Monday, February 18, 2008

News from the "retrieval"

Might as well share it as we heard it from on-call Doctor.

"The good news is that the procedure went well. There were no eggs, but the procedure itself went very well. We flushed the 4 follicles and blahI'm sharing a dozen fascinating details about the super-cool method we use to look for the cells in the fluid, and we did it this way and that today, but, nope, 4 follicles, 0 eggsblah, blah. This almost never happens. It's been several years since I've seen it. We usually get an average of 8 mature eggs. This is disappointing."

Pause for DH and me to ask a few questions, to which Doctor supplied only marginally topical answers. For example, I asked, given this finding, whether it's possible that I really haven't been ovulating on my own for a while, or all the time, but still producing what mimic ovulatory indicators — positive OPKs, measurable follicles that follow an ovulation pattern, appropriate hormone readings, etc.

Doctor's exact reply (after pulling a classic "I'm not actually listening to your words but am waiting for your lips to stop moving so I can insert what I most want to say next"):

"Would I try again? No. I wouldn't. You
might talk to Dr. K about donor eggs.* I don't know what she'd recommend about that just now."

DH and I couldn't end our "conversation" fast enough.

Doctor wasn't quite finished though. "Oh, and you'll be glad to know that you can stop the progesterone. No more shots tra-la.** Just take your doxycycline as though you had the procedure.*** But not with dairy, because the calcium acts as a binder. Call me anytime today or this evening if you have more questions."

"I won't be calling," I said.

"Yes, talk to Dr. K. She watched the procedure in real-time at home. It's really remarkable, she could see the whole thing on a flat-screen TV."

Doctor left the area. DH and I breathed and said, "Let's go."

I dressed, fast, in the bathroom. I cried a little but sucked it up and said no . . . later.

When I came out, the nurse shared her surprise that I was up and around and ready to leave. Most people need a bit more rest, it seems. But my adrenaline had rushed at hearing "no eggs," (BP skyrocketed, too, says DH) and I would not experience any pain or feel like I'd even been anesthetized until fairly late in the evening.

As DH bundled me into my coat, the young nurse trainee came over to say good-bye. She was sweet. She really was. And when she enthusiastically said, "It's really nice out there — have a great Sunday," DH and I shared a bittersweet smile and strode out the way we'd come in 3 hours earlier: hand in hand, heart in heart.




*Guess what, dude, we already did. At length. We took the entire holiday season to weigh whether we should use donor eggs or take one shot with mine. It was a close call. But with eyes open we chose to do what has just freshly failed. Failed so much that none of DH's sperm even get to meet my eggs today. Today, we have learned my eggs are so bad that they don't even exist. So you might want to give us a minute.

**To be fair, he actually ended that sentence at "shots." And in the moment I assume he knows that I don't have to STOP progesterone, because that is not started until after a successful retrieval as defined by a harvest of more than ZERO eggs.

***Uh, I did have the procedure.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

This sounds like a heart breaking process with no time to grieve because a new decision must be made. I'm sending lots of love vibes your way.

JJ said...

I am so very sorry to read this...I hope you do take some time to yourself and heal. You are so very much in my thoughts...

The Town Criers said...

Lisa, I am so sorry. And I'm sort of floored by the doctor. Sending peace of heart.

orodemniades said...

First of all, your Doctor can expect a whole load of Haterade from the internet. Seriously. Wtff kind of bedside manner is that? Is he so uncomfortable giving bad news that he fakes it with technobabble instead?

As for the 0 eggs, I am so sorry to hear of this. I wish there was some program studying this, because while I mentall understand it's possible to have all the signs and hallmarks of ovulating (I do, frex, but the eggs don't actually leave the ovary) and not have an egg, heartwise I don't understand how there could actually not be at least one egg in there? That just seems so...counterintuitive?

Which is my long winded way of saying, I am so freakin' sorry that this is the result of your 'retrieval'.

Anonymous said...

Lisa,

I am so sorry. I can't believe it, really. Who was the doctor? You can just initial Dr. ___. Have your heard from Dr. K? She is good about checking in. I am totally surprised that there were none.

I am sorry I did not check in earlier. I have had computer problems until now.

Do you have a post office box or some other way to send you a care package.

I know the heartbreak.

Shelley a/k/a momtoaminihawk

Lisa said...

Thanks for the vibes & wishes & peace. Shelley, I'll pm you later.

I really don't know whether Doctor was uncomfortable. But I don't think so. It's a little difficult to judge because we'd never met before. I do think he did his best. Even while listening and thinking, "Is this REALLY how this is going down?", I felt a strange sense of compassion toward his efforts. He made eye contact only when saying "This is disappointing," and the second time he said that he touched my foot. I think he did care. He just badly mangled his bedside manners.

DH's assessment is that Doctor simply belongs in a lab, fondling his remarkable tools of reproductive technology.

bleu said...

I am so sorry and so angry for you.

Michell said...

I'm so sorry. Both for the no eggs and the doctor with the bedside manner of a turnip. Where did these people learn to talk to patients. Wishing you peace and healing.

Baby Steps to Baby Shoes said...

I am so very sorry. I wish there were words, but it beyond sucks.

soapchick said...

I am so sorry.

Pamela Jeanne said...

I'm heart broken for you both. I can't imagine how hard it was to get the news and delivered so insensitively from such a clearly self-important physician. What a first class ass.

Really feeling for you...

Carrie said...

I'm so sorry that this has happened and you had to hear it this way.
I hope your husband and you can hang in there together for what will be a difficult time.
I hope the next step makes itself known and you both find peace with it.

sarahinparis said...

I'm really sorry to hear your news. Sounds like your doctor was a real jerk too.

Adrian & Tashida said...

So sorry to hear your ER turned out this way. That doctor was so heartless and cold! They truly don't understand the emotion and feelings that we put into each cycle.

Katie said...

I'm so sorry.

hoping4baby said...

I am truly sorry to read this post. Truly there are no words - but what a heart renching ER - no eggs, then a very poor delivery of horrible news! He should stay in the lab and/or take a course on bedside manner. Hope you find answers and move on to a much better cycle!!!

luna said...

I came over from L&F to say I'm so sorry. Wishing you peace and healing. ~luna

TABI said...

I am so very sorry, this is so painful and I can't believe the behavior of this doctor. I wish you much healing and strength moving forward.

Opus #6 said...

I am so sorry to hear this. There is no cycle as painful as an IVF cycle. The doctor's comments were insensitive to the point of cruelty. I teared up picturing you and your dh walking out of there holding hands. :*(

Polly Gamwich said...

I'm so sorry.

FiestyKel said...

That is crushing. I feel sick even reading it, how bitterly disappointing. To go through all that.. ugh. This shit is so hard. Am thinking of you :(

Susan said...

Lisa.. hugs, that's all I can say. You and your dh are in my thoughts.

2foofy4u

Ms Heathen said...

Oh Lisa, I am so very sorry. I cannot begin to imagine what it must have been for you to hear this heartbreaking news - particularly when it was delivered in such an insensitive manner.

My thoughts are with you.

Anonymous said...

My heart aches for you. I'm so sorry.
Carrot.