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Surrogacy Blogs:
Part of a Miracle
Bump Fairy
Our Surrogacy Adventure

Working on it:
Mad Hatter
Chick N Chicken
Ambivalent Womb
Stirrup Queen's List of Blogs
Delinquent Eggs
Life and Love in the Petrie Dish
Life in the Infertile Lane
Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Barren
Everyone Else But Me
It Takes a Village
Stella Part 2
Music Maker Momma

On other paths:
Fertile Soul
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Out, damned egg! Out I say!
Holding Pattern
Hummingbird Chronicles
Velvet Cage

Adventures in Baby Making
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Great Good Fortune
Healing Arts
Hopeful Mother
I Can't Whistle
IF & the City
It Only Takes One Egg
Waiting for Baby Orange
Jenny From the Infertility Block
She's Back!: Manana Banana
Smarshy Boy
Stella and/or Ben
Tinkering with the Works
Twisted Ovaries
Wishing For One

Other Good Reads:
Dr. Licciardi's Infertility Blog

Mc Gill Reproductive Centre - Montreal
Georgia Reproductive Specialists
Jinemed Hospital - Turkey

Cooper Center - NJ
Conceptions - Colorado
Red Rock Fertility - Dr. Eva Littman
Pacific Fertility Center
Zouves Fertility Center"
Nova IVF

IVF Meds - UK
Free Garage Sale
Flying Pharmacy (IVIg)

Blastocyst Grading Criteria
How much hCG is Left After Trigger?
POAS Ratings
More POAS Ratings
The Beta Base

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pre IVF10 Hiatus: Moving Day

I am moving my blog (again). I love that blogger is free (anything owned by Google pretty much rocks), I love its blogroll features that I have never used, and it's a place where you can be sorta anonymous, that is, unless like me you accidentally forget you're sharing your desktop during an online meeting at work and then go off to read your blog. Yes, I did that. I accidentally outed myself, realized it within a few minutes and stopped sharing my screen. I checked my logs and saw a bunch of queries for "my name + blogname". All in one day, which meant that people were looking specifically for me. None of you guys would do that as you already know me.

Yet another reason to start anew.

It took me a bit to get my new blog up and running on WordPress ... I'm a techie by nature and thought it would be a cinch, but it was a pain in the bum. It doesn't have as many features as I thought it would. It's sorta "open source" and you have to add on "widgets" to get it to behave like blogger.

But I waded through it all over the last week or two ... and I think it works for me. I haven't been able to figure out how to get my fertility fish pond in my header so I have static fertility fish for now.

Anyways, let me know what you think?


Saturday, November 20, 2010

As Expected


HCG < 5 (didn't leave the exact value)
E2: 25
P4: 15.3

Values 3 days post transfer:
E2: 360
P4: 47.6

How did my P4 go from 47.6 all the way down to 15? I was taking at least 800mg/day which is a LOT of P4!!

Also, my estrogen went from 360 to 26!? It looks to me as though my numbers all plummeted.


They left the message on my blackberry as the battery had died (I didn't think to look) and left the numbers.

Bad suppository batch (inconsistently made)
I just can't absorb it all vaginally
It leaked out most of the time

Not sure what else explains it all.

Do some women just not absorb it or what?

I would love to retest my numbers. I think I have a "open lab slip" somewhere. I think I'll see if I can find a quest labs to knock one out today while I'm still on my progesterone.

Please...any and all ideas about this?

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11DP3DT: Waiting & Strategizing

No news yet. I think they typically start to do calls around 3PM EST. It's high noon. I know it's going to be bad news. A few cells in my body want to believe that, as a few of you have said, I'm one of those that HPTs don't work for. Or that my urine was too dilute.

Hope springs eternal. Many of us have drowned in that damned spring.

I ate my dexamethasone, my aspirin, but I have to walk down the street to refill my levothyroxin. I don't want to take another lovenox shot if I don't have to. My tummy has dark purple bruises that make the BF's kids squeal.

