* Author Topic: ARGC ICSI Diary 2016, Male Factor and then Immunes  (Read 4927 times)

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Offline LittleLady K

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Ok, so here I am. Little Lady K – aged 33 ½ and still childless…..

I’ve been toying with the idea of starting a diary for quite some time now and decided to finally bite the bullet and do it!

I’m hoping I will achieve 3 things: -

1.   ‘Poor Mans’ self-therapy! Hoping the diary will be a therapeutic outlet for me
2.   Read diary in the future and learn from past experiences
3.   Help another TTC’er 

And of course more than anything hoping, wishing and praying to finally get our much longed for child ;-)

So where to start; Husband and I got married in Sept 2013, at the start of that year I came off the pill and we actively started trying in August 2013.
I did think we may have some issues conceiving as my husband had an un-descended testicle when he was young and a few years ago he also developed a varicocele on one testicle.

So we came back from honeymoon and I immediately booked us in for Couples Fertility screening at the London Fertility Centre. My results came back fine and OH results showed a low count at 4.2m (normal parameters are 15m and more).
The consultant also spotted OH’s varicocele and recommended we see a urologist before going any further with fertility treatments as the varicocele could be causing the very low count.

So off we went and by the end of 2013 – OH had the varicocele removed and we were advised that it will take 3 months or so to know whether the op has helped or not.
In the meantime, I got the ball rolling for our one and only NHS funded IVF cycle. Our GP referred us to Raj Rai at St Mary’s for more testing…bloods, HSG etc. 
The process with Rai and St Mary’s took nearly 9 months and tested my patience at every turn!

Finally, it was October 2014 and we were ready to start our cycle. My husband’s count had improved massively -best ever was a count of 37m when we were doing the cycle.
If I am recalling correctly; they retrieved 13 eggs of which 9 fertilised and of the 9, 2 looked very strong which they transferred on day 5. The embies were both at the morula stage I think, hadn’t quite reached blast stage. Oh yes and I was on the short protocol, I was never offered an explanation as to why…

Come mid Nov 2014 we got a BFN on our OTD and our hearts broke. Like pretty much everyone on this forum knows – this was a really hard time. I honestly thought I would be pregnant on the first go as OH’s numbers had jumped so much and all tests on me have always come back as normal.
So anyway – extremely dark period but we picked ourselves up. I want to also add at this point; I think quite possibly I have the most supportive husband in the world. I could spend this entire diary pretty much gushing about him, but I think that makes for quite dull reading for you guys! Don’t get me wrong – he annoys me to (and I annoy him right back teehee)! But through the entire TTC journey he has been with me every step of the way – even when I just need to have a blood test at the ARGC or something; he came with me every time and during stimms he woke up early each morning to fetch the injections, get it all ready and even created the cutest chart for us to track it all. So I am one lucky Little Lady K and when I feel down I remind myself of this regularly.

As I am a pretty impatient person – the day we got our BFN I got on the phone to the ARGC and booked a consultation for early Jan 2015.
Went along to the initial consult, got booked in for all the usual tests on the monitoring cycle plus the doc recommended I get my immunes tested…..
Come the end of Jan – my monitoring cycle came back all good, as in all my hormone levels were normal however the immunes came back with high Cytokines at 36 and NK cells CD19 at 16.9%. So prognosis: I would need to do a course of Humira…….
At the same time – I had a sinus infection and worst back pain ever.
So we decided to think over the Humira option and also try to sort out what was going on with my back….

Fast forward nearly 9 months later  - Sept 2015 and I was finally ready to go down the Humira road (now that my back was better). I think in my mind the reason why I waited so long before deciding to do Humira, is that perhaps by some miracle we would fall pregnant naturally….alas that was not fated to happen for us.

So come end of Sept – back to page 1, immunes needed retesting again and this time the level was down 35.7. After this I needed to get a TB screening and we needed to re-do our HIV and Hep tests (ARGC like them to be done within the last 12 months when you’re having treatment with them).

Finally, we did the 1st Humira injection 5th Nov 2015 and then the 2nd shot 2 weeks later. Waited a further 3 weeks before we got retested. Finally got the result on Dec 22nd 2015 and the level had come down to 34.5. I was quite pleasantly surprised the level had gone down as I was expecting a flare where my levels would have gone up instead of down!
ARGC instructed that I needed to do another course of Humira (which I was expecting).

