Starting on my IVF journey in 2 weeks... - Fertility Road Mi...

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Starting on my IVF journey in 2 weeks... suggestions to improve my chances

Gia_9
Gia_9

Hi all lovely ladies,

I have been around for a while now but it's about time I come out about my own struggles and seek help. After having failed 2 IUI rounds (though there wasn't any anomaly in the SA) we've finally decided to move onto IVF... starting 9th of December. Though I've spent a copious amount of time digging information online and on the forums to muster my courage and stay well informed it seems like the real thing needs more than that. I'm kind of both excited and dreaded about the outcome if we face failure again even with the IVF... so out here looking for a suggestion that could somehow just increase the tiny weenie bit chance of success.

Here are our details:

Me 32 and DH the same. The SA came our okay, my AMH though a bit on the lower side but well within the safe limits (2.3). So far the case is unexplained but I have a medical history of having to remove a cyst right around the lower Uterine cavity at 26. I still have a chocolate cyst that hasn't grown in over 5 years now. Though it was said it rarely has a chance to affect my fertility it seems to have but it cannot be surgically removed or let's say the doctor doesn't consent of it.

29 Replies
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I read a book called Survival Guide to IVF and it’s really helped me! I think it depends what suits your lifestyle. Some people give up sugar, caffeine, alcohol, etc. But some diets are quite extreme for me so I just picked and chose what I wanted to do

AmbK
AmbK in reply to Ruby26

Hi there, thanks for the suggestion I'd definitely try to grab a copy so that I fend off my IVF fears. I'm about to start on my first round of IVF in January and I guess I can do with more than just good luck to prepare for it. Considering you've had an IVF, does it hurt, if yes how much? Is it only the egg collection that's supposed to be painful or there could be a painful transfer too. Well, a nice lady in here reassured me that it doesn't hurt and you're sedated for egg collection and that all the negative and dreadful stuff I read about egg transfer available online because people with a pleasant experience are least expected to turn up online and leave the review... lol. I trust her but still, I'd want to know as many as real experiences I can come across before by the time I head to the process myself. I'm gonna take an off from work anyway but then a heads-up on what to expect from someone who has been through it is always helpful.

TIA

Ruby26
Ruby26 in reply to AmbK

I had my egg collection last Thursday. It’s different for everyone but because of the sedation, I didn’t feel anything. When I woke up I had period type pains and my stomach was bloated and achy rather than pain until today. I’ve had nausea as well but that’s a side effect of the progesterone. I had 19 eggs taken which is quite a lot so that might be why I’ve had more pain. I took the week off between egg collection and transfer and I would recommend it. It’s tough physically and emotionally and gives you some time to recover however you need to x

AmbK
AmbK in reply to Ruby26

Oh, that's great! 9 eggs sound a really good result TBH. I mean I was just telling someone not to worry about her 6 eggs because it takes just one if it had to happen but then good numbers in egg collection are always a step-ahead to add on some added chance to your success. I'm relieved to know there's nothing to fear about egg collection then. Actually, hope you understand that it's only natural to be a little dreaded when it's the first IVF. I don't assume I'll have these good numbers though but I guess I'm happy with 6-8 only. Hoping, since not much has been discovered to be interfering in my case the ICSI+IVF might just work fine. When are you scheduled for transfer... I mean tentatively?

Ruby26
Ruby26 in reply to AmbK

Sorry for the late reply. My transfer was5 days after egg collection. Unfortunately my cycle failed x

Gia_9
Gia_9 in reply to Ruby26

Oh I'm so sorry to hear about the failed attempt. Do you have more eggs for transfer or have to go for a fresh cycle? We've thought about the start around December but due to finanaces had to push the process.... now we start next month. TBH also I guess we both needed this time to unwind the stress of TTC and dissapointment limbo. Hope it works for me.

The most important step is to look at the preparation of your body and mind for this up coming journey, a journey to create life , a journey to allow your baby to choose you as parents. Here are some of the ideas quite popular on the internet. A detox can be a really good way to get your body back into balance and ready for the IVF journey. Getting rid of all those toxins you have build up in your body over the years.

Then a well balanced diet will absolutely help your chances of success. Try and prepare this before the transfer. Take part in the fertility diet to enhance your reproductive organs and ensure good quality blood supply to the uterus. Good quality blood supply to the uterus increases protein and nutrient secretion around implantation, which your embryos will love.

Get your partner on the Sperm Diet. IVF fertilisation rates increase with good quality sperm.

