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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello
I am doing some terrible grieving since learning that 4th attempt at donor sperm IUI failed on Dec. 5th/04.
Can you please tell me what medical teams generally expect in terms of "adverage" number of times to expect before donor sperm IUI brings success?  I have no idea what is "normal"?
The first 3 attempts included oral clomid....I heard that that your uterus lining can be compromised with this drug ...and that is my "gut feeling" for my case (I have light periods anyway...it was practically "nothing" when on clomid).
This last attempt included 6 days of puregon injections (2 good sized eggs indicated in vaginal ultrasound)....and we still experienced failure.  I am at wits end!  Where else should we be exploring in terms of potential "issues and problems".  No prior tests indicated problems for myself...other than having a fibroid removed in July 2003 in preparation for donor sperm IUI attempts.  DH has azoospermia.
Clinic was "very pleased" with my response to puregon in Nov (....but no baby for us....so hard to be "pleased")...and states it will continue in Jan/05 with same dose of puregon as in Nov/04.
What about this progesterone issue....is this something I should get checked out? (wouldn't it have been checked out?).  I know nothing here.
Please HELP!
Thank-you kindly, Gwendolyn
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

I can't answer your medical questions but I do know how you feel!!!  We just learned that our third IUI failed and I've been gutted ever since.  My clinic says that 4-7 attempts are the 'norm' for IUI.  I also had problems with Clomid and my lining- it started out looking good and then as soon as I took the Clomid - it actually started shrinking!  I took the drug for 5 days only so after I stopped it, I started drinking 2 cups of raspberry leaf tea and it started going back up.  I also had an HCG shot to control ovulation and the timing of IUI and this drug added more to my endometrium.  I am now researching sperm counts because the first two attempts were done with what I'm now thinking might have been really low numbers.  We used 8-9 million of 97-100% motile sperm (after washing) but everything I've been reading says we should be using higher counts- over 20 million...  Do you know what your counts were for your inseminations?  Did you do one or two inseminations? I've read of some successes with two inseminations, one at 12 hours after HCG and one at 36 hours...

Don't give up - even couples who get pregnant naturally take many months to get there!!  I try to keep this in mind myself as I'm very close to obsessing about babies.  I literally have it in my mind to one degree or another - always!!

Positive thoughts!
Auggie
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Auggie...thanks for your reply....just good to hear from SOMEBODY offering good cheer.
I have heard of others (on FF) getting 2 inseminations around ovulation time (I have only ever done 1 during our 4 attempts)....we just haven't pursued that with our clinic as it hasn't been suggested and also I suppose in the back of our minds- we have considered the increased cost of 2 viles of donor sperm for one ovulation cycle.... and really had hoped that we would be lucky with one vile each attempt.
I know nothing about the sperm counts of the donor sperm we have purchased....maybe I ought to bump up the research as you have!
I have a book written by a couple successful with donor insemination and their counsellor....and they indicated 7 tries before they found success......so I guess I hang onto that.  However, my worry goes ten-fold with every failed attempt!
Thank you so much, Auggie....and I do look forward to others' comments...medically and not! 
Take care, Gwendolyn
 

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Hi
I have had to failed attempts at DI and 2 failed at IUI. Did DI first then foiund out i was not ovulating (did progesterone tests at days 21, 28 and 35) as this is the only true way (so i believe) of knowing if you have ovulated.  A pregnancy cannot survive without the body producing progesterone so this may be worth checkig out.  It surprises me that your clinic have not insisted you get the prog tests done a week after ovulkation and IUI??

I too have mentioned to my clinic about doing 2 iuis but have said this is not normal, although i know of an american lady who just had 2 and now has triplets on the way!!.

I too am taking clomid on days 2 - 5 but dont have the injecitopn to bring on ovulation.  My periods have been much heavier since taking the clomid, this month was a nightmare with having to change every hour (sorry TMI!!).  Hope this helps.  Not too sure about the raspoberry leaf tea, was told to avoid this in pregnancy until you are after 36 weeks pg and then it helps to bring on birth but before then told to avoid it altogether!

I am going to IUI in Feb and are hoping 3rd time lucky but have agreed with DH that we wil have the 6 attempts (have 6 months supply of clomid) b4 we maybe look into DIVF or even adoption.

Good luck for your next attempt.
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

I would definately look into the counts that your lab is producing after washing.  Have read a story about this woman who discovered that her lab was washing the sample again (even though it came IUI ready) and this further decreased the number that went back in.  Her clomid was increased and she made 4 eggs and the sample went up to 50 million and she got pregnant. 

