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Briss sorry this is being dragged out for you. As for collecting eggs I guess go with what you feel most comfortable with. If it were me I would wait as I feel like it's too much trauma and stress to get over, but if you feel ready then why not.

Katkat at ARGC they liked to have progesterone level above 100 nmol during the 2 week wait. I'm not sure on transfer day though. I really wasn't very impressed with Gennet and the consultant I had on my follow up. I had very heavy bleeding around 7 days post transfer whilst taking progesterone support. On Bhcg test date my progesterone level was 36 nmol and she said that's normal! I really felt I wasn't getting adequate progesterone support.

Helen I hope the hysteroscopy went ok and you managed to sort out hotel to stay and car parking at the airport. Sorry you're having to go through this on your own.

Poppy good luck for April!

Klik glad all is good you managed to do some very gentle yoga. I went to yoga today for the first time in a while and it was quite hard!

AFM I have a date for surgery now 3rd of April. It's a busy time of the year for us end of the financial year, but it's been stupid busy all of Jan and Feb and continue to be in March so I don't think there is a good time ever. I just hope my boss doesn't say I can't go off to have surgery. I have been trying to get more people to join the team so hopefully we will have someone to start next week and there's a month of training. I've also decided I'm going to slowly start looking for another job after another ridiculous incident today. I just think all the stress isn't doing me any good.

Also can I ask does anyone else get really sore boobs after egg collection? I do after some cycles get really sore boobs after ovulation. Sometimes doesn't stop straight away after period starts. Is that a sign of being peri menopausal?

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briss - thinking of you, keep having the hcg done, x x x
 

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Briss, the HCG is normal. It takes a while to go down. Just do a test in a week and should be gone, it can take two weeks but as it’s already down to 30 it shouldn’t take long. So sorry for the MC. Hope you are doing ok.

Msj...I’ve had really sore boobs pre ovulation this cycle. I’m not sure which hormone is high right now to be giving me such sore boobs but they are really uncomfortable. I’m worried it’s really high FSH which would relate to Peri menopause.

Kat, I think progesterone should be around 20ng when you transfer. Mine was way higher than that but then I did have 6 follicles producing progesterone plus supplements. My clinic reassured me that it can’t be too high but I’m not sure about that.

AfM, thanks for the well wishes. I’m home. I’m fine just tired. I’m not quite sure what was wrong. I definitely saw from the aquascan that my uterus was kinda divided into two and the scan before my transfer clearly wasn’t although I could see a slight lump so maybe it was just starting. I can’t feel bad about transfer two embryos as I had the aquascan before and was told everything was fine. Anyway in the hysteroscopy the Dr told me that the water they put in was able to separate the “adhesion” so it definitely wasn’t dense and looked to me like a lump of lining. I guess this could have become worse. Before the hysteroscopy the Dr said it could be an adhesion or something else and I can’t remember the word he used but he said something about the lining just being thick. So maybe it would have gone away with a period. Either way at least it’s been sorted and they did implantation cuts. They did find inflammation though. I’ve been tested positive for the hidden C so I guess this is part of the same thing. Penny says that it never goes away. I’ve been given antibiotics but I had a course of antibiotics last month on the cycle so I don’t have much faith they actually make a difference. Do you think this inflammation actually means I have PID. I guess there’s nothing else I can do about it than take antibiotics?
So now I’m trying to make the decision to try OE again or go straight to DE. I’m finding it really difficult to know what to do. I wonder if it’s normal to make the choice to go to DE and yet always have the feeling of what if? I’m scared of trying OE and having another MC which will set me back 6 months. I like the idea of increasing my odds with DE but I’m scared if that doesn’t work either. I’m not sure how I’ll come to a decision on this. Older women can get pregnant with OE, we’ve all seen it happen, but should I be comparing myself to someone else?
 

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Helen, in your case I'd carry on with OE because you are still producing eggs, they fertilise and make good embryos, you achieve implantation- I think it's just a matter of time until you get to the embryo that sticks. But I do understand the fear of having another mc. Unfortunately the risk is there.