So it was now Christmas 2015 and I did the 1st shot of our second course of Humira on Christmas Eve after a full day of baking cookies and tarts! Did the second shot last week (Jan 7th 2016).
So that brings us to present day now, where I feel the days are moving at a truly glacial pace! I’m due to get my immunes retested on Jan 28th and that day couldn’t get here quicker!
I expect after we get the results, it’s very likely that I may need to do intralipids also. Well that’s how I am managing my expectations anyway! Currently I think we may cycle in March….fingers crossed!
So I will sign off for now and will keep updating as we go along.

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    Offline LittleLady K

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    ARGC ICSI Diary 2016, Male Factor and then Immunes
    « Reply #1 on: 21/01/16, 12:06 »
    Hello Diary.

    Thought I would do a quick update.

    No update on treatment just yet as my immunes re-test is next Thursday (hurry up already)!

    I do have a 'feelings' update though....

    One of my husbands good friend gave birth over the weekend and then yesterday one of my friends announced her pregnancy on social media.
    Now I would be telling massive fibs if I said I am never affected when I hear about someone else's good news....it does effect me, it effects me a lot.
    The emotions range from 'why not me' to 'I'm very happy for said person' to despair 'it will happen for everyone but me' etc etc.
    I do eventually get over it - but it does take a couple of days.

    Although one thing that I find a bit frustrating; is the way some of our friends tell us their news. They single us out and often tell us on our own and before making any social media announcements etc. I get why they do it  - they want to be sensitive to our feelings but at the same time I don't want people to pity us and feel they need to treat us differently from everyone else. In fact I think it has the opposite effect of being 'sensitive about feelings' it emphasizes what I feel are my shortcomings in being able to conceive a child. I'm not saying that this is right or wrong - but just how it makes me feel. Rant over!
    Currently I know 5 couples that are pregnant.....I feel haunted by baby bumps wherever I go. lol

    Must.Remain.Positive.Always.

    That's all for now diary.
    Toodles.

    Offline LittleLady K

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    ARGC ICSI Diary 2016, Male Factor and then Immunes
    « Reply #2 on: 1/02/16, 16:54 »
    Bonjour Diary.

    Ok - so last Thursday finally arrived! Went off to have my immunes blood test. Drank loads of water and had breakfast  - but still my veins were hiding (historically I have the worst veins ever). The lovely nurse persisted and wa-hey finally we had blood!

    Also AF has appeared today - with terrible cramps  :( Off to bed with a hot water bottle tonight me thinks!

    So now I'm just waiting for the call from ARGC with my results.......and whether I will need to do intralipids...which I think will be the case.

    Au revoir for now x


    Offline LittleLady K

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    « Reply #3 on: 9/02/16, 12:21 »
    Salutations Diary.

    Arrghhhhhhh I'm still waiting for the ARGC to call me back with my immunes results! Chased them last Thursday and they said my file was going up to the doc on that day and it could take 3 working days for them to then come back to me. So 3 working days takes it to today! Slowly losing my mind....just want to do the intralipids already!

    I really must learn to be patient. So hard!

    Ciao for now.

    Offline LittleLady K

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    « Reply #4 on: 15/02/16, 10:55 »
    Hello diary!

    So I still hadn't heard from the ARGC on my immunes re-test results  :( :(
    Last week they said my file was still with Mr T .....
    Decided to call them this morning - and was advised that my file is still with the Doc but the lady who answered could see that my levels were down to 25.8! 25.8! Wow this is a big drop for me! Canny believe it!
    So I don't need intralipids after all and the lady said I will need to come in once my period arrives possibly to start stimms!
    I still need to hear back from a nurse re the exact instructions on next steps though.

    Finally some movement!!!!!

    Ciao for now x

    Offline LittleLady K

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    ARGC ICSI Diary 2016, Male Factor and then Immunes
    « Reply #5 on: 17/02/16, 12:59 »
    Bonjourno Diary,

    Heard back from the ARGC nurse this morning! Hooray! As I am on day 17 of my cycle - she wants me to go in for a progesterone blood test tomorrow and collect nasal spray. If I have ovulated then I can start on the nasal spray.
    Can't believe we are finally starting now!