We have done both, one insemination and two also dependant on what we could afford that cycle.  Its alot about timing- my doctor says that with the hcg shot we gain a little more control over the scheduling... Supposedly the egg lasts for about 24 hours and frozen sperm does not last the same as fresh sperm... I think that's why it takes alot of tries to get it!  Keep trying!!!

That book you mention sounds interesting- would you mind giving me the name?

When are you planning to cycle again? I will do one more clomid cycle and then move on to injectibles if I don't have anymore cysts- I already had one last cycle from the clomid!!!


Best wishes!!!
 

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Hi Alex,

Good luck for your next cycle- hope you are third time lucky!!

Auggie
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hello All,
Auggie- I would be pleased to pass on the name of the book I mentioned...
It's called HELPING THE STORK: THE CHOICES AND CHALLENGES OF DONOR INSEMINATION.  Written by CAROL FROST VERCOLLONE, HEIDI MOSS, and ROBERT MOSS.
Carol was the Fertility Counsellor (psychologist, I believe) for the couple, Heidi & Robert who were successful with donor insemination in creating their family.
This was the first book I purchased when donor sperm was offered to us (along with the option of adoption).  I found it by researching the web.  This book was definitely my "best friend" for awhile (I hadn't hooked up with FF yet)....and I still revisit it- it is written from the heart.  I always welcome other book suggestions....and have quite the little library going at this stage.

Thanks for the comments re: counts and # of inseminations.  I am away from home for the holidays right now..but will call the clinic on my return.
Another puregon round and donor sperm IUI is scheduled for Jan/05.....just waiting for my period.
How about you, Auggie?
Thanks for the encouragement....welcome any other input from others.
Take care, Gwendolyn
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Alex-
Appreciate your sharing!
I'll be rooting for you and your DH and your 4th attempt in Feb!
The clinic apparently boosts us up to DIVF after 2 more attempts at DIUI with puregon injections.....I so hope we are lucky before then!
Best wishes, Gwendolyn
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

Thanks for the name of the book!  Are you starting meds on the 5th or doing the IUI on the 5th?  I have a scan on Wed. and if all okay, then I'll start another round of clomid for 5 days with a possible IUI around the 14th or 15th!  I'm excited but worried at the same time cause I have this nagging feeling about my scant AFs lately????  I read a few other posts you've submitted and it is as if you are saying the words right out of my mouth!  Keep the faith- we'll get there!!!!

Best wishes for 2005!
Auggie
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
HI Auggie....so glad to hear that my words ring so true for you....it is such a gift for me to know there is someone else out there who "gets" what I feel.  It's a great big hug to my soul- so thank-you.  I no longer feel as isolated as I use to.
I am sorry to have confused you....in terms of the 5th- I am referring to the fact that this January 2005 will involve our 5th attempt at DIUI.  I have yet to get my period this month of January...but I suspect it will arrive VERY soon (later this week).  Then the clinic will likely tell me to begin the puregon shots on Day 5 after my 1st day of full flow.  It could very well work out that we both do IUI around the same time....would you mind checking in on this thread re: start dates.  We might end up a great support to each other during similiar 2 ww's.
What kind of scan are you having on Wed?  I did clomid on my earlier attempts at DIUI and there was no scanning for me....just waited for "Day 1" (first full-flow day) and then started clomid on the 5th to 10th day from my Day 1.
Appreciate the cheer to "keep the faith"....REALLY needed it.  Lately my growing anxiety has made sleeping very disruptive (and that's NOT helpful either!!!)
Anyway, I am sure we'll be in touch over FF.
Best wishes and take care, Gwendolyn
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

It would be great to be cycle buddies!!!!! I know that your support will be most needed then!!!! My scan tommorow is a baseline scan where they check to see if I have teeny follicles and no cysts.  I start off this way each time - first they do a scan and then I start the meds on Day 5.  then I usually do 3-4 more scans to check the size of my endometrium and the number of eggs and their size.  Even with all this scanning, I still have not managed a BFP so not sure if it is all necessary but it does make me feel better psychologically just knowing what is going on in there.  I'm assuming that you are now scanned with the injectibles?  Do you also do blood work?

I tried to look for the thread you mention but didn't know which board it is and I couldn't find it- I also did a general search...

I know what you mean about the sleeping, last night I woke up at 4:30 am and could not go back to sleep!  I know that each time it doesn't work, I get more and more anxious for the next time but as my doctor says, you cannot go by statistics alone.  He for one doesn't trust them too much because you can't always control all of the conditions under which they are made. 

Do you remember any side effects from the clomid?

