agree.
  2. WTF is resting follicle count and WTF makes you think it will change this month?
    We are not banking on a change in the antral count, but instead changing the protocol to drive up the number of eggs retrieved using EPP, estrogen priming protocol.

    EPP is a 2 step process where the ovaries are primed the month prior to stimulation to recruit eggs.  The meds start after ovulation - estrogen and ganirelix.  The regular stims kick in after my period the next month.

  3. I want MF details on my follicles.  How many did I have:
    1. for IVF 1, when we got 3 sucky eggs, all moved on a day 3 transfer?  BFN.
      Didnt find out as first cycle was with Boutique Fertility, not my current Large Fertility Operation.  I can get the info later.
    2. for IVF 2, when we got 8 decent eggs, a day 5 transfer of 2 embryos resulting in one delicious baby and an embryo for the freezer?
      11 follicles.
    3. If my resting was low when we started IVF-3-turned-IUI, WTF made you think it would produce enough eggs to warrant IVF?
      10 follicles.  Go figure.  So much for my theory They-Should-Have-Known-This-Cycle-Would-Suck.
 FSH and stats
  1. What is my damn FSH and why isn't it a good indicator of ovarian reserve?
    5.6 and I believe is it desirable to remain under 10.  Decent number but not great.  I now understand it to be an indicator on your response to the stims.
  2. WTF.  I am 40 in December.  Early December.
    My age seems to be the tolling bell of doom, not my FSH.  Fucking 40.
  3. I want to know my embryo classifications/grades/etc. WTF went wrong to cause the FET to never develop a heartbeat, despite good beta scores?
    I ended up not being able to ask this question.  It is an untold story for me.  It is too close to pain and goes well beyond the miscarriage.  I hope to be able to talk about it someday.
  4. Speaking of which, WTF were my beta numbers exactly?
    The numbers should increase by 66%.  Mine were good, despite a deep feeling they might have really been borderline, but no one told me.  It is heart-breaking to see how promising they looked:

    4, 175, 425, 3226 (86%, 140%, 659%)
Creative Shit from all my New Friends
  1. Uterine biopsy to encourage implantation.  WTF (whythefuck, not what) isn't everyone talking about this?
    RE knew all about this concept and has used it with success on other patients.  I dont have a problem with implantation.  My first IVF over suppressed me, the 2nd I got pregnant (live, healthy birth), and the 3rd I got pregnant (miscarriage).  This is an interesting option I hope someone else can use.
  2. Moxa and acupuncture
    Stress is the number one and the only thing I can control.  RE is a fan of doing what it takes to calm my uptight self off the ledge.
  3. CoQ10 and WTF else?
    Husband and I are both taking 200mg/day.  He is also on the other general vitamins for MFI fellas.  I am taking loads of other vitamins, but CoQ10 is new.  I work at a place with a nutrition sister company and have access to loads of great vitamins.  Please don't think all vitamins are all created the same.  I would love to share the details with you if you are interested.  They are expensive, but I really believe in them.
  4. Damn caffeine I had a couple months ago.  WTF didnt RE tell me it was poison?
    RE really came through on this one.  Caffeine impacts your uterine lining, not eggs.  Thank jaw, I do not have a problem with my lining.  Guess what I am doing on the way to work tomorrow?  Misto, ladies, misto.  Outta my system in 8 hours.  If only all drugs rinsed this clean....
  5. Something about ICSI on immature eggs allowed to mature in vitro.  WTF didn't we do this last time?  Did I lose viable eggs?
    This is leading edge technology but a separate plan than mine.  They retrieve early without stimulation and grow the eggs outside your body.  Not sure I fully understand it, but it is n/a to our plans.  The other version of this story is a standard stim and retrieval where all follicles are aspirated.  Large Fertility Operation routinely allows immature eggs extra time to grow.  I didn't lose anything.
What am I missing?
  1.  Next stop if this protocol doesn't work they way we want: DEHA and growth hormone.  This was also in the same discussion as breast cancer, so I am not sure how much I like this plan.  Way too early to worry about it.  I dont want to be against ourselves.
  2. Royal jelly - some type of traditional medicine.  I need to google it.  Anyone know it?
  3. A batch of frozen backup sperm would not have helped our crap Male Factor counts at IUI.  The thaw is brutal on sperm - much worse than eggs.  This was a great relief to husband.  I found out kind of he blames the IUI failure on himself.  Absurd, but completely understandable.

