Category Archives: surgery

IV Infusion #3

Well it’s been a whole month since I last posted.    There isn’t much to post when I’m not cycling and I’ve been down in the dumps because of being delayed.   I’ve also been down because while I am so, so happy that several of my friends who have infertility difficulties have gotten pregnant in the last month, it just makes me sadder to think it’s probably never going to happen for me.  I see others who get pregnant on their first IUI cycle or even their first IVF cycle and I feel jealous and sad for myself.  I hate feeling that way but it is what it is.

So yesterday I had my third IV Infusion.  Let me tell you, these things are adding up price wise.   The actual medication is $35 with my co-pay but running the IV and the doctors visit runs close to $300.  When I thought I was cycling in June I figured I’d have 2 infusions, pay $600, and be on my merry way.  Now I’m going to have to have at least 4 and pay around $1200 during the summer when I don’t get a paycheck.  Infertility is so great!

Anyhow, after the fiasco of the IV infusion last time the head nurse got me herself.  I had no wait in the waiting room, she took me right back, and told me to get comfortable.  There’s supposed to be no food or drink in the back but she always lets me bring in something during my infusions.  So I got myself settled and she came in, got my IV running then put in the infusion.

I cautiously asked how the lab was going.  She turned and smiled before speaking so I knew it was good news.  She said as of last week they are on track to be finished the first week of August.  The old filtration system is out and they are currently building the new one which will take 3-4 weeks.  In the process they also convinced the university to buy them 2 brand new, state of the art incubators as well so maybe it’s a good thing that we were delayed.   It sounds like they are updating much of their equipment which can only help my cause.

The nurse then told me that they were repainting the waiting room, getting new floors, and stripping the wallpaper.  They haven’t been able to do it because of cycles going on but since everyone is delayed they are updating the entire place.  It looks great!

By this time my infusion was running and we started talking about my cycle.  I should get a period July 22 or 23 and I will start birth control on day 2 along with my baby aspirin.  I will then call her and she’ll go over when to start the estrogen and the Lupron shots.  I’m so relieved that we are finally moving on.  I’ve been on the bench since November and it has really sucked.  That’s 9 months people and in the land of DOR that is NOT GOOD.  Thankfully my AMH is up so I’m not feeling as bad about it.

I still really wish I was doing this during the summer so if it doesn’t work I’d have some time to process it.  As it stands now, my retrieval will be around the first week of school for my students.  This sucks as I am getting a new aide and a new half time special ed teacher with me.  I hate leaving my kids with people they don’t know, especially the first week of school.

So that’s where we are.  I’m about a week and a half out from starting birth control which will mean my IVF cycle has officially started.  My 4th and final attempt to have a baby.   Looking at my chart this journey has been pretty crazy.  We’ve been trying since May 2013 and have been not trying/not preventing since May 2012.  I’ve been through 3 IVF cycles, 5 IUI’s, 2 hysteroscopies, and a miscarriage with a D&C.   All of that has been since January 2014.

I do think this is the longest time we’ve gone without cycling though so hopefully my body is good and rested.  I’m slightly concerned because I’ve had some pain in my ovary area and am really hoping it’s not a cyst.  I think I’ll lose my mind if I get cancelled due to a cyst.

So, I should be writing again in a week or so with more updates and will be more regular from then on since I’ll be actively cycling and there is always a lot to tell during that period.

Advertisements

IVF #2 Embryo Transfer

I just realized I left you all hanging!    We had our embryo transfer early on Sunday morning.   When we got to the RE’s office they told me both embryos had made it and that the embryologist would be in to discuss them with us.   They had me get undressed and my husband was put into scrubs.

The embryologist came in and told us that the good embryo was now actually borderline excellent and she was really pleased with how it looked.  She said the fair embryo was now fair to poor.  She let us know that the chance of twins with these embryos is slim.  That’s what we wanted to hear as we are really just looking for one.  She asked if we wanted to put both back in and we said we did.  She called the fair to poor embryo a “helper” embryo.

