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I figured I’d write a quick update since I haven’t written much lately, but there isn’t much going on.

Since my most recent infertility fiasco I’ve been struggling with deciding what to do next. My infertility clinic has send me a schedule for a February FET. This schedule included a rather lengthy stint on a drug I really don’t want to revisit: Lupron. I had a month-long, horrible, never-ending headache while taking it. I also noticed blurry vision while taking it. For a person who’s already legally blind, this is a really alarming side effect. The headache and blurry vision went away about a week after finishing the medication, but I still have one particularly annoying side effect from Lupron. Tiny little pinprick-sized flashes of light every once in a while. It looks like a tiny flashbulb going off in my field of vision. It’s very fast and comes and goes in half a second, but it’s startling and distracting, and I’ve been off Lupron since August. I told my clinic that I didn’t want to take Lupron again and my doctor seemed fine with that but the nurse who writes the protocols basically told me Lupron’s a necessity, and I acquiesced. However, after lots of thinking, I’ve decided to put my foot down. My husband and I want kids, but not at the expense of my vision.

I know there are protocols that don’t include Lurpon. My first IVF cycle didn’t use it. However, that cycle was unsuccessful, and my second cycle used Lupron and did result in a pregnancy, albeit a non-viable one. I just don’t know what to do now.

My thought right now is to just go along with acupuncture and herbs for now since it actually might have had some positive results, considering I wasn’t undergoing any infertility treatment except acupuncture when I got pregnant (the second time) in September. But since it didn’t work last month (the first time we could try again since the D&C) I’m doubting that choice too, which is silly; I know that. But I’m impatient. And I don’t know what the right answer is.

Maybe I’m not supposed to have kids. Maybe I’m stupidly ignoring all these huge clues from the universe.

What next?

How am I supposed to know the right answer?


I haven’t written anything in a while because there hasn’t been much to report regarding my infertility treatments, and with the holidays coming I’ve been busy with other stuff. But I did have my D&C on November 9th. The doctor found some placenta left in my uterus, so he removed it and sent it off to pathology for a biopsy. I haven’t heard anything back yet. If I haven’t heard anything by the end of next week I plan to give them a call. I also had blood work done a couple weeks ago for recurrent miscarriage. I’m very interested in hearing the results. My gut has always told me I have something more going on than just endometriosis, but I’m more than happy to be wrong about that.

We were scheduled to do a FET in January, but I think it would be a good idea to wait for my test results. So we’re holding off on that for a bit. We’ll try on our own for a few months in the meantime. I always go back and forth about waiting or trying on our own for an extended amount of time. I always worry about losing my one and only remaining ovary to adhesions or cysts caused by my Stage IV endometriosis. I also wonder if I should try another cycle or two of IVF before I use my frozen embryos. IVF is exponentially more expensive than a frozen embryo transfer, but I have the security of knowing if something happens to my ovary that there’s always these embryos waiting to be transferred. But the embryos might not take. I’ve had five embryos transferred and only one took, and that was only for a short time. I just don’t know which path is best. I’m sort of thinking a three-cycle IVF package might be good if I can freeze embryos from the first two rounds and have the embryos from the third round for a fresh transfer. I guess I’ll have to check into my clinic’s policy regarding that. *makes note to self*

Of course it totally annoys me that I didn’t just get the three-cycle IVF package to begin with, considering I’ve had two failed cycles thus far, and those cycles produced a total of seven embryos, five of which have been transferred so far.

While I wait for my results I will continue seeing my acupuncturist for infertility treatment. After my first failed pregnancy, my acupuncturist started me on some Chinese herbs and two weeks later I was pregnant again, so it’s either a huge coincidence (like super-mega huge, considering I’d never gotten pregnant on my own in seven years of marriage)  or there really is something about those herbs. I’m back on them now, so we’ll see.

Anyway, I’ll post my results from the blood work and the biopsy when I get them.

I’ve been in limbo for the past week just waiting for more blood work results. My beta hCG is still hanging in there at really low levels, so I’ve decided, based on my doctor’s recommendation and hours of research, to move forward with a D&C. It’s scheduled for  this Friday, November 9th.

There’s kind of a standing g joke in my family that it should be my goal to have surgery in every hospital in Jacksonville that will have me (meaning NOT counting the children’s hospital), and sadly, I’m well on my way. After Friday I will have had surgery in at least one branch of each hospital in Jacksonville except for Shands, which I plan to stay as far away from as possible. I’ve been to Memorial twice, Baptist South once, Baptist Beaches twice, Orange Park Medical Center once. Friday I can add St. Vincents to my list. Crazy.