Here's to a healthy AF for you shortly, a healthy cyle and a successful one!
Hugs
Auggie
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi Auggie....
I think my poor sleeping habits of late are effecting my ability to communicate through this message board!  ;D My apologies!
When I asked if you wouldn't mind checking in with this thread re: start dates....I was trying to ask you if you would let me know through this particular thread ("Re: Donor IUI attempts? Help") and let me know when you do your upcoming IUI.  Sorry I am not expressing myself more clearly for you!

You are correct that I NOW do a vaginal ultrasound on the 5th day of puregon injections to check for follicles.  Last attempt- there were 2 "of good size" and 5 total.  Blood work was also taken on my 5th day of puregon injections.  Given that 2 "great-looking folicles" were present on the 5th day of puregon- they advised me to have one more injection (6th day of puregon) and then I injected the medication to make my body ovulate on the following day.....I remember that being a Sun. night and then DIUI was done on the morning of that coming Tues.  I sometimes wonder if that is too long of a wait to expect conception to occur???

I, myself, did not experience any side-effects of clomid (nor puregon, for that matter).  I felt very fortunate.

Though I do know that a friend of mine (attempting to have her 2nd....and trying for 6-8 months maybe) was prescribed clomid by her family dr. and she said she felt terrible on clomid and is reluctant to use it again.  SO I am not sure what to tell you?????....I do believe that those who have experienced IF difficulties for a longer period of time, and/or who have serious fertility issues diagnosed can experience a higher sense of tolerance for physical symptoms/side-effects...after all, we get poked and prodded more than we care to admit!!!!  I think the friend I mentioned is struggling more with side-effects of clomid because she expected to get preganant as quickly as she did the 1st time (....her DH and her got the BFP for their son on their 2nd try!!!!!) ...and so at this point, she does not feel the same intense need to continue with clomid (and the side effects for her) when she has had a pregnancy  before and there is not (at least, at this point) a significant cause for IF concerns.

The only thing I noticed with clomid is that when I got the BFN.....my periods were VERY light.  I am already light...so I didn't think it could get much lighter....but it did!  The nurse told me later that this is apparently a side-effect for SOME women....meaning that the "amount" of lining is compromised.
But, Auggie....we MUST NOT worry about that possibility right now because WE ARE GOING FOR THE GOLD FOR YOU......we are going for the BIG FAT POSITIVE!!!! ^hugme^
Take care, Gwendolyn
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

Have just returned from an unexpected business trip and was offline for TOO long!

When you say 5th day of puregon - do you mean day 5 in your cycle or just the 5th time you inject?  I'm asking because if this cycle doesn't work (I am trying to be positive...but also need to plan ahead) then we are on to injectibles and I feel like I'm starting all over again in a new 'area' that I don't know much about.  I have done injectibles with ICSI but I'd be new to the timing of injectibles for IUI. 

As for the timings, I usually get inseminated 36 hours after I take the hcg shot to trigger ovulation.  One cycle, we tried two attempts, one at 12 hours after the shot and then another 24 hours after that (so at 36hrs.)  So you're timing sounds about right.  Is your clinic strict with hours?  Ie. do they want you in within a two hour time frame of the 36 hour mark?

Did you AF turn up?  What stage are you at?  My baseline scan was fine.  I've had my second scan which showed 2 follies on my right side (again- thought it might be my left side this time...) at 8 and 10mm.  My lining was quite thin though 4.4 but the same thing happened last time that it went back up to normal after I finished taking the Clomid.  You're really lucky that you don't get side effects.  I get side effects from everything- hcg, puregon, clomid- you name it... The same thing happened to me with my periods too- they were very light and I'm also lite usually too.

Well, I hope that you are well on your way in this cycle- I'm looking forward to your news... and YES we are going for the GOLD!!!!!!!!!!

Ciao-Auggie

 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
HI Auggie!
I got the AF today (Mon. 10th).....1 week later than expected (stress???)
Anyway, I called the clinic and they will advise me when to start the puregon injections.  I suspect I will begin on Day 5 like last time (if I remember correctly)....so looks like 1st injection will be on Jan. 15th and injections continue daily until vaginal ultrasound on Day 10....then the Dr assesses....and last time I did 1 more injection (6 injections total).  I'll let you know when I know.....the clinic and I kept missing each other today via phone.  Seem to recall the clinic inseminated me at 36 hours for my last time too (after taking ovulation med- hcg?)....they are very particular about the time for me to be there and "ready".  I have only ever had 1 insemination with all 4 IUI attempts in the past.
I am away overnight on business Tues night and back late Wed night ....so will catch up with you Thurs..
Can I ask what the thought is behind your starting with ICSI first and now trying IUI???
Look forward to hearing from you!!!! 
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

