Not At All Prepared for Egg Retrieval Process


#1

Hey guys! I have learned so much from this forum over the past months that I wanted to share my recent experiences with my IVF procedure in the hopes of helping others find answers to the myriad of questions this process brings to light.

For some back ground: My husband and I tried for 2 years (by our selves and with the help of my OBGYN) before being referred to our RE.

We are fortunate to live an hour’s drive away from one of the leading clinics in the US.

After rounds and rounds of tests, they only confirmed—once again— that we are part of the lucky/unlucky 20% of patients that have completely UNexplained infertility. It’s beyond frustrating.

So after ten days of Gonal F (225mg a day titrated down to 150 for the last day due to high estradiol levels), 5 days of Ganirelix, and antibiotics— we were finally ready for egg retrieval.

I checked into the surgical center within our clinic at 7:30 Friday morning, with the expectation that after experiencing “mild period cramps” for the afternoon I would be back to normal.

I guess I’m not normal.

First of all, the pain was worse than “mild period cramps”. I had 16 eggs retrieved and even driving over the speed bumps in our neighborhood on the way home was painful for me.

I almost passed out as soon we walked into our house (this was from anesthesia), and actually did pass out later that evening while sitting on the toilet— sorry if that’s TMI.

Pain meds helped, and I will say that “below the belly button” pain was fine as long as I lay relatively still. Urinating was painful at first, but was bearable by the second day.

What I was not prepared for was the incredible amount of bloating this procedure can produce. My stomach swelled like I had swallowed a basket ball (not OHSS) and the gas pains that accompanied it that evening were so painful I called the after hours nurse to be sure I didn’t need to go to the ER. She said she was unsure what was going on, but that everything should be okay unless I spiked a fever or began vomiting. It was a random stabbing feeling that radiated from under my ribs up into my neck/shoulders and back.

I am not a baby about pain, I have lots of broken bones to prove it:)!

After scouring this website I finally found a post where someone had a similar experience. After being slightly reassured by that post, I took more pain meds and finally got some sleep (sitting straight up in bed, as that was the only way I was comfortable).

Another side effect: constipation. WOW! I did not know I could fill by belly so full of fiber and not have a BM. Finally, on day 2 after the surgery, a strong dose of Milk of Magnesia (and a greasy breakfast biscuit) got things moving for me. Now, my stomach has begun to shrink, but still has that achy feeling you get after a severe stomach bug.

Would I go through it again? ABSOLUTELY!!! WITHOUT A DOUBT!!! I’ll just be better prepared if there has to be a next time:).

We have transfer tomorrow morning. My husband and I are taking a limited approach to IVF based on our beliefs. We had 12 mature eggs, 1 border line egg. Of those, we fertilized 4 good ones and the so-so one via ICSI.

Of those, 2 have begun dividing as they should and will hopefully be extra “sticky” tomorrow morning for our day 3 transfer:)

Prayers and baby dust to you all…:pray: :pray: :bsv:


#2

:grouphug: good luck!


#3

[QUOTE=RCHM]Hey guys! I have learned so much from this forum over the past months that I wanted to share my recent experiences with my IVF procedure in the hopes of helping others find answers to the myriad of questions this process brings to light.

For some back ground: My husband and I tried for 2 years (by our selves and with the help of my OBGYN) before being referred to our RE.

We are fortunate to live an hour’s drive away from one of the leading clinics in the US.

After rounds and rounds of tests, they only confirmed—once again— that we are part of the lucky/unlucky 20% of patients that have completely UNexplained infertility. It’s beyond frustrating.

So after ten days of Gonal F (225mg a day titrated down to 150 for the last day due to high estradiol levels), 5 days of Ganirelix, and antibiotics— we were finally ready for egg retrieval.

I checked into the surgical center within our clinic at 7:30 Friday morning, with the expectation that after experiencing “mild period cramps” for the afternoon I would be back to normal.

I guess I’m not normal.

First of all, the pain was worse than “mild period cramps”. I had 16 eggs retrieved and even driving over the speed bumps in our neighborhood on the way home was painful for me.

I almost passed out as soon we walked into our house (this was from anesthesia), and actually did pass out later that evening while sitting on the toilet— sorry if that’s TMI.

Pain meds helped, and I will say that “below the belly button” pain was fine as long as I lay relatively still. Urinating was painful at first, but was bearable by the second day.