The BF and one of his kids are sick. The little one was screaming in pain from his throat last night. It was heartbreaking. He was in such pain that he vomited. I told his ex-wife that it looked like strep to me, I've had it plenty, and she argued with me that it wasn't. Not sure why she likes to argue with me over stuff like this. I was premed. She went to marketing school. I aced every unknown lab in organic chemistry. I was a protein chemist in an immunology laboratory. I'm not sure she has ever set foot in a lab. I truly believe that I would have made an excellent diagnostician had I gotten into medical school.

It was no surprise that the DH and the littler one just got diagnosed with strep not one hour ago with a rapid-strep test. I knew it. I told him to text the ex and let her know. I hate feeling so smug, but she makes me crazy when she argues anything science with me.

I've already set about cleaning every solid surface with lysol wipes as strep is my kryptonite. When I get strep, my immune system has a horrible time with it. I typically get a horrible psoriasis outbreak from it with patches on my scalp and back (I get a particular form called "Gutate Psoriasis" when I get strep). I'm crossing my fingers that the dark angel of strep passes over my throat and keeps going.

I stayed up til 3AM last night, driven as all hell by those negative HPTs, working on a spreadsheet of suitable gestational surrogates and wrote/posted an ad for myself. I need to start writing to these ladies fast. I found about 15 GS that seem interesting, but I need to shortlist to a reasonable number and start to aggressively work on this. I shudder to think of what this will cost me. I also shudder to think of not having a child if I delay and don't move fast.

I wonder if I need to take a month off after having done a very low stim cycle? That'll be my first call to the clinic when AF arrives. If I do, then I'll do an IVF retrieval that starts late December. I have one last try left with my insurance and it's going to be a full stim cycle, getting as many eggs as possible. These will be frozen or freshly transferred into a GS. There is no fucking way they are going into me, with or without his magic drugs that are supposed to fix my toxic uterus.

After this, I'll consider doing more low stim cycles if Dr. Czech can figure out anything new about my immune condition that would convince me that I should ever transfer something into me again. I know he's hopeful about his "controlled meds", but I'm outta time. I have a lengthy consult with him scheduled for December 6. At that point I'll be moving my immune treatment over to him from Dr. S in California. I'm also talking to Dr. KK's office as I'm interested in her ideas on Resistance Indices for uterine blood flow. I've stuck with Dr. S's office for reproductive immunology for 5 years. It hasn't worked for me. It's time to switch to see if someone else can turn up a new finding that will make a difference.

I sorta doubt it. Yesterday's bloodnurse asked if I'd done some "COX-something" test. I hadn't. But she looked at my list of meds, saw that I was taking lovenox, and said that even if I tested positive for it that I was already doing the prescribed treatment.

All this immune stuff might seem moot if I'm using a GS, but getting the immune issues under full control ensures that I'll get the best eggs out of me.

I don't truly believe that Drs. KK or Czech will find anything new that requires a new treatment but I'm all about contingencies.

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Friday, November 19, 2010

10DP3DT: Being Stealthy

Dr. Czech has two offices: one in NJ and one outside Philly. The bulk of the IVF stuff is done in NJ: retrievals, transfers, U/S, bloodwork, etc. The other office does U/S and blood, but they don't do the big stuff like retrievals.

I see the doctor in both offices as I'm one of his "special" patients that he's testing out some "very controlled" meds with - stuff that is supposed to help "detox" the uterus of endo patients like me. Long story short, my file migrates between both offices depending on what I am being seen for.

So this morning as I was preparing to check out of my hotel, I came up with a stealthy idea.

I put in a call to his Philly office and asked, "Would it be ok for me to do my beta there?" Yep, no problem there. I didn't leave my name or anything, lest they start to "do research."

I knew they wouldn't have my file there as it was still in NJ - I was due to be in NJ TOMORROW for my beta, and THERE my file awaits. They also wouldn't think to call to check on my date: most patients are compliant and follow the rules.

Not me. After 9 rounds of this shit, I've learned to work the system a wee bit.

So I showed up a bit after lunch, filled out my paperwork, and got my draw done, no one knowing any the better.