I associate sore boobs with high progesterone. I wouldn't expect to have high progesterone right after ovulation  even if you are taking artificial one but I'd check if your progesterone goes up too early. Could be some sort of hormonal imbalance.

I wouldn't worry about inflammation/ hidden C (I doubt you have inflammation actually, what Penny sees as inflammation have been interpreted as healthy endometrium by UK doctors, there is a lot of conflicting views on this one) I also wouldn't take more than one course of AB. A healthy gut bacteria system is really important and AB tend to wipe it out completely and it takes a bit of time to get back into shape after AB. Btw it has been discovered fairly recently that one of the largest components of breast milk is indigestible by babies. Basically it's there not to feed the baby but the baby's gut bacteria! Fascinating! But also makes you think how important it is to maintain a healthy gut flora.
 

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Thanks Briss, my boobs have been sore for a few days and getting more so before ovulation. I’m only on day 10 of cycle so don’t see how it can be progesterone unless it’s realiy out of sink. I can get sore boobs when I stim so maybe it has something to do with follicular phase hormones?
Yeah I don’t really like the AB thing. I took them during my cycle last month and now I’m on them again. I do take a strong probiotic at the same time but I know guy bscteria is important too so it’s so hard to know what is right and wrong,
I’m just fed up with all this diagnosis which has everyone with a different opinion. I just don’t know if I’m coming or going and I don’t know which clinics to trust. To take AB’s or not, steroids or not...everyone has a different answer.
I waiver from one side to the other with with OE/DE. Today I decided DE. Maybe I could get an OE cycle to work but when? I’m 42, I just want to get on with it before I’m too old. The next day I think give OE one more shot...I’m wondering if that feeling ever goes away. I’m not sure how to find the answer.
 

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Oh Helen, I feel the same, it's so difficult to know when to give up on OE or not. There isn't a right or wrong answer, I think you will always walk away with some 'what ifs', I don't believe it will be a clean switch off where you can truly believe that you would never get pregnant with your OE. But it's more about being pragmatic, and saying when you've had enough emotionally, physically and financially (as the doctor said to me today). Also with you on the differing opinions from different clinics. I second Briss, I would be reluctant to keep taking AB for unclear reasons. Wiping out your gut microbiota can have really far ranging effects on your whole body and research is only just starting to take notice of the area. I'm glad you had a productive trip to Athens anyway and they hopefully managed to sort out the weird issues with your lining. So strange when they didn't see anything last month. Hope you can have a restful weekend my lovely and enjoy the sunshine x

Briss, I'm really really sorry about the MC and that this one didn't work out. Both frustrating and devastating. Sending you lots of love xxx. Personally I would take a month out because your hormones will still be all over the place and I don't know how that would affect ovulation and uterine environment. My last MC I think I lost it at a similar stage to you, and it took me a very long time physically to get back to normal (AF didn't come for 7 weeks).

Queenie, I'm so sorry this month was another bust. It's horrible to get no fertilisation, really awful, it makes you feel hopeless, but like you said, trying to reproduce everything that happened on your amazing cycle is what you need to do again. It really does seem like you get better embryos on a natural cycle so it makes sense to go back to them despite the temptation to try and get more than one egg/embryo. Wishing you lots of luck for this month.

KatKat, keeping everything crossed that doing a full medicated cycle helps give you time to get a thick lining!

MSJ, really sorry to hear about your cycle too. Removing the stress of your job situation sounds like a really good idea. I know its overwhelming to think about applying for jobs on top of everything else, but I did it last year, and I have no regrets. In fact, my only regret is staying in a toxic work situation for such a long time hoping to get a good mat package! It's great that you have a date for surgery now. I would be vague about what the surgery is for so that your boss can't refuse.

Poppy, great news that you can cycle in April and don't have to wait until June! Hopefully the Humira has done its job and it all goes really well. April really isn't that far away now. I have had really extensive immune testing with Dr Gorgy, and then other consultants at the Lister and CRGH looked over the results and they don't really feel there is anything to worry about... they wouldn't have treated as aggressively as Dr G did. I know that immunes vary a lot, so I feel like me having more tests when there is no embryo is somewhat uninformative, as I think my body does something really different when an embryo is trying to implant, and it is impossible to look at that in real time.

