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Lister or ARGC?

(12 Posts)
TheWorstWitch Wed 07-Oct-09 13:38:14

DH and I are being investigated for secondary infertility at our local hospital. We've been told that they won't be able to offer us treatment because we already have a child.

So far, they can't find anything wrong with me. Bloods are showing I'm ovulating, and even had a scan where they saw follicles. Had a Hysterosalpingogram today and tubes are clear.
DH has low motility and low count.

We have an appointment with NHS consultant tomorrow. It;s likely that the next step would be for him to refer us to a private clinic, and he will ask us which one.

I wondered if anyone had any recommendations. I'm aged 38 and was thinking Lister or ARGC. Having done a Mumsnet archive search, I'm leaning towards Lister because of their "gentler" approach. But, the thread I read was 4 years old, so wondering if anyone has had any more recent experiences?


londonlottie Wed 07-Oct-09 13:53:43

Message withdrawn

Caitni Wed 07-Oct-09 13:58:51


Sorry to hear about the secondary infertility. With your DH's sperm results they'll probably recommend ICSI.

I'd highly recommend the Lister but I'm biased! I'm 19 weeks after my first round of ICSI there - had treatment in May and June. Like you, I was ovulating, had clear tubes, had follicles on the scan (antral follicle count scan), and had normal hormone levels for my age (I was 31) and our issue was male factor. Although since it was primary infertility in our case we were worried I'd have miscarriage problems.

I found all the staff to be helpful and professional, and I always had my queries answered quickly etc. And this was while they were in the midst of a massive refurbishment. I also liked that they specialise in treating women with high FSH and the like and still have excellent results (I was worried that a private clinic could massage its success rates by only treating women with the "right" age or hormone levels).

I also looked at the ARGC but decided it was more of a clinic of last resort, if you know what I mean, as the daily scans/tests seems so full on for your first attempt. The Lister emphasised maintaining a normal life as much as possible during treatment, to keep stress levels low, and were really good about booking scans/blood tests for early morning to fit around work.

Anyway, I could waffle on for ages about it but won't bore you anymore! You'll find lots of up-to-date opinions these two (and other London clinics) on Fertility Friends talk board

As far as I know, you don't actually need an NHS referral for private clinics, so don't feel you have to decide on one now. You can always pick one and then change it after you've been to check some of them out. It's a big decision so worth taking a bit of time over - open evenings are usually a good way to gauge what a clinic's like.

Good luck smile

Caitni Wed 07-Oct-09 14:07:30

Cross posts with Lottie - I agree that you should feel comfortable with the clinic. You'll be spending a lot - financially, emotionally, physically - and you don't need any extra stress about how happy you are with the clinic.

TheWorstWitch Wed 07-Oct-09 15:44:32

Thank you.
I'll have a look on the Fertility Friends Talk Board

Caitni Thu 08-Oct-09 12:11:19

Just saw this thread in Pregnancy - it's just started but there may be ladies on there who can tell you about the ARGC

TheWorstWitch Thu 08-Oct-09 12:45:25

Thanks Caitni.
I saw the consultant today and though we will probably go for a consultation at the Lister, I'm currently getting cold feet about the IVF thing, especially as consultant said that ICSI might be better for us ... DH and I feeling a bit emotional about it all and wondering if whatever will be will be ...

londonlottie Thu 08-Oct-09 13:06:38

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Caitni Thu 08-Oct-09 14:09:59

WorstWitch totally normal to have cold feet - I was gutted when I was told ICSI was our best chance. I felt like we'd failed, like I'd failed, like we'd never have children of our own. Meanwhile all around me my sisters and SILs and friends/colleagues seemed to be having babies nearly continously (over 30 babies were conceived and/or born while we were struggling to conceive). Also had to deal with the fact that I'm "fine" and that the "problem" is with my husband. I didn't ever blame him, IYKWIM, but it just all felt so unfair!

Having said that, I was never tempted to let things be or take a what will be will be view as I feel so lucky that medical science has advanced to the point that IVF/ICSI can overcome insurmountable fertility problems. It's a very personal journey, but I agree with Lottie that the physical bit if definitely not as bad as you expect. We took the view that it was worth it for getting us another step closer to having a baby. So many people do what they have to do to have a baby I have a SIL who had to inject herself everyday of her pregnancies because of repeated miscarriages and a friend who developed gestational diabetes and had to inject - puts a couple of weeks of IVF injections into perspective!).

Good luck whatever you decide and I'm happy to talk whenever you want (also highly recommend the Assisted Conception thread - I never managed to actually post on Fertility Friends - too many emoticons and too pink - but really relied on the AC thread).

The Lister is a good choice and I wish you lots of luck smile

TheWorstWitch Thu 08-Oct-09 16:10:17

Thank you both for your kind words. It's especially good to know that it's normal to have a wobble smile

I suppose it's the invasiveness of it all, not that the tests I've already undergone haven't been invasive enough. And our fears with ICSI's association with "genetic and developmental defects" (I'm quoting from Lister website). I'm sure once we've actually had a consultation, we will be reassured. I also don;t like the idea of having embryos frozen and then destroyed ... I'm completely not religious, but emotionally I feel like they are babies. Rationally, I know they are cells.

It's just taking a while to sink in and I'm a bit scared because I don;t know what to expect.Thanks for the link to Assisted Conception thread though - that has been one thing which has cheered me up today. I've only read up until June, so know that LondonLottie is pregnant with twins smile Congratulations!
Will keep reading to see how your stimming worked, Caitni.
And may pluck up the courage to join you on the thread when I'm thinking a bit more clearly ... or once I've read to end of the thread!

londonlottie Thu 08-Oct-09 17:25:41

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TheWorstWitch Fri 09-Oct-09 22:21:09

Just finished reading the Assisted Conception thread. And although it took me 3 hours of skim reading, it really has helped give me an insight as to what to expect, made me less nervous, and more realistic about the possibility of failed cycles, and what an emotional journey it all is.

Caitni - congratulations on your pregnancy too smile. I was incredibly impressed to read about your egg donation.

Thanks to both of you for posting and sharing your experiences with me. I keep reading your messages again and again; I can't tell you how much it's helped my thinking, though DH and I still haven't had time to talk it through . Think I might show him your messages.

It took us 2 years to conceive DD and I found out I was pregnant a month before our first appointment for assisted pregnancy, and the day before I was going for a laproscopy. I think, deep down, both DH and I are hoping we get lucky a second time, but then I remind myself that I'm 38 years old!

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