Saturday, September 26, 2009

Any opinions my fellow RE's in training?

Who better to ask for an opinion than someone who has went through the same thing as you have, right? While we are not doctors, (although some of us I bet are just as educated now in infertility issues) it helps to read and share our experiences with IF, heck isn't that why alot of starting blogging?

* I don't want to be too graphic, but a few things I must say if any of you can shed any light on them. Dad, you should skip this post, really nothing here you'd be intrested in. You'd thank me, believe me.

Ok here's the deal....

I have two major issues I want to solve before our next try at IVF next month, God Willing. Of course I will discuss these with my RE but wanted to throw them out there to you, as you may be able to suggest what I should be asking in addition to what questions I will form after doing research online with Dr. Google.

One is my cervix is low, i mean quite low. It comes and goes, meaning its lower sometimes more than others but definitely a new thing to have happen to me. I mean I can actually feel it, like dropping or just being there but low, if you will, when i bend down, while going to the bathroom etc. I have also noticed in my last two periods, when my flow gets lighter the blood seems to be a darker, brownish color and streaky, like it is flowing from my cervix that way? Could there be blood somewhere there is not suppose to be? I only noticed AFTER i had my last fallopian tube ligated by the way. Not sure there is any connection though.

The other issue is the failure of the seven (7) embryo replacements, the 3 IVF trials, we did over the past 4 years. I have read that pre-embryo genetic testing can be done. I also read that there are a host of immune disorder tests that cane be done, but  that if someone, like me, who has had several failed IVF's is not recommended to do these tests as it will not change treatment??? Huh?

So my internet lovelies, any thoughts? Is there anything you are sure I should bring up with my doctor?

I will start my research and try to formulate some questions in addition to the obvious "why haven't any of these transfers worked? What can we do, if anything, before this next IVF trial?"

Low cervix and mutiple failed IVF cycles, what should I be sure to ask? If any of you did specific tests after a failed IVF cycle, what were they? 

I know, i know you are not giving medical advice, and I am not seeking it ok. (Damn, should I have even said that? Nope, think not). I mean we blog about TTC, infertility, surgeries- we discuss so many treatments and protocols, we know we are not RE's right? (laughing)

Love you all and a big thanks in advance cause you guys always come through!!!  xoxoxoxoxoxo


  1. I don't have any info - but I don't understand why they couldn't do the testing. It may not change treatment - but what if it did? Wouldn't the information still be good to have?

  2. The only thing that I've experienced that you've mentioned is the darker blood at the end of my period. Mine have always ended that way, so I haven't thought a lot about it.

    I wish they would run more tests...there has to be a reason why these IVF's aren't working.

    You're always in my thoughts and prayers, girl.


  3. I think you should submit your question to LFCA, to have a broader range of opinions. Good Luck finding the answers!

  4. I would definitely ask about the cervix issues. And I would inquire about pre-implantation genetic diagnosis too. I would just think that with each IVF attempt they would be tweaking the method a little. Not just trying again, kwim? I know my RE says IVF is very diagnostic - meaning when it doesn't work it gives them lots of information for another attempt. If you have viable embryos going in then what's happening? Is there something they can do post transfer to boost success? I know I asked specifically for luteal phase support (progesterone) because my luteal phase was kinda short. They were very accomodating. I'd also ask about 3 vs. 5 day transfers. What is your RE's philosophy on the pros and cons there. I know some feel that the "stronger" embryos on day 5 are better while mine felt that getting the embryo into the uterus fast was preferable. Maybe just talking out your RE's philosophy will help him/her think outside the box.

    Good luck! I'm so praying for your next cycle to be successful!

  5. I have no experience with this IVF thing and I have never really heard of a low cervic.

    I hope you will get the answers you seek and that you will be successful in your next attempt because all woman deserves the gift of a child.

    You are in my prayers.

  6. I have had 5 fresh and 1 frozen cycle. I did PGD (preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis) for my 4th cycle. It IS recommended for someone with multiple IVF failures because it can determine if your embryos have any sort of genetic defect that would be causing implantation failure. I would do a little research and ask your RE. It actually helped shed a lot of light on our case.

  7. Have you ever read the book "Taking Charge of your Fertility"? If not, I highly recommend it. I'm not sure if this is what is going on in your case, but that book talks about how your cervix actually does go down around the time you ovulate. It is to help the sperm have a shorter distance to swim from the *ah-hem* "opening" to the egg. I believe the opening to the uterus also opens up a little bit more during this time to assisnt in that journey as well. The book is a fantastic read and very informative. While it doesn't help for things like endo or PCOS, it is great to read what things are normal in a cycle and what things aren't.

