We went to our IUI appointment yesterday and as soon as we walked walked into the room, I felt like something was wrong. It just didn't feel the same as the time before. Well the nurse told me to do the same thing as usual.. 'undress from the waste down' so I did, as usual. Well then I really realized something was wrong when two doctors came in. Usually when you have an IUI (for me anyways) only the lab tech will come in to inject the semen.. well this time the lab tech came in with another doctor whom I have seen before but never during an IUI, so something had to be up. Well then she showed us the normal paperwork and my final confirmation was when she opened the analysis paper.. it had red pen circles all over it, which means that something wasn't right. So she finally explained that last IUI Jeff's sperm before washing was 18 million after washing there was 5 million, which was the cut off for IUI's (5mil) so all was good. Well this time his sperm count before washing was 9 million and after washing it was .3 million which was extremly below the cut off for an IUI. When they do an IUI they want the best possible chance for you to get pregnant... they said that .3 was hardly addiquate. I felt like I had been punched in the stomach. I looked over at Jeff and the look of devistation was quite evident, I felt so bad.
So she gave us the option to either cancel this cycle and to NOT do the IUI or just to go ahead and try and see what happens. She did make a point to say that people have gotten pregnant on this low of a sperm count before but not very often. They left the room and Jeff and I talked about it while crying and hoping that everything would be okay. We decided that we were going to try, after all we had paid for it all up to this point and there's no reason to give up even if there is only a slim chance it could work. So we went ahead with it.
During the IUI, I think I was on edge the whole time.. spacing off and not paying attention. Everytime the nurse touched my leg or any other body part, I jumped, which I'm sure didn't make it easy to guide the catheter in through my cervix. I couldn't help it though. Once she did insert the catheter it felt like she was jabbing a knife and scraping off some tissue.. it didn't feel good. I wanted to cry but I didn't want to let her know that it hurt so I held it back and I didn't want Jeff to feel like he was making me go through this for nothing. I cried once she left the room though. I could just tell that Jeff felt so bad. While I was laying there for my 20 minutes he read me two childrens story's which was really cute but it just made me cry more because he's going to be such a great dad.
So anyways.. we got done with that and OH.. while the dr's were talking to us about whether to continue or not they also suggested that we got with IVF next time, because they really don't think that Jeff's sperm is addiquate to get me pregnant.Once we got done in the IUI room.. they sent us on our way but Jeff and I wanted to talk to someone about IVF to see all that it entails(sp). We talked with a 'ivf specialist and councelor' so that was nice. She went over all that we would have to do and how things are going to go. We also set up an appointment to start IVF if this IUI doesn't take. It's June 25th.
An IVF cycle takes two cycles.. the first cycle you are on birth control to suppress your hormones and to basically let the dr's take over your body and tell it what to do and you are also on a drug called Lupron which suppresses your piruitary gland so it doesn't have any effect on the medications to stimulate the ovary. Then you start a stimulation cycle which begins on the onset of your period, which is about 3-4 days after the last dose of BC. Once you start your period you have to call and make an appointment to schedule a 'supression check appointment' to check for cysts on your ovaires and the lining of your uterus. If you have no cysts and you have a very thin lining of your uterus then you are assigned a day 1 for IVF. Then you will start stimulation medication on day one and continue until the dr's have determined that my follicles are mature and ready for egg retrieval.
I will start the injectable medications for stimulation of more than one egg. Once the eggs are deemed mature then I take my shot of HCG to make me ovulate. Then EXACTLY 35 hours later I will go in to have my eggs removed. This is done by needle aspiration through the vagina. They do it under IV sedation, whatever that means. If they can't get the eggs under needle aspiration through the vagina they will take me to the hospital to have me undergo laparoscopic surgery to get the eggs. Then I will be sent home about 45 minutes later.Once the eggs are taken to the lab I will start progesterone injections or vaginal suppositories.
During this time, in the lab, jeff will be giving a sperm sample (either by ejaculation or by testicular biopsy... most likely ejaculation) then the eggs will be fertilized either by insemination (leaving the sperm with the egg in the dish and hoping that it fertilizes) or by ICSI (where they inject the sperm straight into the egg.
While the eggs are in the lab they will be in a special 'media' room for 4-6 hours while the sperm is washed then the sperm will be placed with the eggs for 18 hours. The eggs will then be ecamined for fertilization, if they are fertilized they will be placed in a special growth room. Then they will be examined again on the day of transfer for cell division. The they will be transfered.Then I will have a pregnancy test 15 days later to see if I am pregnant. If it is uncesseful I have to wait 1 normal period before beginning a new suppression cycle.
Anyways.. I hope I haven't taken up too much of your time. I just wanted to all know what the process involves. I find it rather interesting. We also have to go through a injection class to learn how to give ourselves and each other injections. So we'll see how this cycle goes...