IVF - Slow growing embryos

(32 Posts)
Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 10:52:02

I’ve been told that less than 20% of my embryos are blastocysts at day 5. It is early on day 5, as my EC was later in the day.

Has anyone had any experience of slow growing embryos, did they catch up and what was the outcome?

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twinkledag Sat 09-Nov-19 11:25:06

I had the same issue. Had an early blasto transferred that failed and the others died off by day 7.

However I have read of successes on here with early blastos that catch up so keep your fingers crossed.

Good luck 🙂

itwasalovelydreamwhileitlasted Sat 09-Nov-19 12:45:14

There is some research which suggests that this is why IVF tends to produce more boys than girls because boy embryos develop quicker and so are graded higher and more likely to be transferred at day 5 than a slower growing girl

What were your embryos graded at day 3?
I found with mine that any that weren't blasts or at least early blasts on day 5 didn't make it

Have they said they are still in cell stage?

Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 13:01:35

I don’t feel we’ve had very good communication from our (NHS) clinic as I had a call on Tuesday to let me know what had been fertilised, and told to come on Saturday for a day 5 transfer, no interim call with progress update. So I don’t know what they were graded at day 3, frustratingly.

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ellesbellesxxx Sat 09-Nov-19 13:24:00

We had two embryos transferred on day 5, both only early blastocysts so couldn’t be graded. They both made it and are two!

ellesbellesxxx Sat 09-Nov-19 13:24:21

Really hope it works out for you xx

Sunshine015 Sat 09-Nov-19 13:48:53

I have just returned from a 5dt and I am devestated.
We were told all 7 embryos were slow developers and none had reached blastocyst on day 5.
They transferred two which had the most number of cells in the hope they might catch up.
I have been trying to find success stories online all day sad


Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 13:57:20

@sunshine015 sounds like we are in a very similar boat. I’m sure they reassured you as they did me that the best chance they have is inside of you rather than in a dish so there’s still hope, we are both sitting here with two embryos inside of us after all. Are they going to monitor yours for another day and see about freezing? I will get a call tomorrow if they’ve frozen any but I’m not hopeful as they’ll only do that if they’ve developed.

Can I ask how many eggs you had retrieved and fertilised?

Let me know if you find anything positive and relevant on your online search.

@ellesbellesxxx that’s a wonderful encouraging story, thank you for sharing!!! smile

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Sunshine015 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:31:27

Yes they did say they are better placed in me. They are going to monitor the others until tomorrow for freezing and see if they progress any further. I don’t have much hope though.
I had 8 retrieved and 7 fertilised. I was on the short protocol this cycle. How about you?

Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:35:57

I had 15 retrieved and 12 fertilised so very disappointed to have such a high drop off rate.

I can say whole heartedly I know how you feel as I am in the exact same position re a call tomorrow. Have you got a plan to keep occupied? I’ve been trying to nap but I keep googling instead.

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Sunshine015 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:41:58

Aw that is still a very good number. On my first cycle I had 13 and they kept reducing in number daily so I had to have a 3dt.
This is why I am really upset today as I had high hopes for this cycle sad
Likewise I have just been in and out of naps since I got home and sat on google x

Sunshine015 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:43:00

Did you say you also had two transferred today?

GrumpyHoonMain Sat 09-Nov-19 14:47:17

This is quite normal and the consultant should have prepared you for it - the majority of IVF cycles produce only 1 useable embryo. It’s actually quite rare to have anything to freeze. It’s one of the first IVF assumptions / misconceptions that my consultant cleared up for me.

Sunshine015 Sat 09-Nov-19 14:55:40

Ah that is good to hear.
What had been bad for me is following Instagram bloggers, as so many I have come across seem to have 20+ Blastocyst embryos.

Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:14:24

Yes I had two blasts transferred. One was ‘good’ the other too early to grade as I guess it wasn’t quite a blastocyst.

@GrumpyHoonMain is that true??! You’re right in that I’ve been led to believe (through formal and informal sources) that it’s fairly typical to have ‘surplus’. Guess it doesn’t matter either way now, but I am down about the ‘drop off rate’ and curious to the reasons for slow development.

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Sunshine015 Sat 09-Nov-19 15:21:20

That is a great position to be in. Stay positive.
Mine were not at blastocyst stage and still needed to divide once more.

GrumpyHoonMain Sat 09-Nov-19 16:41:52

The fact that you had 2 to transfer is an excellent result. Don’t look at your fertilization rate at the start - focus on the Day 2/3 ‘survival rate’ and deduct 50% from that to get a realistic figure. Obviously if you get more then that’s a bonus. For example my first cycle only 2 embryos survived to day 2/3, and by day 5 I just had one. Second cycle 10 embryos survived to day 2/3 but I had just 4 day 5 embryos (I have pcos though and produced over 30 eggs with a dismal fertilization rate so while that looks good it is actually terrible).

Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 16:51:53

Thanks for the insight @grumpyhoonmain

I think part of my concern is that I don’t get much face time with my consultants at all and they are very low contact.

As far as I’m aware (and I asked them to clarify and they confirmed) there are still 10 embryos so there were 12 on day 2/3 and 12 today (2 inside me), it’s just that they’ve classified the other 10 as ‘slower’. It’s the proportion in that category that puzzles me. I would have expected them to tell me today if some were ‘out of the game’ (I think they call it ‘arrested’?). Aside from that there was just 1 of my 15 that didn’t fertilise and 2 that fertilised abnormally.

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Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 16:55:33

Also to add the embryologist said “we’d like to have seen more blastocysts” and was generally quite downbeat. I suppose we are all super-sensitive to bedside manner at this emotional time!

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GrumpyHoonMain Sat 09-Nov-19 16:57:41

Can you make an appointment to discuss all of this with your consultant and embryologist? If they don’t let you this would worry me and I’d start shopping around for another clinic personally.

Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 17:02:02

It’s NHS funded (one cycle only), so if these embryos don’t stick we’ll be going private for the next.

I am very grateful for the NHS funding for my cycle but it has been very low contact with the clinic throughout. And when given news I’ve found it hard to process and respond with questions in the 2 min window or whatever I’m given (despite usually being a quick thinker!).

I guess all I can do for now is try and relax, hope above all that 1 or 2 inside me get cozy and as a secondary concern, hope for a call tomorrow.

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RubySlippers77 Sat 09-Nov-19 17:05:43

I had one that was graded well very early and one that only just made the grade when I arrived for the embryo transfer!

They are both now 4 and about to have dinner grin and both absolutely fine - can't tell which was which!

Youngatheart00 Sat 09-Nov-19 17:14:34

Love that @RubySlippers77 smile

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eurochick Sat 09-Nov-19 17:39:18

My five cell (should have been 8 cells by then) day 3 embryo is currently agitating to go out to a firework display. After transfer the embryologist came to speak to us about donor eggs. It was our fourth cycle and we only had one miscarriage to show for the first three rounds so it wasn't looking good. But somehow that slowcoach embie made it. The one I miscarried before had looked good in the lab. Embryology is an inexact science.

Incidentally I know someone else who had a successful pregnancy from a five cell day three embryo. Both our children are girls - I've heard the point mentioned above about female embies being slow growing before.

JoJoSM2 Sat 09-Nov-19 18:20:41

Have they frozen the rest? I’d be pressing for more info as you got next to nothing.

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