More bad news, I’m afraid

10 Aug

Met with a couple of doctors from the fertility clinic today. It seems that they are just as shocked by our first disastrous IVF attempt as we were. None of the tests leading up to retrieval day indicated that anything was going wrong.

A couple of bizarre things happened. First of all, they only retrieved eggs from my left side. It appears that all of the follicles on my right were empty. So it’s possible that my right ovary just doesn’t produce eggs. The other shocking thing — get this — is that my eggs did something strange that the embryologists have NEVER SEEN BEFORE. And they have handled thousands of eggs. Apparently the liquid inside was “sticky” when they tried to fertilize. I can’t possibly use the proper scientific terms to explain what they found, but apparently my eggs were unresponsive in a way that HAS NEVER BEEN WRITTEN ABOUT IN SCIENTIFIC LITERATURE.

(Okay, enough with the screaming capital letters, sorry.)

They said we had two options — try another drug protocol or attempt a “natural” cycle” where they wouldn’t stimulate me, they would just retrieve the one egg that I produce in a given month. A natural cycle is said to lead to improved egg quality. But the odds are much worse overall. We decided to try one more stimulated IVF/ICSI cycle with a new drug protocol. The hope its that the more eggs we get, the higher chance that at least one will be a keeper. If we encounter the same egg problem after our second cycle, we will likely throw in the towel on IVF for a while. We’ll move to investigating public adoption and approaching a known donor about “contributing” on a monthly basis. It’s possible that my body just hates all of this poking and prodding.

It’s also entirely possible that I have poor egg quality and will not be able to get pregnant. Period. Unless we consider an egg donor, which seems like an insane process to navigate.

So that’s what we know. We try again next month. This all feels a little too heavy to handle right now.


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