Yeah that your AF arrived and sorry it was late!  Doesn't Monday count as day 1 of your new cycle (so that day 5 would be 14th)?  I'm told to count day 1 from the first day of AF.  I went for a second scan yesterday and my lining is up from 4.4 to 6.4.  I know its not great but clomid does this to me-  last time it went up to 11.2 just after the hcg shot, so I'm hoping the same will happen this time.  My two follies have also grown to 12 and 13.5mm.  So I may be going in for the IUI around the 14th, 15th or 16th!! Yikes!  I'll be going in to the 2ww a few days ahead of you...but I'll be waiting for ya!

We have severe MF- my DH has a rare condition and so we had to go straight to ICSI when we first started on this journey.  All tests for me so far have come up normal.  After our first failure with ICSI (chemical) my DH started bringing up the issue of donor sperm.  I was adamant to keep trying with ICSI even though the expense was becoming great for us.  My DH was concerned with passing along his condition to his offspring, etc and frankly was tired of 'failing'.  This last part was explained to me by a guy friend who told me that for a man - the sense of repeated failure can be quite devastating.  After our third failed attempt with ICSI and the one FET, I took quite some time out to work out the whole donor thing in my head and now I'm really fine with it, so we are doing the DIUI's until we get pregnant or they find something wrong with me that might make us change our plan of action...

Hoping this one is the one for both of us!  Have a good trip and 'talk' to you on Thurs.
Auggie
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Hey Auggie....
Well, it seems that you are more "on the ball" than me when talking about my own treatment  ;D....as you are so correct (I obviously miscounted).  Anyway- puregon injection start on Jan 14th....will do the vaginal ultrasound on the 19th to check out the follies...and if all goes as last time, I'll be doing IUI around the 21st!  I WISH YOU THE ULTIMATE IN BABY-DUST as you embark on DIUI this Fri (I will think of you especially as my DH gives me my injection! hahahahaha!)

I am intrigued by this measurement of lining....never had it done for me. hmmmmm

That is rather impressive that your DH brought up donor sperm....he is an extaordinary guy.

I do hear you when you mention the notion of repeated failure for men.  My DH and I had a big talk tonight (totally unexpected) after I returned home from business trip and he more or less indicated that the increased anxiety and "anger" that he has been feeling as of late (since Dec he has been very "edgey"....like me, I suppose...but he is usually the more "solid and peaceful" one of of us 2)....anyway, he feels it is linked with battling his decreasing sense of hope and lack of confidence since 4th failure (in Dec).  He starts to question everything and the emotional pain he felt at diagnosis of azoospermia comes racing back.  He finds himself wondering about a "child-free marriage"....and it just gets messy for him (and me for that matter!!)....when really it is just that he wants to run away from the pain in his core as he truly wants to have a family with me.

ANyway....look forward to our next contact!  I AM THINKING OF YOU with lots of HOPE!  Take care, Gwendolyn
 

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Hi Gwendolyn,

Your post made me smile- thanks for all the support and encouragement!! Depending on my scan results this evening, my doc will decide whether to trigger me tonight (so I then go in for IUI on Sat.morn) or tommorow evening and do the IUI then on Sunday.  I think I prefer tonight because I'm afraid that I will ovulate spontaneously as last month which makes calculating the timing of IUI more difficult. 

They check the lining as part of the SOP for the scans.  They most probably check yours too but just don't tell you about it 'cause its fine!  If it wasn't okay- I'm sure they would tell you... I ask for my number because I am low on progesterone some months and now with the clomid it definately thins out my lining- which is a known side effect in some women.  BUT, I'm learning (the hard way) that sometimes too much information is NOT a good thing and just adds to my stress!!! Even when my doctor says that everything is fine, I fret now because of the 3 icsi's I'm so used to having so much detail about my cycles.  My new doctor says he wishes that he could erase the memory of the last 3 icsi's so I wouldn't get so worked up.  I wish he could do that too!!!!  On the other hand, now that I know that I have an issue with my lining, I can do things like drink raspberry leaf tea and do the femoral massage which has helped me build it back up before IUI!

