Yassy’s note: One step closer to our IVF journey

In the previous entry titled “Yassy’s Note:Impossible dream made possible“,I wrote that 12 years ago, I came to the states via marriage and,after spending about 2 years ourselves alone, we started thinking about starting a family. However, doctor has found the toxic fluid for babies in one of the tubes and the other tube was closed , plus I had the wall in heart shaped uterus (bicornate uterus). Therefore, both tubes had to be removed.

 Since my uterus had so little space for the babies to grow, our first doctor told us that our option for our dream of life will be achieved via surrogate program,which runs up 60,000 dollars.

 However, when we went to the fertility clinic to talk about option in detail, we were told that the another doctor could perform the surgery to remove the wall in my uterus so the babies can grow, and that I could carry my own baby via IVF as option.
 
 We were really lucky to find the doctor who could help us to have a little one that way. Otherwise, we would still be thinking that our option is only the surrogacy..

 Our journey to finally be able to hold our own child has all started from 12 years ago;the summer in the year of  2004.

 July 15 Liam feeding time 2014

Our little prince “Liam” 2 days old..

Our regular OBGYN at the time referred us to the reproductive Endocrinology& Infertility Gynecology specialist first. The doctor there wanted to evaluate the infertility issue for both of us,and has sent me to the test called Hysterosalpingogram a.k.a. HSG to check if the tubes are opened;this is to check if the infertility issue was one of female factors. Then,she has sent my husband for the semen analysis  to check if Infertility was make factor.

 It was clear that the issue was not male factor. Therefore, I was tested more in detail to see what was resulting to the infertility issue.

According to the doctor, the infertility evaluation process is recommended first before the treatment such as IVF if the couple has attempted to conceive more than a year without success. This evaluation is to find the possible cause of infertility.

 What kinds of tests are performed to identify the cause of infertility? Here is the list of tests done.

  • Medical history of both partners
  • Physical exam of female;pelvic organs (ovaries,uterus, and cervix) will be evaluated for abnormalities
  • PAP smear
  • Semen analysis;the lab will test for sperm function and presence of infection
  • Blood test on the cycle day 3 for the hormone FSH and LH to check ovarian function, blood test for hormone imbalance etc..You will be checked for more such as TSH,PRL,ABO and Rh, Rubella, HIV,Hep B&C and RRR,
  • HSG (Hysterosalpingogram) on the cycle day 7 -10 to check if fallopian tubes are opened, and to evaluate the internal architecture of uterine cavity

What is HSG?How is it performed?

HSG (Hysterosalpingogram) is the test to check fallopian tubes are opened, and to evaluate the internal architecture of uterine cavity.

The test is done in between your cycle’s day #7-10, in a radiology department at the hospital.

In the room, the contrast medium or dye is injected through your cervix and it will outline the uterine cavity and fallopian tubes so that they may be photographed on the X-ray.

You will be instructed to take an antibiotic before and after the procedure. Then, you will be instructed to take Advil or Motrin 1 hour prior to the procedure to prevent the cramping after the procedure.

  • Between cycle day 13 to 16, you should be ovulating and ultrasound test will be performed to see both uterus and ovaries. This test can confirm at least one follicle containing an egg is present in the ovary and it goes away after ovulation. This test also can evaluate the thickness and pattern of endometrial lining. This ovary function,uterus lining thickness etc can effect the potential of an embryo to implant after fertilization. As for the uterus, ultrasound can check pathological abnormality on the uterus as well.
  • On the cycle day 21, you will get blood test  to check the progesterone level. The progesterone level rises dramatically after an egg is released from the ovary.The progesterone prime the lining of your uterus to both becoming a pregnant and maintain the pregnancy
  • Cycle day 27, endometrial biopsy to evaluate the response of the uterus lining to the progesterone if needed. I did not have to do this biopsy.

 As you can see, there are many tests before actual treatment and often times, to evaluate the female side of infertility factor, tests are done based on your cycle day,and there are so many tests to be done.

 At the time, I was working for Japanese Airline at the Airport near us,but I had to take multiple days off without advanced notice now and then because of that. At the end, I came to the conclusion that I could not do the job and do the Infertility tests or IVF at the same time,and I have ended up leaving the job.