After 20 minutes they took me back with my husband.   I got into the position and my old RE showed up!   He was in charge of the ultrasound while my current RE was doing the transfer.  It was nice to have them both there.   When they put the ultrasound on I was in a lot of pain because my bladder was so full.  The speculum hurt even more.  Needless to say I wasn’t in the mood to chat.

They confirmed my name then the embryologist brought in the embryos.  The RE showed us where to look on the screen and they counted down and put them in.   I saw both of them go into my uterus but my husband missed it…..again.   The RE’s were grinning each other and told us that we had a picture perfect transfer and they went in perfectly and in the right place.   They snapped a picture for us.

My husband was then kicked out of the room and I was given a bedpan.  I almost died.   They told me to relax, turned on the water, handed me toilet paper, and left.   It took a few minutes but I wasn’t about to sit there with a full bladder for 45 minutes.  So, I did it.

I was wheeled back out and the embryologist came back in with her computer.   It was super cool what they showed us.  We saw all of my eggs, saw the actual icsi process being completed, then saw the embryos on each of the 3 days.   The excellent one looked amazing!    We also saw them do the assisted hatching.  It was really cool to see.   Afterwards she told us that if we got pregnant, we would get a copy of the photos on a CD.

I lay down for 45 minutes and my husband and I just chatted.   My back and lower abdomen were still in pain and the RE said they probably would be for a week or so.   So not happy with that answer.  My beta is supposed to be the 17th but we’ll be on vacation so I can’t have it until the 21st now.  I’m usually a beta or bust gal, but I’m going to have to POAS before we go on vacation.

So now we wait.   I’ve been nervous about how my husband feels about the two embryos but he’s been great about it.  This morning he started talking to them both and he’s nicknamed them Lar and Bar.  It’s cracking me up.

We went out to eat today and I mean we both chowed down like crazy.  Finished our meals in under 10 minutes.   My husband was like wow, that was crazy.   I said, “Well I am eating for 3!”  We both cracked up.

The two week wait is going to take forever.   I’m sure I’ll post several times just letting everyone know how I’m doing but I won’t know anything until the 16th.  I’m really hoping this is our rainbow baby.

IVF #2 Egg Retrieval

I’m home from my egg retrieval!  It was much quicker then the one I had for my first IVF and I felt much more comfortable.   We got there at 7 and I was in surgery by 7:20.  I was back out and awake at 7:50.   I woke up with a lot of pain in my left lower back and my left lower abdomen.

When the nurse saw me she got worried and they rushed out with the ultrasound to see if I was bleeding.  Luckily everything looked ok.  The RE came in and said it was probably because he had to go through my uterus to get to my left ovary.

As I was laying there the nurse came and told me they had 3 eggs so far.   A few minutes later she came back and told me they had 8.   A few minutes later the embryologist came in and said they had 9 eggs!  I think that’s pretty darn good.  She said 4 looked wonderful, 3 looked ok, and 2 looked immature but they’d let them go and check them again this afternoon.  Hopefully we have some fertilize.

ER

They told me all about the process and said if 5 or more fertilize we’ll freeze and do a FET in August wit PGD.   If 4 or less fertilize we’re looking at a transfer Sunday morning.  They also want to transfer 2.  They said this based on the quality of my eggs but it could change when they grade my embryos.

After an hour or so my pain began lessening and I started feeling better.  They gave me some Tylenol, checked my blood pressure, and removed my IV.   They told me to take it easy and let me go home.

I’m home now and feeling pretty good except for my left lower back.  I’m having some not so good pain in it and it’s hard for me to get up from a sitting position.  We’re having company tonight so I’m a little worried, but I’m sure I’ll be ok in the end.  My fertilization report comes in tomorrow morning and then Saturday morning they’ll let me know if we are freezing or transferring.

I forgot to add my stats for the day.  I weighed 132.2 pounds this morning so no weight gain at all between starting stims and egg retrieval.  We’ll see how it goes the next few days.  Also, my waist was 30 inches so I only gained half an inch there.  Much different then my last retrieval where I gained 10 pounds.

