All Roads Lead to. . .IVF?

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I would say that I can’t believe that it’s been over a month since I last posted, but that would be a lie.  I’ve been on the down-low for a long time for various reasons.  It makes me wonder–what happens to all those bloggers that just disappear?  I was perusing my reader the other day and saw quite a few posts from some folks that I thought had long since quit blogging, but have happily resurfaced.  My first thought upon seeing those posts was, “Who is this?”  Then after a reading a while, I said to myself, “Oh, yeah.  I remember her now.”  My point is that I hope I don’t become one of those people who other bloggers no longer recognize because I’ve been so absent from the online world.

A few days ago I had my first appointment with a new RE, one who does more testing and performs IVF.  We talked a while and she confirmed what I knew:  I should have been pregnant long ago.  In a way, the news bothered me because I guess some small part of me was hoping that maybe I just time babymaking at the wrong interval.  After all, it’s much easier to deal with the things you can control, like timing, over things you can’t, like your body.  But no–eventually you do hit the right time–if you don’t have any other problems.  Obviously, I have other problems.

She did offer two possible explanations for why it hasn’t happened.  1)  Implantation failure (meaning antibodies, autoimmune, or Natural Killer cells) or 2) Male Factor (sperm antibodies).

Number 1 basically means that your body rejects the pregnancy you create.  It never even has a chance to implant in the uterine wall.  If it never implants in the uterine wall, your body never gets the chance to produce HCG, so you don’t even see a positive pregnancy test.  In other words, you never knew you were pregnant.  This is actually where most miscarriages occur, though women never know they had them.

Number 2 is a more complete analysis of semen.  A typical semen analysis looks at things like volume, count, motility, mobility, etc, but according to the doctor this is not a complete picture at all.  A more in-depth analysis looks at possible antibodies and other things that I can’t remember.

The RE thinks that if you can offset these possible problems in the beginning, you have a better chance at a successful IVF.  And that’s where I am headed.

Of course I have concerns, but the biggest is money.  How will we pay for this?  We have some insurance coverage, but there is still a large amount of money that needs to be paid, money we do not have.  Money that needs to be paid in advance very soon if I am going to do a late summer cycle.  Then there’s the stress of anticipating the actual event.  You plan months in advance for IVF, and that leaves plenty of time to worry and obsess and Google every concern known to man.

I worry about these implantation failure tests.  They are quite expensive for one thing, but there’s a lot of issue over whether things like antibodies and Natural Killer Cells attack the baby.  From what I understand, these issues could possibly be a cause of infertility, but there is no concrete evidence that supports this.  Then, of course, I wonder if I do have these problems, can they can be resolved.  From what I understand, you have to take steroids or have some type of transfusion to suppress the levels.

Worry, worry, worry.  The other day I said to my husband, “I worry that. . .” but had to stop mid sentence because there were so many things to worry about that I couldn’t remember the correct thing I was supposed to be worried about.

I could sit here and list all my worries, but I guess I’ll save them for another post.

12 responses to this post.

  1. I’m really glad you’ve found an RE that’s willing to look at all those things and is thorough. I think it’s a really good sign that she’s going to look at everything before something as expensive as IVF! I’m wishing you SO much luck and positive thoughts and prayers.

    Reply

  2. Worry is such an inevitable part of infertility. I hope your testing can get you some answers and that, over the months to come, you are able to find peace. ~ hugs ~

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  3. Oh yeah, I am so there. Halfway through my injections for my first IVF cycle and I can’t remember all the things I’m meant to be worrying about. I even had to sort them all into sub-categories, things to be a lot worries about, things to be just plain worried about, things to be a bit worried about. I’m here, worrying right by your side, lady.

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  4. I can’t say whether NK cells cause IF or not but when treated for them I became and stayed pregnant after 5 failed prior cycles. So, I do sit in the camp of yes I believe they contribute to IF, especially unexlained IF. I highly recommend the blood tests if anything they are cheaper than a failed cycle. Good luc. The cost is more daunting than the reality of IVF. Altho remind me of this when we try for #2!

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  5. I am really hoping your testing yields some concrete answers, so that, at the very least, you know better what you are facing with and without the cost of IVF. The financial part of it all has always been the most stressful for me… Because we always knew that without a lot of luck or some large monetary gift, we’d soon face the end of our road. And we were pretty close to that point when we got our miracle. I’m praying that fate takes a lucky turn for you, too, so that the money issue turns from how to save for IVF into how to save for college!
    I think of you often.

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  6. My RE has never mentioned implantation failure tests- what are they? What do they entail? I worry all the time too and google alot of my questions/symptoms etc! I hope everything works out for you!

    Reply

    • Many RE’s don’t run them because they don’t fall within the typical category of things that could be wrong with you. I think they are blood tests that measure whether you have certain things in your blood (antibodies, Natural Killer cells) that could attack a possible pregnancy. I’m still in the process of learning so I don’t know a whole lot about them but I think they are worth running if you don’t have a clear diagnosis.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Reply

  7. I’m glad you found someone who’s willing to take a closer look and figure out what’s going on. I hope you get some answers soon so you can move forward.

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  8. I hope the answers bring peace of mind. It’s nice to see you blogging again. I didn’t forget you and I’d visit your blog every now and again to see if you’d returned. So welcome back :)

    Reply

  9. I don’t know how so many people manage IVF. We also don’t have the money and our health insurance won’t cover a dime. I really hope you’re able to get the testing done and some actual answers. This is sounding really positive to me and I’m hoping everything works out so you have a miracle in your arms soon. I’ve missed you and think about you often!

    Reply

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