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Fertility Network UK
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Sedation or anaesthetic?!

Hi all

Me and my husband are just looking into options following our first failed ICSI cycle a couple of weeks ago.

We are now paying privately so looking at other clinics and the one we like best so far only offers sedation for EC rather than general anaesthetic like I had last time.

I just wondered if anyone had experience of sedation for this (good or bad) that you would mind sharing with me? I'm worried as I had a bad experience myself once but have been assured this isn't normally the case.

Thanks everyone and I hope you're all doing ok xx

21 Replies
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Sorry to hear about your failed cycle. I have had 3 egg collections under sedation and I was completely knocked out and unaware of anything for all of them. So good experiences all round for me.

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Thank you, I'm so glad to hear it can be a good experience. I'm so torn but just knowing it can work without being painful means I'm not going to write it off just yet! X

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Hi Franco, sorry to read about your recent cycle. I’m in 2ww now and have done both EC and ET under sedation; very convenient and had no problem at all x

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Thank you so much, it's great to hear a positive story!

I wish you all the best in your tww and hope you get your positive xx

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Thank you hun xx

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I had sedation with both of my ECs. The worst bit about them both was trying to get the cannula in!! After that I just drifted off to sleep x

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That's good to know that it's possible to actually sleep and not remember it, that would be ideal!

Thanks for the reply x

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I had conscious sedation. They said I’d feel like I was drunk on champagne but with the bonus of no hangover. I didn’t lol. I was fully awake throughout the whole process. At times it was painful but they were great. They topped up my pain relief (pethadine) through a cannula in my arm. Ok, I wouldn’t want to repeat it but at least I was ok to go half an hour later. When I had GA for my D and C I was very sick and stayed in hospital all day xx

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Ah thank you for your reply. It sounds the same, they did say 'conscious sedation' and said they keep an eye on your heart rate so if it goes up indicating pain they top up the pain relief then. I'm still not sure but if it's relatively quick I guess I need to trust them! Do you think mindfulness is worth a go?! I'm thinking of trying it to keep me in some kind of control! And maybe take my mind away from any pain!

I hope you are doing ok, I've seen some of your posts and really hope you and your husband are managing to get through all the knocks you have had, you sound like a very strong person xx

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I don’t think of myself that way, I just think it’s a case of having to do whatever you have to do to achieve (hopefully) a family. But thank you 😊

I think a mindfulness app is definitely worth a try. I didn’t know about one when I had EC last September. I also asked for a muscle relaxant which I took on the morning of EC to just take the edge off my nerves. Perhaps they can prescribe you something similar? I seem to be one of only a few people on here who was awake for the whole process lol. But if I can do it then anyone can, trust me. If you are awake you will be able to ask for more pain relief, if you need it. Hopefully you won’t 🤞 xx

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Ps I’m sorry to say that I remember everything. I’m only telling you just so you’re prepared.. I remember my OH feeling feint and having to leave the room for 5 minutes and the nurse offering me her hand to hold instead. I greatfully accepted it xx

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Ah thank you, that's worth looking into.

My previous experience (for something totally different) sounds similar to yours where I felt so drunk I felt sick and could feel all the pain but not able to do anything about it! I think that's why I'm scared but this is for a positive end goal so I'm hoping it will be worth it!

I'm gonna get the mindfulness app everyone recommends this time too x

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I’ve had sedation both times, my clinic says general anaesthetic for EC is no longer considered best practice. I hated general anaesthetic the one time I had it for an op so I’m glad about that! Sedation was fine, I just had a lovely sleep and didn’t remember anything afterward. One time I was sleepy all afternoon but the other time I was awake once I was awake, as it were. The drugs they give for sedation usually include something that affects memory so you shouldn’t remember anything.

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Ah that's really interesting, thank you. They did say something about not remembering too so maybe I'll just focus on that! X

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Hello Franco! I had sedation and it was wonderful! I was completely knocked out and had no recollection of anything at all! Good luck with everything, I’m sorry you’re having to go through this again xx

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Ah thanks for the reply and thank you you, I'm still relatively new to all this compared to a lot of the brave ladies on here but we somehow dust ourselves off and carry on.

I'm really hoping that sedation does the same for me as it did for you! X

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I have it for my transfer and the scratch as I couldn’t cope with an internal so they know it has to really knock me out, so just ask for the good stuff!! Xx

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I have had both and would go for a general again. I had sedation the first time and they said I appeared distressed so they ended up giving me double so was so knocked out with that plus the diazepam they also gave me it took me almost 3 hours to wake enough to go home. Last cycle oct 17 I had General went down at 9am was fully awake by 9:50. I personally have to have a anaesthetist in the room as I am asthmatic so they won't do sedation without one present incase my breathing was to change. Xx

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Hiya sorry to hear you had a bad experience. I had EC under sedation as well and I honestly thought I was under a general because all I remember was waking up in recovery room much later. I was terrified at the idea of only being sedated and I said to the anaesthetist to make sure I was out cold and he said don't worry you will be snoring lol

Hope that helps to reassure you x

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I had GA, I have stage 4 endo so they knew my ovaries would be tricky. I was awake very quickly after the procedure and am so relieved I did not feel anything.

All the best with your decision. xxx

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I had gas and air and found that fine xx

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