Hysteroscopy

Last Friday I had my hysteroscopy.   My surgery was scheduled for 7:15am and I guess I figured we only needed to be there 20 or 30 minutes before the scheduled time…boy was I wrong.   The night before I got a call telling me to be there by 5:30am.  Now that’s early anyhow but the hospital was over an hour away so we ended up leaving the house around 4:30.

We got to the hospital around 5:40 and went up to the same day surgery wing.  I thought ahead this time and wore my hoodie and a pair of sweatpants knows I’d probably be hurting afterwards.   Once we registered I was taken back to get prepped for surgery while my husband waited in the waiting room.

A nurse came in and talked to me and asked me a few questions.   Then she hooked up the blood pressure cuff, a heart monitor, and took my temperature.  All of my vital signs looked good and she said I was healthy so this procedure shouldn’t be too bad.

Next another nurse came in.  She was there to put in my IV.   She grabbed my hand and I told her that was a bad place to put it in.  I told her it hurt and that it always blew my vein.  She assured me the plump vein in my hand would be fine.   She pushed in the needle and a pain went shooting up my arm.  She had to move it around a bit to hit the vein.   She took a vial of blood and then hooked up the IV.

By this time blood had dripped on my sheet, on my hands, and all over the floor.  She quickly twisted the cap on the IV and then swabbed my hand.  She got a new bandage and put it over the IV.  She assured me I was fine and that the IV was running properly.  This was not a good start.

After the IV went in my husband was able to come back with me.  We just sat and talked for a while until the anesthesiologist came in.   She was a super nice woman and I was so glad to have her since the anesthesiologist I had for my D&C was a complete jerk.  This woman explained everything to me, told me I was healthy and I shouldn’t have any problems, then answered my husbands questions.   I signed the forms and handed them over to her.

Then the nurse anesthetist came in.  She was very down to earth and told me exactly how it was going to be.  She said she would put in the anti-nausea medicine, then the pain medicine, then roll me back.  Once we got to the OR she’d give me the actual anesthesia.  She put in both medicines and let me kiss my husband goodbye.

As we were rolling down the hallway my vision started getting blurry.  Before we even made it to the OR I was out for the count.  I guess getting up at 4 am and not eating put me to sleep.  I woke up at 8:40, nearly 1 1/2 hours after my scheduled surgery time.  I was very worried something was wrong and that was why I was out for so long.

As it turned out I was in and out of surgery in about 30 minutes.   The RE went and talked to my husband just before 8 showing him the pictures of the mass he removed from my uterus.   He wasn’t sure what it was so they sent it out for a pathology report but the RE said he was glad they got it.  It was taking up a large part of my uterus and I’ll have a better chance of conceiving now that it’s out.

I sat quietly for about 10 minutes before the nurse moved me to the other recovery room.  At this point they went and got my husband.  He was really worried about me since it was almost an hour since the doctor had talked to him.  Apparently it took me longer to wake up then they anticipated.   I figure it was just because I was tired.

I felt ok when I woke up.   A little sore in my lower abdomen but ok.   The nurse helped me to the bathroom because I had to pee before I was allowed to leave. I had some moderate bleeding but nothing major.   The gave me some pain medication and sent me on my way.

I actually felt pretty good so we went and got coffee and did a little shopping at Target.   By the time we got home I had some pain but not much.  My husband went and filled my pain medications and when he came home I took both of them.  We went out and got frozen yogurt that night.

About 3:30 in the morning the pain meds wore off.   I had severe pain in my lower abdomen.  I ran for the kitchen and grabbed the pain medication and took it.  After about 30 minutes it kicked in and I was able to sleep.  All day Saturday I was in pain.  The bleeding had mostly stopped, I was just spotting, but the pain was bad.   I took the max dose of both the pain medications but I was still hurting.   My stomach was swollen and I had to wear my sweatpants again instead of my jeans.   My left hand, where the IV was, was also swollen and black and blue as the vein had burst.  I was not in great shape.

