IVF 2: The first few days

It’s rolled around again… I’ve been waiting so long it seems to be a slight anti-climax. I’ve started IVF cycle 2. (For the story of cycle 1, which resulted in pregnancy and then miscarriage, you can click on IVF experience at the top of the site.)

The reasons for the delay are a few… Firstly, I had to have surgery to remove a fibroid that was found during the miscarriage. Actually, I think it was highlighted earlier, but at any rate they decided it should be removed. Due to both the NHS (lovely NHS, but overrun with more urgent cases so loooong wait) and my medical insurance company (BUPA, who are possibly slightly less lovely as they refused to fund it if they thought it was related to infertility but it was eventually approved it due to my problems with heavy periods), the operation eventually took place in December 2015. 

I think I first got called to schedule IVF in November time, and I asked the chap on the phone whether I should go on the waiting list or wait until after the op and he said to wait until after the op. Which put me back a few months. Really I should have just gone with it as that would have probably meant starting IVF in December last year (op was early December) but I guess being able to drink / eat soft cheese over Christmas isn’t a bad thing. As it turns out – it seems like the fibroid is still there, which means either the (private) doc did a bad job or it’s a super fast grower (unlikely it would grow back in exactly the same place within a matter of weeks). Not much I can do about it now – it’s quite small – 0.5 cm or something – so all I can do is hope.

We also sought second and third opinions. One from a private IVF clinic that does mild IVF, which we were quite open to, but even they recommended we take the free cycles (sounds like somewhere you give away old furniture) and then come back if it doesn’t work. In our area, we get three free cycles on the NHS, which is great. Although apparently the magic number is 4, as in most women with infertility which is treatable by IVF get pregnant within four cycles (sorry I don’t have the citation… I remember random facts but not names and dates). Good to know.

The third opinion was from Dr S who specialises in reproductive immunology. I know – lots of people think it’s bunkum. I’m undecided, but think it’s worth a shot. My history is not “just” one IVF miscarriage. It’s a forever (10+) inability to get pregnant, both in a previous long term relationship, a few shorter relationships (so judge me) and my current long term relationship with T. Yeah, I’d be the proverbial oopsie pregnancy person if my equipment actually worked. Anyway, with Dr S I’m following the borderline protocol which means that I have a few extra meds to take alongside my cycle. This is because I have a slightly outside normal Natural Killer pregnancy response (although I have a normal NK level).

IVF Cycle 2: Days 1-3

NHS protocol: Down regulation with Buserelin, 0.5ml

Dr S Supplements: Omega 3 (Urk), baby aspirin, Vitamin D, Pregnacare – detailed in a previous post

NHS protocol: My baseline scan is 12 April after which I may start stimming – my stim med this time is Menopur – last time it was Gonal F and I was a slow responder and did an extra almost week of stimming (stimulation – for eggs)

Dr S protocol: For the borderline protocol I am recommended to start heparin injections during day 4-6 of stims and have a one off intralipid infusion around the same time, and then prednisolone 2-3 days before transfer 

So far I’m feeling fine although the injections hurt more than I remember! I do remember they hurt differently at different times during the cycle. I seem to be at peak hurty time if the first three are anything to go by!

I decided to do my hour (you can pick the time to do injections within an hour) between 06:30 and 07:30, which seems reasonable. Although I keep waking up earlier which is annoying.

I’m slightly up on weight this month but I think that is due to staycation and Easter. (Boo!) I’m hoping it will go down a bit so I can get back to February weight as I was doing much better then!

My boobs hurt a bit too but I can never quite tell if that’s my normal cycle or the drugs. It seems a bit odd that it would happen so quickly.

I haven’t stopped drinking coffee yet (one Nespresso in the morning) or soft cheese. I intend to eat a massive load of Pie d’Angloys this week and give it up by the stims phase! In theory the Nespresso should be fine but I’m not taking any chances. I might go decaf and see if it gives a placebo effect as it helps me wake up in the morning!

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40 comments

  1. EmilyMaine

    Wooohoo! A new cycle brings new hope so I always liked that about it. Plus I’m a doer and I suspect you are too so it is always nice to feel like you are doing something towards the overall goal. Hope it all goes smoothly. Keep us updated xx

    Liked by 2 people

    • Nara

      Haha, like Star Wars! #geek 😆
      I am sort of a doer… I’m very into work, but I’m very lazy outside of work, if that counts! The whole process at least makes me feel like I’m doing something productive. Although the end goal seems so far away and over so many hurdles! Thanks for the encouragement! X

      Liked by 1 person

  2. TryTryAgain

    Brilliant news that you’ve started this cycle! I’ve got everything crossed that this is the one for you! And don’t beat yourself up over the weight, the more relaxed you can be the better I think, a couple of extra pounds is better than trying to starve yourself when you’ve got enough going on! Xxx

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Jein

    Good luck, Nara, and all the best for this cycle! If the injections are hurting you could try stuff called Emla. It numbs your skin so you don’t feel it. (I used it on my last round due to my fear of needles, even thought it doesn’t hurt so much… Big wus when it comes to needles, but it helped me with it all.) Fingers and toes crossed for you. X

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Thank you! The injections aren’t hurting me badly at all. It’s just I remember last time when I first started them, I barely felt them! They did start to hurt a bit more through the cycle. Whereas this time I can definitely feel them. Although it’s not bad at all! I’m just being a wuss! 😂

      Like

  4. Courtney

    I remember being surprised the second time by the pain of the shots. I think the first time, we’re so amped up and excited and POSITIVE that we’d take any amount of pain. After that, we’re in reality.

    GOOD GOOD LUCK!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Hahaha. Really the first time I was shocked because I couldn’t really feel it! I noticed that it changed throughout the cycle though. I’m hopeful it will be second time lucky like it was for you! X

      Liked by 1 person

  5. mamajo23

    I am glad you are finally here at this point. I find it emotional and hopeful and exhausting all at once to start a new cycle. I think there is something to be said for the immune stuff so glad you are adding that in too. I like to try to stay even at every monitoring appointment- I don’t let good or less than stellar news affect my even coast through the stim phase. It helps me not to obsess over every measurement and follicle. Those stats don’t really matter in the end and I like to save my crazy for the TWW :). Wishing you so much luck. Have everything crossed for you!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Haha! You’re right! I really didn’t know what to expect last time though and I think even though I’ve tried not to notice the stats, I’ve sort of taken some in by osmosis! At least we don’t have betas in the uk! Thank you for your support and your reminder to be positive! ☺️ xx

      Like

  6. My Perfect Breakdown

    To me there is just something so exciting and hopeful at the start of a new cycle! So today, I am simply excited and hopeful for you!
    I also have to add my two cents in on the reproductive immunology. I support it as new(er) science that hasn’t become as mainstream yet. Just like IVF was back in the day. So, in my humble opinion, I’m glad you are adding it into the mix!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Amy M.

    Sounds like things are going well so far! Sorry the fibroid is back, hope it doesn’t get any bigger. I don’t know about any immunology stuff, but it’s worth a shot!! It may not take 4 tries for IVF to work….thankfully it only took 1 transfer for us! Sending you lots of positive vibes!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nara

      Thank you! It’s nice to hear from a fellow Brit. I’ve followed your blog and will catch up on your history! Good luck with your treatment too. I’m happy to share pics with homesick Brits!

      Liked by 1 person

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