Had a follow up apt at the Lister today and feeling a bit blah about the whole thing. It just feels like I'm going through the motions and have no real faith in my body or eggs anymore. But I feel like I need to see it through for at least another try. The doctor was very measured, said its up to me what I want to do but should bear in mind that I have only transferred 3 good embryos and am not (that!) old so I'm still within the statistical measures (which is true, but it's taken me 2 1/2 years and £50K to get to that point!!!) With DE, he said I would have a 40-50% chance, which is higher, but you still have that 50% chance it won't work. So how many rounds of DE would I honestly want to put myself through? DH is starting to worry about money, we had a big leak from the bathroom into the lounge this week, and had to pay a fortune to get it fixed which was an unforeseen expense. We desperately need to do loads of work on the house which is falling apart around our ears, but its so difficult to prioritise. Anyway, I'm not stressing about it for now! Have my half marathon next weekend which I'm strangely quite looking forward to. It's nice that my body is at least co-operating in one area. And work is really fun at the moment, so I'm glad that I have other things in my life besides the horror of IVF. BTW, just a trigger warning, I watched Roma this week having no idea what it was about and thinking I should before the Oscars are announced and I wish I hadn't!!! There is a hugely traumatic and very sad baby plot line.
 

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Klik, really happy that everything is still looking good. What a shame about the underwhelming yoga class when you haven't exercised in so long! Hope the pilates one was much better and left you feeling more satisfied.
 

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Hello

I just wanted to pop on to say hello as I’m still reading along with your updates and wishing you all the best. I’m so sorry to everyone for all the recent disappointments, Shady, Queenie, Helen, Kat and Briss.

Helen, I do know what you mean about the antibiotics and hidden c, as I also tested positive. I do think Serum put too much emphasis on this, Penny even said this was the reason why I have low egg reserve which I really struggle to believe. But as you have just had another hysto I think you need to take the antibiotics anyway, did Penny also give you  serrapeptase to stop anymore scar tissue building up? When I got this BFP Penny advised me to take a load more antibiotics to dampen down the hidden c to avoid miscarriage, I took about 3 days worth and then freaked out and didn’t take the rest.

Shady, I hope your run goes well and glad that you are enjoying work at the moment, that must make a huge difference as I literally hate my job. Sorry that you are having issues with the house, my DH keeps going on at me about moving house now before the baby comes as we had never planned to stay here this long, but even now I can not bare the thought of spending the money on a new house when we may need it for further treatment if things don’t work out this time.

MSJ, goodluck with finding a new job, I hope you manage to find something far less stressful and that your work are ok with you having the operation, surely they can’t refuse it? I have stayed in my job for years as its just been easier with treatment but I’ve grown more and more miserable there.

Afm, just a quick update, had another scary week with lots more bleeding, I kept being told different things and the NHS weren’t interested so I managed to find a private local consultant to scan me, a small part of the placenta is coming away but the baby still looks healthy, he thinks it is a little girl although still too early to tell for definite, but we still aren’t planning to tell anyone for a few months yet. I have had to take most of the week off work so no doubt I will get in more grief on Monday as they already had issues with my excessive absence but I’m past the point of caring.

Hello to everyone else. Xx
 

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Shadywheat- I’m sorry to hear your news. I haven’t had any experience of a sore throat etc. when on immune meds. I felt very cold when taking the meds when pregnant although my core temp was high. I’m on the fence about immunes as my bf has psoriasis and managed to get pregnant and have a healthy pregnancy without any medication. I hear what you’re saying about spending so much time being miserable. I’m utterly sick of this whole journey and I just want to be me again without all of this hanging over my head! Good luck with your half marathon!

Katkat - I’m sorry to hear you had to cancel your transfer, but it does sound the sensible choice if your lining wasn’t quite thick enough. I think synthetic drugs like gonal f are recommended as you get older, but I’m not sure if they produce more oestrogen.

