N is the one for me!

TW and I went to the N Clinic for a consult yesterday. WOW. Dr. P was quite a guy…I don’t think he cracked a smile first hour. But it didn’t matter. He was a little dry, but he was wonderful. He knew his stuff. And there was no ‘hard sell’ going on at all. It was just factual and informative. We were there for almost 2 hours. With Dr. Z I got more of a salesman feeling which really turned me off.

I heard a bunch of stuff I hadn’t heard before, and I was floored. After 16 months of temping and OPKs and HPTs and reading and researching, I thought I knew it all! Dr. P. pointed the finger at both TW and me. I thought he (like everyone else) would say — “it is obviously male factor so IVF is the answer for you”. At one point I felt my face get all hot and thought I would burst into tears, but I kept it at bay…I was so certain that Dr. P. was going to tell me that our only hope is IVF with donor eggs. I realize that this could be a possibility (donor eggs), but I am not ready for that discussion yet!!

Things I learned:

  • 25% of “Healthy and young” couples who are TTC will conceive in the first month. 50% will conceive within the first 3 months. 60% will conceive within the first 6 months….etc. After 5 years of no birth control, if conception hasn’t been achieved, the chances of spontaneous conception are something like .001% per cycle. Yeah. A thousand to one odds. Hmmph. What a waste of time holding my breath during each 2WW! Dr. P. was pretty surprised that we waited so long to look into IVF. Since TW has a child already, he immediately responded with, “Most likely it is lack of egg quality”. OMG I almost keeled over.
  • Women who have regular periods (never a skipped month), and cycles anywhere from 21 through 35 days long are definitely ovulating each month. No need for any testing.
  • He said that IUI was a total waste for us and was surprised any doctor would have tried it!!!
  • He said that despite my low FSH, my estrodial (50 on day 3) invalided the FSH number because high estrodial lowers FSH! I had NEVER heard this before.
  • He was not concerned about TW’s sperm counts as much as my own reproductive health. Another SHOCKER. (You should have seen the smug look on TW’s face)
  • He said it doesn’t matter if you are ‘actively’ trying or not — having sex once a week will guarantee pregnancy if both parties are healthy.

In addition:

  • I asked him about Dr. Z’s immunity protocol and he said that the National Association of Fertility Specialists (or something like that) does not recommend this type of treatment, and until they do, the N Clinic won’t do it unless there are multiple miscarriages.
  • He does not recommend bedrest after transfer. He said it was completely unnecessary but he leaves it up to the woman to decide how she feels (I will think on that one – may use it as an excuse for a few days vacation!).
  • He only uses 12 days of progesterone suppositories, no PIO injections. He doesn’t think that LPD exists!!!
  • His protocol is all subcutaneous injections anywhere on the body!! Tiny little needles! Hallelujah!! I probably won’t need a back-up person to help me out if TW is out of town!
  • Their egg retrieval is non-surgical – no general anesthetic. Just local.
  • TW can give his sample for assessment (they do an assessment prior to the procedure to see how they need to process the sperm) and at the time he drops it off, he can tell them to freeze it. This is such a load off – he doesn’t have to be in town on the day of the retrieval!
  • They do a lupron assay prior to the cycle…this may be common but Dr. Z didn’t mention it. So, if I don’t pass the test, we cancel the cycle until the next month. If you fail the test three times, you are no longer a candidate with your own eggs (PLEASE don’t let this be me!)

So much of the protocol seems so much easier (and less stressful). I have to say though, all the talk about my egg quality really got me worked up. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. The last 16 months (ever since we started treatment) everyone has said it MUST be the low sperm count/quality that is blocking a pregnancy. No one has ever said anything about the possibility of MY eggs being the culprit!

Well, I showed Dr. P! The 2nd part of the initial meeting is a physical exam. He did an antral follicle count and a “mock embryo transfer”. I think Dr. P assumed he was going to see two shriveled up ovaries like dried out prunes. But when he did the antral follicle count, he found 7 follicles on each side. He said that he looks for anything from 5-6 on each side, but no more than 8 on each side (he doesn’t like too many). He totally changed his demeanor when he saw my ovaries and said, “It couldn’t get much better than that!” PHEW. I personally still think it is all TW’s fault. Tee Hee. Well, maybe we both have some issues.

The mock transfer is where they measure the uterus and see how difficult it is to put the catheter in. I was totally normal.

So — we are going to do this! I am chock full of hope. Wonder how long it will last.

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5 Responses to “N is the one for me!”

  1. Leah Says:

    I’m chocked full of hope for you too! Glad that you got so much information (except the part about him dissing your wonderful eggs), and that you liked the new RE.

    I can’t wait for your cycle to start so I can cheer you on!

  2. Chris Says:

    Wow, sounds like a great day for gathering information! I’m glad you have a plan, and lots of hope. Keep it up!

  3. Serenity Says:

    I am so happy to hear you have a resurgence of hope! So happy to hear about the follie count, despite the high estrogen numbers. That’s good news for your eggs!

    To answer your question on my blog, we *are* flying to and from NC today. From what I’ve heard (though I didn’t specifically ask my doctor), it’s no issue to fly until later in pregnancy – airlines have restrictions on how far along you can be when they’ll allow you on their planes. I’m still early, so it’s no issue.

    The only thing they tell you to do is stay hydrated – get a bottle of water or two once you’re past security and make sure you drink it.

    I fly a lot for business and visting my family – I’m flying to and from Philly for a couple of weeks in November and then to FL in December to visit family – and I don’t believe there’s anything to be nervous about. 🙂

    Hope this helps! And welcome back to hope! 🙂

  4. Erin Says:

    This sounds so great! I’m glad you found an RE you can be happy with and who has such a positive outlook for you! Good luck!

  5. Red Says:

    Great news! I’m thrilled to hear so much hope come through in your post 🙂

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