I liked the job but it was for the good, and I have no regret for that.

  As a result of all of these tests, the doctor has found out that I have got a bicornate uterus (heart shaped uterus), ovarian cysts (which turned out to be it was simply abnormal cell,not a cancer), and one of the fallopian tubes were closed.

 She has scheduled me then to remove the cyst on the ovary and when she looked inside me to retrieve the cyst, she has found out that there was a large number of endometriosis around the ovary as well.

She could removed some of the endometriosis on me, but too many to remove all of them and she has put me on the birth control pills first to remove the rest of the endometriosis.

  Having a birth control pill was opposite idea for our ultimate goal,which was to be able to get pregnant,but she has told me that the pill will regulate the cycle,and also treat the endometriosis and I should be on it for a while until endometrosis is gone.

Therefore,I was on the birth control pill for a while to treat the endometriosis.

Looking at all the tests results, the doctor has us seated and basically told us that since I have got a bicornate uterus with wall in the center, even if I got good opened fallopian tubes, and I could conceive naturally, chances are I would more likely miscarriage.

  After all, ovaries were functioning as it supposed to,and since I had one closed fallopian tubes and I got a bicornate uterus with wall in the center, she thought I would no way that I could carry my own child via IVF successfully. Even if I could get a pregnant,she thought it would more likely end with miscarriage.

  Her suggestion was to talk to the Infertility specialist for the surrogate program after endometriosis was treated,and go from there.

  We were then referred to other Infertility clinic in our local area to talk to the option we have got to be able to have a baby.

  She also suggested to join in the support group called “Resolve“. You can find the support there as well as many IVF,surrogacy or any other family building related information.

As you can imagine, we were both shocked to find out that the only option for us to have a child was via surrogacy, and it was very hard for us to accept the fact that I was not being able to  carry a child on our own.

 Not only that, when you get pregnant, what you eat or drink and all other things in your daily life really effects unborn child and, I was worried thinking how would I know the person who would be carrying our child would be eating and drinking and spending a day as she should.

 Controlling what you would eat or drink is easy, but it would be hard to  control somebody else’s daily habit. Plus, the program itself I heard was super expensive and when you think about it, program does not guarantee the successful pregnancy of course and, the dream to be able to have a child of our own looked so far away.

  Because of the cost issue and, the fact that we were thinking that surrogacy was the only choice for us to have a children of our own, we were debating what we should do next, and we were putting off to visit the Infertility clinic  until 2008 winter.

 That is something I would regret a little because the doctor at the Infertility clinic has told us that having the wall in the uterus would not  be a big deal for us because he knew other doctor who could remove the wall in the uterus and repair the uterus so my uterus would have more chance to be able to carry our children on our own.

  You could imagine how much we got relieved and at the same time, we were so happy to find out about that. If we knew that much earlier, we could try building a family a little bit earlier then.

 The infertility clinic has sent me to the hospital to be tested for fallopian tubes and uterus abnormality via HSG again. It showed that one of the tubes was closed as our first doctor has told us and the other tube was filled with toxic fluid for the babies to grow. Therefore, both of my fallopian tubes were no good, and they had to be removed while uterus surgery.

  Of course, the uterus surgery needed some painful recovery time and we could not start the IVF treatment right away. Another time to delay the building the family. However, end result at the end, as you already know, was a good one so, I am grateful for that.

 One step closer to our dream.

 Long road to go but we were determined and faithful that we would be able to have a child of our own someday. I knew that Celine Dion has tried IVF 7 times and the last one ended up with successful outcome;twin boys.

 Therefore, I wanted to believe that we could end up with successful result like theirs at the end. We had to believe that to be strong. Infertility issue is really emotional and stressful for both. I needed something to hold on to and it was Celine’s story and it was my husband’s emotional support.

 Our real journey to be able to meet our little prince “Liam” has started in winter 2010.

 It was such an emotional roller coaster but, every time I see Liam’s face now and see his arms and legs flapping around for the excitement and smiles, it makes me smile.

 It was real hard to go through the whole IVF program especially when we were told “You are not a pregnant” over and over again, but it was worth it. One little smile from Liam is priceless and,I am glad that we could find the clinic that could make our dream come true.

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Dec 08, 2014 | 0 | IVF

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