Friday, 6 June 2014

Fertility vacation

All things fertility have been progressing slowly, and shhhh...don't tell anyone, but this time I don't mind. 

I've been distracted with company and home renovation projects (mostly painting). It feels good to think about other things. 

Some of the company that came were my friends that I wrote about a lot in the month of May. I worried a bit that things might feel a bit awkward after asking for more support, but they weren't. Phew! 

We had a wonderful time. The weather was great, we rode bikes and went on a 3 hour boat cruise, ate tons of yummy food and had a bon fire. We sat on a floating couch thingy that they bought for us for hours. It was my idea of perfection.  I'm feeling very grateful for the time we've been able to spend here and for how things worked out with them.  

If we hadn't all talked before they visited, I know this weekend (if it happened at all) may have been tainted with resentment towards them. I'm thankful that the lines of communication were opened. 

This week, we had another meeting with Dr. S. 

The purpose of the meeting was to find out more info about our CCS results. 

We were wondering if they could determine anything from the abnormalities ie) if they were from sperm or egg issues? He said they had no way of knowing his information. 

The 3 normals we had were 3 of our highest rated embryos. They were previously rated:


He suggested re-testing our no results. 

We asked again about if he thought if we should transfer 1 or 2 embryos and what his rationale was for his response. Last time when we didn't have our CCS results, he suggested two. 

Surprisingly, said two again. He said this is because of the number of embryos  and transfers we have had in the past. He said we didn't know for sure if the ones we transferred were normal or abnormal.  

This was very different advice than what we got from Dr. Gustofson with our last transfer (at the same clinic).  He suggested one when we didn't know if they were normal or not. 

(Side note: In my heart, I believe that most if not all of the embryos we transferred in the past were abnormal. Of course, I have no proof of this. I believe this however , because seven of them were donor embies where there were known miscarriage issues. The next six were our genetic embies (with all of our issues) and the last one one was the donor egg (where we know that at least 5 of the last 11 were abnormal- so who knows if that one was normal or not). 

Regarding our last DE embaby, I'd be interested in knowing if it was more or less likely to have been because of a genetic abnormality after finding a heart rate? I didn't think to ask. 

In our meeting with Dr. S, there were a few annoying contradictions. They were about medications and protocols.  There was also some contradictory info between what Dr. G said the last time and what Dr. S said, and what Dr. G said made more sense. 

Dr. S is slipping out of our good books.  We're going to stick with him, but D and I are feeling a bit frustrated with him. He's supposed to be the best, but he tells us different things at each meeting. I feel like it's because he has barely reviewed our file before our call.  He says one thing, I remind him of what he said before and why, and then he changes his tune.  We have very high expectations of him and this clinic, yes, but I know the contradictions would be something I would be annoyed at if they happened somewhere else too.   For example, how many times should I have to remind them that I can't take the pill because of my family history and my risk of stroke? Gah! 

Anyways, Overall, he said that he was glad we did the CCS, which he previously described as something he didn't recommend and "overkill". 

I think transferring two normal embryos (which Dr. S says almost all of his DE patients do) might be overkill. Who knows though, we're still thinking about it. 

Now, I will continue to wait for my HCG to drop below 5.

I had a test recently and I'm still awaiting the results. After it has dropped, I'll need one more test and then my fertility vacation will be over.  


  1. Such interesting news about the difference of opinions you receive from Dr. S and Dr. G. Somehow, in the past year, I have never had any other communication with any other doctor but Dr. G, makes me wonder what others would say about my case?

    I am thrilled to know you have 3 high quality, normal embryos. And it certainly wasn't overkill. It gives you a huge piece of mind which can sometimes be worth it's weight in gold when it comes to infertility after what you've gone through.

    I love that you enjoyed your vacation from infertility. We definitely need those from time to time. Your break sounds lovely. Here's hoping that HCG is negative so you can get going again very soon.


  2. Three great quality embryos is awesome news! Enjoy your time away from treatment etc. and come back ready to get pregnant with those wonderful babies waiting on you :)

  3. That sounds frustrating to deal with differing opinions - especially coming from the same person! I hope you continue to enjoy your break, and I'm glad you had a wonderful weekend with your friends.

  4. Oh my gosh... mixed messages and forgetfulness are my BIGGEST pet peeves! I would be so mad! Especially from the best doctors... nope, not tolerating it. READ MY FILE! The inconsistencies and the very obvious lack of file reading are the reasons I will not return to our previous clinic. It's like he can't imagine that I have my medical records in front of me for the call... am I the only one in this conversation actually looking at my chart??? Sure feels like it! Ughhh! I would expect a lot more from Dr. S.

    I think I would definitely retest the others. And personally, I know this sounds crazy, but I think I'd do one at a time. After everything you guys have been through, I would want the most chances to get it right. Does that make sense? I mean these are good blasts, you know they are genetically normal now, I'd only want one (unless you really want twins) each time. Plus, if you use two and it doesn't work, you'll have to transfer one the last time... I think I'd want it the other way around. Anyway, food for thought!

