Because the important moments in life just don’t fit in a status update! I started this blog when I was training for my first ½ Ironman, (70.3 miles) to record what I hoped would be growth and progress but ended up being a huge learning experience. Although fitness is one of the key ingredients to a happy life, it certainly isn't the only ingredient. My blog has evolved to document growth, progress and setbacks in other areas too. From my surprise proposal in Rome and wedding in the fall of 2013, to Mom's devastating stage IV cancer diagnosis and death 2 weeks after I found out I was pregnant. Who knows what shape it will take, but thanks for being along for the ride.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Fresh or Frozen?

Fruits, vegetables, seafood, your breath. These are all things you want fresh, for many reasons. But the advantages are not as cut and dry when it comes to embryos; there are advantages and disadvantages to each. We're in a quandary and don't know what to do. We have about a week to decide, and it may end up being a game day decision.




I'm on my 8th day of injectible meds. Every day I've injected 225 of Follistim, 225 of Menopur and also used Lupron for the first three days. I'm scheduled for retrieval on Sunday or Monday, and my doctor says my 15 eggs are developing nicely.

Last night when I should have been sleeping, I decided to google IVF success rates. And boy was I surprised. You would assume that it would be a 60% or higher chance of pregnancy, right? Come to find that it is more like 20%-30% for my age: 37. This soft data (about.com) wasn't good enough for me, and I hoped it was wrong, so I kept searching. I found that the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technologies (SART) lists the success rates for every clinic across the country. You can view that here. I looked up my place, Coastal Fertility Center, and that's when I found out that my doctor's success rates are even a bit lower. This upset me greatly, and I started questioning myself and our decision. How on earth did I not find this data sooner? Why did I spend more time researching our last vacation spot? And the big one: What if it doesn't work? 

A good friend told me not to be too hard on myself, and another told me that it is in God's hands. Both of those statements helped, and because I know we are committed to this particular center now, I let it go. There is no sense in being upset over spilt milk, even when you tipped the cup yourself. But there is one thing we do still have control over: Should we do a fresh transfer of the embryos next week, or should we wait until July and do a frozen transfer?

My doctor has been saying frozen is better because waiting would allow my body to get rid of all of the hormones I have been injecting and provide a more hospitable environment for the little embries. The national data does show slightly higher success rates for frozen, viewable here. A drawback of frozen is that not as many may survive the process. Counter argument to that is that they may not have made it to day 5 blastocysts anyway, and that the ones who make it are heartier and more likely to implant. 

Right now, I am leaning more toward having a fresh transfer, and then a frozen with what we have left. It seems to be the best of both worlds. And I hope and pray we do have enough embryos left to do another transfer because we cannot afford to do another round of IVF right away.

After my appointment yesterday (yes, my doctor works 365 days a year when needed, even holidays) my doctor called to say that my estrogen levels went up, but not as much as he would like. He called to make sure I was taking the medication right, and said if I was, to just continue with what I'm doing. He will recheck me on Wednesday, tomorrow, and hopefully they will be where they're supposed to. 

And tonight, when I'm trying to fall asleep, I will not google what happens if my estrogen levels don't rise.




2 comments:

  1. Nice blogpost. The eternal conflict between fresh and frozen is hard for everyone! Thankfully with vitrification, it would be easier to choose. I do feel, that if you are going for blastocysts and have surplus ones to freeze, that would be fantastic! All the best!

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    1. Thank you Dr. Bhat! May I ask how you can across my blog?

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