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IVF for the last time (probably)

(30 Posts)
NinjaHaggisHunter Fri 20-Nov-15 18:11:47

I'm in the middle of my 6th and probably last cycle of IVF. I've also had one FET. I have a DD conceived on our 3rd cycle so I know we're very lucky. I'm nearly 42 so if this doesn't work we won't do it again. Anyone else had success in a similar situation?

NinjaHaggisHunter Sat 21-Nov-15 20:25:03


NinjaHaggisHunter Sun 22-Nov-15 21:08:35

Anyone around?

Shellster52 Sun 22-Nov-15 21:49:42

Hi Ninja. I'm around! I actually read your thread the other day as I saw no-one had replied, but I didn't post a reply because my situation is not quite the same as yours and you sound more like you want to chat to people in your situation and thought it best if I didn't reply so others could also see your post is unanswered and see if they were in a more similar position to support you.

But now it is Monday and still no-one has replied - and I know IVF is lonely enough as it is without being alone on here too! I am currently pregnant after my 11th IVF attempt, and this is my second child. So I totally understand where you are at, and the desperate desire to produce a sibling for your first child to grow up with. We started trying for a second just after I turned 34. I started IVF when I was 35 and it was discovered I was a poor responder. I turned 38 during my last IVF cycle and I really felt dread about that, knowing age was against me. So I can understand or feeling that you need to draw a line if this doesn't work at nearly 42.

I assume you don't have any more frozen embryos and this will be a fresh cycle? I am here and happy to chat if you like. However, I also know that when I was on a Mumsnet IVF thread having IVF failure after failure, it was painful for me to watch others come along and do IVF and get their BFP so easily, so I totally understand if you would prefer to chat to someone who is still undergoing IVF rather than me.

NinjaHaggisHunter Sun 22-Nov-15 23:34:45

Thank you! Congratulations on your pregnancy! No frozen embryos left, usually only 2 or 3 that are any good, never get to blastocyst. I've always had 2 embryos transferred each cycle. Tbh I'd keep going because I always feel ok with the drugs but we need to stop throwing money at it. I know we're lucky to have one child but I'd hoped that because we'd had one successful cycle, another was more likely. Egg collection is likely to be Wednesday so not long now! We have unexplained infertility. I have a good AMH ( for my age!) and husband has amazing sperm, apparently!

Shellster52 Mon 23-Nov-15 07:58:04

Of all my 11 IVF attempts, I never made it to blastocyst either. I always felt okay with the drugs too. It was the emotional process of it all that was horrendous. I felt tremendous pressure for my last IVF cycle because like you, I needed to stop throwing money at it. I had got an interest free credit card to fund my last cycle and couldn't afford to do it any more. Although after I finally had success on my last cycle, a clinic opened up here (I am in Australia) that is 100% covered by our Medicare system so no cost to me, so I am sure I would have gone there. But with our diagnosis of 100% abnormal sperm morphology, I really think it wouldn't have happened without the HA sperm selection that our expensive clinic offered and I am sure the cheapie clinic would not offer.

Best wishes for you egg collection on Wednesday. Do you have any idea how many eggs you are likely to get? I had shocking AMH - it was already only 2.5 back when I was 34. I always had shorter cycles and light periods too that got even lighter in the last few years, both of which are what happens as we head towards menopause, so I was really fearful my time was up. But now that I finally have my miracle baby, I guess light periods (when they finally do return) will be quite nice and practical!

NinjaHaggisHunter Mon 23-Nov-15 22:28:50

Poor scan today, looks like 2 possibly 3 eggs. I've never had less than 10 before now :-(. Going ahead anyway as it's unlikely to be any better if we wait. Gutted!

I hope all is going well with you, you deserve it after 11 cycles!

Shellster52 Tue 24-Nov-15 03:15:26

All is going well with me thank you. Although I feel guilty to be on here announcing I am pregnant and that it is going well when you are obviously feeling quite devastated. If you've never had less than 10 before, suddenly having only 2-3 must be quite a rude shock. Was your last IVF cycle some time ago? But I understand you pushing forward regardless as I know age is the enemy and it's better to get 2-3 younger eggs than 5-6 older ones at a later stage. Hope you're sleeping soundly now and wake up feeling better. xox.