    Glad to hear you're doing well and that the break has been good.

  5. Oh wow! That is frustrating when you are dealing with the "best of the best." Sigh. The one or two embryos is a HUGE internal debate on my end. While I LOVE the idea of TWO after all we've been through, I know first hand the risks that CAN come with them (so many people do carry twins to full term with no issues.) However, I also hate the idea (in my own situation) of 1 at a time (we didn't test our embies). What do I hate more? Twins and all the panic or slowing transferring 1 at a time? I know you and your husband will have peace about whats right, just like you guys agreed to test the embies left. PLUS, knowing three are amazing, your odds are way higher...could you transfer 1 normal and 1 "unknown?" Sigh. Who knows though. I know miscarrying one early on can still hurt the other so that might put things more at risk...ugg. I feel like I'm talking to myself!

  6. Ugh... you should not be getting that kind of service from ANY doctor, particularly CCRM. I am so sorry to hear about this... so frustrating. It sounds like maybe re-testing is the way to go? In the meantime, here's to your HCG dropping quickly. Hang in there.

  7. I don't know if you follow the Dreaming of Dimples blog, but that blog author has also noticed that Dr. S didn't read her chart before their appointment! I wish people would Yelp this kind of common experience & then maybe future patients would know what to expect before travelling to CCRM.
    (scroll to the bottom to get to the part about Dr. S.)


  8. So glad you are having some lovely "normal" times and not in the thick of things constantly on the IF front. I feel a lot of parallels with you, reading this post today. We met with the RE this week, and she obviously had not read our file ahead of time either. I kept asking myself, "is it just too much to ask?" I know they are busy and such, but it just feels like they don't care. I used to run an Admissions Office at a private school and interview a lot of students. I certainly could have just waited until I was in the interview room to start looking at a file while we talked, but I always thought that would be incredibly rude and not at all efficient to get the best results. Sorry you have to keep reminding him of the same stuff!! AND that he contradicts himself!! That is unsettling. It's bad enough when different RE's seem to have not agreement, but the same one saying different things? It makes me realize more and more that there is a lot of guessing and dart throwing going on with the treatments we get. I see it with my IVF support group. Some of us our told to get up and move all around after transfer, and some are on days of bed rest. I am not sure they know what the best things are. Oh man, I am going on a rant here :) Sorry!! I also am very interested in the suggestion to put back two embryos. We also asked the RE, specifically, if we test the embryos and have normals, how many should we put back. She said one. I am forty with three miscarriages. I asked her if two would be crazy to consider, and she said, no it wouldn't, and she would be ok with that. Now possibly she was thinking that a twins pregnancy would be more risky for me than in your case, so again...just throwing it over there for what it's worth to hear another RE's thoughts. I will stop rambling now...

  9. I'm so frustrated for you that Dr. S isn't giving you the care you deserve--and pay for. I'm glad that you have been able to get away from the infertility stuff, relax and enjoy your friends. I always like when I'm on a break from fertility treatments--you can feel optimistic about what's head but not worried about the barrage of testing and subsequent results. Enjoy the rest of your IF vacation

  10. I'm glad that the fertility vacation is good for you, and that the weekend with your friends went well. But the lack of communication with CCRM sounds annoying. Can you email and get extensive answers that way? I often prefer that, although in large parts because I don't like phone calls, and much less the wait until I actually get to talk to someone. Regardless, there's no excuse for not having read your chart - my doctors remember what I do for work between appointments!

  11. I have to say I am hugely disappointed in Dr. S. WTF. He should not be making errors like that---no doctor should. I could never get over how doctors could be so cavalier in their instructions, especially in this industry. It's so telling that when you went with what you knew to be right---CCS---you got the information you needed, that he thought it was overkill before, but now thinks it's great. Eh? Anyway. I'm glad you did the CCS. It's just seeming more and more likely that YOU figured out what you needed to do, and got the info you needed, and that this last loss has a good chance of being an abnormality.

    Did anyone say anything about 5 of the 11 being abnormal? Is this abnormal, or average?

    I have such a good feeling about transferring the normals! I think you should go with what you think is best---1 or 2---because it seems like your gut is pretty awesome at telling you what you need. (:

  12. One thing I've learned during this whole process is that it is really nice to embrace the times when you are on a break and not thinking about infertility or baby-making at all. I'm really glad you enjoyed yours.

  13. I am not supposed to say this, and I should know better, but I think there are worse things than twins.

    I mean. I've had a newborn and I can't imagine having two...but. If I could have been done with the first go -- instant siblings -- well, I just think of how much I could have saved myself. The time, the pain, the money. The total suckage.

    You just have to do what you'll have the least regret over, in the end.

    I wish you a very happy vacation and every success once you go "back to work." xo

  14. This was how I felt as well, Julia. We received contradictory information and he didn't seem to remember anything about our case. Very disheartening when you're spending THAT much money and they are so renowned.


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