Except for me, who is feeling quite content that I'll have my results tomorrow as planned but without have to drive 160 miles round trip to the Joisey office on a Saturday. The results won't get to me any earlier, but it saved me the long and boring drive.

Well worth the stealth. :-)

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9DP3DT IVF9: Screw this cycle

So, I had some rather intense cramps on Sunday night which progressed into Monday. I went to work that day, cramped all day long at my desk, and decided to take the train home that evening, which sucked, as the train broke down, it took 40 minutes to fix, and then I had to walk home 1/2 a mile with my laptop bag. It took me about 1 hour 20 minutes to do my typical 30 minute max commute.

I was exhausted and pissed by the time I got home.

And by the time I got home, the cramps were gone.

I can't help but think that I should have taken a taxi to the ferry and have gone home the more expensive but safer way.

There was just a wee twinge of them the next morning (Tuesday) as I drove to Philadelphia...and then a teeny bit on Wednesday...but really nothing I could notice.

Today there hasn't been a thing. Not even a remote sensation.

And the HPTs are snow white.

So, if progesterone causes cramps, then where have they gone? I've been at work up and to bed at random times and so I've taken a few 200mg P4 capsules to work as I'm sure that some of the P4 has just oozed out before it's had a chance to absorb. So I've probably gotten a bit more than the 800mg/day, which means if the cramps are solely P4 induced, I should be reeling over in continual pain.

But I'm not.

I worry that I screwed this cycle up by exerting myself a bit too much on Monday - then there was the stress of a fight with the other half on Sunday which left me feeling horribly depressed and emotional. I hate all the end of the cycle second guessing that I do. I can't help myself.

My beta is on Saturday and it smells like failure. I am still in Philly on business by myself, in a boring hotel room, alone. I wish I was at home with my cats who let me squeeze them until they're nearly flat before putting out a protest "mrow" in defense.

I think that I'm going to call the clinic in the AM to see if I can do my beta tomorrow and just call this cycle done for. If there's any HCG, and I'm sure there's not, they can do the math to figure out if it's worth retesting.

But my sticks are 20mIU sensitive and they're telling me that this party is over.

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Monday, November 15, 2010

6DP3DT: Testing out my HCG

Yesterday's HPT showed the last trace of my bHCG trigger from 9 days ago.

And, today? Today was the first day of a snow white HPT. 6 days after transfer. Now the fun begins.

Two days ago I wrote that I felt nothing. That was until last night. I had some great cramps last night as we drove the boyfriend's children to Toys R Us and, again today, at work and on the way home.

I'm not stressed (yet). Just curious, wondering, wishing.

The cramps might be due to my mixing progesterone types (suppositories and capsules up the hoohaaa) rather than anything. Perhaps they used a different type in the capsule? (Despite the fact that a molecule of progesterone is a molecule of progesterone. Unless it's perhaps synthetic and not exactly the same or mixed with something irritating?)

I try to not obsess about signs. I don't wipe obsessively, looking for traces of pink. I've read oodles on implantation bleeding and I actually think it's more of an urban myth or of a symptom of progesterone irritation to the cervix. This study seems to affirm this.

I can't take huge faith in cramps because progesterone screws with our bodies and our heads. It's comforting to know that something's going on when you get a cramp or two and I hate to say that it makes me hopeful for a bit, but I have had cramps with most cycles. Damned progesterone.

The only thing that will convince me is a red line, no matter how faint.

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Saturday, November 13, 2010

5DP3DT IVF9: Musings on Progesterone

Progesterone used to make me feel intense uterine cramps, make breasts hurt, and just cause me a lot of physical discomfort. Most of my cycles, I was on 200mg/day and maybe even 100mg/day on one cycle. All these symptoms on 100-200mg/day.

In this cycle I'm on 800mg/day of P4 supplements.

And I feel ... well ... nothing. My breasts are normal, smallish actually. I'm not feeling any cramps from the P4. Nothing to really make me think, "Is that the progesterone or am I maybe getting implantation twinges."

It's just rather quiet. Disturbingly quiet.