I’m obviously extremely unhappy about the course of events the past couple months, and I’ve been thinking a lot about the D&C. I know not everyone feels the same way about this type of procedure, and all I can say is that you have no right to judge until you’ve experienced this difficult decision for yourself. I’m not terminating a viable pregnancy. I don’t take this decision lightly. We’ve spent over $25,000 trying to get pregnant so far. What’s inside me is not growing at all. There’s no heartbeat and it’s still too small, at 8 weeks, to be seen on an ultrasound. We can’t move forward with a frozen embryo transfer until my hCG levels go back down to 0, and the D&C will remove whatever’s keeping my hCG levels from going back down.

The good news that came out of this is that they’re doing a workup for recurrent miscarriage, which will either find a problem we can address or put my mind at ease if nothing’s wrong. If nothing’s wrong in that department it means I’m just really unlucky, which seems par for the course anyway. Does that sound negative? I’m feeling a little negative.

On a side note, if you haven’t voted yet, I strongly urge you to research the President’s stance on reproductive issues and compare them to Romney’s and Ryan’s views before you vote. Pay close attention to Ryan’s views on personhood and his Sanctity of Human Life Act. The act has a pretty name and sounds nice, but think about what it means for D&Cs, ectopic pregnancy, and IVF.

Some of you might be wondering how a miscarriage could ever be good news. when you’re actually trying to have a baby, but the truth is, it CAN be good news.

When I thought I needed a D&C, for example.  And now it looks like I don’t.

My hCG levels have been absolutely dismal for how far along I was. First was 23, then 31 three days later, then 35 four day later, then 44 six days later. 44 at six weeks is so low, I couldn’t even find anything near that low in all my online research. Even people talking about how their levels were really low and they were so worried…their levels were at least in the several hundred range. My doubling rate was 14 days when it should have been 72 hours.

So anyway, it was looking like time for a D&C. Obviously extremely unhappy with the prospect, but I clearly had a very abnormal pregnancy going on that just wouldn’t quit. This didn’t make the decision to have a D&C easy, though.

I’ve been waiting for the doctor’s office to call and set up a time for the procedure. While I was waiting today things started to happen that indicated to me that a D&C was maybe not necessary and that things were going to take care of themselves without medical intervention.The end result was unavoidable, but I’m relieved I didn’t have to make that type of decision this time around. I get to play the waiting game a bit more now, and see if it turns into a full-on miscarriage, which is the best I can hope for now with this clearly non-viable pregnancy.

This pregnancy was unplanned, unexpected, and it’s made me doubt every decision I’ve made regarding infertility so far. Do I really need IVF? Can we do it on our own? Is there an autoimmune component here that I’m not aware of?

I have absolutely no idea. I’ll be very interested to hear my RE’s take on these events when I meet with him next month.

I’m still waiting for the doctor’s office to call so I can schedule a D&C. Things actually seem to be happening on their own now, though, so I’m not sure if they’ll still do one or not. I wish they’d just call already.

I still want them to do a hysteroscopy so they can take a tissue sample for biopsy to look for autoimmune problems. I hope I don’t have to fight them for it. If they don’t think it’s autoimmune, fine, but I’d like to definitely eliminate it as a possibility since I just had two chemical pregnancies in two months that never advanced very much at all.

Pretty unlikely it’s ectopic though, so that’s about the only good news.

Please just call me.

I’ve been waiting for the doctor’s office to call me so we can set up a D&C.  Imagine my surprise when I answered the phone this morning and it was my RE himself! I’ve been seeing him for three years and I think he’s only called me a couple times ever. Anyway, I was happy he called because I got to ask him questions about the procedure instead of asking the nurses. The nurses are fine with general info, but don’t always get very specific. My RE was able to address my concerns about potential for infections and adhesions, and discuss plans for a biopsy to look for potential autoimmune problems.

He also mentioned the possibility of an ectopic. Since I only have one ovary and tube, I obviously want to find out ASAP whether it’s ectopic and take care of it immediately. Since my numbers are so low it seems unlikely to rupture the tube in the near future, and at this point I’d just need to have the shot and not a  tube removal.

I’m unhappy about this outcome, of course, but I’m glad about the opportunity to find out if I have an autoimmune issue. If it is a problem then we can address it, and if it’s not the problem then it’s one less thing to worry about.

D&C will probably be next week.

There’s a D&C in my very near future.

My numbers went up again but only slightly. I didn’t even ask for the numbers. I didn’t care. It doesn’t matter.

The doctor’s office will call probably tomorrow to schedule a D&C for sometime by the end of next week.

I’m not surprised at the outcome at all. I am a little surprised that I need a D&C though. With such low and slow numbers I expected it to take care of itself, but the embryo just wants to stick around. So, I’m not really sure how I feel about a D&C. I feel a little uneasy about it, to be honest.