MSJ - Did you find out if it was no fertilisation or abnormal fertilisation? Either way I’m very sorry. I don’t seem to have any luck with the eggs from smaller follicles. Usually they are abnormally fertilised, or the embryo develops abnormally.

Briss - You really have had a tough time, I’m very sorry. I did think there was a glimmer of hope at one point, but things weren’t meant to be. I suggest taking a month off to physically and mentally heal. I didn’t ovulate last cycle and just felt that my progesterone was high throughout. This second cycle is back to normal, with ovulation occurring exactly on time.

Queenie123 - I’m sorry about your fertilisation results. I’m plagued by abnormal fertilisation. As I’ve mentioned to MSJ the eggs from the smaller follicles usually are abnormally fertilised. I think it’s something to do with the egg wall not being developed enough and letting in more than one sperm. I’ve tried ICSI in the past, which has resulted in broken eggs and still abnormal fertilisation. So other than ensuring follicles are larger at trigger (which can be hard to achieve) point I’m not sure what to suggest.

Klik - I’m glad your scan went well and your little one was unaffected by your cold.

Poppy1981 - That’s great news that you can cycle in April!

Helenbeau - A hysteroscopy sounded a good idea and I’m glad they were able to sort out the ‘adhesion’. I’m flip flopping constantly between OEs and DEs. It’s not an easy decision. At the moment DH is not on board with DE, so I’m plodding on with my own.

Sunshine122 - The bleeding sounds very scary, but I’m glad they were able to identify where it was coming from and the baby is doing well. I hope work will be understanding. Surely they will write everything off as pregnancy related?

Afm - I’m currently taking doxycycline and using testogel in preparation for my next cycle. DH and I have tried naturally this month as I ovulated at day 14 and it seemed a waste to miss it. I’m supposed to take norethisterone from today, but I’ve decided to postpone taking it a few days just in case I’ve managed by some miracle to conceive naturally. I’m feeling very ambivalent about my next cycle. I’m just going through the motions now. I wish I could shake my negative mindset, but I think I’m also trying to protect myself from further heartache. DH and I took advantage of the beautiful weather yesterday and went for a very long walk with our dog. I got to the top of a steep hill and just cried my heart out, it was very cathartic and I actually feel a lot better today for the release of emotions. DH also opened up, so it was a good experience all round. We’ve put more hill walking on our to do list and are thinking to try glamping in the near future.
 

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Helen - My opinion about Penny and inflammation is just that she has a lower threshold for what she considers to be abnormal, she would consider any small amount abnormal, where as in the UK (particularly the NHS) they consider a small or sometimes even moderate amount to be 'normal', which is why there appears to be a contradiction.  Personally I don't think it's wrong to be a bit over cautious - Penny's team will pick up some people who have such a small amount of inflammation that it isn't having an effect, but I would prefer to have it done and know than to have a small amount which might be causing a problem. 

Has she recommended Sero-peptase for you?  You might want to add it into your supplements, not sure the evidence is sufficient to confirm it works against inflammation, but then there is nothing to say that it doesn't so from my point of view it's worth a try.

Shady - I am with you, I was getting to the stage whereby I was considering DE myself,
When I had my good embryo, not only was it natural cycle but I was really looking after myself in terms of diet, exercise, sleep, stress, sunlight hours etc.  So I think for me, I need to try to do that, but the stress of it all doesn't really help.  I'm still young(Ish) but clearly quality is a big issue and

Sunshine - I am so sorry, but also  ^pray^ for you, it might be good for you to have a bit of time off work.  It sounds so positive that you have got this far - I am really excited for you.

Briss - fingers crossed it was a good clear out and it all came out so you can have a proper BFP next time.

Baby hopeful - the follicles were not small, 19 and 18mm the day before collection, so I think I just had poor quality eggs, DH has poor quality sperm and we have to go for natural cycles, get 1 good egg and then select the best sperm.

AFM - AF arrived today, been a super stressful luteal phase, so not 100% sure why it is 3 days early, except perhaps it is going off the CL from the dominant follicle which we missed?, But it's still a day early even then. 