My last IVF cycle, I believe I had STABBING cramps at the time of implantation. That was the cycle I saw a very faint BFP that appeared for one day and then disappeared before beta day.

I have to wonder if the pain I was feeling in IVF8 was more a symptom of one hell of an immune reaction happening...or of typical implantation. The more I read of other women's experiences before getting a BFP, the more I think I had a major immune reaction. So many women state that they felt little around implantation, were pessimistic about the cycle, and then went on to a BFP.

One thing that comes to mind is that this is the first cycle I've done since my endo surgery at the end of June. Could it be that the cramping was co-correlated to the presence of endometriosis (stage 4) with progesterone levels? I know that endo can cause the body to produce progesterone at random times in the cycle and can cause the lining to be out of sync. Can progesterone conversely affect endometriosis?

Lastly, I wonder if it's age, and my body's lack of response to the progesterone, or something else. There's nothing special about my progesterone suppositories save that they're 400mg each. I should be recoiling in pain, but I'm not.

I wonder.

Anyone else notice a chance in how you feel with progesterone as you age?

I'm baffled.

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Friday, November 12, 2010

4DP 3DT: IVF 9 Spiral Arteries & Progesterone Levels

Made the journey to an out-of-the-way ultrasound clinic to get a quick doppler of my uterine spiral arteries. According to Dr. KK, for IF/immune patients, the resistance index (RI) of the spiral arteries should be below 0.6. If not, then additional lovenox should be added to get the number down. Too much resistance to the blood flow means that it is moving slowly and can clot. Something detrimental to an embryo if it attaches and finds a clot rather than a nice blood source. More about this procedure here.

I'm typically on 40mg/day during a cycle, but if you look at standard dosaging on the lovenox website, one should take 1mg per Kg of body weight. For me that winds up being 79mg/day, or, two 40mg syringes a day.

Dosaging for general purposes *might* be the same as for IF, but I'm not really sure on that, so I increased to 70mg a day since transfer.

So, after 3 days of 70mg/day of lovenox, the U/S technician found that my RI wavered between 0.65 and 0.74. He took multiple data points to be sure, but the number likely means that even at 70mg/day, I'm still not taking quite enough. One thing I am unsure of, is that Dr. KK often does this sort of U/S on certain days of the cycle and I'm not sure if these values apply in the luteal phase when under P4 support. It's a calculated risk to up to 80mg/day, but one that I think isn't too unsafe.

So today I upped to a full 80mg/day, but I am unsure as to whether I should do even more while unsupervised. I've actually seen some of her patients reporting that they're doing 60mg, twice a day. Holy crap. Maybe 80mg isn't enough? I did a PTT test about 10 days ago and I was in range then, but how about now?

I put in a call to Dr. KK two days ago and am going to get on her list of patients. She can treat me remotely, so that's reassuring. (BTW: The U/S technician that did my doppler today was trained by Dr. KK's ultrasonagrapher - so he definitely knows what he's doing.

My other concern, besides getting the right lovenox dosage, is that doing a doppler around this time feels a bit risky. I'm not sure if it is though. Dr. Czech's nurse did a U/S on me yesterday to ensure that my lining had converted post transfer - it had - so is this sort of ultrasound anymore risky than a doppler one? I asked if the "intensity" of the waves used was any different and he said "no". So I think I should be ok. So then the concern of just having yet another wand up my hoo-haa, trolling up in my nether regions. He was actually quite gentle though - no complaints on that department, so I don't think I need to worry about physical jarring of the embryo.

Maybe I worry too much? I just feel that this is one major thing (RI) that's been overlooked in my cycle for the last 5 years and it seems, well....sorta big!?

They also did my blood work yesterday to see how my progesterone levels were - I'm doing 400mg twice a day (supps):

Blood values:
E2: 360
P4: 47.6

I've read that doctors really like to see this number above 30, but I've seen many ladies report values around 10.

They said to change nothing in my protocol. I have to be honest: I don't know if this is a good P4 number considering how much I am taking. I do realize that oral and vaginal suppository P4 yields lower blood P4 levels than, say, PIO. But I'm not sure what the "curves" look like for: method of delivery against amount of P4

Anyone have an idea what a normal range for P4 is after transfer if using the suppositories?

