So the test cycle continues and Thursday I had a hysterosonogram. I was asked to take a pregnancy test just to super dot the i’s and cross the t’s confirm that there was nothing going on in there and of course the one test I had at home ended up not working. So, I got up super-dupes early so that I could get on the road and pick up a test on the way to my 8am appointment. I mean, it’s the big city, most places are open 24 hours, but I apparently picked the CVS and the Walgreens that didn’t fall into that category…and while the Jewel-Osco I stopped at technically WAS open, they had no electricity. I was greeted by a shrugging and apologetic employee on the other side of the door….the other side because without electricity the automatic doors couldn’t open.

Long story short, there was lots of traffic, I had to pee, it took a long-ass time to get to Dr. Hail Mary’s office in Naperville (I usually go to the Schaumburg office, but that’s where he was on Thursday) and I ended up getting a test close to the office (along with a chocolate milk….wonder what that check-out clerk thought on the HPT/Chocolate milk combo) and took it in the lobby bathroom. Negative as expected.

So the hysterosonogram. Basically, it feels like a pap smear meets ultrasound with a little extra cramping. It was NOTHING like the HSG test which took a few years off my life.  I found this information on the interwebs:

A hysterosonogram is a procedure that allows doctors to examine the inside of the uterus and check for abnormalities with the use of ultrasound, which uses sound waves to produce an image.
 A hysterosonogram can be a valuable diagnostic test for a wide variety of problems. It can identify abnormalities in the uterus, which can be very useful in finding underlying causes for those who suffer from dyspareunia (pain during sexual intercourse), reproductive problems such as infertility or frequent miscarriage, or menorrhagia (uncommonly heavy or painful menstrual periods), and can help doctors identify uterine fibroids, polyps, or other growths, abnormalities, or lesions in the uterine wall.
To perform the procedure, the doctor begins by inserting an ultrasound device into the vagina, and checking for abnormalities in the uterus and ovaries. Then, a device called a speculum is used to open the vagina and expose the cervix. The doctor cleans and possibly numbs the cervix, then inserts a small tube through the cervix and into the uterus. The tube pumps a harmless, sterile saline solution into the uterus, which expands the uterus and makes it easier to see. Then, the doctor uses the ultrasound probe in the vagina to generate an image of the expanded uterus for a few minutes. After examining the image of the uterus, the doctor removes the probe, and the saline solution drains from the uterus. The procedure is usually not painful, but the patient may experience cramps similar to those that happen during her period when the tube is inserted into the cervix or when the uterus is filled with saline solution. If desired, an over the counter pain remedy, such as Advil or Tylenol, may be taken before the procedure to maximize comfort. This, however, should be cleared with the physician first.

The test went just fine and the doc said that everything looked beautiful, so that was nice to hear. He also gave me the news that the AMH and FSH tests were back, and as suspected (and as before) my AMH is a little lower than they’d like and my FSH is a little higher than they’d like. I’m 43 and the numbers are pretty typical for my age range. He wants to redo the FSH test next week – he said sometimes that number can fluctuate, so likely that’ll get tested next week or the week after.

The good news is that my antral (resting) follicle count was 11 which is considered good for a lady my age. The antral follicle count gives an indication of how many potential eggs might be produced during the cycle. Dr. Hail Mary liked that number and feels that so far everything’s looking good to get going next cycle.

Next peek in there will be Monday (Day 13 of my cycle).

New Supplements, Tests and Fran Drescher

Dr. Hail Mary puts all his patients on the same supplement regiment…..and then adds to it as necessary once test results come in. So, I’m now on the following supplements:

Prescription Prenatal with DHA (continued with pregnancy)
Pregnitude Reproductive Support Dietary Supplement (includes folic acid 200mcg & myo-inositol 2000mg) – it’s a powder that’s mixed with 8oz. water and taken twice a day. (it’s stopped with pregnancy)
CoQ10 – 600mg/day (stop with pregnancy)
Calcium – 1000-1300mg per day (stop with pregnancy)
Vitamin D – 200-400IU per day (stop with pregnancy)

I’ve been asked to stop all other supplements (Royal Jelly and pycnogenol, which I only took during IVF3)

Yesterday I went  in for Day 3 bloodtest and ultrasound (and I met the most entertaining person even to put an ultrasound wand up my nethers)

Yesterday’s tests covered:

estrogen level, LH, FSH, TSH, thyroid, pituitary, prolactin, DHEAs, Testosterone and something that I can’t read…..because he’s a doctor, and his handwriting is…..stereotypical.

When I got there, my IVF nurse took me in to take some blood and asked if I ever fainted. I said no and asked if she had patients that did. She looked at me and emphatically nodded yes, then added, “most often it’s the men.” She then proceeded to take 4 vials of blood and explain when I’d be able to get results and how (calling in to a voicemail network).

And then I was greeted by my new U/S (ultrasound) tech….who for some reason reminded me of Fran Dreshcer, minus the accent and nasal laugh….I think it was the hair and no-nonsense attitude. I was on the table and she started the ultrasound – said everything looked fine as she counted my follicles and checked my lining. I asked her something and she went on an amazing run of an answer about how great Dr. Hail Mary is, how he’s very aggressive with his treatments and straight-forward with his patients, how she’s seen him get people pregnant that had everything against them, how/where/when I’ll get all my information, what the hysterosonogram will be like that I have to get soon, how she’s going to try her best to schedule it because the doctor’s schedule is full and he’s at conferences in February, how her mother had a straight-forward doctor and she didn’t like him but he was the best and something and something and something.

Somewhere in the midst of that she dropped a well-placed F bomb and it was then that I knew we’d get along just fine.

OH – and that entire conversation took place while she was holding the U/S wand as I’m on a table in a dimly lit room….so it was hard not to laugh at the ridiculousness of the scenario.

She was great though, she was so encouraging and I look forward to seeing her many times throughout these next few months….must remember not to call her Fran.

By day’s end I had some of the results:

my once slightly elevated Prolactin is now in the normal range at 17.07, TSH 2.57 and DHEAS 83 (I didn’t write down estrogen and progesterone but they were both normal). I will have to call in next week to get results on ovarian reserve and autoimmune stuff…..and I’m now waiting to hear if I can be squeezed in for that Hysterosonogram early next week. It has to be done Day 6-12 and I’m out of town Days 10-12…..and the doc’s schedule is packed. So, fingers are crossed that Fran (must remember not to call her Fran) will indeed make something work.

Since this is a “test” cycle to see what’s happening in there, I started estradiol (estrogen) last night and will do progesterone shots the 2nd half of the cycle. I’ll talk about the various tests as I have them this month….the hysterosonogram, a couple of biopsies, etc.

And yes, I could harp on “why didn’t some of these tests happen before” but why do that to myself.

For reals. Why.

Instead, we’re excited to do them now and rock out IVF4.