Sunday, November 9, 2008

Treatment progress

One of the main reasons I decided to start this blog is to keep family and friends up-to-date on what is happening with our IVF cycle. So far this is what has happened:

Birth control pills - Oct 11-31st (I know it probably seems weird that the first part of treatment for IF is birth control, it is to prevent cysts and get your cycle in sync with when the doctor wants to do IVF). This part of treatment went pretty well. I am so grateful to everyone who prayed for me while I was on the pill. God really protected me from a lot of the emotional side effects. Physically, I did not feel so well and I am very glad to be done taking them.

Oct 31st - ultrasound(US) to see if I had any ovarian cysts and to get baseline measurements of everything, I think she counted about 7 follicles, no cysts!

Nov 1st - J gave me my very first shot, it was huge - 3mL, J says most SubQ shots are only about 1 mL, it hurt, but no side effects at all. I was really concerned about this because it was our 5th anniversary and I wanted to be able to celebrate. We went to dinner at a great restaurant and then to see the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra (which I would highly recommend). This shot is to prevent premature ovulation.

Nov 4th - 1st US and blood work (b/w), everything looked good. I think she counted 8 follicles, all my b/w was low which is what is wanted at this point in the process. I started my first shot of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) that evening.

Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday - I gave myself a shot in the morning and a shot in the evening. I wanted to give them myself rather than have J do it because he has to go TDY to San Antonio Sunday through Thursday. I wanted to get comfortable giving myself the shots while I had J there to oversee. I think I have managed to get fairly proficient at SubQ injections already. The side effects have not been too bad. I have had quite a bit of lower abdominal pain and a feeling of fullness. This has actually been very reassuring, it helps me to know I am giving the shots right. I have had a couple headaches, a little insomnia, and a couple of crying episodes, but nothing major. I would take crying over irritability any day and so would J and I'm sure everyone else around me :).

Nov 8th - drove over to Mobile (a little more than 2 hours away) for US and b/w, my US was good, I had about 19 follicles, she didn't tell me, but I looked on the screen and I think they were measuring about 7 mm. I think they want them to be about 18-20 mm when they are mature. My E2 (estradiol) level was only 129. Dr. K said it would normally be double this at this time, but that since I was limiting the number of eggs he was not giving me as much medicine. I explained to him that he could take as many eggs as he wanted to, I just want to limit the number of fertilized - take the best of the bunch. So he upped my evening dosage a little bit for Saturday and Sunday. I go back again on Monday, but this time I only have to drive to Gulf Breeze which is about an hour away.

After this, I will have both US and b/w on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.

I will continue FSH and add in 2 other types of shots this coming up week. I should go in for retrieval on the 17th. It could go a day or two before this or several days after this. After retrieval, we will wait about 3 days while the embryos grow and then I will go in and have 2 transferred into me. I will be on bed rest for 3 days following transfer. We will then wait about 2 weeks to find out if the pregnancy test is positive. Here is a schedule of a typical IVF cycle for those who are interested.

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