Egg retrieval, what was your experience? - Fertility Network UK

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Egg retrieval, what was your experience?


Hi guys, me again!

So I'm hopefully starting my stims tomorrow evening and my clinic have pencilled egg collection for week commencing 8th Feb, all being well.

I know everyone is different and will respond to things differently, but what was your experience of the egg collection process? Mainly the sedation as that's whats worrying me 😬

Thanks in advance and I hope everyone is well xxx

47 Replies

Hey! How exciting. I had my egg collection last week. I was nervous too as I’ve never had any sort of hospital procedure, but it was absolutely fine. Arrived at the clinic an hour before, was taken into the theatre, they insert a canula into your hand and you wear an oxygen mask. They put the sedation stuff into the canula and then that’s it, your fast asleep. When I went to sleep there was an army of doctors and embryologists in the room. Woke up 25 mins later to just me and 2 nurses helping me into a wheel chair.

Apparently I was a bit high off the meds for 10 mins or so afterwards and barely remember being wheeled back to the room, but then that’s it, all done! Xxx

Oh how exciting, see you in your 2 week wait now?

Sounds like all went smoothly then, thats reassuring, I just get myself into a tizz with being knocked out haha. Never done it before xxx

No unfortunately not because I’m on a freeze all due to high number of follicles / risk of OHSS. FET pending. Fingers crossed! X

Ahhh I see, well good luck with your journey my lovely xxx

Hi :)Weirdly I actually enjoy the egg collection process. I think it's because I hate needles so I give myself a massive pat on the back each time. The sedation is really nice - you feel so relaxed as it goes in - it completely knocks you out so you won't have a clue what is going on. Afterwards you will probably feel pretty bloated - but that will go down (sometimes takes a few days) and you can take paracetamol if it's too much. Best of luck xx

Hi Mill. Thanks for your reply, its so reassuring to know its a positive experience for you. I know its a straight forward procedure I just get myself worried haha xx

I was exactly the same before - I was so worried and anxious - but honestly it was soooo much better than I was expecting. You'll be fine!! xx

Honestly, egg collection seemed to be, in retrospect, one of the easiest parts of the process. You just have to show up and they do the rest 😂 I was totally out during the procedure and was rudely awakened by the anaesthetist in recovery from a lovely sleep-I thought it was my husband and he nearly got an earful 😂. Completely oblivious to the whole thing. The only stressful bit was they were running 45 mins behind, not ideal for a precision timed procedure, but they got a better-than-I-expected number of mature eggs out so didn’t seem to do any harm. Xx

Haha I'd be unhappy being woken from a nice sleep too 🤣 nice to hear it went smoothly, definitely puts my mind at rest xxx

Hiya, I have my egg collection on Friday. Your post has given me a reall reassurance. Can I check when do they tell you about how many eggs were retrieved? Same day or in few days?

They told me the same day while still in the clinic - I think same day is pretty usual but whether everyone gets it while in the clinic or on the phone later that day I don't know. If still in the clinic, they should wait until you are awake and about ready to leave so that you are sufficiently compos mentis to receive the info, good or bad. I was also given an information sheet with post-procedure info and they put the egg number on there, not sure if everywhere does that. They then called me the following morning to let me know how many eggs fertilised normally and again I think that is pretty standard everywhere but you can always check with your clinic on EC day how it works so that you know what to expect and when. Best of luck! xx

Thank you. Well, the 'next day' after the EC will be Saturday and I think my clinic closed on Saturday so I won't know about how many eggs fertilised until Monday. I think.... thank you for your answer x

They may be closed but someone may go in to check on them - my clinic is closed on Sundays but the embryologist called me on Sunday morning to let me know about my last 2 day 6 embryos, which had not progressed to blastocysts on day 5. xx

I see, I am hoping someone will keep an eye on our embryo development over weekend. So maybe you are right. Makes sense for someone to check on them. So what happened to you? I didnt understand the last bit? Your last 2 embryos did not develop to blastocyst? Xxx