    Anyway, that's my two cents. Not sure if it helped. Good luck!

  8. On the darker blood, it's probably "left over" from a previous cycle -- or the last of your current cycle - a guess anyway. I was told that once.

    For the same reasons that the other IFers have mentioned, I'd ask again about the genetic testing. If there are some major chromosomal issues with the embryos, they might not make it - for the same reason that people have miscarriages. There may be other reasons, but that's the one I know about. Best wishes!

  9. I seem to be recommending this a lot lately but I would try a long distance consult with The Alan E. Beer Center for Reproductive Immunology & Genetics. They have been in on most of the ground breaking work done on immunological issues affecting treatment.

    If they recommend testing and they do find an immunological issue, that won't change the basics of the cycle but it will add some treatments for you...possibly adding iViG or some other treatment. Shannon over at Musings of a Fat Chick is being treated for some immunological issues and, hopefully, this will result in a sticky pregnancy.

    I personally have known people online who have been helped by Dr. Beer's clinic.

    Email me if you have any questions.

  10. Your cervix should be low around ovulation time. Is this when you normally find this happening?

    I have the same issue with darker streakier blood at the end of a period. I guess I always thought it was normal, but would be curious to hear otherwise.

    I would consider doing some immune testing. My 2 IVF REs both recommended this after failed cycles. Your body could be "attacking" your embryos treating them as foreign bodies...

    Have you had an integrin biopsy? It is an endometrial biopsy done ~8-10 days after ovulation to make sure that you have the beta-3 integrin (the sticky glue necessary for implantation to take place).

    I also would really start to consider either PGD or CGH testing of your embryos to determine which are "normal".

    I wish there were some easy answers or just easy conceptions!! Hang in there and good luck with all your research!

  11. Before you go to PGD, have you done full panels of genetic testing on yourself and Super S?

    You definitely should find out exactly what changes your clinic has been making for each different IVF and at what point they think things are going wrong. Like Paige, my RE also thinks of IVF as very diagnostic and he suggested major changes (primarily ICSI) between #1 and #2 then a protocol change to a micro-flare between #2 and #3.

    Hopefully they have something to suggest aside from more of the same.

    Good luck!

  12. Hi, you should definalty have some more testing done, there is no reason why you shouldn't no matter how many cycles you have done.
    I had more testing done after a misscarriage but the tests are sort of the same, also there's a few more that cover implantation issues too. The website i posted is about causes of misscarriage but the things they mention like immune disorders and killer cells etc are reasons for implantation issues too that doctors are really starting to take notice of. Plus they're easy to treat with simple steriods similar to ones used for asthma and allergies, or aniti biotics or blood thinners, so defianlty yes it would be so worth doing these tests, most are just a blood test.
    My prob was found to be a blood clottin issue, wish we'd been offered the tests before our bub died at 9wks.
    Good Luck to you

  13. I don't have anything to add other than if YOU think you need some extra testing done then push for it. Be your own advocate.
    Good luck!

  14. I haven't ever heard of a low cervix, but I hope that you find out what that's all about. Sounds a little painful, hope it isn't too bad for you. And the period thing sounds weird too. I'm sorry you have to go through this! hugs!

    I have a friend who is doing the pre-embryo genetic testing done for their IVF, if you'd like to chat with her, I could get you two in touch?

  15. Of course, you know my opinion...I agree with these other veteran IVF'ers in that a good doctor would be evaluating each protocol for each failed cycle and deciding what is working and what is not. Peesticks and Stones ( had some immune issues and tried IVIG with success finally. I would ask all the questions you have. The brown blood sounds like what I've sometimes seen during my period..sometimes for the whole bleeding episode. I've read it is normal. But ask anyway! My dearest, I pray for a wise, listening doctor for that comes up with a protocol you can be confident with and a game plan...all based on your history and test results.

  16. I did 3 useless IVF cycles after several m/c . Became my own Dr Google and diagnosed myself with immune issues...NK activity.One or 2 of the girls above mentioned it.Testing came back confirming this.They do a uterine biopsy(not fun,,,kind of like a MEGA pap) at the tail end of your cycle before AF. The treatments are steroids-awful.Not good for me. IVIG- effective but expensive.Many doctors don't like this one as it is a blood product and it spooks them. The third is Intralipid infusion.Works the same as IVIG but is very inexpensive and not a blood product.There are 2 places in South Africa that do this if they won't do it there.The US and UK of course also but they're more expensive.
    Please feel free to e-mail me if you want me to send my e-file on all of this.I had to find out the hard way.If I can spare 1 woman another negative ,chemical or m/c...I will. Best wishes..


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