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

2DPT: IVF 9 - Mo

I just read that Mo and Will lost their baby at just over 7 weeks. I am shocked. Stunned. She had absolutely PERFECT embryos, the best clinic on the blessed planet and still...it happened again.

News like this makes me despair that here I am, approaching 46, with one nearly perfect embryo (visually, not by PGD).

None of us are safe from this fate.

If you're a reader of her blog, or not, please stop by to share your support.


Tuesday, November 09, 2010


I know that this is supposed to be a relaxing few nights in a hotel, but it's actually quite *boring*. I have two more nights here then I head to a conference at work all day Thursday.

I've been wondering about my lovenox prescription. I've been doing 40mg once a day for all of my cycles without a change in protocol. If you follow Dr. Kwak-Kim at all, she's been doing some great studies of uterine blood flow through the spiral arteries by measuring the resistance index. She likes it to be below 0.6 or she may increase your lovenox dosage until it is. Granted you need to check PTT to ensure that you can still clot if need be!

I'm not supposed to go to 40mg twice a day until I get a BFP. So it's not an unsafe amount for me. But I'd like to know where my RI on the spectrum of things.

So one of the gals over on the Immune Board pointed me at an U/S facility in Flemington NJ that can test this for me. They're in network and I don't need a referral. Woohoo!

So I'm heading over on Friday afternoon to get my spiral arteries looked at - a 15 minute procedure with the dildo-cam that I am assured will be gentle and cause no harm to my one embryo. They'll forward the results to Dr. Czech so that he'll be fully informed as well.

Hopefully I'll leave with a bit of information on whether my uterus is actually working properly!

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MeKate finally had her baby ... and it's a girl!!!!

Please pop over there and say hello! :-)


Monday, November 08, 2010

Transfer: Close to Perfect

One 3 day old embryo.

5 cells.

Grade 2A.

And....absolutely no fragmentation whatsoever!! :-)

Is this the embryo of one turning 46 this month? Holy crap.

I am stunned. I had 3 with very little fragmentation my my last cycle at CWRC in May, but this little bean is even better.

I am thrilled ... and best of all, hopeful.

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Sunday, November 07, 2010

CD15: Anticipation

I sat around yesterday morning with both phones by my side, not sure which one would eventually ring. When it came in on my cell phone I recognized the number and panicked a bit ... I hate getting the clinic phone calls no matter what they are.

Fortunately, it was good news: the embryologist said that my little bean had survived the night and was at the 2pn stage.


I started progesterone yesterday - 400mg twice a day. 800mg total. That's quadruple what most of my doctors have had me on. I read a few of Dr. Czech's studies and it seems that he gets better pregnancy rates with this method in older patients. Glad this guy is on the ball with the meds.

Today the embryologist called at the same time. I was even more panicked today as so many embryos just don't make it past the first day or two. I've also been hemming and hawing on whether email my manager regarding my absence for a few days.

Good news again!

3 cells!

I asked the embryologist what the normal range was for an embryo that "made it" at this point. She said 2 to 5 cells is normal and that mine was doing just fine.


I made a point of asking her about my zona and whether it seemed that ICSI would have been required. But she explained that she wasn't the person that did the ICSI so she didn't know. She said there weren't any comments in my file. She did say that they see a 60% fertilization rate without ICSI. My one natural fert cycle was at 67% so it was a bit higher than that but not by much.

So I'm busy today trying to get the apartment in order for when I return on Thursday or Friday afternoon. I'll be in a hotel tonight through Thursday morning, complete with room service, housekeeping, and a shuttle to get me to and from my appointment. I hope it all goes well and that there aren't glitches with shuttles and meals that I couldn't have forseen. I've got my laptop & meds all packed away. I still need to grab hi protein snacks that I can take to the hotel to supplement the room service meals. I'm going to head out late tonight and stay there tonight so that my room is all set up in the morning and I can come back and lay down for the next two days.

