Posted by: stacie2147 | May 4, 2009

April 4th Ultrasound – Last During Stims

We went all the way up to Lebanon to have another ultrasound so that my doctor could review the results from his own staff and lab.  It ended up being a good news/bad news scenario. 

The bad news:  My estrogen levels came back at 4962, and they don’t want you to be over 5000 when they do the egg retrieval.  If your levels are already that high and they proceed to transfer embryos a few days later, there is a high risk of developing ovarian hype-stimulation syndrome, or OHSS.  Since my estrogen levels were already just about at that point, my doctor decided to cancel the transfer but schedule surgery to remove the eggs first thing Monday AM.

The good news:  They found 23 follicules!  23!!!  I guess that could be considered bad news too though, because more than 20 eggs on a healthy woman is considered overstimulation.  So much for first finding 16 and then just 8 pulling forward.  Oops… 

My u/s tech was a male, so there was a female nurse present for the test.  The nurse said I was lucky that the u/s tech was the manager of that department with many years experience because I would be a nightmare patient for a newbie with all those follies to keep track of!  The ultrasound tech didn’t talk much during the procedure because he was concentrating so hard being careful not repeat or miss any follicules.  The nurse filled us in as he went along, commenting on how uncomfortable I must be with so many follicules crammed in there and my ovaries being so large.  Funny, I’ve never been so acutely aware of exactly where my ovaries reside until this ultrasound!  The right ovary was especially sensitive and although the ultrasound didn’t hurt it was extremely uncomfortable.  I was glad when it was over!

Until Saturday the 4th, the day of that last ultrasound, I had felt pretty normal as far as using the stim drugs.  From Saturday on, I became very uncomfortable.  My abdomen had extended because of my bursting ovaries, and it looked like I was already pregnant.  (I imagine it must feel similar too!)  I kept getting a pulling sensation on my right ovary as well.  I also gained 4 pounds in 3 days, and it wasn’t from indulging in Ben & Jerry’s, it was from the fluid within and surrounding the follicules.  I could no longer wear any of my jeans; the one pair I could still button was extremely uncomfortable tugging at my belly.  My other pants were tight as well, but at least I didn’t have to revert to sweats or buy anything in a larger size!  I felt so bloated, and yes I’m going to say it again, uncomfortable.

It was at this point that I stopped blogging.  I was SO disappointed that we couldn’t continue with the IVF.  I felt poor physically and to have one more setback really threw me emotionally.  I know I should be grateful that my doctor was careful to avoid OHSS; I later found out he considered mine to be a borderline case with the symptoms I had and we avoided it going full blown because of his caution.  I know I should be grateful that I had so many follicules to harvest, yet was cursing them for making me feel so lousy.  I know that we were lucky the entire cycle wasn’t scrapped and they were able to save the eggs; some women are not so lucky if they are borderline OHSS.  At least I didn’t suffer through the stim drugs and their side effects for nothing!  Even so, with all these logical reasons to be happy I was upset.  All I could think about is that originally were were set to do IVF in January.  That was delayed when we found an ovarian polyps and I had to have surgery to remove it.  I had to heal from that surgery and now I have to heal from the OHSS which puts our embryo transfer out to June.  JUNE!  Five whole months after we were supposed to start.  It means that if it works we will no longer have a 2009 baby, it will be 2010 and I will have turned 41 before giving birth.  It’s just so much time slipping away, and at my age it seems like I’m on borrowed time to start with.  I can’t help but think our slim chances of success are getting slimmer each month that goes by.  It’s true, and that’s why it hurts so much.



  1. Hi Stacie – Wow, there was a lot in this post that sounded so familiar. In Feb I went through a similar situation with OOSS (luckily 22 folicles extracted and 15 valid enough to freeze). I fully comprehend the disappointment you felt as we too couldn’t have a fresh embryo transferred. We did have a frostie transferred on the 16/05/09 and got pregnant (unfortunately ectopic) so again I understand your disappointment as I too thought no 2009 baby (and was so ready for it to happen). We’re about to start an assisted cycle and are feeling positive about success and a 2010 baby! I hope things are working out – My thoughts and best wishes are with you.

  2. Hi Stacie, Hope uyou are going well its been quite a while since your last post hows your journey these days would love to hear take care xx

  3. Hi Stacie-
    I’m dying to know how it went. Also I wanted to talk to you about featuring your story (we can discuss if you are interested) on our modern family web site-

    Let me know if you are interested and best of luck!

  4. I am about to start IVF & found your blog very helpful in keeping me realistic about it all. It is a journey. I pray that god blesses you with a renewed strength because you are meant to be someones Mommy. Sending you lots & lots baby dust!! Take Care!

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