Just when things when things were cruising along and we were feeling super confident about this cycle… WHAM. A problem comes and hits us right between the eyes. This is not uncommon with IVF. For me at least it always seems I have one or two roadblocks along the way to transfer.
Nobody said it would be easy.
Last night through a new curveball at us, one that I am hoping doesn’t cancel our transfer. Our eggs should be fine, but I am concerned we may have to freeze all the embryos and wait until next month to bring them back home where they belong. I hope I am getting way ahead of myself and that my early morning scan tomorrow proves otherwise.
For those of you keeping close tabs on our journey, you know that I often have difficult embryo transfers. The transfer is the most delicate part of the process, when our precious would-be babies are most at risk. Having a smooth transfer is a key indicator of success and it is the “art” behind the science of what the Reproductive Endocrinologist does. I have a tough cervix due to past surgeries and my uterus is also extremely retroverted. If the follicular ultrasound is like the Triple Lindy for sonographers, my transfer is like an Inward 4 1/2 somersault from the 10 meter platform for the RE (this is the most difficult olympic dive according to Google, for those of you who are unfamiliar).
To help navigate my disagreeable anatomy, I take cytotec prior to transfer to help soften the cervix and make everything a little more hospitable. This allows the catheter which will transport the embryos to gain easier access to the sweet spot. Its rarely done, but my situation is pretty rare.
We used cytotec for the first time at Celebrity Miracle Clinic and it did indeed help smooth the process. So when I returned to Home Clinic we added it to the plan. However my RE wanted to move the cytotec closer to transfer to obtain the max benefit from the softening. At Celebrity Miracle Clinic I took the cytotec almost a month prior to transfer, and not while taking stimulation medications. This meant that there was very little going on in my abdomen at the time and all I experienced was some persistent and moderate cramping.
Well guess what? When taken close to transfer with a lush lining and ovaries the size of oranges, it really flipping hurts and also causes bleeding. And why wouldn’t it? That is what the Cytotec is designed to do.The drug is used to induce labor and miscarriage. With additional pressure in the abdomen from oversized ovaries and a perfect lining it only makes sense that there would be some pain and even bleeding.
I have never experienced full on labor, Spork was a c-section baby taken at 37 weeks due to a compromised placenta, but I feel like I got a glimpse of it last night. It was so bad that we called to neighbors, my Inlaws, at 1 AM to see if they had Tylenol. Acetaminophen is the only pain medication approved during IVF and we had picked a heck of a time to run out. When Bill’s parents came up empty, he had to leave the house to track some down. There was no way I was sleeping without some help with the intense pain.
I am still crampy today but much better, but there is still some bleeding. The question is, is the bleeding from my lining? Will my lining still be thick enough and retain the right patterns for transfer? We have to wait and see for the ultrasound tomorrow.
I am so hopeful the little bit of bleeding is an irritated cervix and the lining is still intact.
Fingers crossed that we are still a go for transfer.
I simply cannot wait until tomorrow.