Conservative Clinic

September 10, 2010

Going through IVF last month has really made me realize that my Fertility Clinic is rather conservative. But I’m OK with that. It can be infuriating sometimes but I understand why they do it.

They rarely do 5 day embryo transfers despite what I’ve read about the increased success rates. Their reason? The embryos do not like being outside of the mother’s body. Although it’s easier to identify on Day 5 (as opposed to Day 3) which embryos will turn in to a baby, it’s apparently much more difficult to keep them alive those 2 extra days. So my clinic chooses to put them back in their natural environment as soon as possible instead of risking losing them all together.

My original beta HCG test was scheduled for 14 days past transfer day – not 14 days past retrieval. That seemed awfully late to me. But since I got a positive home test much earlier, I ended up going in for my first beta 3 days early. In my case, an earlier test worked out fine. But my Cycle Buddy, @IVFQueen, was not so lucky. Her clinic had her come in at 14 days past retrieval (I think). It turns out she had a chemical pregnancy and that beta came back at 12. But she couldn’t know if that number was on it’s way up or on its way down. So she spent two days waiting in agony to find out. I suspect this is one reason why my clinic prefers to test later. And why they had me come in for a 3rd number. They want to see it go over 300 to be safe.

My first ultrasound is scheduled at 7 wks. I’ve heard of others who go in during their 5th or 6th week of pregnancy. Some of them hear a heartbeat that early. Some of them don’t. The ones who don’t are left waiting in agony. Again, they are left wondering if it was simply too early or if there’s a problem. Another two week wait for my ultrasound is going to be PAINFUL. But I feel confident that the outcome will be definitive on that day. Or as definitive as it can be.

My RE once told me that she is open to trying anything and everything that her patients want to try. But she will only suggest treatments that are based on empirical evidence – treatments that have been thoroughly tested and proven to be effective. I think I like that attitude. Not afraid to try new things, but also not quick on the draw to try the latest, unproven, possibly fad, treatment. One example was DHEA. She discussed that with me. She said they don’t routinely use it because the evidence of its efficacy is controversial. She also said it causes severe acne. But she was willing to try it if I wanted to. Fortunately we didn’t have to.

So anyway, while I go crazy waiting for this ultrasound I just have to keep telling myself that it’s worth the wait. They’ve done right by me so far so I have to keep trusting their judgment.

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