    Feels so surreal and I am so scared. Particularly because I know the next 6-8 weeks are going to be so hard, emotionally and physically. I actually feel petrified!
    I am hoping and praying more then anything that this time works for us. After this cycle we have no more savings and we're back to the drawing board and will need to start saving again - but this time for our first home.
    We've put our lives on hold in the hope of expanding our family, so I literally feel as though 'all my eggs are in one basket'!

    Please, please, please let this work for us. My husband deserves to be a father more then anything - and it prays on my mind always that I can't give him the family he wishes and deserves.

    And as if there isn't enough to worry about; I was originally planning to tell my boss about this cycle, who I know would be supportive etc re time off I would need. But then last month there was a tiny rumor that I may get a promotion....not from my boss but someone else. So now I'm worried that if I tell him about this cycle that I won't be considered for the promotion anymore......really confused about what to do! :(

    Back soon! x

    Offline LittleLady K

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    « Reply #6 on: 18/02/16, 12:38 »
    Hi Diary,

    Went in to the ARGC for my millionth blood test this morning! So will hopefully hear back by 7pm today re whether I ovulated and If I have I can start the nasal spray! Milestone alert!
    That's all I have to report for now - other then my pesky veins that always play hide and seek and make the poor phlebotomists lives difficult! But my fave Dracula (endearing term don't worry lol) sorted me right! He is so lovely and gentle!

    Anyways - off to try and concentrate on doing some work (so hard with all this going on)!

    Toodles xxxx

    Offline LittleLady K

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    « Reply #7 on: 18/02/16, 17:40 »
    Greetings Diary - got the call just now from ARGC nurse; I have ovulated! My progesterone is at 33.3 and I have the green light to start with the nasal spray tomorrow morning.  :)
    Feels like everything is happening so fast now! Although once I'm in the 2ww (hopefully, fingers and everything crossed I get there) I'm sure time will totally slow down!

    Ciao for now x

    Offline LittleLady K

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    « Reply #8 on: 19/02/16, 10:59 »
    DAY 1 of Down Reg

    Made it to this day finally! Nothing much to report at all....1st spray this morning was totally finally. I must remember to drink loads of water to see if I can counteract the headaches, which are supposedly a very common side effect of taking Supercur.

    Downloaded the Zita West audio for "Positive Visualisation for IVF". So will start listening to that and hopefully achieve some sort of relaxation!
    Also booked into see my acupuncturist! Haven't seen her in over a year - so looking forward to starting that up again too!

    Hubby lovingly wizzed up 2 pots of 'Avocado Pudding' for me last night. Gulped one down last night and had one for breakfast this morning.
    I read somewhere that having loads of avocado as part of a healthy Mediterranean diet increases the chance of success when having IVF as Avocados are a natural source of keeping inflammation down....
    Similar to most ladies on here; I am willing to do anything! So Avocado pudding it is! In case anyone is interested - all you need is half an avocado, any milk (I use Almond milk) and sugar/sweetener (I use stevia). Pop it all in a blender and then voila!

    All for now! x

    Offline LittleLady K

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    ARGC ICSI Diary 2016, Male Factor and then Immunes
    « Reply #9 on: 22/02/16, 16:39 »
    DAY 4 of Down Reg

    Hey diary

    Not loads to report but thought I would update you whilst I still held some semblance of sanity!
    Day 1 and 2 DR was pretty hard as I had headaches that lasted all day long! Went off for a lovely weekend of pampering with OH and 2 close friends. Even the pampering couldn't get rid of my headaches on Saturday and I had a really bad nights sleep..... :(

    However yesterday was a headache free day and today has been good so far - although I think there is a headache lingering....trying to burst into my head!
    Called the ARGC this morning and they said I am fine to take paracetamol and any over the counter pain relief for the headaches - phew!

    In other news; went to see my lovely acupuncturist on Friday evening - felt super chilled afterwards.

    Also I am fretting some what about having a scan. You see the last time I had one was over 14 months ago when I did my monitoring cycle. So logic tells me - surely things could have changed in my uterus in all that time...so shouldn't I be having a scan sooner rather then later. Later being; CD 5 when I am about to start stimms. So I asked the question this am - and the lady who answered stated I have nothing to worry about. If my scan on CD5 showed anything - we still had time to do something about it...

    So I leave it in the hands of the 'powers that be' ARGC...... ^pray^ ^pray^ ^pray^ really hard this is the right way.