Anyway,
I have a return flight booked  for next month from Athens, but think I should just leave it for a month.

My PhD funding finishes at the end of January next year - and I know we can't do timing, but I was really hoping that we could have an October baby so that I could have maternity leave on my stipend (which isn't the best, but actually a lot better than a lot of jobs would give you), then I could have extra time for writing up and have a more flexible submission. 

Now Penny said to wait 1 month, then to do a natural cycle for banking and have a hysteroscopy, then to have a fresh and frozen transfer 4 weeks later, which means that I probably won't be due until after submission.  I like the plan just not the timing,  I know any viable pregnancy is a massive win, but still I don't like it when I don't have control over it.
 

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Hi, I'm back with some questions. I will try to catch up with all your posts tommorrow.
I had an appointment in the clinic today to sign in consent forms and I asked about tamoxifen/letrozole for natural modified. Nurse went to ask doctor and she said I have too little number of antral folicules to have that drug and we will stick to 150 of Bemfola. My amh is 3.2 and antral folicules were 4.
What do you think? How did yours natural modified cycles looked like?
I have read so many good stories with poor responders where letrozole was added and  have a feeling I could miss out on few eggs  :-\
 

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MSJ: thanks! It boggles the mind that there's a possibility your work will tell you you can't have surgery... hopefully that won't happen! Hm, I don't know about sore boobs around ovulation--I just can't work out how it could possibly be a sign of perimenopause, though... hopefully it's not!

queenie: the lack of control is a real pain to deal with... I'm sorry the timing is unlikely to unfold in a helpful way... But yeah, our lack of control has, for me, been one of the most difficult things to accept. We are very much in luck's hands--all we can do is help it along by giving ourselves chances--as good and as many chances as possible...

Helen: I'm sorry you had to go through that alone. It sounds traumatic, especially as inconclusive results are hard to process... Hard to know what "inflammation" means, but hopefully if it were retained products that would have been picked up in the hysteroscopy... Also really hard to know where the line should be drawn between what is considered "inflammation" and what is considered normal. As far as I know there's no hard data about any of this, so you end up having to make choices based on not very much at all... It's quite demoralising. As for OE vs DE, I know I am personally rooting for you to try OE again--to me, these pregnancies you've had are really promising... But I can completely understand and relate to the wish to remove some of these obstacles and just make life easier and get to the baby already. Of course DE doesn't always work, and it certainly doesn't always work first time, but even skipping the egg collection malarky can already be a big relief... And then of course, statistically, a 25-year-old egg will have a better chance of being a good one. So yeah, I can entirely see the appeal... Whichever you choose, I'll be here cheering for you!

Briss: gut bacteria is something i now always think about when i'm prescribed antibiotics... I hope you're well, and that your body is recovering quickly from your m/c...

Shady: thanks! Did the half-marathon happen already?! If so, how did it go? If not, good luck! I can totally relate to your sense of feeling deflated... I mean, I know I'm pregnant now but my memory is very vivid of how it feels to have so much uncertainty ahead, and just more procedures in the horizon with zero guarantee of anything working... I'm really sorry... It's like what I said to Helen--I hope you do try OE because I really believe you can get there, but I completely understand the wish to just move on. And while I feel confident that you can get there if you keep trying, I have no idea whatsoever of how many attempts it would take. And that's what's so hard to bear... But I do hope that luck will finally be with you for whatever you decide to do next, even if it feels like you're just going through the motions. I'm really sorry about the house--this process forces us to neglect so much of our lives... I'm really glad at least work and running are bringing you joy! Good luck...

Sunshine: thinking of you, hoping all is still well...

