Monthly Archives: July 2007

Looks like it’s over

 posted by Mel

 All 17 embryos have arrested. There’s nothing to transfer. We don’t know why.

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Egg Retrieval Rocks!

Posted by v
Witnessing the retrieval of our 22 eggs was a truly amazing experience. Mel was out of it, but every now and then she’d manage a slurred question like, “Can you tell if the shells of my eggs are penetrable?”

I held her hand and watched the ultrasound monitor while Dr G sucked out the insides of each follicle. Initially, the contents of each follicle was placed in a separate test tube. After we had 10 or so from one ovary, he just started sucking out as fast as he could to remove the liquid. The test tubes were passed into another room where their contents were examined. Shortly after a tube passed through the window, I’d hear somebody call out, “That’s one”, “That’s two”, “That’s 12, 13, and 14”.

Mel did a great job before, during, and after the procedure. She was annoyed that things started late, but she was too drugged to protest too much. Afterwards, she slept for about an hour before they let us leave. She pretty much slept the rest of the day and night.

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Embryo Report

posted by Mel

They retrieved 22 eggs. According to the report this morning, 17 fertilized normally (with ICSI). This is more than I ever hoped for. Vanessa was a bit closer. She guessed we’d get 15. Dr. G says I am an “ovary achiever”– glad I wasn’t alert enough to hear that. Now we wait to see what makes it to blastocyst. The transfer will be Thursday around noon.

I was out of it for most of the day yesterday. I hope Vanessa will blog about it because most of it is a blur for me. I took two Xanax at 8 AM, and by 8:30, I was stumbling around the surgery center. The retrieval probably happened around 10:30 (The RE was late getting there from a surgery on the other side of town, but the nurses reassured us that some extra time was built in and that I wouldn’t ovulate before he got there. The embryologist said that in 3 1/2 years, no one had ever ovulated before retrieval). I woke up around noon in the recovery room feeling little pain, and I think we were out of there by 1:00. Vanessa took me home, tucked me into the recliner in the living room (they won’t let you lie flat for 24 hours to keep the excess fluid from the follicles from pooling around your lungs) and kept the Vicodin and anti-nausea medication coming for the rest of the day and evening. She took wonderful care of me– even slept on the couch last night to be close to me. She is the best partner ever. She got me up around 10 PM for my progesterone in oil shot, which I didn’t feel at all thanks to the numbing cream she asked them to prescribe us at the surgery center. I didn’t get up again until 8:00 this morning.

I’m in some pain now, but it’s manageable. I still don’t know how I’m going to get myself into anything work-appropriate for tomorrow morning– a skirt, I guess. If one of those 17 embryos turns into a real live baby, everything will be worth it.

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All systems go

posted by Mel

We’re on for retrieval Saturday morning at 10 AM. Vanessa (who is HOME for now! btw) gave me my last Menopur shot this morning, and we trigger tonight at 10 PM and not one minute sooner. Cue hyperventilation brought on by me imagining arriving at the surgery center to find I’ve already ovulated.

I am officially too bloated and uncomfortable to wear work-appropriate attire. So I’m wearing lounging pants from now until it’s over and working from home. New IVF side effect– I am belchy– Oh goddess am I belchy. Doesn’t seem to matter what I eat. Another good reason not to be at work. Also, the smell of almost everything makes me sick to my stomach, and I thought I was going to retch last night watching Vanessa’s little brother eating that 12-inch Italian BMT from Subway. Ugh– greasy Italian coldcuts with mayonaisse. Bleh.

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Second opinions rock!

posted by Mel

Holy crap. Vanessa called me from the oncologist’s. She and her mom went to get a second opinion. The oncologist feels that an embolism (basically shutting off the tumor’s blood flow) is possible, contrary to what St. Francis’s pulmonologist said, and they’re admitting her to IU Hospital right now for the procedure at 1:30. As I understand it, they will radiate the tumor (we thought radiated tissue couldn’t be re-radiated) to stop it from bleeding into her lungs. It’s a bandaid at best, but it will probably give her a little more time– maybe weeks, maybe months. They should at least be good quality weeks or months since right now she’s feeling pretty good. This is incredible news.

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Last u/s before IVF (I think)

posted by Mel

I had what I think will be the last ultrasound before IVF this morning. Despite decreasing the stims from 225 to 150 IU each of Bravelle and Menopur, we somehow recruited 5 more follicles. So now we are up to 35, but I’m revising my earlier estimate and saying now that I believe 11 of them will be viable at retrieval. Those are the ones currently falling between 15 and 20 mm. Assuming the RE agrees with me after he has reviewed the ultrasound and estradiol results, they have one more day to grow, and we will trigger tomorrow night for a Sat AM retrieval.

The uncomfortable bloating really didn’t show up in earnest until yesterday, but waking up with a full bladder this morning was bad. There’s just not that much room in there anymore. My ovaries are each about 4 times the size they normally would be. I’ve gained 7 lbs so far this cycle. I have to take off early today for an appointment, and I’m thinking I’ll see how I feel on Thursday and plan on taking Friday off to relax in anticipation of Saturday’s procedure.

All in all, I feel lucky that I’ve experienced almost no side effects with the stims. This really hasn’t been bad. What I’m most worried about now is the needle they’re going to be threading through my already crowded girly parts. The ultrasound this morning was pretty uncomfortable. I know everyone says that you’re so knocked out you don’t care, but right now I care, and I still have 3 days to think about it.

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8 days of stims, 6 days since the world started spinning in the opposite direction

posted by Mel 

My estadiol level has recovered. We have 30 follicles all at different sizes. I’m predicting a worst case of 9 ready the day of retrieval, best case 15. The smallest follicle is 7.5mm, and the largest is 15.5mm. We’re looking for 18mm or larger. The nurse this morning said that when the lead follicles are ready, the RE will tell us to trigger– whether the rest have caught up or not. They have 2 days to catch up before our last scheduled ultrasound, 3 days before we’d need to trigger if we stay on track for a Saturday retrieval. Follicles grow, on average, 2 mm per day, so I’m calling everything at 11.5 mm and up right now a candidate.

Vanessa still hasn’t blogged about what’s going on with her mom, and I don’t blame her. She has other things on her mind, but I’ll provide a quick synopsis. Her mom has had two harrowing E.R. experiences in the past month. After the last one, a pulmonologist at the hospital where she was taken said that the main tumor in her lungs has compromised her pulmonary artery and that it’s just a matter of time before it goes. He gave a week to two weeks. There’s nothing they can do. Starting last Thursday, Vanessa has been staying at her mom’s. She stayed w/me on Saturday night b/c she needed a break and some rest. She’s planning to be home tonight and then again on Friday night so that she can come with me to the retrieval early Saturday morning.

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