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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi

I've actually already posted on a couple of sights but thought I'd introduce myself here too.

We have been trying to conceive since Sept 03 - not long.  My wife first visited our GP in July to tell her we weren't having any success.  At first she was sent off for acupuncture (!) as she had had a stressful year.  She then visited a gynaecologist who examined her and did scans which confirmed everything looked to be ok.  At this point noone suggested that I too be examined !  In September my wife saw a different GP about an unrelated problem and they got around to talking about conception.  This GP was aghast that I hadn't been looked at yet and got me in straight away.  She got me to do SA which came back azoospermic.  Then sent me to do another SA and again azoospremic.  So she referred us to a Harley Street endocrinologist and fertility expert called Dr Maurice Katz.  He talked about the possible problems and solutions and was the first person to mention IVf / ICSI.  He sent me for FSH tests etc and these came back normal.  He also conducted a physical examination.  My FSH came back normal and found that physically found everything felt normal.  On this basis he strongly felt that there was very strong chance that sperm production was normal and that there was liely a blockage somewhere.  So he referred me on to a Urologist, Mr David Ralph.  He also did physical examination and sent me for ultrasound.  He discussed ICSI and suggested we go to Mr Paul Serhal at UCH where he is also part of the team and would be responsible for conducting TESE.  Their ICSI stats are quite impressive (we are also thinking about the facility at Hammersmith where Professor Lord Winston comes highly recommended).  He also sent me to get some genetic tests. 

We had our initial consultation with Mr Serhal on Friday - seemed very pleasant and we both felt pretty comfortable with him.  Bizarrely, whilst we were with Mr Serhal the phone rang and it was Mr Ralph with the genetic results.  Apparently I have a genetic mutation which dramatically reduces the possiblility of finding any sperm from 90% (based on previous tests) to 40% now.  It also means that should they find any sperm, any male offspring would have the same problem as me.  He mentioned sex selection, but at the time of writing it isn't allowed for people with our problem, but could be very soon.

Tomorrow we see the counsellor for the first time to discuss difficult issues like donor sperm.  This is definitely a fairly weird time in our lives.

I have already posted on the ICSI thread.  Would love to hear from other people with similar problems and wish everyone lots of luck. 

Andy
 

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Hi Andy,

What a lot you are both having to think about at the moment, it must certainly be a very confusing and worrying time for you. I am glad that you are going to see the counselor tomorrow, I do hope that it starts to help you both to come to terms with how you feel, It can be a very lonely and depressing time. How are you feeling, I know when my dh was told that he was the cause of our i/f he was very depressed and felt so guilty and helpless. He has antibodies which are causing the i/f and are starting out first cycle of icsi this month!

Whatever you and your wife decide to do, I would like to wish you both the very best of luck.  Sorry I cant offer any advice, but I wanted to say hello anyway.

Love Kty xxx
 

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Hi Andy,

I cant really give you any specific advice either, but I just wanted to say that it makes a refreshing change to read a post written by a bloke!  My husband listens to me telling him all the stories I read here, but would never have the guts to post anything himself. 

Anyway like your wife, I seem to be ok, but my husband has very poor sperm quality.  The number varies a lot, but always a HUGE amount of abnormal forms (upto 98%) and not what you'd call olympic swimmers.  So after trying 3 cycles of IUI we have just done our first ICSI cycle this summer.  It didnt work but we are going to have another go in January.

We are both struggling with the situation and I know he feels terrible for being the one with the problem, even though I too feel like its somehow my fault for not being able to conceive.  It is so hard and I think you will find it helpful seeing a counsellor.  I have been seeing one (my husband hasn't), and it has really helped me.  Also I have regular acupuncture - its supposed to help if you have it through the ICSI cycle, plus its great for general relaxation and stress-relief.  So if your wife didnt mind having needles stuck in her last time, she could think about continuing with that.  Actually I have heard that acupuncture can help with sperm quality so maybe you could also look into that, depending on what you decide to do with regards to the donor sperm.  I recommend Zita West's "fertiltiy and conception" book - it will give you some ideas for things to try to get yourself ready for your ICSI cycle and lots of useful info.

Sorry I cant be of more help.  The only thing I would say is that the most important thing is to take your time with it all (even though sometimes you feel so desperate you just want to rush straight on with whatever treatment has been suggested last) and just do whatever feels right for you both.  I would never have chosen to be going through this and I struggle with it everyday, but I have learnt a lot from it and my husband and I have grown closer as a result of it.  I feel like if we can get through this, then we can survive anything and thats a positive to come out of all our heartache.

Well sorry for rambling on.  Hope I have been of some help.

All the best, Olwen 
 

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Hi Andy

welcome to the site. My husband and I are currently going through ICSI. My husband had a very low sperm count and also poor mobility. I think it'st great that you are talking about it and wish you and your wife all the best.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks very much all of you for kind words and for sharing your own experiences with me. 

Will no doubt have lots more to discuss in the months ahead.

Andy
 

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You're very welcome.

All the best.

Olwen
 
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