Babyhopeful: thanks... re. norethisterone, for what it's worth, in this pregnancy I started taking it the day after ovulation (or maybe two days after, I'm not too sure). I don't think it either help or hurt at the beginning of the luteal phase, but I'm positive it sustained the pregnancy until I could detect it in a FRER, as my serum progesterone was only 2 nmol at that point. So yeah, I don't think delaying starting it would hurt any, but taking it might help, if you have a luteal phase defect. I'm really really sorry you're also feeling deflated and discouraged... I do understand the feeling of just going through the motions... I'm glad you had a cathartic moment and a nice time walking in the beautiful weather, and that your DH was also able to open up... That's all some really good healing... Your recent m/c was just incredibly bad luck--to me, trying again makes a lot of sense, but, yet again, I very much understand the wish to just move on and put this phase of your life behind you. After all, what  you want is a baby, not to keep trying for one... I hope you have that good pregnancy soon--ideally in this natural attempt--good luck...

Sisi: I've taken letrozole with an AFC not very different from yours, so I disagree that you are not a contender. Every extra egg counts--even more so when you are DOR--so if the doctor's calculation is that letrozole might at best help you get 3 eggs instead of 2, obviously that would be worth it. That said, letrozole didn't do all that much for me, personally... I responded better to Clomid or just straight-up stims. Everyone is different--you really never know which protocol will suit you best, until you've tried them all at least once... It's really very specific to each woman--or even to each cycle, sometimes, which makes planning really hard... But good luck, whatever protocol you end up going with...

AFM: so far, so good. I think the back pain is here to stay, unfortunately, but on the plus side I'm starting to feel him move, which, I will not lie, is utterly amazing (and kind of terrifying--it's all getting very real now...) I dearly wish you all get to experience this very soon--just without the back pain, of course...
 

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Sunshine, I'm really pleased everything looks good with your little girl, so exciting! I'm sorry to hear that the bleeding is still continuing, that must be incredibly stressful, I can't believe you had to resort to private scans and that the NHS were not more helpful at this stage. It's really frustrating after everything we go to to get to this stage. Have you told work yet you are expecting, as they cannot penalise you if you are pregnant, that's discrimination.

Babyhopeful, great news that you are getting ready to start again, maybe we will be cycle buddies over the next few weeks? I can completely empathise with the feeling of ambivalence, I think it's necessary to protect ourselves from the constant cycle of hope and disappointment. I really really hope that your next cycle goes wonderfully well and that the next embryo that goes back in will result in all your dreams coming true.

Queenie, the only thing I learnt on this journey is that its impossible to plan for anything and to relinquish control. I'm glad Penny has a good sounding plan in store for you, and frustrating as it is to miss a month, maybe you can use the time to destress a little to go into your next cycle in the best mental state that you can.

KatKat, how is your lining doing this month on the medicated cycle?

Briss, I have been thinking of you and hope you're doing ok. Has your betas dropped back to 0 now?

Helen, you must be getting ready to start again. What did you decide about your next cycle? It's so tough to know what's the best decision, I have been really oscillating between giving up and just transferring my last embryo and going again. I think with so long without fertility drugs, I'm really reluctant to put my body through hell again, and I'm also worried about another cancelled cycle and the stimms sending into a menopausal state.

Klik, thank you for your kind words. Like you, I think I could get there eventually with OE, which is what makes it so hard to give up, especially having managed to get pregnant with OE. But we are really out of money, patience and emotional strength to keep on going indefinitely. I definitely do not want to be doing this in my 40s.

AFM, ran my half marathon today and it was so much fun! Really really enjoyed it especially the middle stretch before it got painful. Have been doing some research into DE clinics in Greece as I have decided if next cycle fails, this is probably it for me. I'm not getting any positive signals to continue. I got the distinct sense from my consultant that he was telling me to stop last week and was fairly unenthused about me doing more cycles. Access Fertility never got back to me after an initial phone call where I was probably a bit too honest about all the failed cycles, so I'm probably not even eligible for their discounted 2 cycle. I don't really feel like there are any more clinics I can move to in London (apart from Create, but I don't want to go there) and it's impossible for me to do OE at a foreign clinic without telling work. Have booked a consult with New Life when they are in London next month after hearing good things about their success rates with DE. Am also going to look at Serum. I have to get my AMH tested this week before the next cycle and I really don't want to know how low it is. It was 2.7 2 years ago so it is probably rock bottom now....
 
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