Acupuncture is now, without a doubt, one of the best ways to enhance your success rates. It will reduce your stress, enhance your ovarian function, and increase blood supply to your reproductive organs. Plan an acupuncture treatment on the morning of transfer and one for the afternoon. Studies have shown that women who had acupuncture before and after embryo transfer had a 44% success rate per cycle compared to 29% amongst those who did not. Other therapies such as reflexology, hypnotherapy, yoga, or massage can also help. Alos the feel-good factor and endorphin buzz produced by regular sexual intercourse can really help to alleviate stress.

Take a good quality multi-vitamin and mineral supplement which contains vitamins A, B, E and C complex, zinc, magnesium, selenium, iron and Co-enzyme Q10. which play a vital role in the fertilisation and implantation process. Essential fatty acids are vitally important. Wheat Grass to keep your FSH in check and Royal Jelly to nourish your egg quality. Finally Folic acid, make sure you are getting enough folic acid in your everyday diet as research shows this prevents neural tube defects, such as spina bifida.

Finally, plan for the 2ww..

Hope this helps xx :)

IVF must be a good answer in the most of cases. The success rates are guite high nowadays within clinics. But while searching for the place to be with, I'd recommend to look more for the high birth rates, not success.. No one knows how many tries it will take you!! Every case is different, but often it takes more than one round to conceive. I've just shared this on another thread. There are clinics which want to make the IVF treatment a win-win situation. I've been twice with one of this kind. They offer money back guarantee programs. You pay for a certain number of cycles (for example 5 IVF cycles in my case) and if you do not get pregnant within those 5 rounds, they give you back your money. This is a wonderful option, which could help you preserve your peace of mind. At least as regards the financial aspect. So before starting an IVF cycle make sure that your clinic has such an option and ask them whether you qualify for such a programme.

Here's also some of my background. Me – 37. DH – 38. TTC since Jan 2008. Faced 2 chemical pregnancies the 2 following years. Was put on Clomid 50 but ended with another chemical. Oct-Dec 2010 Fermara 5 and Purgon 75. Had 3 months break from treatments. Feb & Mar & Apr 2011 IUI #1 & 2 & 3 Purgon 150 & Clomid 100 BFN x3. IVF #1 Superfact & Puregon 300. 10 eggs retrieved, 8 mature, 6 eggs fertilized, 2 survived. Transferred 2 low grade morulas on day 5 – BFN.

Donor Egg Cycle. IVF#1 (DE)April 2015. Transferred 1 grade 4AA embryo – BFN. Dr made some changes into treatment protocol. IVF#2 (DE) - transferred 2 blasts. BFP on 6dp5dt.1st Beta 148. 2nd Beta- 315. 7wk 3d ultrasound - 1 heartbeat 138bpm, measuring 7wks 3ds. My sweet son born via C-section. Adding 2 more MCs after my son was born.

We've been through another donor egg cycle with the same clinic. They placed back2 A grade embies (The clinic guarantees at least 3 healthy A grade embies for the ET if you're dealing with donor eggs). One vanished. Currently prego with the LO. :) Having every bone in my body crossed for our lucky starts in your comming cycle x

Hi there, sorry to hear about your struggles with infertility and the failed attempt at IUI. :( I happen to share the same fate as yours and have failed my IUI as well. I don't have experience in IVF and very much on the same point in my fertility road as you are... but I can suggest a thing or two I found online which might be helpful to give you a better chance at IVF. Firstly, I agree with PP that you do need some medications to improve your egg quality. Though the success can also happen with average quality eggs at times... but considering we don't have much luck on our side it's best to consider every possible way we can add-up to our chance of success. Since the doc will select the medication it's only best you stick to the prescribed one and not try to do anything otherwise. Secondly, make sure you run a PGS on your embryos... the grading alone isn't enough to get you the best of embryos. Also, you can consider a twin transfer, somehow there's evidence that it works better for 35+ women but anyone struggling to get pregnant can probably give it a try. One of my friends went for surrogacy abroad and had success with the Biotexcom in Ukraine using twin transfer and PGS testing, after having failed once at gestation surrogacy in Spain who never told them to consider twin transfer or PGS. I guess the guidance and the right kind is very important for success in any assisted fertility process. Last, but not least... ICSI or IMSI can also help just to make sure you get best embryos.

andylins
andylins in reply to AmbK

Just adding a couple of things. PGD is not 100% accurate because only one cell is tested. The technique is technically challenging and requires great expertise. Therefore, an amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling is suggested after a pregnancy is documented.

PGD testing ranges from approximately $2k to $5k and is not covered by most insurance companies. Not all IVF centers do PGD. The experimental techniques require great expertise and should only be done by qualified personnel. It is preferable if the lab performing PGD has a PhD or MD trained medical geneticist responsible for the PGD laboratory. If you are considering doing PGD, make certain the laboratory is experienced, does a large number of cases, and is certified. Ask your doctor at the IVF clinic or the lab director the following questions:

What training has the PGD laboratory personnel who are performing the testing have? How long have they been doing the procedure?When will you get the results of the PGD?  What will happen if all the embryos are genetically abnormal?