The next day was rough.  I took my pain meds all day and basically sat on the couch all day long.  I had a lot of pain and cramping.   On Sunday I felt ok, though still had some pain.  My husband helped me to the grocery store and carried everything for me.  By the time we got back home I was sore and exhausted.  I was SO GLAD I made the surgery appointment for Friday so I had the weekend to rest.

By Monday morning I was feeling ok.  I had a little bit of soreness but the pain was all gone.  My hand was swollen and black and blue from the IV but that was the worse of it.   I’m just glad that is out of the way and we are in the final countdown of IVF 2.0.

Sonohysterogram

Yesterday I had a sonohysterogram.   It was the second one I’ve ever had and it’s in preparation for our next IVF cycle.   I crossed my fingers and went in hoping they wouldn’t see anything.   There was an intern, the RE, and the nurse.

First off the nurse got me ready.  She’s the best.   She’s older but it turns out she’s a Nurse Practitioner, teaches nursing at the college, and has tons of experience.  The intern and doctor came in and the intern cleaned my cervix and tried to put in the speculum. She couldn’t get it in so they had to go with a smaller speculum.  She got that one in.

Sonohysterogram

Next the intern tried to put in the cathetor but she could not get it.   The RE then tried and told the nurse to make a note this would be a problem for transfer.  He finally got it in going up the left side and told me it would be ok.  They started inserting the saline.   The RE took a lot of pictures.

When he asked for more saline I knew I was in trouble.   He and the nurse talked for a moment then he turned the screen towards me.   She showed me a long, thin strip going across my uterus.   He said it could be scar tissue or it could just be endometrium.   He was going to ask the other RE, the one doing my IVF cycle with me, what he wanted to do.

They helped me sit up and everyone but the nurse left.   She pulled the blanket over me, told me to sit for a few minutes to drain, and then handed me a pad.   I sat for 2 minutes and nothing was coming out.  I stood up and…..yeah there was the solution, mixed with a little blood.

I got myself dressed and went to talk to the doctor.   He, the intern, and the other RE sat me down and took a look.   While they said it could be nothing, it looked like some tissue.   The RE was worried because it’s in a place where an embryo would implant and he didn’t want to take the chance.   I agreed with him.  If I’m going through days of shots, medications, egg retrieval, and a transfer, I want to do everything I can to give myself the best chance.

I walked out of the room and my husband could tell by the look on my face what had happened.  It sucks but I want the best chance possible because I don’t know how many more times I can go through the hope and disappointment.

My hysteroscopy is scheduled for May 1 with a pre-op on April 24.  While I’m not happy about going under again, I just want whatever it is gone.

My D&C

My D&C happened on Sept. 18, 2014.   It’s a day I won’t forget.  It was 2 days before my brothers wedding.  My husband and I went to the hospital and up to the OB unit.  That’s where my RE performed surgeries.

I was put in a room and asked to put on a gown.  The nurse that came in to work with me was a blessing in disguise.  She was so kind and understanding and was with us for the 6 hours we were in the hospital.

She first came and got my history and put it in the computer.  Then she took my blood pressure.   She asked us some questions and answered our questions.   She prepared me for the surgery.

The anesthesiologist came in then.  He was not kind.   He was kind of a jerk and both my husband and I were not pleased with him.   In fact, the nurse could tell and sent him out of the room.  She ended up putting my IV in herself.  She tried it in my hand but my vein there always blows so she got it in my elbow.

My doctor finally came in and explained everything to me.  He told me they would put me out and then he would go in, remove the fetal pole, the sac, and any other material that needed to come out.  He then told me I’d be sore for a few days and probably would bleed for a few days as well.

When it was time to go I gave my husband a hug and they wheeled me into the OR.  Once there my doctor and another OB picked me up and put me on the table.   The anesthesiologist gave me a dose of meds but it didn’t put me out.  I must have looked terrified because my doctor patted my leg and told me it would be ok.  He looked at the anesthesiologist and that’s the last I remember.

