With 10-25% of all clinically established pregnancies ending in miscarriage, it’s a wonder that anyone would purposefully put themselves at risk of going through such a heartache. When a couple has to employ the services of a reproductive endocrinologist and pay for artificial reproductive technologies (ARTs) in order to even attempt a pregnancy, it’s all the more amazing that people take the chance. On average, IVF carries with it a 35-40% success rate for women under age 35, just over 30% for women between 35 and 37, just over 20% for women between 38-40, and only about 13% and 4% respectively for women aged 41-42 and those over 42. So between the likelihood of a success (defined here as a live birth of the awaited child) and… [more]
I’m seeing double. Double lines on a home pregnancy test, that is! But hold your congratulations. I have been here before, and it did not end well. The way I see it, entering the two-week-wait after an embryo transfer, insemination, or timed intercourse is like entering a competition of sorts, even though we are not really competing against anyone. However, from listening to some ladies talk when they announce a negative result (“I’m out this month”), it would appear that the analogy is not that far off. Once a positive home pregnancy test is achieved, or for those with nerves of steel, the results of their first beta results are in, we are indeed one step closer to our goal. However, we are not out… [more]
While the infamous two-week-wait seems to be dreaded by most women, it's only because the focus so often is about what we want. "Obviously," you may say. But for a person of faith, it is not necessarily so clear-cut. This time of uncertainty offers several opportunities for growing in our relationship with God, and perhaps also with others. First and foremost, stressing over the desired positive outlook only sets us up for failure when, inevitably, so many of us do not succeed every time we try. Instead, we have an opportunity to practice truly turning our will over to God. Clearly, we desire that the cycle results in a healthy take-home baby. I'm not suggesting that we should try to want what we don't actually want… [more]
The time between an attempt at pregnancy (be that timed intercourse, an intra-uterine insemination, or an embryo transfer) and confirmation of the result of the attempt is commonly referred to as the two week wait. Generally speaking, it takes about two weeks before a pregnancy can be detected, even though the actual length of time can be slightly more or less time. Perhaps because we are utterly unable to do anything during this time that would bring us any closer to the desired result, this time of waiting is often dubbed “dreaded”. Speaking from personal experience, but also from noticing certain patterns among people struggling with infertility right along side me, a common theme among those waiting in their two-week wait seems to be one or more… [more]
Welcome to the new series of Fertility Blogs! As a Mom and a woman who had some of the most excruciating experiences with my infertility treatments, I can empathize and sympathize with every woman, man and family during these emotional times. A friend once asked me to describe myself, using one word, starting with the letter of the alphabet. This gave me 26 ways to describe myself and I felt compelled to accept the challenge; knowing it would be simple, right? I began to ask other friends, family and colleagues to use a word that best described me in their eyes. Some were hilarious, others poignant, and still some even stung. As a columnist, I began a series on life from A-Z and it… [more]
The Southeast Chapter of RESOLVE is having it's first annual Family Building Conference on May 1st in Atlanta, Georgia (CLICK HERE for more information). Beyond being a spectacular idea - getting people together with experts to discuss issues surroung infertility - it is also very well named! The conference intends to "address the medical, emotional, social, financial and legal issues associated with infertility and adoption." There are also some awesome give-aways, including a chance at a free IVF cycle and a free donor egg cycle, but I digress (as I am apt to do when someone says the word free). What struck me the most about the informational email I received about the conference… [more]
While suffering with infertility I always had a secret hope that I am sure is shared by many other people who pursue fertility treatments. I wanted more than anything to just miraculously get pregnant and prove all the doctors wrong, showing everyone that we weren't actually infertile and that we could get pregnant on our own. I did lots of reading about people who got pregnant after the HSG test and convinced myself that would happen to me too, but it didn't. I kept putting off the initial consultation with the Reproductive Endocrinologist thinking that I would have luck in the month before the appointment, to no avail. I tried a new tactic every month that was supposed… [more]
If you have reached a place where you feel like you are losing your mind with trying to become pregnant, you might want to consider taking a month or two off from trying to conceive. You might find that giving yourself a breather is just what you need to help you have the stamina to continue trying to conceive through various fertility treatments.
I was so goal-oriented when I was trying to conceive a child. All that mattered was that we try and try again until we were successful. I did not want any time off. If anything, I wanted to accelerate my life so I would know immediately if the last try was successful so we could try again. I thought that I could… [more]
We continued the fertility treatments throughout the summer and fall of 1998. The fertility procedures were consuming my life.
I had multiple doctor appointments each month between the follicle tracking, intrauterine inseminations (IUIs), and pregnancy tests. (The progesterone would cause a false positive if I took a home pregnancy test, so if my period was late, I would have a blood test performed at the doctor's office.)
When I wasn't at the doctor's office, I was running to the drug store for Clomid, barbiturates for the migraines, and the progesterone supplements. I finally switched drugs, replacing the generic Clomid with the brand name Serophene. I tolerated that drug better and was able to manage the migraines with Excedrin Migraine… [more]
Continuing along the lines of stress and how it relates to fertility, I found the following question and answer at www.ivillage.com. Click here to read the full article. The woman with the question felt that her stress was affecting her ability to conceive since there were no findings from her testing. She wanted to know what she could do to help reduce her stress. Dr. Mark Perloe was the doctor who wrote the response to her. He did a great job of explaining that stress can affect ovulation, hormone production, and the immune system. According to Dr. Perloe, here are his suggestions for stress reduction: Strive for more open communication with your partner and other important people in your life. Ask your partner what she or he needs… [more]