Posts Tagged ‘Reproductive health’

If you have been following my previous posts, I am continuing with a description of how J.O., my son, came into my life.  Read my previous posts to review the story from the beginning.

I can not really describe our excitement when we had reached this moment.  Probably the best description would be exhilaration.  We were very close to successfully having a baby or babies.  Up to that point in time our situation was considered to be a hopeless dream.  My emotions were already all over the place because of all the injections. Add to that the exhilaration we were feeling at this stage in the IVF process.  It is at this moment that your thoughts begin to describe the current circumstances as being miraculous.

 At this point, the specialist reminds us that this is the critical stage of the process and that we needed to treat it very seriously.  He stressed that we should follow all of the procedures and recommended precautions.  This sounded pretty scary. Our exhilaration quickly changed to somberness (I’m not sure that is a word, but I am sure you understand it.).  It was obvious the jubilation we were feeling was much too early.

After the embryos were transferred to my uterus and after laying flat on my back for an hour or so, the procedure was to continue supplementing my system with progesterone.  The goal of this is to create a good environment for the embryos, which increases the pregnancy chances. Once again this comes with body aches depression, and mood swings.  I couldn’t tell you if they used synthetic progesterone medication or natural progesterone.  One of the risks of synthetic progesterone is the possibility of birth defects.  It is also true that using natural progesterone is not a guarantee for having a child without birth defects.

Besides supplementing my system with progesterone, the specialist recommend:

  • no heavy lifting for 48 hours
  • no strenuous physical activity
  • no tub baths or swimming for 48 hours
  • no douching, tampons or using a bidet
  • no alcohol, smoking or recreational drug use
  • no intercourse and no orgasms (this stays in effect until you can see a fetal heartbeat via ultrasound or you have a negative pregnancy test)

Unless advised otherwise, you can:

  • return to work immediately (assuming it does not require heavy lifting, physical exertion or being submerged in water)
  • engage in light activity (housework, driving, shopping)
  • travel
  • engage in sexual activity other than intercourse for your partner’s pleasure – no orgasms for you! (this stays in effect until you can see a fetal heartbeat via ultrasound or you have a negative pregnancy test)

We were then sent home and the specialist said he would see us again in one month.  At that time he would determine if I was pregnant.  Waiting one month was one of the most stressful times.  Plus there were so many mixed emotions.  You didn’t want to get overly excitement, especially since the percentages of success were not in your favor.  At that time the success ratio for a woman who is 40 years old was 6 to 10% chance.  The odds were not good. 

More to come later . . .

Advertisements

If you have been following my previous posts, I am continuing with a description of how J.O., my son, came into my life.  Read my previous posts to review the story from the beginning.

At this point we are at the first pinnacle of the IVF process, which was the fertilization stage.   Fertilization in the IVF process can be done in a number of ways, but in our case the lab technician put viable sperm into the lab dish containing the viable eggs.  The resulting embryos are allowed to grow and divide in the laboratory for about two days, which is sometimes referred to as incubation. 

Then we hit another mile stone in the IVF process, which is the transfer of the embryos from the lab dish to the uterus.  The number transferred depends on the age of the woman, the quality of the embryos, and the success rates of the clinic. More embryos can mean a better probability of success.  On the other hand, multiple embryos transferred also increases the risk of having a multiple pregnancy. Any then multiple pregnancy comes with increased risk of miscarriages, premature labor and premature birth.  It is also true that if there is more than one baby high blood pressure and gestational diabetes are more common.

In our case the specialist transferred four embryos into my uterus. It was not our decision.  The specialist made the decision.  He explained that we wanted to choose the healthiest embryos which were the four that were implanted.  It was at that moment that the thought of having multiple babies became very real to me.  I wanted a baby.  I knew that IVF could result in multiple babies, but the reality of that did not really hit me until I was pregnant with the four embryos.  I now realized I could have “babies.”

More to come later . . .