Decisions….and update on IUI with injectibles #1

So…I’ve now interviewed all three of the major reproductive endocrinology clinics in Atlanta (except one whose stats are sub par).

Clinic A is my current RE in Atlanta.  I like my doctor and I like the staff…but the rate of fertilization of our eggs with ICSI scares me.  This could be the fault of the doctor for letting my eggs grow too large, or it could be that my eggs are bad quality or it could be that the lab is bad.  A friend of mine recently cycled there and had 50% fertilization.  So it isn’t just me.  This is a concern.

Clinic B seems a little disheveled.  The doctor listened to me, she was nice but I definitely led the conversation – recommended which drugs and she largely agreed with me.  I don’t know about you – but I am not a doctor.  I know a hell of a lot about this process and certainly how my body responds to certain meds but…I’m looking for someone to lead me – not follow my lead. They do, however, have one of the pioneers of ICSI as their head of embryology so if fertilization is my aim…this is a serious consideration.

Clinic C was warm and fuzzy – brand new offices looked more like I was walking into Goldman Sachs than a fertility clinic.  The doctor, also a female, was such a nice, caring person.  The clinic’s pregnancy rates for my age are around 40% a cycle which is quite high – but she puts my chances around 25-30% based on my recent failures.  She recommends that I try two more cycles with my own eggs and then go on to donor egg…which was a little shocking, to be honest.  Donor egg chat already!

So I have decisions to make and I am completely torn for many different reasons.

My current cycle is looking OK – actually I’m please that there are 3 follicles with about 2 or 3 lagging behind.  I’m going to trigger tomorrow night (inject the HCG) and C’s sperm will injected into my uterus on Sunday and on Monday.  I have already scheduled the surgery for removal of the polyp in my uterus for late November…so that might tell you what I am thinking about this cycle.  If it worked, well, it would be great but I just seriously don’t think it will.

I’m giving it my best shot!

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Back to the present…

Two weeks ago I failed IVF #6.  It was a bit of a surprise for me but I’ll save that for another post.  Today I am day 8 of an IUI cycle (intrauterine insemination).  Normally I take a very high level of medication to stimulate my ovaries.  I’ve never been on any other protocol…so this time I decided to ask my RE to lower my dosage in half to see how I might respond.  So far it hasn’t been that bad.  I’m on stim day 6 (have not taken the meds yet) and I have four measurable follicles.  In fact, I’m quite pleased with this result.  At the end of this cycle (Friday or Saturday) I’ll get a trigger shot and C’s sperm will be injected – two times, a few hours before I ovulate and then again the next day.  Given our low rate of fertilization I don’t have high hopes but…you never know!  It is all about hope and I’m trying to muster some up.  In the meantime I am interviewing every IVF clinic in the Atlanta area.  So far I’ve learned one thing – I’m my own advocate.  Seems like the more you know the more you realize that this is just a crap shoot…you need to be on the right protocol of medications, have your body respond to those medications, have the Gods of fertilization on your side, a good thick lining and an normal embryo to implant in your uterus and continue to grow.  It really does surprise me, given all the factors involved, that pregnancy ever happens at all…and yet most of the world doesn’t need all this – they just have sex.  Remarkable!

If this cycle doesn’t work I’ll be having surgery in December to remove a polyp in my uterus..and then beginning IVF again in January.