PS - Interesting IVF protocol discussion website.


  1. I'm a huge believer in royal jelly. Especially because it's more a superfood than a supplement - naturally occurring, yadda yadda yadda. I also think it's made a huge difference in my antral follicle count. I also like the taste of it (though not everyone does). Get the stuff that's in the actual honey, not the pills. Supposed to be better. Also, I'd be REALLY interested to hear your take on the Coq10. I was taking Ubiquinol but not sure that it's preferable. Also, never quite knew how much to take of the stuff.

    The DHEA...a few thoughts on this. Some people do beautifully on this. I was on it 2 months and didn't do so hot - lots of heart palpitations, which is why I finally quit it. The key thing is to have them test both your testosterone and DHEA before you take it. If your testosterone is high, you need to stay away.

    Lastly, your FSH is GREAT. Really great. That's a good sign. (And my friend who is preggers with twins did the estrogen priming...she believes it made all the difference).

  2. Your FSH is smoking hot. Like a young thirty-year-old. Otherwise, dish on the vitamins brand. Also, taking notes here. Excellent review.

  3. I'm with Adele - I've been taking the Royal Jelly (with Bee Pollen) in honey for 2 months now and am really hoping its going to make a difference.

    Misfits is right - you're FSH is smoking hot. Mine hovers anywhere between 6 and 8 but I haven't had this tested since my last IUI in April so who the fuck knows what its doing now.

    I'm curious about the Coq10. I've been hearing lots about it but don't exactly know what its suppose to do - I'll have to look that up.

    I found a website that was interesting - all about what you can do to make healthy eggs in 90 days - here's the link:

    I'm not doing everything they've recommended but have been on Royal Jelly and try to force wheat grass down a couple of times a week as well.

  4. Hey guys. I am late in my response after this wkend. "Smoking hot FSH" had me laughing all day today. I havent felt this sexy in years.

    I accidentally misrepresented my supplement knowledge. I took notes here and there as I swept all over IVF blogs to harvest information. I didn't take many notes on WHY but just WHAT.

    Adele, I saw CoQ10 over and over. I met with one of our doctors of naturopathy who advised 100 mg, not the 200 I saw online.

    I got the Ubiquinol somewhere else in blogland too. But the nice young hippie in the shop agreed it would help with fertility.

    I work at a place that treats people with late stage cancers. The patients can only accept the purest of vitamins and supplements.

    A lot of products are CRAP on the market. It isn't surprising as the regulation is looser.

    I have heard stories about the likes of Centrum just getting pooped right on out in almost the same condition it went in. Ew. CNCA vitamins are powder and absorb quickly.

    I had to work my way up to the recommended daily dosage. I have to take it with food or I get an upset stomach. You know how hard ass we are about meds - they must make you suffer to work, right? Ha! Maybe this is why I believe in them so much.

    I am sure I don't explain this just right and welcome any challenges I can clarify for you.

    And fish oil. Take your fish oil.

    You might consider CNCA as a place to get your vitamins. It doesnt help me financially in any way. In fact, I can get you a nice little sample if you like.

    Lisa, great site. This whole 90 days thing has my boat rocking.

  5. I don't know about Royal Jelly, but I had great quality embies after a month of wheatgrass shots.

    Oh, and estrogen made me HORNY, so maybe you'll get that nice side effect. It's the first good side effect I've had from IF drugs! :)

  6. Also, have you had your AMH tested? Mine thinks that's a good indicator of egg QUALITY, which might be interesting to see in relation to your "smoking hot" FSH.