Thursday, November 12, 2015

Our Newest Plan...


I would love to go back and try to find how many times I have typed the word “PLAN” on my blog.  How many plans have we had over these last 4 years of TTC?  Probably nearing the hundreds at this point.  Once again, we have a new plan.

We decided to switch doctors for a 3rd time and I am extremely confident (even more so than with my 2nd doctor) that he will help us get pregnant for real this time.  His name is Dr. Sherbahn and he works at the Advanced Fertility Centers of Chicago.  We had to travel over 2 hours in the direction of the city (YUCK) and it took us over 3 hours to get home, but we were very happy with what he had to say.

I went in first for an ultrasound and they said everything looks great as far as my uterus and ovaries are concerned.  I do have 2 small fibroids in my uterus (small tumors) which are not impinging so they’re nothing to worry about.  I have 30 antral follicles (follicles that sit in the ovaries) which is a great number for my age. 

Once the ultrasound was over we sat for a bit then we got to meet the doctor.  He is very serious but has a very dry sense of humor too, his personality is different, but he knows he is good and he has the numbers to prove it.  The national average of live births with IVF is 40, he is at 58.  That number alone was enough to get my attention.  We discussed my previous cycles and he showed us where our current (our first clinic) rates on the SART charts and it’s not very good.  Their live births were only 26, well below the national average.  We determined that I was more than likely overstimulated, which we already knew, and that the lab quality may not be up to par.  Looking at my stimulation sheets from my first cycle he was very concerned that they only monitored me on day 5 and on day 8, & that on day 5 my estradiol was a whopping 2000, he said it should’ve only been about 300 and that I should’ve been monitored daily with a number that high.

With my second clinic we determined that I may have been understimulated in an attempt to keep my follicle numbers down and help the quality, he wants to find a happy medium between my 2 cycles, somewhere along the lines of 15-21 follicles rather than the high number of 34 and the low number of 10.  I was thrilled because this is EXACTLY where I was at.  I made no mention of this to him, and was very happy that he seemed to be on the same page as I am about stimulation.

The other big topic he covered was PGS testing.  He told us that for our age and their success rates it’s not something we would necessarily need, but with 5 failed cycles he completely understands if want testing done and is more than willing to let us do that if we’d like.  There are 2 testing facilities, one called Genesis in Detroit that has a 5 day turnaround so that we would be able to have our retrieval, freeze the embryos, send the cells off for testing, and then have our FET the following month.  Their cost is $4000.  The other facility is called GoodStart Genetics and they just recently got into PGS testing.  They are proven with PDG so I have no qualms about them not yet being proven with PGS, in fact I know a lovely lady who works at this facility so I am very confident in their work.  The plus side to this facility is that they only charge between $1500-$2000 so it’s more affordable, BUT their turnaround time is 6-10 days so we would end up having to wait 2 months to do our FET rather than just 1.  I told Dr. Sherbahn that I have waited over 4 years, I can certainly wait an extra month if that is the route that we decide to take.  

We aren’t 100% sure if we will move forward with the PGS testing but I think we are both leaning more towards having the testing done than not after all that we have been through.  To me this is the end of the road.  There will be no more doctors to seek out or treatments to try after this.  Although I think Dr. Sherbahn will help us get where we want to be. 

The success rates he gave us based on our history are, a 63% chance with 1 PGS tested embryo, a 45% chance with 1 untested embryo, or a 65% chance with 2 untested embryos.  Although the chance of transferring 2 untested is higher, it still has a higher risk of multiples which we are trying to avoid if possible.  Anything is a blessing, don’t get me wrong, we just know the risks associated with twins and don’t want to increase our chances if we don’t have to.  With a PGS tested embryo we would have peace of mind that it is normal and there is no reason it shouldn’t implant unless I have some type of uterine issue that we have yet to discover (which I don’t believe we do), we would also know the gender of our PGS tested embryos. 

I found out this afternoon that we should be starting this cycle as early as tomorrow!  My nurse, Deena told me she would submit a protocol to him for his review and that I would hear back tomorrow about whether or not I need to start BCP.  We should have baseline November 30th or Dec 1st and start stims on Dec 2nd.  Our retrieval would be scheduled for the week of Dec 13th but since we are early starters we would probably go the weekend before that!  I can't believe how quickly this is happening, but I am excited that it is.  

