Tuesday, May 5, 2009

It's been awhile, but we are doing the IVF trial!!

Okay, so I have been really bad about updating this thing. I need to get in the swing of doing this! Anyhow this one might be a long one so bear with me!

Basically our first visit to New York City was back in March. They basically went through all of the paperwork and talked to us about what is involved. They told us that if we were accepted there was a possibility they would cancel us if it wasn't working. I had an ultrasound and they drew some blood work. They had to check how may antral follicles I had..I was slightly below the amount required for the trial but they said it was okay. One thing that struck me was the doctor asked if early menopause ran in my family and that my ovaries looked that of a 40/70 (couldn't understand what he said) year old! My reaction? "WHAT?!" Anyhow, he said he wasn't certain as he couldn't tell on the ultrasound but it was still quite alarming. The trial coordinator talked with the doctor afterwards and basically had to decide on whether they were going to offer us the trial. He called us back to his office and said that he had good news and he also had bad news..of course I asked for the bad news first! He said that we weren't great candidates as I have less eggs..he said my ovaries are about 10 years older than I am..but his good news was that they were going to accept me into the trial anyways!! I was so ecstatic! I was scared, nervous, happy, and basically anything you can imagine! So, he gave me birth control pills and said that I would begin them the day I go for my bloodwork which would be a few weeks after that.

So, once this cycle started we headed up to NYC on Monday, April 20th, for the beginning of everything. They did bloodwork and the coordinator said my levels were a little bit higher than they like and that I really wasn't a good candidate for the trial but they were going to go ahead with it anyway. He chose the envelope which would determine my fate of which route of IVF we would be going through. We were put into the Mini IVF which I was sooo thankful for! Conventional IVF focuses more on quantity of eggs, where as Mini IVF focuses more on QUALITY which is more important to me! So, after that visit he gave me Clomid to take and said I would be taking it for many days and also gave me 3 doses of Menopur.

We went home, mind you traveling to and from is absolutely INSANE! We usually have to leave at 11pm and drive through the night. It's about a 7 1/2 hour drive. We arrive to the train station at about 8am, get on a train to go into the city, get on a couple Subway's, and then walk to the office..it's pretty time consuming and exhausting but totally worth it. Anyhow, I started taking my Clomid and Ross gave me my injections in my tummy..I am thankful he is so graceful with those..sometimes they sting but that's not his fault.

We had to head back on Friday, April 24th for more blood work and ultrasound. They said that things were progressing well and that I need to come back on Monday. So, on the 27th, we did the drive again for the same thing..blood work and ultrasound. This time they said we had to come back on Wednesday! So, not only did we get home Monday night around 11pm, we had to leave exactly 24 hours after that for another drive!

We arrive on Wednesday the 29th for the same stuff, blood work and ultrasound, waited 2 hours for the results (by which we went to Neil's Coffee Shop for breakfast, and that is like my favorite place now!). When we got back they said that they needed us to stay through the weekend as my levels had jumped up so much in only 2 days. So, that night I was supposed to take Clomid and another Menopur injection. We left there and called my mom to book our hotel room online since it was a little cheaper and then headed back to pick up the car in Newark, NJ and drive to the hotel which was in Queens. That took like 2 hours, traffic in NYC is just crazy! No wonder why people don't drive! LOL! So, we got to the hotel and took a well deserved nap, got up and headed to dinner. When we got back, Ross was getting the injection ready and realized they sent us home without a needle! Can't give myself an injection without a needle! So, I freaked for a few minutes and then called the answering service to the clinic..a lady called me back and asked for a pharmacy number so she could call in a needle. Well, we weren't from around there so we asked the people at the hotel and all they could do was point to the pharmacy a few blocks away..so poor Ross had to run while I sat on the phone with the nurse. He got the number and then the nurse called in the needle but they wouldn't allow it since I wasn't getting medication! Mind you, we stayed in a SCARY party of town..so, I can see why they wouldn't allow that! We were in Jamaica, Queens and were surrounded by scary people and a lot of homeless people..it was truly heartbreaking.

