May 27, 2016

IVF Take 2: Stims Update

Hello loves.
I thought I would update everyone about where we are with the second round of IVF.

But first, I need prayers, people. 
Our English bully got into a scuffle with our old timer cat this morning (think 80 lbs vs. 8lbs), and after a day of ER visits and multiple surgeries, we were told the cat's jaw is broken in two locations, one that can't be "fixed" so will (hopefully) heal on its own in the next 6-8 weeks. They are giving him a g-tube, or feeding tube, while he heals, which means Mark and I are on feeding duty 2x a day until the old man regains use of his mouth. It was such a pitiful site to see, and this is Mark's cat....he has been rather upset about it. I am trying to be the rock and work out the logistics, but we did have to have an "end game" talk today, just in case. 
It hasn't been an easy day today.
I'm hoping for nothing but positive results from the surgeries today along with a speedy recovery.

So, IVF....things are a bit different this time, but I'm not complaining in the slightest.

One thing you can bank on, should you be doing a second (or third, or fourth) round of feel like a total pro the next go-around.

I remember sitting in the small consulting room, back in March, watching the nurse walk us through how to fill and inject each shot and thinking this is going to suck...we are never going to get through this!

And now that we are through the trenches with our first and in the midst of our second...we totally have this.

Of course this cycle hasn't been without it's surprises, but overall I'd say we are doing good.

Here is a day by day recap:

Friday, May 13th: Break-through bleed turned into full period while on Endometrin, emergency ultrasound/bloods to confirm no issues. Hormone levels normal. Adjusted protocol.

Sunday, May 15th: Last day of 2x daily Endometrin

Tuesday, May 17th: Baseline ultrasound (u/s) and blood work (lab). Confirmation of 21 itty-bitty follicles. Hormone levels are good.

Friday, May 20th: Stims Day 1. PM 450u Follistim, 150u (2 powders) Menopur, (1) 2.5mg Letrozole pill. Bring on the headaches!

Saturday, May 21st: Stims Day 2. PM 450u Follistim, 150u (2 powders) Menopur, (1) 2.5mg Letrozole pill. More headaches....YAY!

Sunday, May 22nd: Stims Day 3. PM 450u Follistim, 150u (2 powders) Menopur, (1) 2.5mg Letrozole pill

Monday, May 23rd: u/s, lab appt. Ultrasound tech is concerned that I already have lead follicles measuring at 16mm. I panic all day until I receive the nurses phone call.

Nurse calls. 19 follicles ranging from 7.8 - 17mm.
Nurse reassures me that the dominant, larger follicles will most likely be absorbed back into my body, so we will inevitably lose them.  The bulk of the eggs retrieved will come from the smaller follicles. Hormones are normal.

Stims Day 4. PM 450u Follistim, 150u (2 powders) Menopur, (1) 2.5mg Letrozole pill + the addition of Ganirelix (3 shots in one night!)

Tuesday, May 24th: Stims Day 5. AM Ganirelix shot, PM 450u Follistim, 150u (2 powders) Menopur, (1) 2.5mg Letrozole pill. Last headache pill...woop!!

Side story: The Tuesday evening Menopur shot hurt like hell. I think Mark jabbed me in an already sore spot because I yelled kind of loudly as the needle went in. Instead of continue the shot IN MY SKIN, Mark's nerves took over and he starting pushing the liquid in the air, and all over my pants, instead of in my abdomen. Cool. So I got to get stabbed for the 3rd time to get it right.

Wednesday, May 25th: u/s, lab appt.

Nurse calls. Approx. 16 measurable follicles ranging from 10 - 21mm
Again, I am assuming these numbers are going to flucuate, and will likely not all lead to eggs.
Hormones are normal.

Stims Day 6. AM Ganirelix, PM 300u Follistim (finally lower!), 150u (2 powders) Menopur

Thursday, May 26th: Stims Day 7. AM Ganirelix, PM 300u Follistim150u (2 powders) Menopur

Friday, May 27th: u/s, lab appt.

Nurse calls. My estrogen is 1486 so a nice rise by their standards. Approx. 9 measurable follicles ranging from 10-25mm. This drop in count kind of made me sad, but at this point, I am hoping for quality over quantity.

Stims Day 8: AM Ganirelix, PM 150u Follistim, 75u (1 powder) Menopur

I am headed in tomorrow for another u/s and lab at the Highland Park location.
Last cycle, when I started to head in every day for appointments, my first of two trigger injections began two days later.

I am assuming I will trigger either Sunday or Monday, with a Tuesday or Wednesday retrieval.

Noticeable side effects:

This round I can tell I am a tad more bloated after shots and in general. I guess this is a good sign because I have more follies, therefore, more space is being taken up by potential eggs!

Letrozole yielded mild, ongoing headaches for the first three days, but seemed to subside by Day 4. This pill is only taken for 5 days, so hopefully the worst of that is behind me.

I am more juicy, as Mark likes to call it.
Get your head out of the's not what it seems.

With each shot, I have bled. This goes for blood draws as well.

I am chalking it up to the sheer amount of medication being injected....specifically with Follistim. Those that have used this pen before....450 units means it is cranked up as far as it can go.
The WHOLE thing goes in.

Also not so fun story....our predetermination to biopsy any embryos for future PGD testing was denied earlier this week. I was heartbroken because I did so much research to ensure coverage and again....more balls to the face.

I processed my appeal, and the same day received an email from Dr. Jacob's nurse saying that he initiated a peer to peer review of my need for PGD biopsy and testing with a Dr. from BlueCross.

Everything is now approved!!

I just love that our doctor is that in tune with his clients and willing to help us fight the good fight. For once I feel like a couple things are working in our favor!

As always, thanks for reading!! XO


  1. Yay on the approval! You got this.

  2. One woman's bloated is another man's "juicy" HA!

    So sorry to hear about kitty, I had a cat once who had a broken jaw and it did heal! I hope to hear good news about your kitty too!