What the clinic’s success rate is for frozen embryo transfer following embryo biopsy?

MamaVe
MamaVe in reply to andylins

Well as a process it gives 98% accuracy.... in clinical scenario the 100% ideal is not just rare but almost inexistence. Yes, the accuracy depends on the expertise of the technician as well as the infrastructural facility of the clinic but then that's why digging is done before really settling with one clinic. TBH nowhere in the whole world, you can actually get a glimpse into the efficiency of the clinical employee. At max, the eligibility could be requested or sometimes that is offered in the open-information about the clinic but then eligibility and efficiency are not the same things.

What training and how long has the specific person been taking care of the PGD can be asked but then can you validate the information really? It's better to look at the success rate with PGD performed in the clinic (when available) is the best way to judge the competence of the clinic as a whole. Cause a single expert won't make a difference in an elaborate process of clinically assisted fertility. Yes the last question is however of utmost importance. One should know what the package covers to estimate the costing.

Gia_9
Gia_9 in reply to AmbK

Thank your for such a real helpful post. We had to shift out plans a bit ... so I was off the forum for a while... taking a break. Yeah, I have heard about Biotexcom too... there's several women who've had their baby dreams come true with them. I guess there's much time for me to plan for surrogacy and honestly, I kind of hope that I find success with IVF to not have to keep on with this infertility struggle. The time is really ticking for me and we really want to start a family soon.

Please, do look for the ''win'win''plans.. Not sure what that meant at the time for me. But I had convinced myself we needed another transfer that donor egg embryos and decide what we would do next if no luck.. Maybe sell the stupid big house with empty bedrooms and move to a condo in the city. I didn’t know what we would do next because having a baby was all I had thought about for so so long. For years and years a baby and a family was the plan! My life had been on hold for so long I didn’t know how to think of anything else.

But opting for ''win'win''plan abroad gave us hope. We just thought if clinic's so sure of possible success they are ready to give money back - then we're on the best route!

Gia_9
Gia_9 in reply to andylins

Well, I guess I understand your point on this win-win situation. Why would a clinic offer money back unless they are really sure they won't have to. This certainly makes them one of the most optimistic choices to find success and TBH maybe I'll be convinced to move forward with a similar clinic. However, this clause shouldn't be just in the advertisements but also in the contract. I'm telling this and much more insistent on this because I know a couple who were tricked into getting infertility abroad programme and then there the attempt failed due to the poor DE which was not in the clauses of a possible refund. It was a surrogacy procedure and they were offered no refund but another attempt when the surrogate didn't show up. Eventually, they dropped the clinic after having lost like 50K and decided to go for another. Luckily they have blue-eyed twin girls now. So you've got to make sure that you read every detail till you are able to comprehend that all loopholes are covered is okay.

Hi there, it's good to know you're on your IVF journey. How well did it go this far? I hope you're well within your first trimester as I'll assume you have had a FET by now and wish it had been a BFP. Nonetheless, I'll share whatever I know about improving the chances of success in IVF. First... as your case in really unexplained you better get on with some healthy lifestyle switch with supplements to improve your vitality and hormones. Green tea is a good one to do the necessary. Take lemon and honey in lukewarm water every morning that will help improve your immunity and keep digestive functionality apt. Lastly, add some good fat, nuts and omega 3 fatty acid rich fishes. Hope this helps!!

Wish you all the luck in the world to find success with IVF soon enough!

Hi, I would like to preface this the fact that everybody is different and everybody's body reacts differently to medication. Besides our diagnosis vary much. I passed different infertility treatments before we went on with our ivf treatment in bio tex, Ukraine. It took us 2 shots to conceive. Moreover, as I've probably mentioned before that time we were using donor eggs. 1st shot passed unsuccessfully. But the 2nd round gave us hope- 1 of our 2 beautiful blasts got stuck. :) Later it turned into an adorable baby boy.

I'm currently prego with my DE IVF baby#2. We were doing with the same repro center. It was a nice journey, as we already knew who have been all those people around. :) I just thought today, some time has already passed. So probably you may have succeeded so far and have a some amazing thing to share with us, eh? How are you doing?

