Too often I browse online looking for a similar experience to mine. I follow the links, hopeful to find the full story, only to realize the person never came back and finished their tale. If someone makes their way onto my blog, I want to make sure they always get the full story, beginning to end.
Let’s recap my first round of IVF which started 07/23/2014.
07/23 – CD1~ AF
07/24 – CD2 ~ Bloodwork and baseline ultrasound. Everything looks nice and quiet. I’m given the instructions to start my stimulation drugs (150iu Menopur & 300iu Gonal-F RFF).
07/28 – CD6 ~ Bloodwork and ultrasound. I have 3 follicles on my right ovary (8-11mm) and 4 on my left ovary (8-12mm)
07/29 – CD7 ~ I’m given instructions to start Ganirelix.
07/30 – CD8 ~ I have 2 follicle at 18mm, 1 at 16mm, 3 at 15mm and 2 at 13mm.
08/01 – CD10 ~ I receive my instructions to trigger at 1:30am (08/02) for my egg retrieval on Sunday (08/03)
08/02 – CD11 ~ My husband wakes me up at 1:20am and at exactly 1:30am, I take 2x 250mcg Ovidrel.
08/03 – CD12 ~ Retrieval Day! Procedure goes fine. They retrieve 8 eggs.
08/04 – CD13 ~ I get my first fertilization report. All of my eggs were mature and 7 fertilized through ICSI. I start my Progesterone in Oil.
08/07 – CD16 ~ I have my progesterone tested and it’s at 40! Best level I’ve had in a long time. I’m now all set for my transfer the next day.
08/08 – CD17 ~ Transfer day! I take a Valium to relax my cervix and have a 5-day blastocyst transferred. I’m told 3 of my other embryos are being frozen today and possibly another 1 or 2 tomorrow. I start Lovenox that night.
08/09 – 1dp5dt ~ 1 more embryo gets frozen, giving me a grand total of 4 frozen embryos. I’ve had a great outcome from a low-yield cycle.
08/13 – 5dp5dt ~ Time to start testing! I already know how long it takes for my body to metabolize the trigger. I wake up in the morning and test with an FRER and see my usual remaining trigger squinter.
08/14 – 6dp5dt ~There’s a definite line today! It’s darker than yesterday. Could this be real? I take a digital: “Pregnant 1-2″. Holy shit! This is for real.
08/15 – 7dp5dt ~ My line is still faint in the morning but it’s clearly there and definitely not from trigger. I feel bizarrely unsettled that night and take a digi which comes back “not pregnant.” Starting to think it was a chemical pregnancy. I don’t sleep much that night.
08/16 – 8dp5dt ~ My husband is tired of seeing me mope around all day so he goes to the pharmacy and gets me some more tests. I take a test that night and it comes back “pregnant” again! I’m so freaking happy!
08/17 – 9dp5dt ~ I’m starting to worry that my lines on my FRER are just not darkening fast enough. I skip testing today.
08/18 – 10dp5dt ~ First Beta comes back: 24.4. Shit. That’s not good. Most first betas I see come back at least over 50, if not 100. The nurse tells me that though it’s on the low side, not too worry yet. We need the next beta to really come to a conclusion. I have a bad feeling, but I go with it.
08/20 – 12dp5dt ~ I POAS and my line comes back darker than ever. I’m starting to feel confident I have a late implanter on my hands.
08/21 – 13dp5dt ~ Second Beta comes back: 36. WTF?! My beta only rose 12 in 72 hours. My RE calls to give me the news and asks me to come in the next day for one more draw. I feel crushed and emotionally battered. I was prepared for bad news on Monday but watching my test lines get darker the last few days gave me a lot of false hope and confidence.
08/22 – 14dp5dt ~ Third Beta comes back: 38.5. No surprises this time. It’s over before it even began but not before I allowed myself to hope. I’m given instructions to stop the Progesterone in Oil and Lovenox.
So there you have it. I hoped to have a story that would give comfort to someone with slow-rising betas. Instead, I’m adding to the veritable litany of stories out there that all end the way mine has. A chemical pregnancy at the end of an IVF cycle is truly a cruel blow. You’re given just a little taste of hope before it gets snatched away.
Now, I wait for AF to start in the next 1-5 days. If she hasn’t shown up by Tuesday, I have to call for bloodwork to make sure my HcG is dropping and I don’t have a tubal pregnancy. CD 3 of next cycle, I slap on two estrogen patches. Then at some point I go in for a baseline ultrasound and when my lining is thick enough, start up Progesterone in Oil again in preparation for a Frozen Embryo Transfer. If all goes as plan, my next transfer will be the 3rd week of September.