Hail Mary Pass

So I had my Day 3 (on Day 2) scan this morning. My FS gave me some bad news. My AMH is 0.4….which can be expected as I am 38, so you would expect to see it dropping. I had a 1.3 last year, so was surprised it went down so fast. but not unexpected. My Antral Follicle Count (AFC) was 5, which is also quite low. The conversation was rather positive than negative. We have decided to go ahead with the cycle as both AMH and AFC are indicators of ovarian reserve, but not absolutes. We need to see how my follicles stimulate and the quality of the eggs I produce. My FS is optimistic as I have always been a good responder to stimulation. We have never had more than three embryos so I am used to low numbers. The FS also said that as I have been pregnant with my own eggs (although baba only stuck around until week 7), this is also an indicator that we should keep moving forward.

We are going to stimulate hard with a mix of Menopur and Fostimon, which is a first for me. In older ladies (like me and my gray hairs) the lower acidity of the added Fostimon is supposed to work a bit better. We shall see. However, the FS and I spoke a lot about what this means. It basically means this will be my last shot with my own eggs. DH and I were ready to do donor eggs last year, so not too much of a surprise or adjustment for us. So I am moving forward and hoping for the best. I just want to get to retrieval, which says I can produce eggs. That will be step one, then I will worry about getting to transfer. If we do get to transfer, we will do Intralipids immediately after transfer, which is also a first. I only did them before once I was pregnant. We are also going to do Clexhane at transfer as well, so hopefully that will also assist.

All guns in. Last attempt with my own. Hoping for the best…but not the end of the road. DE is definitely on the cards. Feeling optimistic….but don’t really have a choice now, do I ? Ladies please send me all your happy-love-juju-positive-light-energy-peace-hope-vibe….praying that this is my ‘Hail Mary’ pass.


CD 25 – waiting for CD 1

Just about to get my hair done. Finally! I am such a slacker when it comes to my hair. I put it off until the last minute and then when it is done I think, ‘why did I wait so long?’.

Anyways, I am on CD 25. I am waiting for AF and as soon as she arrives I will do my bloods on CD 2. Last time my AMH was 1.3, which is ok, we are really not supposed to be concerned until it drops below 1. However, the last time I had my AMH done was almost a year ago. I think it was August 2011, I’ll have to go back in my blog and check. I am really hoping my AMH is ok. I won’t start Lucrin until CD 21, so there will be enough time to get my AMH results as they take about 10 days. That is what is nice about long protocol, you ease into the cycle – although it is a long process – hence the name long protocol.

Crystal ball anyone? Sometimes you just wish you could peek into the future and see what awaits you around the corner. Although that would defeat the purpose of living…don’t you think?

Countdown to IVF#6 begins

I’ve found it difficult to blog since we have not been in a cycle since last September. I have really taken an infertility holiday in the last six months. For those of you who have followed my journey, last year was a bit of a disaster for DH and I with two miscarriages. I am in such a better place now, I am ready for IVF again.

We will be doing long protocol again, so that means a Day 21 start. We are anticipating a start around the second week of June. I am going to email the sister at the clinic shortly to let her know of our plans. We will then do all the prep blood work the month before to make sure we are on track. Hopefully my AMH is still ok -erp! I think it was around 1.3 – 1.6 last time, I will have to go back in my blog and take a look. As long as it is not under 1 then we are good to go.

So once June hits I will have lots more to blog about! We wanted to do a cycle earlier, but we had overseas visitors this month and we have more coming in May. My in-laws also wanted to visit, but we’ve been able to postpone their trip until August. I have always said that the hardest part of IVF for me has always been the planning. I am hoping this round will be relaxed…or as relaxed as it possibly can be.

Back to ‘Normal’

Yippee….never been so happy for AF to arrive! Yesterday was Day 1, so that means I actually had a 29 day cycle. Could it be?? Could my cycle be returning to ‘normal’ after three months. (I don’t like using the word ‘normal’, because there is no such thing within a population. When I use it I mean ‘my’ normal.) Awesome. I was getting all caught up, thinking that my cycle was out of sorts and this could impact my next IVF somehow. Maybe it was an indication of my endo getting worse, or my AMH dropping further…..you know how it is, eventually we get to the doomsday prophecy.