I need to thank you all again for your love and support as we continue to fight this path of infertility.  It has not been easy and we would never be where we are today without the truly amazing support system that we have in our lives.  I hope that you guys can stick it out with me while we venture down this new path & hopefully this final path to our baby!

24 comments:

  1. Wow, sounds like such a wonderful new doctor. I can "hear" the excitement in your voice! I pray that this is the cycle to make you a mother!!!

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  2. Very exciting!!! The SART data for my 1st failed ivf cycle is 10% for live births! I wish we had known to check that out. His 58% is amazing! As is your antral folical count. You've got this!!

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  3. This is amazing! May your this cycle make you pregnant and you get blessed with a lovely baby. Professionally I am an infertility doctor. I know that how couple feel when they faced IVF failure. Today IVF Center in India has fulfilled the desires of many couples who can not conceive.

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  4. *Fingers Crossed* This seems like really positive news!

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  5. Oh, I'm so so happy you liked Dr. Sherbahn!! I really, truly believe he is the best!! It's sounds like his assessment/advice was spot on. I'm really hoping he can help you have your miracle baby. :) And I love that you mentioned the lab! I think it's something we sort of take for granted, but I believe Dr. S's lab is the reason we actually had embryos make it to freeze - something we didn't experience with our first two IVF cycles.

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  6. I am beyond excited for you!! You are one tough cookie that's for sure and I so admire you for continuing to persue your dreams. Lots of hugs to you and hoping you get that positive test for Christmas!!

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  7. I absolutely think this doctor knows what is going on and think you made a wonderful decision by switching to him.

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  8. I am so happy you're working with a doctor who is on the same page as you--that makes all the difference!

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  9. So, this may sound dumb but I think how you wrote this plan is much different than the rest. If you reflect on the past posts, you have always had other variables (additional doctors, options, etc), like what you were currently doing was good but not good enough. I believe that in the back of your mind you knew it was the end, even though the emotional toll is high. However, "the end of the road" sounds pretty damn solid if you ask me. It's those that have always been at the end of the ropes that have the best outcome, I think. Third times a charm, and I will be following along the entire time. Good luck, my dear.

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  10. I'm so glad to hear your new plan! Confidence in your doctor and being in the right place makes all the difference. Really hoping you get to have your miracle baby with this upcoming IVF!

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  11. OMG Elena by what I read we are set for the same days. I'm praying hard and you are included in my prayers. I'm so excited for you and I'm glad you are happy with this new clinic. Never lose your hope keep your head up high <3

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  12. Wow Elena! SO much peace in this post! Sounds like you got so many questions answered and sounds like he had so much wisdom to offer. I am glad that you can start moving forward so soon too! That is AWESOME! Happy Friday friend

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  13. Yes! I agree with other commentors. It sounds like God brought you to the right doctor. It's sooo nice to have the confidence in your doctor and your plan of action. Praying for success this time around!!

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  14. He sounds like he is on top of his game!! I am excited for you sugars! xo

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  15. Such an exciting plan!! I'm so hopeful for you. Sending good vibes!

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  16. Wishing you the best of luck! Very exciting!
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  17. Wow! Such great news! I'm excited for you and very glad you moved forward with meeting with this doctor. I look forward to following this journey!

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  18. Sounds like you found a great doctor that was able to answer so many of your questions. Wishing you the best and I look forward to seeing updates on your journey. xo

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  19. Sounds like you found a great doctor that was able to answer so many of your questions. Wishing you the best and I look forward to seeing updates on your journey. xo

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  20. Of course we will stick it out with you down this journey! That's what friends are for! I want a successful transfer for you just as bad as you do! So glad to hear all of this news with the new doctor! I'll continuing praying for success for you! Come on baby Ridley!! ♥

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  21. ahh i love that you explained it so fully so that i could really understand. this doctor sounds AMAZING with his averages and whatnot. girl. all my fingers and toes are crossed, i hope beyond hope that this is the end of the road for you - but in a good way. i hope this finally brings you baby Ridley!

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