Clomid vs acupuncture

(8 Posts)
hedgehog1975 Fri 18-Oct-13 23:18:20

Hello,

I had my first fertility acupuncture appointment today and it's left me a bit confused!

As it was a first appointment it was mainly a consultation and then some acupuncture at the end. I took all of my test results as requested and the acupuncturist was really helpful, explaining my cycle to me and the different things that can go wrong. She seemed very horrified that I'd been prescribed Clomid, particularly now I'm on 100 mg for 5 months, after 3 on 50.

She touched upon a lot of things that have already concerned me - thinning the uterus lining and messing up ewcm. I got 9 on my day 2 fsh test and she said she was concerned that my ovaries are probably having to work quite hard already and Clomid would push them even further. She was also concerned about the lack of monitoring (which I've mentioned before on here) - I'm not being monitored at all over the 5 months.

She has suggested I take a month off and do my temperature every morning to see when I ovulate naturally (or if I do). She even gave me a thermometer!

I'm a bit torn now though. Do I follow the medical advice or hers? I've been slightly concerned about the route we're taking anyway, with no testing and the consultants have always been a bit vague as to what's happening (the first said the results are fine, the next said I didn't ovulate in the test cycle, but as the acupuncturist said, if I have a short luteal phase then the tests they did wouldn't have picked up on that). On the other hand....they are the doctors!

Has anyone else had these concerns? What she said made a lit of sense, but what if Clomid is our only chance? I have to make a decision pretty quick as I think af is on its way :-(

Hx

beginnings Sat 19-Oct-13 23:01:36

It sounds to me as if you're not very happy with your doctors sad I wasn't, we moved on and after a couple more tries at IVF, had DD1. I was never really happy with the advice I got from my first clinic.

I was never on Clomid, so I don't know if one month off would hurt. It may be you've nothing to lose by trying!

Also, the whole point if basal temp monitoring is that you've been still for ages, like six hours. If like me, you're a not great sleeper, you may not be able to monitor accurately. I found clear blue ovulation kits to be more helpful.

Hedgehog

Is this clinic you are currently under a NHS one or private?.

Regardless I would now seek a second opinion from another fertility clinic; some are definitely far better than others and it is all too easy to be fobbed off.

Your story to date with this clinic reads to me like its actually one of the poorer ones. They do not seem to have any real idea of what they are doing.

You should never be given clomid and with an increased dosage at that without any monitoring whatsoever; that is completely unacceptable. Clomid's main job is to make the ovaries work harder, if there is no monitoring you will have no idea whether its doing the job its supposed to be doing or not. Also you should only be given clomid for a maximum of six months after which time other treatments should be tried.

Do you actually have a diagnosis of the underlying problem and also have both of you been tested?.

Clomid is usually prescribed to women who have ovulatory problems; neither charting or OPKs are helpful if the menstrual cycle is irregular to begin with. There is also a lot of controversy over LPD: some say it does exist whilst others do not.

hedgehog1975 Sun 20-Oct-13 09:58:17

Hi Beginnings and Attila,

Thanks for your replies. We are NHS and have been referred to a consultant in the gynaecology dept at our local hospital. Once we get referred for ivf we will go to a (fairly) local private fertility clinic that the NHS uses.

When I asked about monitoring the consultant said it is the Trust's policy not to. The NHS website says to get a 2nd opinion I need to go back to my gp and get referred for one, but if they are working under the same policy I don't know if it is worth it? Also our next appt with our current consultant is January and so the 2nd opinion would probably be after that.

I feel like it would be better to complain/discuss higher up, as it's the policy that needs to change. But who would I write to? There is a complaints procedure on the NHS website, so maybe that.

The 'diagnosis' as it stands is that I didn't ovulate on the cycles tested. My day 2 FSH was 9, so in the low side of the normal range. I got 10 on my first day 21 prog test, then on my two during the first 3 months of Clomid I got 29 - so higher but not high enough. Of course they may not have tested on the right day. We have no other issues - unblocked tubes, good SA and regular cycles. I usually got a smile when using the kits. I'm very stressed at work though and I've always wondered if that might delay ovulation sometimes, so maybe I get the smile but then it's delayed. I don't know.

