Thursday, November 10, 2016

IVF Part 4

September 14, 2016

Today was the 6th day of stim shots. It has been hard getting used to the three different shots. I always do the Menopur shot first because of the stinging and burning so I want to get it over with first. I then do the Gonal-F because it always seems to be a dull needle so its harder to get it to go in, and then I do Lupron last because that one is nice and easy. I was excited to reach day 6 of stims because that means we have reached past the half way mark for 3 shots a day, as long as they don't extend them longer! So far the main side effects I have had are nausea, headaches, exhaustion, and dizziness/lightheadedness.

Today I had a blood draw. I was anxious to see how everything was looking. It was a long day waiting to see what numbers would come back at. They tested Estrogen, which they wanted to see above 500. My levels came in at 1,289. They said to keep doing everything I am doing and following in the calendar. I will go in for a repeat blood work on Friday as well as for an ultrasound. I am excited to see how things are looking and progressing then.

So a side note story, I went to acupuncture on Monday and I had told the doctor that I was having pretty bad headaches. After he took the needles out he told me to sit still a minute and he was going to do something to help with the headaches. He said he was going to put something in my ear and I didn't really catch what he was doing. There were two sharp pains in my ear. He told me what he had put in should fall out in a few days. I went home and looked in the mirror and this is what I saw.

I freaked out! It looked like I had two extra piercings in my ear. They felt weird and I did not like them at all. They are called ASP needles for acupuncture. They are designed to stay in a few days then fall out on their own. This is what they look like when they aren't in your ear.

I showed Taylor and he didn't like the way they looked either. So I told him to yank them out. So he got tweezers and yanked them out while I pretty much had a meltdown while he did it. In the end it didn't hurt that bad, but I just wanted them out. Those will not be happening again to say the least.

September 17, 2016

Yesterday I went in for my first ultrasound. I went in and was nervous. I was worried that there wouldn't be follicles or that there would be something wrong. My mother-in-law, Myra, went with me to the appointment. Chelsee my IVF coordinator did my ultrasound which was comforting since she is the person I have been working with the most in this IVF process. She started the ultrasound and I could immediately see that there were follicles. It was very clear. She started measuring the follicles and I saw that there were quite a few. She said things were looking good as well. She didn't measure all the follicles on the left side because it was quite painful. At the end I asked her how many follicles there were and she said she didn't know, that she stopped counting at 15, and that there were oodles. She said she would have another nurse tell me how many were measured. The other nurse later told me 28 were measured, and that wasn't even all of them. I then went and had blood work done. The office later called me and told me that Dr. Foulk had reviewed the ultrasound and blood work and that everything looked good and I should continue with what my calendar said. I asked them what my estrogen levels came back at and they said 4,000. I of course googled this number, which was a huge mistake. So many people were saying that over 3,000 or 4,000 your IVF cycle was at risk of being cancelled. I started to panic and so many worries were going through my head. I started reading IVF stories of other people from what they had blogged and that started to calm me down when I saw others had high numbers too and their cycle wasn't cancelled. I also had Taylor give me a blessing later in the day after my meltdown and it was very comforting to hear that everything was ok. 

Today I had another ultrasound and blood draw. Today my mom and Sara went with me. I wasn't as nervous for this one but it is hard when so much has been put into this process and there are high stakes. I can't help but get a little nervous, since anything could happen. I love how everyone at the office is so great though and they always are able to calm all my nerves. They did blood work first and they had to poke me 3 times to get it drawn. I then did the ultrasound. The person doing the ultrasound said there were indeed oodles and only measured a lot of the biggest follicles. 

Here are a few pictures of the ultrasound. Each of the black blobs is a follicle.

Here are all the bandages from the blood draw.

They called today and said that everything is looking good, but Dr. Foulk only wants me to do two of my shots tomorrow instead of 3. My estrogen was at 4,700 so the rise in estrogen seems to be slowing down. We go back again in the morning for another ultrasound and blood draw.

September 19, 2016

Yesterday we had another doctor appointment. It all started off great because I only had to be poked once for my blood draw! We then had the ultrasound and I could tell the follicles were definitely growing. The ultrasound tech said that she thought they would trigger me that night, but would have to see what Dr. Foulk said. We got done with the appointment just in time to join Taylor's family for church. It was a long day waiting for the phone call to come with the results. Around 4:30pm they called and they told us we were going to trigger! They said I would only be doing half of the HCG trigger shot. The hope is that since it is only half that the risk for OHSS (Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome) will be reduced. Since I have so many follicles, PCOS, high estrogen, etc, I am at greater risk for OHSS. This is when after retrieval your body keeps stimulating your ovaries and your abdomen fills up with fluid. It is very uncomfortable and sometimes they have to go in and drain the fluid. We are taking every precaution to lower the risk of this happening. I have started drinking protein shakes and Gatorade, no water. This will be hard for me because I love water!

I did the HCG trigger shot at exactly 6:30pm yesterday. I had to do it to the minute because everything is so precise and needs to be exact. This morning when I woke up I needed to take a home pregnancy test. It came out positive. As much as I wish it really were a real positive test, it is a false positive. The HCG trigger shot is supposed to make a pregnancy test positive, and I did the pregnancy test to make sure the shot worked. I was also very happy that I didn't have to do any shots this morning!

Today I should be having a phone conversation with the anesthesiologist to prepare for egg retrieval tomorrow. I have to get up at probably around 5am, because we have to check in at the office at 6am. They will need to do the retrieval right at 6:30am. We are moving right along in this process!

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