No they didn’t. We had six day 3 embies and on d5 four of them had progressed to blastocysts. The embryologist left the last 2 another day to see whether they would catch up but they did not so they were discarded. Sometimes they do catch up and can then be frozen and transferred as a d5 blastocyst on a frozen cycle so they are in sync with your endometrium. It’s pretty typical for some dropout between d3 and d5 so I was happy with 2/3 making it. Xx

I see... indeed still have some good embryos. Some people dont get any at all. Pleased for you xxx

Ah you will be fine! I was really nervous too but the sedation was the best bit haha! Doesn’t hurt, you’re only under for 20 mins or so so it’s not long but you feel like you’ve had the best sleep 😂 good luck xx

I could so do with a good sleep right now, not been sleeping very well at all. Thanks for your reply catlady its definitely reassuring xx

I was nervous for EC too, but it went really well. Cannot remember much at all from the procedure itself, was a lovely feeling really. And very relaxing in recovery afterwards. Got some herbal tea and a cheese sandwich after - it tasted amazing haha! I felt bloated and had moderate cramps the next few days, but only took paracetamol day of EC, so could not have been that bad pain - but I remember it took me by surprise as I was so nervous for EC itself, I had not thought about the part after 😇

Exciting times - hope all goes well for you! 🤞🥰

Thank you sparkly it so nice to hear all these positive stories, making me feel so much more at ease. Xxx

The only bad bit I experienced was getting the cannula in as I have small veins at the best of times and the room was cold. I have a second egg retrieval on Wednesday so planning on taking thicker socks and a big scarf thing to keep around me while I’m waiting to go in.

I was so out of it after the sedation that on the third time I asked the nurse how many eggs were retrieved she wrote it on a piece of paper and left it with me as I dozed off again! 😂

Melonay1987 in reply to skitten

Ah bless you, yes taking things to keep you warm is definitely a good idea. Being put of it is not a bad thing I suppose 🤣Xx

Definitely the best part of the process for me, minus the last time a similar situation to skitten being unable to find a vein as the room was cold.The drugs they give you are sooo relaxing you will be away with the fairies and I usually sleep most of the day afterwards- the tea and toast afterwards was always a definite highlight but you will need to bring your own drink/snack for afterwards now due to Covid.

Good luck, it will go so quickly x

Melonay1987 in reply to Rocco11

Oh brilliant nice to hear another positive experience, thanks so much for replying xxx

So exciting! I was also very nervous for EC having at that time never been under GA or had any kind of medical procedure before. My clinic does sedation. Cannula in, oxygen mask on, went off to sleep quite quickly and didnt remember a thing. Nurses woke me up, quick snack and went home a little while later. My 2nd experience was a little different when i woke up, i had pain down one side of my back and nausea. Nurse came and gave me painkillers and anti-sickness through the cannula, had to wait a little while longer to leave as they wanted to keep an eye on me. I have a feeling I felt this way as I got a high number of eggs and was at risk of OHSS, so ended up having a freeze all. I'm sure things will go smoothly for you! Good Luck xx

Ah bless you sounds like 2 different experiences. Hopefully all will go smoothly and I won't know a thing about whats going on haha xx

Is it bad I’m kinda jealous of everyone’s experience! I’m having treatment in The Netherlands and they give you 2x paracetamol & a naproxen for the retrieval 😯 Still it was quick & not that bad. Over in less than 10 mins x

Oh crikey bless you, that sounds rough, fair play for doing that (not that you bad much choice) glad it went OK for you xx

Egg collection procedure is fine under sedation and I woke up from it really ok. What nobody told me before was there may be no eggs in follicles. I have low amh so the first egg collection was a shock to me with it resulting in nothing. The second one was great as I had three eggs, which for my case was good. I'm on another cycle now and if I get any follicles, egg collection will be next week. I am just posting this for awareness so if someone has low amh and was not told follicles could be empty you know this possibility. I would have rather been mentally prepared for that outcome beforehand. A big good luck to all!