The embryologist is supposed to call me by 8AM to let me know if the embryo is still alive. Another call I have to endure and hope that there's good news on the other end of the line.

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Friday, November 05, 2010

Retrieval Day

Imagine if you will, laying on an OR table, 2nd IV placed, patient draped, legs in stirrups.

It's 9:55AM.

But retrieval was scheduled for 9:30AM.

The doctor is no where to be seen.

Where is she? I'm told she was pulled over for speeding to the office and is talking her way out of a ticket.

She's still on the fucking road? WTF?

I am beside myself. I am at 34.5 hours post trigger shot. The clock is right in front of me, I can't avoid looking at it and watching the seconds tick by. I'm hooked up to an EKG (that machine that goes "biiiiiiing!" and I can hear my heart rate speed up just a bit every time I start to freak out).

I ask for an U/S to make sure that I haven't lost my follicle. My one and only follicle, which today measured just over 25mm.

It's still there. For now. I'm relieved for a few seconds.

I ask if there's another doctor in the office who can do my retrieval. The anesthesiologist dashes off and returns. "No". There's no one else.

Yes, that is the way my retrieval went. But not before my IV in my left hand didn't work, blood dripping down my hand, and then the anesthesiologist had the insight to place it himself in the other hand.

She arrived just a few minutes later and the anesthesiologist pushed the milky white propofol quickly through the syringe. (Have I mentioned that I love the stuff?) I remember as I drifted off asking her, "Hey, I know it says I've got one follicle, but please really look around. My ovaries like to stick to the back of my uterus. Really." She agreed to leave no stone unturned and out I went into a delicious sleep.

I woke up from my snooze, I asked my nurse if the egg was alive. She knocked on the embryologist's window and her head popped out. "Yes, it's alive AND mature".

Huge sigh of relief. (Doing ICSI on that one embryo set me back $1050 as Aetna doesn't think it's "medically necessary". Hell if it's not! I supplied the billing department with 7 IVF cycles worth of fertilization reports showing 100% fertilization for 5 ICSI cycles, 80% for 1 ICSI cycle, and the one cycle where I did natural fertilization, I had 67% fertilization rate, 6 out of 9, but only 33%, or 3, of the embryos were any good.)

I felt like I'd slept in, but I'd only been asleep 30 minutes. I got up at 5:15AM to drive myself the 81 miles to the clinic so I was utterly exhausted when I had arrived.

Yes. Drove. Myself.

The boyfriend was in client meetings in the city and couldn't get away. There was no one at his office that could fill in.

I knew they'd freak out if they knew I was there alone but I had no choice. I really don't know anyone here. No friends I can call up for a favor. So I did what I had to do.

I lied.

After they let me dress, they put me into a room to snooze and wait for "the boyfriend to arrive". I waited about 20 or 30 minutes. No one came back so I headed to the waiting room. The receptionist said I couldn't leave until he arrived. A few text messages sent ... then I heard the receptionist say to another, "...he just called...he's sending a car for her."

.::evil grin::.

The car was a taxi I'd called. He came in, asked for me, and I departed. Once in the car, I explained my situation and that I merely needed a ride to my car, which was around the building.

I handed him $10 - I'm sure it was plenty. I didn't even think to double-check. I was that petrified that they would figure me out and cart me back into the building.

And off I was.

I know it's crazy. I stopped at WFs for a decaf and some food just to make sure I was OK. I was. I made it home just fine. It was 2 hours since I woke up when I took off down the highway.

I'm in the same boat for transfer. The boyfriend is out of town - left today and he's gone for a week - and I'm on my own for Monday's transfer (that is, if the embryo survives the night). The clincher this time is that I need to be on strict bedrest for 48 hours. All day Monday and Tuesday. There's no way I'm driving 81 miles home in traffic to get home. It's too stressful a drive and I want to do everything by the book.

My plan is to get a hotel down the street for 2 or 3 nights. There are a few nice ones within walking distance that might run me $70/night. I can park there, check in and get my room all squared away with laptop, snacks, water, magazines, meds within easy reach. I'll walk over for transfer, and then call a shuttle to return me when it's done so that I don't have to drive. I'll order room service and ask for them to just come in the room so that I don't have to get up or clear dishes.

