My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 8
It has been a while since my last update regarding my pregnancy journey. And it's not just a simple pregnancy process, where I was able to conceive naturally. In my last post, I did mention that my husband and I chose the IVF treatment. Right after our last visit with the fertility specialist, we bought all those prescribed medications we needed to prepare for the IVF process. Those medications needed to be in a cooler or freezer bag to maintain its efficacy because even with just a brief warming period might, the medications might be rendered ineffective, especially we would have to travel back home from the city, which is a 4.5 hours drive.
During that visit, it was actually my first day of the cycle. But because we stayed in the city that weekend, John and I mutually decided to wait for my next cycle (or the start of my next period) so I could commence the medications and injections, although it occurred to me that maybe we should just start already whilst we were there. However, I suddenly became anxious because of the thought of those injections that I needed to endure throughout the whole preparation process. It wasn't just two varieties of medications that I had to inject myself. Four different ones on different nights.
One month I had to wait then. 29 days to be exact. Finally, the next cycle came which was on the 19th of July 2019.
Now, I will need to elaborate on all the details of my IVF preparation process.
First, I would have to begin the injection on Day 2 of the cycle, starting with the Gonal F (175 iu), a follicle-stimulating hormone, which I must inject on my belly (anywhere near my navel) for 9 consecutive nights at exactly 9 P.M. That was my preferred time each night so I would not forget, and I wanted to adhere to a strict schedule. I also set the alarm 15 minutes prior so I could get things ready ahead of the scheduled injection.
Of course, it wasn't easy. I am scared of needles. I would cry if I'd get pricked accidentally by a rose bush thorn. How much more if I had to inflict the pain to myself. So, I got John to inject the needles on to my belly, every night. Yes, not just one, there's more!!! And furthermore, during this whole time that I would be getting all the injections, John and I were not allowed to have intercourse until it was safe to do so. The doctor was making sure that it would not result in multiple pregnancies, since the medications were meant to stimulate the ovaries, and therefore, more egg cells would be produced during this cycle.
Day 6 of the cycle was the start of another medication, Orgalutran, which they call the Antagonist injection. I had to take both medications at 9 PM each night. This injection was bigger than the first one. I had to continue taking them until I was advised to stop.
One of the great things about this whole process was that the fertility nurse was regularly checking up on me over the phone to see how I was going, and also to check whether I was following the process and not forgetting the injections every night. The nurse would also inform me when to take the blood test to determine whether the medications were working or not.
I had to get ultrasound and blood tests done and the results of these were immediately sent to the fertility clinic so they could study and monitor my ovarian follicles to assess the correct timing of my ovulation. This was highly crucial.
The last day of the FSH or Gonal-F injection.
The last day of the Antagonist or Orgalutran injection at 9 PM, and then at 11:30 PM, a new medication, which is the Trigger Injection or Ovidrel, would be injected on to my belly.
I was instructed to fast from midnight, as in no food, no water.
Day 13 - The Day of Egg Collection, 30th July 2019
So, from 12 midnight, I had to fast. I was not allowed to eat or drink water until my eggs were collected from my ovaries. The nurse had already booked for this procedure at their Day Surgery two days prior. On the same day, they also had to collect the semen sample from John. His schedule was 8:30 AM. He had to go into a room by himself, and you probably know what's going on there so that he could collect his sperm. I am not going to elaborate on that detail.
My egg retrieval procedure was scheduled at 9 AM. However, I was not sent into the operating room until 11:30 AM. I was famished and extremely thirsty, but I had to wait until the procedure was finished. I was also very anxious because I was told I was going to be sedated and, of course, I had to undergo this operation.
I woke up at 2 PM. The egg retrieval was successful. I was told that they collected 20 mature egg cells from my ovaries. That was plenty!!! Now, these egg cells would then be fertilised and cultured with John's sperm cells and hopefully, it would also be a success!
The nurse gave me a packet of biscuit and water because I was not supposed to eat a big meal straight away after the procedure. It was the worst feeling I had so far. Worse than all the injections that I inflicted upon myself. We couldn't leave the day surgery straight away because I was vomiting really bad. They said it was the side effect of the anaesthesia. I was dizzy and felt like I would faint or collapse at any time. When I felt like I was all right to leave, the nurse accompanied me to the lobby and John was waiting there patiently. He is such a good man!!! I love him so much and I missed him, especially during the time I was suffering tremendously after the operation. I just couldn't wait to see him.
We drove back home on the same day despite my condition. I just wanted to get home and sleep in my own bed that night, and not stay in a hotel. The next day I woke up with very severe pain in my belly. Like a really bad menstrual cramp. I couldn't walk properly, even just a few steps going to the toilet was a struggle! My belly was so bloated for about a week, it's as if I was pregnant. Because of the abdominal cramp, I had to take some tablets, called cabergoline, as advised by the doctor because I was experiencing ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS). This was really serious. I suffered for days and I could not go to work because of this.
I'm just so thankful that my husband was very supportive all throughout the process. He took care of me and gave me everything that I needed. I'm so blessed to have him!!!
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 1
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 2
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 3
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 4
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 5
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 6
My IVF Pregnancy Journey Part 7