Anyhow, we didn't do the injection and only did the Clomid, we went back to the clinic on Thursday and they said that the Egg Retrieval would be on Sunday (we were previously told it would be Saturday). So, they gave me an hCG shot, told me to continue to take Clomid, and I also began taking Indocin..which I am assuming that is to prevent ovulation. My blood work was good and my ultrasound was showing that I would possibly have 6 follicles for retrieval. We went back again on Friday for the same stuff, and then they said I would have to move the retrieval to Monday! So, they gave me another hCG injection and I went on my way after the ultrasound and bloodwork, same meds as the day before.

Same thing really for Saturday, only difference is I began taking a nasal spray at 9pm that night (after all of the same stuff..ultrasound, blood work, etc) and again at 10pm. Sunday I had to take the nasal spray at 10am, this is basically to release the eggs. Sunday they only did bloodwork and said that they would see me on Monday..not not before the coordinator literally almost gave me a heart attack! When he was there he said "we have a problem". So he basically said that my pap smear had expired and that they had no blood work on file for Ross. Which totally made sense because when I had my screening blood work that is required for all IVF's, Ross was sitting in the chair to get his and they said he didn't need it! So, I questioned it but they said it was only for me. So, basically he said we either had to do it right then or they would have to cancel me. Of course I said, alright let's do it! I was not about to go through all of that for nothing! So, after that, we went on our way. We had decided to spend the day at Times Square..it was a nasty day though, but still very cool to see! We sat down and ordered at Planet Hollywood when I received a phone call from the clinic. It was the coordinator (of which was supposed to be on a plane to Texas..so I hope we didn't make him miss his flight!). He said that they needed to see me right away and that the Egg Retrieval had to be right then. So, I freaked out a little bit and we had to tell our waiter that we had to leave..I felt horrible but was so thankful they hadn't made the food yet! So, we grabbed a small can of pringles to share so I would have something in my stomach and basically ran to the Subway station, had to get on 2 different ones, and then had to basically run to the clinic. When we got there there was barely anyone there! They did an ultrasound to make sure everything was okay and took me upstairs. They had me change into a gown and then gave me a Valium. I just sat there until it kicked in, then when it did I felt soooo loopy! It was kind of a nice feeling! LOL!

Anyhow, they took me into the room and I got into the chair/table thing and showed everyone in the room my goods because I had to put my legs in the stirrups(hey at this point, who HASN'T seem them?! Right?!). The doctor was soo great and friendly he described everything to me! He gave me 2 shots of local anesthesia on my uterus..which surprisingly didn't hurt at all really! Just felt like a little pinch! Then he had to do an ultrasound to locate the eggs. When he was about to grab one he just told me to breathe in and then breathe out really hard and that's when he got it. So, all in all we ended up retrieving 6 eggs! It was really cool because I was able to watch everything he was doing! I saw the ultrasound on the screen and then saw the egg in the thing the Embryologist uses..too cool! I was able to see the egg of what might potentially be my baby one day!

So, after that I changed and then had to wait for Ross to do his job. Men get off SO freaking easy when it comes to infertility..LITERALLY! Here I am getting pumped full of hormones, getting so much blood work that my arm is black and I look like I shoot up cocaine, having a huge ultrasound want shoved up my WhoHa, and he gets to "do" his little job into a cup?! Damn! It's okay though, going through all of this for years has made me a much stronger person that's for sure!

Anyhow, we went back to the hotel afterwards and just watched TV. We left early on Monday morning to come home. On our way home we got a message that 2 of our eggs had fertilized, 2 were a little immature and they did ICSI (a procedure where they actually inject the egg with sperm..giving a much better chance of fertilization) and said they would call back today (Tuesday) with those results, said that 1 egg was abnormal, and 1 was degenerate..which basically means that it was missing some Chromosomes.

We got the call today that the 2 that had ICSI both FERTILIZED! YES! So, right now we have 4 and they said it's possible we will have 1 more but they are watching it as it hasn't matured yet.

So, that is that! Our next step? We will wait for a phone call on Friday..with doing a Mini IVF, they always freeze the embryos before the transfer. So, once they do that they will let us know how they have done and if they are okay. Then, on May 21st I will go back to NYC for a Hysteroscopy. They are doing this (it is basically a D&C) to clean me out from anything that could prevent the embryo from implanting. Since I have previously had endometreosis (and probably still have it now) they need to "clean me out". So then after that happens we will do the transfer and continue to pray that it works!

So, that is that for now! I will keep things thing posted as the information comes in now!