NinjaHaggisHunter Tue 24-Nov-15 09:31:43

Thank you, no need to feel guilty. I understand life goes on. Last cycle was a year ago. I have 15 follicles on the scan but 12 are 11mm or less so unlikely to be mature by Wednesday. The consultant didn't want to give me any longer because the womb lining is good now and I may lose the larger follicles without gaining any of the smaller ones. Thank you for chatting, it does help.

Shellster52 Tue 24-Nov-15 20:51:57

I am more than happy to chat. I still feel more of an affinity with this IVF world and the ladies in it, rather than the pregnancy world that I am now in. I go to appointments and there are all these other pregnant ladies in the waiting room and I still find it quite confronting, even though I am now pregnant myself. I know how much I found Mumsnet my lifeline while I was doing IVF cycle after IVF cycle, so I am glad you find it helps you too.

Wow, so it wasn't that you started with less follicles due to being one year older. You still had 15, but it was just that only a few took the lead. I did read one article that said your first follicles to mature are the ones your body is naturally trying to select and we should not allow these to over mature for the sake of a few extra inferior smaller follicles to catch up. After having read this, I had one cycle where I had two larger follicles and three smaller ones. My Dr wanted to wait over the weekend for the smaller follicles to grow a bit more and even though they got 5 eggs, I only got one embryo that didn't make it to transfer. Of the other 4, one didn't fertilise, one fertilised abnormally and two broke apart with the ICSI process which the Dr said is what happens to over mature eggs and these were probably the larger two follicles. So I felt like I lost my best two eggs for the sake of three inferior ones and always wondered if the outcome would have been different had we done egg collection on the Friday like I asked and collected my first two eggs. So I certainly hope that proves true in your case and these first few to mature are the ones your body is naturally selecting as best quality/most likely to be genetically normal.

And I really hope that the 11mm follicles managed to grow an average of 2mm a day, making them 15mm by Wednesday and then likely to contain a mature egg so you get a couple more than expected.

NinjaHaggisHunter Tue 24-Nov-15 22:28:58

I was thinking that perhaps the larger follicles are likely to be the best quality, just like you've said. Will find out soon enough!

Shellster52 Tue 24-Nov-15 23:42:43

Yes, will find out soon enough - although a few days in the normal world is soon, but in IVF world a few days feels like forever when you're waiting for a daily update - how many eggs, then how many mature and fertilised, then how they are at day one, day two... each minute feels like an eternity while you're waiting for a phone call to update you!

NinjaHaggisHunter Wed 25-Nov-15 18:24:38

Egg collection was okay, they got six! There is at least one immature one but they'll ring tomorrow to let me know. I'm glad I went ahead with it anyway. As ever, husbands sperm is amazing so that's one less thing to worry about.

Shellster52 Thu 26-Nov-15 01:50:05

Six must be a relief after your last scan prepared you for only 2-3. Now the wait continues.

What day does your clinic do the transfer?

NinjaHaggisHunter Fri 27-Nov-15 22:08:29

Had 2 embryos transferred today, one was a good 3 cell, the other not quite so well defined. Only 3 of the 6 eggs were mature and only 2 fertilised so similar to scan prediction. I can't test until mid December as I'm having 3 lots of HCG. I'm going to have to try to forget about it for a while!

Hope all is still going well!

WinterBabyof89 Fri 27-Nov-15 22:16:04

Just read your thread - hope all goes well for the test in mid December!! Everything crossed for you flowers

NinjaHaggisHunter Fri 27-Nov-15 22:23:30

Thank you!

Shellster52 Sat 28-Nov-15 19:42:09

I was hoping for you that one or two of those smaller follicles had done some last minute growing to produce a mature egg but obviously not. So all focus is now on these two. I didn't realise embryo quality could be based on how 'well defined' they were - is that to do with them being a perfect circle shape or not? I always based mine on the number of cells and the level of fragmentation but this 'well defined' thing is new to me.

Three lots of hCG! Is that instead of progesterone suppositories? And a longer wait - what a killer!

NinjaHaggisHunter Sat 28-Nov-15 21:29:48

The hCG is in addition to the progesterone and I'm on prednisolone 15mg daily. Just a long wait now! When I said well defined, those are my words really. The embryologist thought it was also a 3 cell, not fragmented but not such even cell size. Looked a bit lumpy to me!

