Friday, June 24, 2016

Let's get this party started: IVF Cycle #1 is underway!

This post is long over due but a lot has happened since my last entry. First of all, I got my "box of meds" in the mail. Having had JRA my entire life, I am used to having tons of medications and am not easily overwhelmed with complicated medical regimes. However, this was a much larger box then I was expecting. It also contained a ton of 1 1/2 inch intramuscular needles. This caused me to panic, because under my protocol I only have one intramuscular injection. After a panicked 9.00 pm phone call on day 2 to the on-call fertility pharmacy nurse, we realized these needles were intended to be the syringes you used to mix the medicine, and you could just unscrew the needle cap. Crisis averted. 

Cycle Day 2: I was on birth control pills for two weeks. I had no side effects from these pills but it was a long two weeks anxiously awaiting the green light to proceed with the injections. I had my baseline ultrasound on cycle day 2 to determine my Antral Follicle count and make sure there were no cysts. I started my Gonal-F injection this night. It comes in a nice epi-pen style injection and I barely felt it.

Cycle Days 3-5: I dutifully completed my Menopur injection each morning around 6.30 and my Gonal-F injection, every night around 8.30. I felt ok throughout most of this week. I was definitely feeling tired, crampy and more bloated by day 5. However, I think I felt tired from waking up at 6 every day to do the injection. I went to acupuncture on day 5 and have my first follow-up ultrasound and blood work on Day 6.
The one thing I did that I felt was really helpful was to make a calender to keep track of all the medicines. There are a lot of medicines to keep track of and it helped the weeks go by quicker when I could cross off the days! I invoked Daeneyrs, the mother of dragons, from Game of Thrones as inspiration for my cycle. I felt like she was a strong inspiration!

Will update more!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Cycle Day 1: Pre-IVF cycle

Today is cycle day 1 of the month before my first IVF cycle. In some ways I feel like I have been waiting for this day forever and in other ways I still can't believe its happening. I initially thought that an IVF cycle was one month long, but it is frequently about two months long from start to finish. This month I will take birth control pills to help suppress my hormones and regulate my cycle. Next cycle I will start all the injections to suppress ovulation and then stimulate the ovaries to produce many eggs in preparation for the transfer and retrieval.

Since my last entry I successfully had hysteroscopy #3 to remove the left over tissue from my miscarriage. It wasn't as painful as I expected and I even returned to work that afternoon with minimal cramping. I am hopeful that I will not need many more hysteroscopies in my future, three is enough! I then anxiously awaited the insurance approval and here we are.

I have been attending acupuncture for the last few months and you can read about that here. It has been relaxing and has helped decrease my stress level. I am going to continue to try to take it one day at a time for the next two months..