Yeah, my DH is pretty mature with some issues.  He is also anxious to get a family started and in his naive way thinks that since no problem has been found with me as of yet, then doing DIUI will give us results more quickly! (he's a problem solver so tends to go for the perceived quickest way to success...) Wrong! Even though the doctor told him it could take up to 6-7 tries, he still thinks -'why is this so difficult and taking so long?'  On the other hand, he does NOT deal with his emotions too well, so even though I know he is OK with the DS issue, there are still issues that he has not worked out.  He also has been aware of his problem since he was 18 years old so I think he has been milling this issue around in his mind for quite some time?!!  If your husband was just recently told (and I'm talking few years time) then, I think it might still be 'fresh'.  It is GREAT that your DH talks about what he is experiencing- it is so very healthy!!!  My DH just bottles it up...which causes lots of anxiety coming out in other ways... like getting upset when the garbage bag breaks before he gets to the bin, etc.  This IF is certainly a trial on a marriage and our selves but HOPEFULLY it'll all be worth it SOONEST!!!!!!!!!!!! 

My DH is also now talking about a child free marriage and thinks that I should start getting my head around this one a little bit and not be so 'obsessed'!!!! :)) You are so perceptive in seeing that they are just wishing to run away from it all and masking what they really would like!! My DH is just the same!  He prefers just not to deal with the issue and can 'convince' himself quite nicely that it will be okay for us NOT to have children.  But, then when I see him at a party (the other night) and watch him looking at a father/daughter relationship (some of our friends), I KNOW he is kidding himself!!!!!!!!

I've decided that if this cycle doesn't work, I will take a break for a few months, detox my body and mind, go back home to visit my family in North America and then start with injectibles (we will need time to work out all the insurance permissions, etc...anyway...) I was sooooooooooo convinced that it worked last time that my let down was tremendous and I'm just now trying to not let that happen again!!  We'll see...but as for YOU, I'll be thinking of you too this Friday and am wishing you a good start to your cycle AND THAT a super duper strong +++++++++++ will shine your way this time around!!!!! 

Are you doing accupuncture or supplements or anything like that?

Be well - 'chat' to you soon!
Auggie

 

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Hi girls!  I just spotted your posts and I hope you don't mind if I add a comment. 

This time last year I was exactly where you are ... so desperate to get a BFP, and in utter despair each time a DIUI cycle failed.  DH and I did 5 cycles without drugs (except the HCG shot 36 hours prior to the one insemination) ... all with at least one good follicle, but all BFN. 

Then I tried Clomid, which turned me into a she-devil and killed off my 3 developing follies without eggs being released.  We changed to use a different donor, clutching at straws really, but another unstimulated cycle gave us a BFN.

Finally we did one with Puregon, and yet another donor (for luck!).  Two follies developed and we finally got our BFP!!  We're now 35 weeks with twins, and utterly delighted!

So, it really CAN happen after lots of attempts, don't give up hope!

And by the way, we looked back at the donor statistics after getting our BFP, and the one we used the first 5 times had been used up and not achieved a single pregnancy.  So, I don't know what your clinic have to offer, (or you may be using a known donor) but I'd say it's worth using a different donor if you haven't already.  Our choice was limited, but we were less strict matching DH's characteristics for the second and third donors.

Anyway, I've gone on too long, but hope this gives you a bit of hope!!  Wishing you lots and lots of luck and heaps of babydust,

Fliss x
 

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Hi Fliss,
Thanks so much for posting your story!! It certainly does give me hope!! We have changed our donor on our last attempt as the one we used to use was giving us very low numbers (less than 10 million although 95-100% motility) I am also thinking of changing again as soon as these last few vials are used up of our 'new' donor.  I'm not sure if I can get pregnancy achievement rates from the donor but I will try.  Do you remember what counts and motility you had for the IUI that finally worked? Our last cycle was 26 million with 89% motility which my clinic was not too happy about (the motility that is-they were happy with the count...)

CONGRATULATIONS and best wishes!!
Auggie

 

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Hi Fliss,
I saw your note and have to say thank you for sharing your story.  DH and I have had 5 failed attempts at DIUI natural cycles as we were not offered stimulated ones, in fact I only learnt about stimulated cycles on this website. Our last BFN was in Dec and we have been spending time on what our next movement should be.  I am really nervous about injecting drugs as I am the kind of person who doesn't even like taking a pill for a headache, I have little trust in what drugs do to your body.  However we have been unsure whether to have any more DIUIs as we assumed after 5 that they were never going to work.  BUT your note has given us hope that we should perhaps try a few more before we move on to the next stage of treatment.  Did you feel it wasn't going to happen at any stage during your cycles?  I always thought it would happen the next time and never really felt that disappointed when it didn't work as I have friends who are trying naturally and it hasn't happened for them overnight!  But when no. 5 failed I did start to think o my god, what now? 
Thanks again for sharing that and I think we may go ahead and find a privite clinic to try again (previous 5 have been on NHS).
Good luck
Jojox     
 
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