I think I can manage this way. At least I hope so. My other option is to get a car to drive me both ways. I can't imagine how much that would cost me but it seems that the hotel is probably the best way to go as I'm not going to get room service out of the cats.

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Wednesday, November 03, 2010

CD11: White Knuckle Cycle

Remember how I told the nurse that I didn't need to come in the very next day for bloods and US because I was only at 15mm?

This was two days ago, right? Two days ago that follicle was at 15mm. And we know that follicles grow basically 2mm/day. So said 15mm follicle should be at 19mm today. A perfect size for HCG. Yes?

Well, somehow in two days my single guy went from 15 to about 24.5. Essentially it grew 5mm A DAY.

I ask you, how is that even possible? This is my first time using cetritide over ganirelex and I've never had movement like this.

Ideas that immediately come to mind:

1. Bad batch of cetrotide
2. Refrigerator did damage to the cetrotide (too cold?)
3. Cetrotide just doesn't suppress me
4. Faulty injection (nah!)
5. Wrong amount of cetrotide for my body weight
6. One of the U/S techs screwed up on their measurements (but which one?)
7. Allergic reaction to cetrotide which kept dosage from being absorbed fully (possible: I had a nice red itchy abdomen after injecting)

All I know is that I've never had this problem with ganirelex before so when the nurse called today with the stats, I asked if it would be ok for me to switch back to Ganirelex, as it's what I know works best for me. If there is anything whatsoever wrong with my batch of cetrotide, I certainly don't want to take it again.

She said it would be fine, but didn't check with the doctor which sorta distressed me. I asked if Dr. Czech had even looked at my file at all for this cycle and the answer was that another doctor was the doctor actually monitoring my cycle. Dr. Czech comes up with the basic strategy and the other doctors implement and monitor.

I'm not sure I like this approach, especially as it was never communicated that Dr. Czech was not being "hands on" with my file.

Another gripe that I voiced to the donor coordinator today was that this was the first clinic I'd ever cycled at that didn't give me a calendar to go off of. At each step along the way, I've been given instructions verbally. Tonight I was told to take my menopure, cetrotide (or ganirelex), and HCG at 11:30PM. But nothing about whether I continued with my EE2 in the morning. How hard is it to print it all out for a patient and make sure she leaves with it at the end of an appointment?

I'm not a fan of cycling at a clinic with this much disorganization but as I'm retrieving in just about 40 hours, there's not a lot that I can do at this point.

Today's stats:

E2: 504 (292 two days ago)
FSH: 10 (7 two days ago)
LH: 3 (nice and low, so despite the 25.6mm, I'm fine)
P4: 0.2

Main follicle: 24.6mm
<8 (no measurements on this one)

Yes, four. It's a real pisser that they weren't clear on the strategy for this cycle - that we were going for 1 rather than more - as I could have had FOUR.

So, with a single follie at 24.6 or so, that is probably already cooked (aka: dead), I've decided to not go the GS route this cycle. It costs $500 just to register myself with the FDA, and that has to be paid for before retrieval, before I even know if anything was retrieved, let alone viable.

Just too much risk.

So assuming that it is viable, I'll either transfer or freeze - guess I'll make a split decision on Saturday when I get the fert report. I spoke to the embryologist today, she said that they free on CD1 (Saturday) as they've found that they have a 95% survival rate with a 1 day freeze as opposed to a 75% survival rate if they wait til day 3 to freeze. But the problem here is that we won't know if it can cross that CD3 hurdle when the cell division instructions shift.

Talk about one helluva a crapshoot of a cycle.

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Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Imminent Migration

I've finally installed wordpress on my old blog homepage and am migrating back there in the next day or two - or whenever I can get things up and running. I'm close.

It's been a painful process. Wordpress is GUI driven...and I would actually hack or write code than screw with countess widgets, themes, and crap like that.