Hi Schnitzel, sorry to hear you had no eggs on one collection, that's pretty tough and yes being prepared is much better. Thanks for your advice, good luck with your next collection xx

Well these egg retrieval stories sound nothing like mine! I’m presuming it’s a clinic decision (East Yorkshire based) but mine don’t put you to sleep and it’s not a particularly pleasant experience. Yes there were drugs given through a canula in my wrist (as my hands were too cold to get a good enough vein) and they really relaxed me, but I was awake the whole time and could feel the needle puncturing inside me. It sounds like if you’re put to sleep though it will be completely different so I hope you are! I also hadn’t been told in advance that there might be an issue with follicles. I had 11 good sized follicles on my final scan 2 days beforehand which I was really pleased with, but on the day there were only 4 follicles to drain from which they got 2 eggs (normal for my age and low AMH apparently). No signs of early ovulation from the other 7 follicles, apparently they can just collapse in on themselves. I wish I’d been told that before getting excited thinking I would get more eggs than initially expected, because I didn’t. Wishing you all the best of luck for ER and the rest of your cycle xx

Melonay1987 in reply to Emma672

Hi Emma. Thanks for your reply, I think my clinic does the same as you as I'm sure they said its sedation. Ill double check with them so I can manage my expectations. Thanks for the heads up about amount of eggs, ill definitely bare this is mind. Xx

Hi,In my clinic they do offer sedation but I opted out as didn’t want to be drowsy following so had 2 paracetamol suppositories. Procedure was fine, even though they had to go in twice as blocked suction! I’m assuming it’s the same in all clinics but they call out number of eggs as they go which is nerve wracking and exciting at the same time. I was honestly just pleased to be finally getting to that stage after a long wait. Good luck! Xx

Oh fair play Peace, did you feel any pain with only having Paracetamol? Xd

Just a bit uncomfortable. I think I was just so happy to be at that stage! Everyone is so different so just go with whatever you feel is best for you! Good luck! Xx

Another reason I chose not to be sedated is that I like to see what is going on and I wanted to find out egg number! X

Thanks peace fingers crossed I dont feel anything haha xx

Following as I am due to have my first Ec next week. I’m not sure if I get sedation or GA but either way I’m terrified too, glad I’m not the only one 🙈

Does anyone know how it works with partners, I assume they are off to do their bit whilst I am doing EC so won’t be with me until I wake back up?

Judy18 in reply to SR90

First time my husband did his part while i was having canula put in and signing forms. He then sat with me until i went in. Second time he had to do his bit at home and take it to the door and i went in by myself (covid rules). I was always given a tablet to relax me and had a book so fine waiting. I have not been fully knocked out (just light sedation) for EC. Always seems to go really quickly and not ever really fully aware of what’s going on. Good luck to you xxx

SR90 in reply to Judy18

Thank you! My partner may have to do surgical sperm retrieval but we won’t know until on the day after his fresh sample is looked at. Hopefully he can sit with me for as long as possible 🤞.

Melonay1987 in reply to SR90

Its strange not being in control, thats the bit I worry about. I'm in a same sex couple, I've been told my partner will wait in recovery for me and will allowed to be with me there. Xx

SR90 in reply to Melonay1987

Aw that’s good news, it’ll be nice to have your partner waiting for you on the other side. Our partners are our rocks at times like these. x

Melonay1987 in reply to SR90

I hope you get to have your partner waiting too. Good luck my lovely xxx

Hiya I had my egg collection today with a mild sedation Temazepam and Fentanyl pain killer. Felt pretty chilled out. Not a full anaesthetic but pretty pain free. The only thing I felt was the needle initially going in but after that was ok. X

Hi Sorcha this sounds similar to what ill be having , although I think they said medazolam for the sedation. When you felt the needles was it painful? Were you able to respond/ask for pain relief if needed when you were sedated? Xx

I had a conscious sedation, and was aware the whole way through which I preferred but the Temazepam gave me a chilled out vibe. I was able to communicate with the staff. If you’re having Midazolam then you’ll not remember anything about it.😊 The feeling of the needle going in lasted a second. Post collection I don’t feel sore or bloated 8 hrs later. Hope all goes well. X

Ohhhh I see, I wasn't too sure how sedated midazalam made you, im glad I won't be aware 😅 I'm glad you didn't feel too uncomfortable, thanks for your input its made me feel better about the situation xx

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