So, last Friday we started the IVF process.
Now, I don't want to turn this into an IVF blog, however, I know that many stepmoms deal with what to do when hubby has had a vasectomy and you decide to have children together so I want to share with you what we are/will be going through. Because my husband has had his vasectomy for almost 14 years, it was not really an option for us to go with a reversal. A reversal most likely wouldn't be successful and if it did we'd have to pay out of pocket for that (about $10K) and then if that didn't work we'd have to move onto IVF which is another $20K on top of that. So, we made the decision to go straight to IVF. Is it what I really wanted to do? No, but the end result is the same...a baby (or twins).
***WARNING***This is about to get more in depth and graphic so if you are not interested in the process...don't read. Because I am under 35 and assumed to be in good health for having babies, I am on a fairly simple protocol. I had to wait for my period to come (which of course was a week late since I was waiting for it). On day 2 I went into the office for a few blood tests and an ultrasound to see how my ovaries are doing during my cycle and to check how many follicles I'm producing on an average basis. Follicle # is what can give them a general idea of how many eggs they might be able to retrieve. I was at approximately 24. Which they said was VERY good. Phew! They did find a fibroid which they said is common, but during one of my many tests they will see where it is located and if it's location is going to be an issue at all. It shouldn't be though.
Then I started my Lupron. Lupron is a shot (like a small diabetic needle) that I give myself in my belly every morning for about 3 weeks. This drug is used to suppress my cycle and basically put me into menopause before they have me amp up. The shot isn't as bad as I thought it would be. Pretty painless actually (and I'm squeamish about shots, needles, blood). My husband has given me one and I have given myself a couple. No problems. I haven't experienced anything too bad for side effects yet. Just some bloating and a few headaches. I've still been able to go hiking and be active, but do feel a little more tired now on day 4. The good old hot flashes are supposed to start coming around weeks 2-3. My husband is just waiting for me to go nutso :)
This week I have a litany of tests to do. Blood tests and internal tests mostly to make sure I have a "happy" uterus. Then after about 3-4 weeks I will start taking growth hormones (more shots) to increase the # of eggs they will be able to retrieve. Then they will retrieve sperm from my husband one night and my eggs the next moring and hopefully 5 days later they will implant 2 healthy looking embryos. Yes...2...chance for twins :)
I would say to anyone who has looked at the option of IVF to not just think it's about $8-$10K. You have to factor in several other things (like additional procedures and all of the medication, in addition to some tests that insurance doesn't cover). This is all like if you live in a state like I do that insurance doesn't cover IVF. When it's all said and done we are looking at almost $20K. We are having to do a medical loan, which basically has credit card like interest and you pay for 4 years. Make sure you get something that doesn't have a pre-payment penalty if you go this route so that you can pay down the balance faster if you can. The interest is insane! Right now we are very optimistic that this will work and if so...I could be preggo by summer! Here's to hoping :)