I'm not sure I'll be posting an update link, for obvious reasons, so ping me if you would like the old address.

Hopefully a few of you still have it handy. :-)

I'll try to reach out to those of you that are here often to make sure we keep in touch.

CD10: DS Delivery Anyone?

Got a call from the DS clinic in NYC - they have 2 vials left of my favorite guy left while the rest of his "stuff" is in quarantine awaiting latest results. Both have been reserved and purchased for me to the tune of $300 - not bad. I'll be zipping over late afternoon via ferry to fetch them in person in a canister that has enough dry ice to last days. It feels sorta silly to be trollopsing, quite literally, down Wall Street for such a thing.

I asked my boyfriend if he would accept the delivery at his office, just around the corner, and he was horrified.

"What if our mail room person opens it up before I could get to it?"

Me: "Well, that would be damned funny now, wouldn't it?"

He growled at me and I couldn't help but laugh.

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Monday, November 01, 2010

CD9: Slowly I Turn, Inch by Inch

Got to Dr. Czech's office at 7AM for my bloodwork but they weren't clear that I needed an appointment for my regular ultrasound.

Nurse: You need to come in on Monday for your next blood and ultrasound.

Me: What time do you open?

Nurse: 7:00AM

OK, that doesn't tell me the following crucial details:

1. That while they open at 7AM that ultrasounds aren't available until 8AM
2. That ultrasounds require an appointment while blood does not.

I'm not sure why these ladies don't understand that they gave me half the information that I needed. My other half was totally exasperated that we had to wait until 8:30AM to get squeezed in for an U/S. Actually he waited out in the car while I stood next to the U/S sign in sheet asking every U/S tech that walked by if she could please see me as my other half was supposed to be at work in NYC (81 miles away) at 9AM and how horribly late we were. Finally a nice Russian U/S tech took pity on me and squeezed me in. We waited 1.5 hours but we were out 8:30ish.


So here's the data from today:

  • 2 follicles at 6mm (oh why are they so small?)
  • 1 follicle at 15mm
  • lining is 11mm (wow)
  • FSH 7
  • E2 295

I start cetrotide and 3 vials menopur tonight, continuing with the .02mg of EE2. NO gonal-f whatsoever? Wow. Cheap cycle.

They said they wanted me in for an U/S tomorrow but I protested (my!) and said that I might be at 17mm or 18mm tomorrow and that when I have been triggered that soon in the past that I'd had empty follicles and immature eggs. She said that if I was sure that I could push off until Wednesday. Whew.

That drive is just killing me.

So I'll order DS tomorrow and see if they can bring it to my house tomorrow - and I'll drive it down on Wednesday morning.

I told the office that I wasn't sure if I was transferring into myself or a GS at this point and that I would like to do the FDA bloodwork for a GS.

It's a lot to coordinate in two days, but I know from past experience that I'll figure it out in due time. I have a 2 day seminar that I am in charge of next week (Nov 10 and 11) and I am horrified of trying to manage that, 2 days of bed rest, and the seminar all at the same time.

I am irked that I didn't have any flexibility in scheduling the seminar - I didn't want to confide with my manager in my treatment as I've rarely seen it work out well when an IF tells her manager. I've seen the time away from work used against women friends of mine undergoing IF treatment and worry that I'll be the victim of similar treatment. So I've kept my mouth shut and here it is affecting my cycle.


All this for one follicle.

Crazy isn't it?

I am leaning towards just freezing this one and moving into another cycle in two months time. Stockpile as many as I can and then decide when I am more rational. I have to cycles that my insurance will pay for and then I'm on my own again.

I am such a hopeless romantic, thinking that if I transfer an embryo into me that it will grow. But, then I think, "If anyone can do it it's Dr. Czech". But how many times have I thought that "If anyone can do it, it's Dr. ?"

More times that I care to admit.

Dr. Moustache
Dr. Pompy
Dr. Generous
Dr. Indian
Dr. Italian

and now,

Dr. Czech

After 8 retrievals, I just don't know how to trust anyone completely. And I don't have the luxury of time at this point.

What to do?

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