IVF is a bit of a taboo subject and not many people talk about it, I don’t really know why but personally for me I just wanted to keep it to myself while we were going through it. As I said in my Having Children? post our Infertility is unexplained so we had to have IVF.
The form of IVF we had was ICSI which is where they take the sperm and the eggs and put them together and then transfer the embryo back into my womb. The thing we had to keep in mind was even though this way can be successful it can also be unsuccessful.
As you can see from the title this was Cycle 1 and the treatment we did was the Long Protocol, this is where they control starting my period and ovulation with medication. We started this Cycle on day 21 which was the 7th November 2016.
This was when I started the Suprecur injections, I had to take 0.5ml and take it between 6 and 7pm. We had to inject an inch and a half from my belly button on the left and right side, alternating it each night. To be honest I didn’t really have any side effects to this medication but I did have a bit of bloating. I had Llewellyn or my Mum do my injections as I was terrified of injecting myself, who wouldn’t be? I had to keep taking these until the 21st November.
The 21st November was a Baseline Scan where they see if my lining is thin enough to start the next set of medication. Before this scan I had to have a bleed for at least 24 hours which luckily I did otherwise I would’ve had to have had the scan at a later date. I want to point out that all scans done through IVF are internal scans and can be uncomfortable but it is surprising how quickly you get used to them, especially as you have quite a few. During this scan it showed that my lining was thin enough and I could start the next set of medication.
So from the 21st November I had to take 225ml Menpour alongside the Suprecur. The Menopur is to help my follicles grow and hopefully develop eggs within them. Now the Menopur I had to mix myself, which was 1 vial of water to 3 vials of powder and had to inject in the same area as the Suprecur, again alternating each evening between 6 and 7pm. This medication I found stung a little when injecting it and I bloated a lot when on this. I then went in on the 28th for a scan to check how my follicles were doing, it showed that they were growing nicely initially and was booked in for another scan on the 2nd December.
The 2nd was the scan that showed my follicles weren’t quite growing as fast as initially thought so had to up the dose to 300ml of Menopur. 300ml of Menopur is 1 water to 4 vials and had to mix myself, I was also still on the Suprecur alongside it. I was then booked in for another scan on the 5th and hoping that my follicles were big enough that I could then have egg collection. We kept everything crossed and was so happy that at that scan we were able to make the decision to have egg collection.
With egg collection you have to have a trigger injection 36 hours before which as in the title triggers ovulation and this is called Ovitrell. After the scan they called us to let us know what time we had to take it and when egg collection would be. I had to take the Ovitrell at 9pm on the 5th and was booked in for egg collection at 9 am on the 7th. I was so happy we finally had it booked and yet was still slightly nervous as I had to be sedated.
When egg collection came around it was very nerve wracking as it is a very invasive surgery and never having been under sedation I didn’t know what to expect. When you go in you have to go up to the Clinic and check in and empty your bladder as for this procedure it has to be empty. Once I was all checked in the Dr took us into another room where they went through the procedure and to put my canular in. I felt the canular was the worst bit and was not nice at all, especially as it wasn’t turned tight enough at first so I bled quite a bit, but was all sorted out straight away. Once in the theatre I got on to the bed and they put my legs into the stirrups, if you ever have to have IVF I will say you do get over being shy about your ‘bits’. Then the nurse gave me the sedation meds and the next thing I knew I was being wheeled out of theatre and back to the recovery area. When I came round I literally burst into tears as I think I was just so overwhelmed by everything it just became too much and cried. While I was having egg collection Llewellyn had to give his sperm sample and also he collected my pessaries.
If you ever had a procedure like this done or anything where you had sedation you will know you have to wait a certain amount of time before you can leave. In this case I had to have a light snack and have been to the toilet. While recovering I was in and out of sleep, and the nurse was checking my blood pressure. I think after an hour I ate my sandwich and I did have 1 or 2 cups of tea and that went well. After I’d say another half hour I went to the toilet and they could then take my canular out. This was when the problem started as I was getting ready to leave I felt very sick and did actually throw up, of course because of that I had to stay and wait for my blood pressure to go back to normal. The embryologist then came round to let us know that they had collected 6 eggs and that Llewellyns’ sample was really good.
We then went home and waited for the phone call to let us know how many eggs fertilised. We had the call the next day and she let us know that 1 egg fertilised perfectly, 1 was developing ok but they didn’t see if it had actually fertilised first and the other 4 eggs didn’t survive. So because of this we were booked in for a 2 day transfer on the 9th December, which I was a little apprehensive. I felt like because we only had the 1 egg we were relying on it to much and didn’t have any eggs to fall back on if it didn’t work. Anyhow with the transfer it is a 20 minute procedure which is more or less like a long smear test, you also need to have a full bladder for this. Also with this procedure Llewellyn could come into the theatre room with me which was nice.
Once the transfer was done I then had to take Cyclogest for 2 weeks until I had to take a pregnancy test to see if it worked. The Cyclogest is a pessary so I had to take this either vaginally or rectally, I actually found it was so much easier to take it rectally and I had to take this twice a day at the same time each time. We had to take the pregnancy test, of all days, on the 25th December and if it worked to call the clinic to have a scan, but also to let them know if it didn’t work. Also when they do the transfer they tell you until you do a pregnancy test you are pregnant until proven otherwise as to some the picture is just a bunch of cells but to me and Llewellyn that is our baby.
Unfortunately after all this I noticed I was starting to bleed on the 23rd so did a test on the 24th in the morning and it was negative. I will admit I was very upset when it was negative as we wanted it so much but we accepted that maybe at this time it wasn’t meant to be. We did give it a few days and done another test just to make sure and then rang the clinic. They were very sympathetic and we just basically had to wait for a follow up appointment ready for our 2nd cycle.
I do apologise that this is a very long post with a lot of information but there was no way I could make it any smaller. If anyone has any questions feel free to ask in the comments and I will answer as best I can. Keep your eyes peeled for my post on our 2nd cycle which shouldn’t be as long as it was a quicker cycle.