Hoping for you Xx

Gia_9
Gia_9 in reply to andylins

I'm really happy for your success, congratulations. Thank you for the real elaborate comment and reference of biotexcom. I have also notieced the breakthrough of Ukraine in the whole assisted fertility arena... with of course impressive success rate. How long ago did you get the first one? How many years have you been trying for getting pregnant at that point? I guess I heard the name somewhere but in context to surrogacy and not IVF alone. Did you had DE+IVF or needed the surrogacy too? Since my DH had the SA problem as well maybe we'll need the ICSI+IVF programme. I'll go check the details online... and better get planning than being despondent about the failed attempts.

What is SA? X

MamaVe
MamaVe in reply to kitscat

SA stands for Semen analysis. It's the first diagnosis towards recognising male fertility issues... usually done way before you even step into the IVF scenario. You can say it's the first line of investigatory activity into male infertility carried out when you fail to conceive after 12 or more months of futile TTCs.

This is a tough journey by all means.. I was feeling lost after our previous losses. so I wanted to get on the boards with people going though the same and work out my feelings. A little bit about our journey..

My husband and I had been trying to get pregnant for years. We did rounds of IUI – All unsuccessful. Then went down OE IVF route. The only pregnancy was an early loss – A very painful and bitter experience.

We decided to go to a specialist and we set a further ''game'' plan. I had to wait for my cycle before we could start everything. But guess what?- My period just wouldn’t come!! I didn’t even think to test because I figured there was no chance. I was feeling so defeated. Was really trying to stay positive but it was so hard. The mc felt like possible “bad luck” - My previous dr so coldly put it.It was what I thought about day and night. My body was failing me. As a woman I felt that I’d failed at the one thing my body was able to do. And did let my husband down as well. This was such a difficult thing to wrap my mind around!! This rant was my irrational, emotional brain speaking though. I needed to keep that in check and just stay positive because through all of this. I had a lot to be thankful for. I had/have a supportive and loving husband and just the mere fact that I was able to conceive at all was something to be thankful for.

I was so hoping that our next stage, with our new dr/clinic, would be a success. Finally we did it!!

I think you could also try some of these tips out. They're aimed to help to improve egg quality. #1 Get at least 8 glasses of pure water every day. Water lack decreases circulation in the body, as well as many other issues. Make sure to drink purified water and not bottled in plastic! #2 Exercise - Find something to do that includes movement. This could be tennis, walking, running, dancing, or fertility yoga. Exercise brings fresh blood to all of the cells and helps to oxygenate the blood. #3 Get fertility massage. One of the best therapies for increasing blood flow to the reproductive system is by massaging your uterus and ovaries. Massage helps to bring fresh, oxygenated blood to the ovaries and removes old stagnant blood. #4 Eat these foods for egg health: royal jelly, maca, fertiligreens, broccoli, berries, dark leafy veggies, halibut, salmon, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, turmeric, ginger. Discuss the supplements you can take. Try those only your dr feels ok about. I'm hoping for you. Keep us posted and all the very best of luck xx

Thanks for all these tips! Will certainly follow them. Sorry to hear about your struggles. But they were all worth it in the end!

Hi! may i ask how did you choose your clinic? im new to ivf and having a hard time to choose what clinic to go to :(

There's no step-by-step SOPs sadly to follow. But I can probably give you an insight on where you can begin. Firstly, you need to understand your situation precisely... as in the physiological limitation, possible infertility cause and definitely your resources. I started with looking for clinics that suits my available budget as well as have reassuring success rate into similar cases. Usually, people only look at the success rate on a general basis but the good way to find accuracy is to look in relevance to their own case. Next comes considering the future chances and how capable the clinics infrastructure is to support that. Like you should have options to be able to go on corrective measures or implementing better procedure... having PGD and PGS, the possibility for Mitochondrial donation so on and so forth. Lasty, the contract is totally important. You should read it very carefully and even get a consultation from legal practitioner (your lawyer) if you're going for reproductive tourism.

Thanks Gia, I'm feeling funny now. Searching online for clinics when I even don't really know my situation yet. Doing tests now :) Whichever way, I am gaining headway in knowing where to go in case I do need ivf!

Thank you Gia. You're right, I'm still mustering the courage to have me and DH checked.

You're welcome! Women here help each other support and make the fertility journey a bit smoother. Above all stay positive for that's what will channel the strength and motivation to go on even after all the oddities that come on the road. Wish you all the luck in the world.

Thanks Gia!

You shouldn't spend too much time thinking about it. Whether or not you should go for it is a life-long dilemma, but assumptions don't help in correcting the problem or assisting getting pregnant. If you're way past the 12 month TTC that even the doc will ask for before the preliminary diagnosis it'll be fair enough to go for SA for DH and hormone profile for you.

Hello You're right. We had a chat about it with my hubby's friend. We're feeling more comfortable about the idea. Hubby and I are going to have ourselves checked this week.

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