I also bought the cutest pair of black peeptoe slingbacks. Awww it’s the simple things in life that make us happy eh? And my DH just brought me tea….so lucky I am.

Day 3 – A good start

This morning was my Day 3 scan.  Normally a pretty uneventful scan, but today my FS discussed AMH and antral follicle count with me.  I must say…my Day 3 scan will never be the same.  For some reason, probably because I never asked, I always thought that Day 3 was about ensuring there were no cysts, looking at your hormone levels from Day 2 blood tests and deciding the way forward.  I asked my FS to explain to me in more detail my AMH, as I had ‘google-fever’ and had convinced myself that 1.29 was a crap result.  The problem with google is that you start comparing yourself to everyone else…what a ‘beginner’ mistake…I should know better, but I think it is human nature to compare yourself to everyone else.  So my FS explained to me that AMH had no correlation with egg quality, it is an indicator of egg reserve and reduces with age.  AMH levels are also impacted by endometriosis.  So  I am 37, with endo 3, so you would expect my AMH to be on the lower side.  However, when we look back at my previous cycles I always produced around 7 eggs per ovary (remembering that I have a hidden ovary, which they can never retrieve from), so on average I am actually producing around 14 eggs per cycle, which is a good outcome.  The more important point is that AMH is never looked at in isolation, it is also important to look at the antral follicle count which will tell you a lot more about the potential outcome of your cycle.  FSH is not a good indicator of a potentially good cycle.  My antral follicle count this morning was good….so all is good in the world of my ovaries!  Yeah!  So now Day 3 has a whole new meaning to me….antral follicle count.

We also discussed Intralipids and my FS will give me Intralipids the day of embryo transfer.  If I get a BFP (crossing everything….please, please, please) then he wants to give me Intralipids weekly until my first scan!  Wowzers, I thought that was a little OTT (over the top), but he explained that with my history of miscarriage and that this is now my 5th IVF cycle, he wants to give us every chance possible.  As it can do no harm to increase Intralipids, I say why not!  I am just so pleased that my FS is doing all he can to help me…it makes such a difference to have a FS who is always available, realistic and practical, and is truly committed to the outcome…a baby!  By the way…he is also very affordable compared to others.  I am so happy and I love his team!  They were always great, but since the miscarriage, they really have been so amazing and it is the little extras, like all the staff knowing my name (although that is probably because I have been in the office almost every month for the last three years), asking about DH and treating me with so much kindness.  It makes the process a little bit easier.

I really hope this is my last cycle….please.  I start Menopur tonight.  The FS said 3 amps each night, but when I was speaking to the sister we spoke of my last cycle and how we did 4 amps for the first three days.  So we decided to change it to 4 amps for the first three days and she would just tell him we changed it.  Now I really know I am a Veteran IVF’er!  I could probably rent an ultrasound machine and do my own cycle!  I am happy to do some harder stimming the first three days, I have gotten more good quality eggs using this process.

Back in for Day 10 scan on 28 July, so just need to keep on keepin on until then.

AMH results…finally

After many years, I finally asked about my AMH results. I have no idea why I didn’t ask sooner, I guess I just had so many other questions. So my result is 1.29, which is above normal, but not high enough to be of concern. The range is between 1.0 and 3.0 being normal and anything around 3.0 or above suspect of PCOS. At 37, I am really happy with my result and it make me feel relieved that I still have the option of additional IVF cycles if I choose. I feel the clock ticking and the window slowly closing on my IVF success rate based on my age. We would love to have a successful cycle again…and a successful full term pregnancy. Now that I have been around the block (now on my 5th IVF ICSI) I feel I know so much more about the tests, the drugs, the whole process. I wish I never had to be here, but the positives of being here is 1) knowledge and 2) I am much more relaxed throughout the cycle. My first 2 cycles I was a mess. However, all my anxiety has now transferred to when I do get a BFP and all that can go wrong. So I will need to work on that. For now, I am just happy that my AMH is good and I am starting my new IVF cycle with lots of hope.