Short protocol for second round of IV... - Fertility Network UK

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Short protocol for second round of IVF after poor response. Anyone had similar experience?


My husband and I had our first round of IVF (long protocol) June 2019 and I unexpectedly did not respond to the stimulation drugs. Our infertility is unexplained and our consultant did not expect such a poor response from our test results which were all within normal range, although my AMH is at the lower end of normal. I am 37 so again age was not considered a factor.

I had 6 reasonable sized follicles but only 3 eggs. The follicles were slow to grow so I was on stims for ages. Two eggs were abnormal, the other fertilised but stopped dividing at 8 cells and we did not progress to transfer. It originally stopped developing at 4 cells. This meant our planned transfer on day 3 did not go ahead. After being kept in culture for another day, it split again on day four before stopping again ... so technically our IVF failed twice without even getting to transfer.

We are about to start round two and our consultant is recommending we try a short protocol. I have been taking DHEA, hopefully the combination will help with egg quality even if we don’t get many eggs.

Does anyone have any success stories or experiences of changing from a long protocol to a short protocol? We are also changing drugs from Menopur to Gonal F - anyone experienced changing drugs and did this help?

11 Replies

Long protocol first cycle. I have high amh. I'm 38. I had 18 eggs but only 3 made it to day 5. failed fet August. Started second cycle today, short antagonist protocol this time. Like you I've been taking dhea but scared to due to my high amh. I'm also changing drugs to menopur, fyremadel and fostimon. Can only hope this is a better round x

Good luck, hope you have a better round this time xxx

I got better quality eggs moving to bemfola (same as gonal f).

Menopur is a mix of LH and FSH but gonal is all FSH so that may help you!

Dhea did help me, as did taking 600mg ubiquinol and ppq. At least I suddenly conceived 3 times naturally once I was on those supplements for a while!

Countrychic in reply to Orla9298

Thanks for your reply. Reassuring to hear you found you egg quality improved following the supplements. There is so much information out there.

Good luck with your journey xxx

My first cycle also didn’t make it to transfer, it was devastating so I understand how you will have felt, so I’m really sorry xx

Hi firstly am sorry you never got to transfer stage this happened to me earlier this year it is so frustrating.

So my very first round of IVF I was on gonal f and out of 7 embryos, 3 were viable and we had a double transfer resulting in my now 3 year old son.

Since he turned 1 we have been trying unsuccessfully for his sibling.

After a failed FET we had another great cycle on Gonal f and exactly same results again fell pregnant from a double transfer, unfortunately miscarried at 7 weeks due to small gestational sac 😕. So not one to give up I discovered DHEA and Ubiquinol we tried again this time consultant prescribed Menopur as felt it best for quality and my age. However I had the worst response ever had and only 1 egg collected so no transfer . I came to the conclusion I responded much better to Gonal F and of am honest felt completely cheated out of that round plus 4K down the drain. Since then we tried again with gonal f again got 7 eggs only 2 made it transferred both but BFN. Unfortunately I think it’s age factor for me now as am 43.

We are still deciding where to go from here.

I hope this helps I vote gonal f all the way 😀

Countrychic in reply to Hope76

Thanks for your reply, lovely news about your son but sorry to hear about your difficulties trying to have baby number two. Good luck with whatever route you decide to take next xxx

When I switched to short protocol I felt a lot better, I got the same number of eggs but first time around (on long protocol) I got one blast nothing to freeze. On short protocol I got 4 frosties from the same number of eggs so overall the outcome was much better. I’ve also recently tried Gonal F instead of Menopur and my body responds much better to it, on Menopur it’s very slow for me, on my recent FET I had very low dose Gonal F (75iu) just to help my lining grow and my follicles went nuts whereas on Menopur I was taking (300/375iu) and not getting anything like that kind of response. Good luck, I hope these changes work for you xx

Thank you, it is reassuring to hear other people have had positive experiences following changes to their protocol. Congratulations on your pregnancy, wishing you a healthy pregnancy 😊 xxx

My situation is very similar to yours so I too would love to hear other stories on a short protocol. Wishing you best of luck. I’m starting end of October. 37 also but Low AMH and high fsh 😥 trying not to focus on numbers though. I only ever get 4 follicles but first cycle only two eggs retrieved and zero fertilization so didn’t even get to day one, second cycle cancelled on a estrogen priming protocol. I’ve been taking dhea, ubiquinol and every other supplement under the sun so prayering so hard this makes a difference along with a new clinic and new protocol. Baby dust to you 🤞🏽🤞🏽 X

Baby dust to you too 🤞🤞 Looks like we will be cycling around same time. We should be starting around end of October as well. Here’s hoping the expense and constant taking of vitamins/supplements pays off for us both! I am pleased to try the short protocol because I had so many side effects from the down-reg meds’ last time. It only takes one, have been read loads of success stories of people similar to us 😊 xxx

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