NinjaHaggisHunter Sat 28-Nov-15 21:37:11

My situation is now the same as most of the other cycles. Two transferred and nothing to freeze, only difference is the 2nd embryo not as quite as good as the other.

Shellster52 Sun 29-Nov-15 02:00:09

Oh yes, I have heard of the cells themselves not being evenly sized - not sure what that means for embryo quality or if it implies some genetic issue.

Our IVF situations sound similar. I was always lucky enough if I just made it to transfer, let alone having something to freeze. Of my 11 IVF cycles, only 7 went ahead with EC as the response was too poor the other 4 cycles. Of the 7 egg collections, only 4 made it to embryo transfer.

I always wished for more eggs, but tried to convince myself it was quality over quantity, as I chugged down my supplements and was strict on my diet. But I was 35-38 while going through IVF so I guess it adds another stress doing through it at nearly 42. Do they give you any statistics of your chances?

GrinAndTonic Sun 29-Nov-15 05:10:08

Shell you are pregnant? Congratulations. I had no idea.
What clinic did you go through? I don't think we have any 100% fully medicare funded here. Im still out of pocket some money even with hitting the safety net.
We just got our first fertilisation EVER the the other day and had our one decent blast transferred on Monday. So fingers crossed!

Shellster52 Sun 29-Nov-15 08:11:06

Lovely to hear from you Grin. Must have been so nerve wrecking in the lead up,waiting to see what would fertilise. What did they do different? And did you get more than one fertilise that made it to freeze? Must be reassuring that your little embryo made it all the way to blast stage so you know it has made it that far and all it has to do is implant.

Yes, I finally ended up pregnant - on my 11th IVF! I got a bit more back after hitting the safety net but I too was definitely still a lot out of pocket. I did my first four cycles with The Fertility Centre as they were cheaper. But I could start to see reasons why they were cheaper which I thought was compromising my success and I thought it better to do one proper go with a more expensive clinic rather than four failed attempts with TFC. So I moved on to Monash IVF. But turns out it took another 7 goes anyway - although only 4 resulted in egg collection as they other 3 I hardly produced any follicles and the cost of EC did not seem worth it for the slim chance of success. So it's been a rough ride and four years of hell but of course I am happy I persevered now.

What clinic did you end up with? I'm crossing, my fingers and whatever else I can for you Grin!

GrinAndTonic Sun 29-Nov-15 23:06:11

Hi Shell, we ended up staying with TFC. It was easier. Im still not 100% happy with them and I considered changing to Life fertility.
DH started taking zinc and I was taking DHEA, L-arginine, L- Orthinine, Pregnenolone as well. Plus we did a straight IVF cycle with no ICSI. My egg/follicle numbers didn't increase though. So test date is the 7th so im just twiddling my thumbs and being grossed out by the pessaries. I have crinone too but the applicators just remind me of tampax applicator tampons that wierded me out when i was young. The good thing is that I have to uni assignments and a house to pack and move in the next two weeks so I am pretty well occupied.

When is your due date?

Shellster52 Mon 30-Nov-15 00:52:22

Okay, so you still did IVF without the ICSI despite 0 fertilisation last time. So nothing frozen then as a plan B?

Interesting that you had a day 5 transfer with TFC - they do a day 2 transfer here in Melbourne. That's one of the reasons I changed to Monash because after 3 embryos failed to take on day 2, I wanted to leave them in the petri dish longer to see if the issue was the embryo dying before it got to implantation stage, or if they were making it to day 5 and it was the implantation part that was failing. Also, I wondered if the reason they only do day 2 was because their culture medium was cheaper and they couldn't survive to day 5. At Monash, I had to sign a form acknowledging that the culture contained albumin (a blood product) which I did not have to do at TFC.

I personally didn't mind the pessaries so much - I suppose because of my 11 IVF attempts I only had 4 transfers because the other cycles were either cancelled before egg collection due to poor response, or the embryo died before transfer day. So I was just happy to be in the two week wait on those 4 occasions out of 11 attempts. My due date is 26.03.15.

You do sound busy with uni and moving - bet you'll still find time to obsess while packing boxes - seems impossible not to!

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