Friday, August 04, 2006

Medical History, Part 3

When my HSG showed a blocked left tube, I was devastated. I got all worked up because I went on Dr. Google and read about those blocked hydro tube problems that are uterus home wreckers, preventing embryos from implanting no matter whether you have IVF or one healthy, working tube. I imagined all the possible embies that might have developed over the last year, washed out at sea because of the evil left tube. When H came home my face was a swollen balloon. He yelled at me for going on the Internet and told me to wait for the RE’s analysis. I yelled back that I read a study about the whole thing that our very own Dr. Optimism had written on the subject, and it showed that a hydro tube (sorry for the slang, I forget the real term) would prevent even IVF from working let alone IUI and my only recourse would be to have the tube removed through a lap. I started calculating when I would have the surgery, and how long it would take to recover. I imagined that once the left tube was gone, we’d be able to get pregnant with just the right one. It would just take longer. But that was okay. I felt in control, and it was good.

But I was wrong. I called our nurse to get H’s latest SA results, and when I did, she put Dr. Optimism on the phone. He explained that my left tube was compromised, but it wasn’t collecting fluid, like a hydro thingy would. No surgery would be necessary. It wouldn’t matter, because H’s SA results confirmed he was subfertile, and IVF was really our best chance. IVF most likely with ICSI. I went home and cried harder than I had over my perceived hydro thingy, knowing that H did not want to do IVF at all. He had been clear about it.

When he got home, I was so upset I could barely tell him. I finally showed him the scrap of paper with his test results and squeaked out “Fixing my tube doesn’t matter because your diagnosis is bad and IVF is our only choice and you don’t want IVF so we’re not having kids and I want to die now.” And he said, Okay. So we’ll have to do IVF. Just so long as we don’t have to do ICSI (we had learned it at this point). I said nothing, figuring I’d let the doctor tell him about ICSI. We had a follow up appointment scheduled to discuss next steps, and that was all I could handle right then. The fact that H did a complete turnaround from no IVF to allowing IVF gave me some hope.

11 comments:

NikkiNix said...

Oh for goodness sake sweetie you need a good massage and an even better cry! I feel it for you man :( What's teh diff with IVF vs. ICSI... the fac thtat HEEE will have an invasive retrieval kind of similar to YOURRR invasive treatment??? Sorry, i couldn't help it. I've been dealing with ego-man for the last 2 days who's totally oblivious to the fact that he's acting weird and it's all becasue of the ICSI need in our diagnosis.

I read your blog every weekday so I'll be checking in on you ok. Let's hope Dr.Optimism is in fact correct and that he's able to get you ubby to jump on the bandwagon before you explode.

You are not alone.... reapeat that to yourself over and over... the bloggy babes will come to the rescue whenever you need a friend okay :)

Suggestion: Write a little journal to yourself about why having a child is so important to you. Be very clear in what you say, re-write it a couple times and whenever you feel like you'll explode, just reread it to focus again. I did that and it helps me keep things in perspective.

Take care. Give yourself a treat - you deserve some TLC !!

linda said...

I lost both of my tubes 9 weeks ago so I know how hard it is to think of losing one. But you know, if you do have a diseased tube, they do emit cytokines and tumor necrosis factor that is bad for embryos. If you have insurance that pays for IVF, you might want to try a couple times with both tubes, but then you might want to really have someone take a good look at your tubes from the inside. Dr. Nezhat in Palo Alto is supposedly one of the world's best doctors for minimally invasive surgery. I met with him, but wound up seeing my own doctor in the end.

StellaNova said...

Wow! You've been busy over the past couple of days! Thanks for sharing all of this - it's fascinating to hear the stories of others. I look forward to hearing the rest.

Lara said...

I dont understand what Hs problem is with ICSI? Isnt ICSI when they take the individual sperm and directly inject them into each egg? Or is he going to have to have the sperm aspirated from him? Even if he does...arent you going through a LOT more than that for all this? Anyhow, you are not alone, there's a lot of us out here who are IF so know that there's a lot of support for you if you want it. :)

OK.NOWwhat said...