I woke up with a pain in my lower abdomen.  My husband was there holding my hand as I started to cry.  My baby was gone…it was really gone now.  We sat together in silence until the nurse walked in.  She made sure I was comfortable and gave me some extra strength Tylenol.  She then told me I had to eat something and use the bathroom before I could leave.

She brought me crackers and Gingerale.  I slowly drank the Gingerale.   I ate a few crackers then I had to use the bathroom.  The kind nurse put a pair of disposable underwear on me and helped me to the bathroom.  In the bathroom I cried when I saw all the blood.  I took a deep breath, stood up, and walked back to my room.

The nurse took my vitals again and gave me my discharge paper.  She then tolld me t wait a minute that she had something for me.   She brought in a postcard with a picture of a leaf with a single dew drop.  On the back was a poem about loss and hope.   She had tears in her eyes as she read it to me and I could hardly stop the tears from running down my face.  Even writing about it has me tearing up.

She handed me the post card and told me it was mine.  She told me she had hope that things would get better then she gave me a hug.  I truly believe she cared about me and my situation and it was nice to know someone did.

As she left my husband helped get me dressed.  I put on a pad to catch the blood from my D&C.   I hadn’t eaten all day and it was 7pm by this time.  We ran to a Chinese buffet and ate dinner.  Then we made the hour drive home.  Unfortunately I had a cake to make…my brother’s grooms cake for the wedding.

The only hope I had for the weekend was that I’d be too busy to worry about myself and the baby.  I had medicine I needed to take and I had my husband by my side.   I knew that though it would be tough, the two of us would get through it.

The Aftermath and another Ultrasound

Saturday and Sunday were the hardest days I’ve ever had.  I stayed in bed most of the weekend crying.  I had to be coaxed out of bed by my husband to eat dinner on Sunday.   I was having a hard time facing the fact I would have to get up Monday morning and go back to work…to all my students.

Monday I woke up early and started my normal routine.  It helped to keep my routine.  I was like a zombie going around doing what needed to be done before school.  I got in my car and headed to school.  When I got there I was glad no one  else was around.   When my aid got there I had a hard time holding myself together but managed.

The worst part was when the kids came in.  After the weekends a lot of the kids need hugs and love and while I was more then happy to give it to them, that Monday it hurt.  All I could think of was that I might never have a child.

I got through the day and early the next morning we went back to the RE.   I lay on the table with my husband holding my hand.  The RE performed the scan quickly and then told me to meet him in his office.   He told me that there was no heart beat and that the baby had stayed the same size.   He let me know that I needed to decide if I wanted to let a natural miscarriage happen, use medication, or have surgery.  I promised I’d called the next day and left.

That ultrasound was easier then the first.  I was void of emotions and just stared at the screen and stared at the doctor.  I cried some on the way home and had to go to work when we got back.

The next day, Wednesday, I called the RE crying.  I told them that I wanted to have the procedure, that I couldn’t keep waiting for something to happen.  My brother was getting married on Saturday and I couldn’t risk having the miscarriage during his wedding.

I took Thursday and Friday off from work.  I already had Friday off for the wedding and took the whole day off on Thursday as I had to be at the doctor’s at 11.  They wanted to try to get the baby out in the office without any medication but once I got there and they saw how jumpy I was they knew that wouldn’t happen.

The RE took me into the room to speak with me.   He asked me what I wanted to do and I started crying.  I told him I couldn’t handle having my baby, without a heart beat, inside of me anymore.  He told me to wait and came back 10 minutes later.  He told me to be back there at 1 the next day for a D&C.

Well that’s all it took.  I really started sobbing.  I told him I couldn’t come back tomorrow that my brother was getting married out of town and I had to be there.  I was a total wreck.  My husband wrapped me up and told the doctor tomorrow was impossible.  The RE left again.

When he returned he told me that he had cleared his schedule and would meet me at the hospital in 1 hour.  He was going to do the D&C today.  I was so grateful to him for taking the time to do this that I didn’t even know what to say.  He told me to just get over to the hospital and he would meet me there.