Fertility Network UK

Poor response to stimms- failed ivf

Hi, i was doing ivf with ICSI backup. My first cycle was cancelled pre egg collection due to my poor response. They could only see 2 decent size follicles.

This cycle they upped my meds to 5 amps of merional. I had my egg collection on Monday and they retrieved 5 eggs..but they have said only 1 was mature. My husband did his sample on the morning of EC and they asked him to do a second sample pretty much straight after as they said the sperm quantity was low and they wanted to top it up! We got a call later that day to say they were proceeding to ivf ( the embryoligist said they didnt know at that stage that only 1 egg was mature.

Our one egg didnt fertilise. We're devastated. Weve now been told the mature egg looked fine and the sperm quality was good.

Has anyone else had such a poor response to the stimms? Does this count as a full cycle paid by the nhs if they dont have anything to implant into the womb? Should i push for ICSI next time?

5 Replies

Hey SaraD, so sorry to hear this. Must be very difficult and confusing as well. I don't know the answer to your questions I'm afraid, but according to the guidance my fertility centre gave me 'a cycle is the process whereby one course of IVF/ICSI commences with ovarian stimulation and is deemed complete when all viable fresh and frozen embryos resulting from that stimulation have been replaced.'

I really hope I'm wrong (and im sure others can answer better than me) but that sounds like your cycle would count as one full cycle for the purposes of the funding. Hopefully someone else on here can help further with your questions. Will keep my fingers tightly crossed for you xxx


hey lovely,

Im so sorry to hear about your situation i had the same with the poor responce on my first go my cycle and it was terminated just before EC, because they had mucked up the drugs it was there fault it didnt use one of my go's, they tried me again on a different protocol and i actually made but only 2 embies were put back in and none to freeze. in my clinic if none of my embies had made it then unfortunately that would have still counted as one of my free goes. because what you're actually paying for is the drugs and EC and fertilising of the embryos, putting them back in doesnt cost them anything. every clinic is different but that is how mine was explained to me for the nhs, and you would only get the free FET if i had embryos frozen then i would have got that free.

This whole thing is so unfair. but i would defiantly speak with your clinic and see if they are any different.

I really hope your ok hun sending you a big hug



It sounds like your response to stims this time was ok, but maybe I they triggered you too early? I had 6 eggs last cycle and got 4 blastocysts so 5-6 eggs can be a good number. Also they have always done icsi with me as know my numbers are lower than some so think you should definitely explore this more. I've always had really good reviews with consultant after and felt it helped me understand more what was happening and what needs to be changed. However, mine have always been private as refused nhs treatment for slightly low amh. I do wonder of private leads to better individualised care in some areas. It had been really hard financially but our consultant has told us us there would have been certain doses and procedures that would have been limited on nhs had we got funding. I would think it would count as a cycle, but it is hard to guess this as each ccg is a law in itself on rules! Hope you are doing ok. It is so hard emotionally to go through a whole cycle and have nothing to transfer. I do think there have been positives in this cycle for you though and I do think a better timed trigger could have made a huge difference to your outcome. Best wishes going forward xx


Hi SaraD, I have low AMH and have had a poor response too. 1st IVF I had 4 eggs collected but only 1 of those was mature and fertilised (but IVF failed after transfer), 2nd round was cancelled after taking 450 gonal f because 1 follicle grew too fast and only 1 other follicle, 3rd round I took DHEA beforehand and changed clinics and switched from a short protocol to long protocol with 450 menopur- 5 eggs retrieved, 4 fertilised and 2 perfect 8 cell transferred resulting in a BFP but sadly we lost the pregnancy on NYE. We are having to pay privately so I'm afraid I don't know the NHS rules but know if its cancelled before egg collection you dont pay on a private paying cycle but do pay once you have eggs collected. Changing your protocol may help you achieve better results, everyone is different and responds differently, I think you should press for ICSI if there is a sperm issue. Good luck!


Thank you for the replies. I had a consultation with the ivf clinic and i dont feel any further on. He didnt know if this would count as a "go" and the said that he didnt think that 4 of my eggs were immature- contrary to what the embrologist said. I felt like he was just winging the meeting. He said he'd set up a meeting for me with an embrologist because he thinks theres an issue with me and my low response to the stimms so hopefully ill know more then.

Next time it looks like ill be on 6 vials of merional a day and they will look to wait a day longer before the trigger shot but i have to wait until May to start again.

I feel so down about the whole thing- so hard to go through egg retrival with nothing to show for it and dont feel i have any explanation for why.

Iv started taking "baby aspirin" in preparation for May


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