We've decided to take a month of to think about things and try to sort out the not monitoring issue. I am giving temping a go, just got to try and stop having a glass of water by my bed as that can affect it! So thank you again, it's difficult to go against the doctor's advice so it's reassuring to chat on here and realise that they can be doing things wrong.

Hx

I would read the NICE guidelines on such matters and invoke the NHS complaints procedure.

Re your comment:-
"Once we get referred for ivf we will go to a (fairly) local private fertility clinic that the NHS uses".

Do you think this will actually happen and why IVF, why has this been mentioned at all?

Do you at heart feel that you as a couple have been adequately investigated to date?. Your treatment as a couple to date is amongst the worst I have seen on here and I have read a fair few horror stories of couples being messed around. Its still appalling and I would have nothing further to do with the current bunch who are (not) treating you. Not monitoring you is unacceptable in any case, that's being done to save money and is certainly not being done with your interests as the patient in mind.

It looks like you have no proper diagnosis either yet they've put you on clomid and increased the dosage to boot again without any firm diagnosis. Its both appalling and substandard treatment to boot.

I would ask your GP to refer you to another clinic altogether in the nearest city to you. As I stated before it is fair to say that some units are far better than others.

Stress does not cause ovulation problems to arise, physical problems do.

hedgehog1975 Mon 21-Oct-13 00:11:20

Thank you Attila, I've had a good read of the guidelines. I can see I should at least have been scanned for the first cycle, and should only have been given 6 months. I do also feel that we don't have a proper diagnosis yet. I was told I didn't ovulate in one cycle from my day 21 test, but my day 2 tests were fine, so I do think it requires more investigation for a proper diagnosis.

For ivf, they will refer us in January as we will be 3 years ttc by then.

I am definitely going to complain. Thank you again for your advice.

Hx

bouncingbelle Sat 26-Oct-13 18:02:23

Hi,
I,ve done 3 cycles on clomid now and get a scan at the clinic on day 12 to see how many eggs I,ve produced (due to other health conditions, we all want to avoid a multiple pregnancy, so if there was more than 1 egg we would supposedly not try to conceive that month). Due to my partners work, I only take clomid every other month as there,s no point when he,s not here and so far that hasn,t affected the effectiveness of it at all, so don't worry about taking some time off. I didn't ovulate on the first cycle, ovulated (tho hormone levels were low) on the he second cycle and did actually fall pregnant, tho miscarried at almost 6 weeks, and so far on this cycle have had my highest day 21 result yet! I started accupuncture in the middle of my second cycle and have been for it throughout no this cycle and honestly believe it's made a huge difference in supporting the clomid to do its job. If nothing else, it makes me feel like I,m doing all I can and like I can actually relax and not stress, which in itself has to be beneficial!!

I'm rambling a bit now, can't actually remember the point of my post, but if you ever want to chat about clomid I,m here!!!

hedgehog1975 Tue 29-Oct-13 07:51:24

Hi Bouncing Belle, thanks for your reply! I've had a break from the Clomid this cycle to give me time to think and have also written to the consultant's office about it, so hopefully it will be sorted out soon. I'm a bit undecided what to do if it takes ages to get a response, or if they just reject my points. I' m glad it's working for you, although sorry for your mc. I wish I knew what effect it was having so I could decide, it's tempting to go for a private scan but we can't really afford it.

I too think the acupuncture is worthwhile. Friday is my first proper session and I'm looking forward to it. The acupuncturist is v nice too and really helpful, it just scared me a bit last time as she was (rightly) so critical of my treatment. How often do you go?

I am also trying temping at the moment, which I've never done before (no idea why as I think I've tried everything else!). It was going fine until Sunday when I got ill, then decided to take a lemsip tablet with caffeine in it at about 2 this morning, having given up caffeine a couple of weeks ago so I have been wide awake for 5 hours!

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