Hi, kiddo. I happened upon your blog via the magical "next blog" feature. first, I must tell you that I'm 56 years old and have been where you are. God. For years I was where you are. Here's the thing: I finally did have a biological child (now 25 and recently married in France.) It was 5 years and endometriosis surgery and tubes blown and laparoscopies and a little Clomid that finally did the trick. I was 31 when I had my son.(My history, believe me, is that of a pelvic war zone.) When I wanted another child, I tried the same thing over again for a year, but then I finally got to the point where I said "I've had enough of this." And we adopted a little girl from Korea. (Now age 20 and a Junior in college.) I think you have to figure out what you're bothered by. What you're aiming for. If it's just being "able" to have a biological child, then prepare yourself for even more bull%$#@. However. If you want a child. A child to be your own and to parent and love, I can heartily suggest giving up all the surgery and thermometers and pills and just getting in line for a baby with an adoption agency. Believe me. I have one of each, and there is very little difference in how you love them. No more than the difference in the style or characteristics of the loving there would be between any two children you welcomed into your life. So, when you get sick of all this crap, adopt a baby. Then get on with your life. If your ego resides in your womb, there is other work you need to be doing, and that would be with you head. Having a baby doesn't prove anything. It's the sort of parent you becomethat means everything. And being a great parent has nothing whatsoever to do with who made the baby.

Good luck to you, in whatever choice you make. There is life after all this, believe me. The catch is in deciding when you want the rest of your life to start.

Meg said...

Emmie - If it's any consolation, diagnosis has been the absolute worst part of this journey for me so far. Even worse than our recent embryo picking-off, etc.

You CAN get through this. And if he's agreed to IVF, most of the battle is over. ICSI is like no step at all from there on. It doesn't even impact your own personal experience of IVF at ALL.

Meg said...

Oh-Oh, I just realised.. this is your history, right?? I am so dumb. Duh.

Motel Manager said...

How is the ICSI-persuasion process coming along? Is H more amenable to it?

GLouise said...

Good info and background. Can't wait to read part 4 :-)

Emmie said...

Thanks everyone.
To Ok_Now_What?: I'm so glad you happened onto my blog. It's good to hear from someone who has gone through both sucessful IF treatments and adoption. I have some questions about adoption that I will address in my next entry, and I hope you will weigh in with your experiences. I know that I will love a child the same whether it is mine biologically or not--my real concern is the adopted child's feelings. How did your adopted daughter react to her adoption? I have so many friends who are bitter about being adopted that it scares me to think about doing it myself. More on that later...

martin said...

Hi Emmie - my wife and I went through three years of IVF / ICSI, finally moving on in late 2002. I actually stumbled onto your blog after a random search on adoption (I'm off to respond to your 8/8 adoption post after this) but reading a few of your posts brought so much of our experience back.

We've dealt with our infertility now - at least as much as we ever will. IVF didn't work for us, but the main thing is that we tried. And that's what I'd put to your husband: there were plenty of times when we felt harrowed by the process (and of course what I went through was nothing compared with what my W experienced) and we often found ourselves wanting to find ways of making it seem more natural (or at least less unnatural). In fact, for our first cycle, we both vetoed the idea of ICSI for that very reason. But that first cycle didn't work and we were left wondering whether things might have been different if we'd opted for ICSI. So for the following cycles we tried ICSI, and on the last even paid extra for PIGD (Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis). In the end, none of the cycles worked; perhaps none even came close – we’ll never know. But at least we tried everything that science could offer at the time (or at least that we could afford). So looking back now, we're both confident we gave it our best shot. Knowing that really helped us to move on when we needed to.

Another point that stood out from a couple of your posts was how those around you were handling the subject. All I’ll say is just try to be patient with them. When you’re stuck in the IF spiral it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that your super-fertile friends and family can never understand 100% what you’re going through. Most people will do their best – they’ll give you encouragement, say and do things that they feel are what you need – but somehow it’s never quite enough. The main thing, I think, is that they try. We found our real support online in bulletin boards (www.ivfconnections.com in particular), discussing issues with people, several of whom went on to become close “real-world” friends.

Anyway, I’ve rambled more than I intended – fingers crossed for you both whatever you decide. When you have your family at last, whether it’s through IVF or adoption, and you’re going through the day-to-day of being mum and dad, everything will come into perspective. Hang in there – it’s worth the struggle.