What I was not prepared for was the incredible amount of bloating this procedure can produce. My stomach swelled like I had swallowed a basket ball (not OHSS) and the gas pains that accompanied it that evening were so painful I called the after hours nurse to be sure I didn’t need to go to the ER. She said she was unsure what was going on, but that everything should be okay unless I spiked a fever or began vomiting. It was a random stabbing feeling that radiated from under my ribs up into my neck/shoulders and back.

I am not a baby about pain, I have lots of broken bones to prove it:)!

After scouring this website I finally found a post where someone had a similar experience. After being slightly reassured by that post, I took more pain meds and finally got some sleep (sitting straight up in bed, as that was the only way I was comfortable).

Another side effect: constipation. WOW! I did not know I could fill by belly so full of fiber and not have a BM. Finally, on day 2 after the surgery, a strong dose of Milk of Magnesia (and a greasy breakfast biscuit) got things moving for me. Now, my stomach has begun to shrink, but still has that achy feeling you get after a severe stomach bug.

Would I go through it again? ABSOLUTELY!!! WITHOUT A DOUBT!!! I’ll just be better prepared if there has to be a next time:).

We have transfer tomorrow morning. My husband and I are taking a limited approach to IVF based on our beliefs. We had 12 mature eggs, 1 border line egg. Of those, we fertilized 4 good ones and the so-so one via ICSI.

Of those, 2 have begun dividing as they should and will hopefully be extra “sticky” tomorrow morning for our day 3 transfer:)

Prayers and baby dust to you all…:pray: :pray: :bsv:[/QUOTE]

hey RCHM… i had the same trouble that u are having. it was the worst time. i never expected this much. but thankfully all was good in 2 days. bloating does take some time to go. u will even experience it after ur transfer. but all will b good in no time. take lots of fluid. it helps. n i hated those small bumps on the road. it felts like mountains. like everything inside me jumps with the car. best of luck for ur transfer and :bfp:
:bsv: :grouphug:


#4

Good luck with transfer sending :bsv:


#5

[QUOTE=RCHM]Hey guys! I have learned so much from this forum over the past months that I wanted to share my recent experiences with my IVF procedure in the hopes of helping others find answers to the myriad of questions this process brings to light… [/QUOTE]

Thanks for the heads up! I’ll probably be doing my ER on Friday. Good to know what to expect, thanks! And good luck on the transfer tomorrow!!


#6

Hi, sorry to hear you went through so much discomfort with your retreival. I am not a doctor or anything (just someone who has been through numerous treatments :)), but are you sure you don’t have OHSS?? Are you still in pain?

I am asking because PAIN (not a little discomfort) is not that common (unless you have OHSS). My first IVF retreival I was in severe pain after the retreival and I have a very high pain tolerance. I told the nurse that I was in pain and she said “a little pain is normal”, but I don’t think I was really expressing how it felt.

Went through three retreivals after that and NONE of them had any pain! It was not until after the second retreival that I was talking to a different nurse about what I had experienced the first time around when she told me that I very likely had been suffering from OHSS. Up until that point I did not even know what that was.

The constipation is very normal and for me it only got worse as things went along. But I can say that my two miracle boys are well worth everything! Good luck to you, hope this is the cycle for you!


#7

Hey guys! Thanks so much for your replies.

So we arrived at the clinic this morning (2/4) for our embryo transfer and I was so nervous.

But it was great news:)!

Our two little embryos were both doing really well. For a day 3 transfer, our clinic wants the embryos to be between 4 and 8 cells. One of ours was 8 and the other was 6.

Both were transferred and our doc was really happy about where he was able to place them in my uterus.

By far the easiest part of this whole process.

Brit1612- I was still a little worried about potentially having OHSS because it has been extremely painful to urinate the last 24 hours. I spoke to my doc about it and he took a look at my ovaries with the sonogram they were using for transfer and said it all looked fine to him.

Did not know this, but apparently it takes the ovaries about 10-12 days to return to normal size after retrieval, even longer if it all works.

Here’s to hoping my ovaries stay swollen for a long time:)!!


#8

I had my ER last Thursday and the pain was incredible. Looking back it was mainly from the gas and constipation from the anesthesia and pain pills. I couldn’t barely stand up straight. If I have to go thru this again I will definitely be more diligent about drinking lots of water and taking stool softeners. It lasted about 2 days but it was BRUTAL! Good luck to you!


#9

I had horrible pain, too, and I was under just one pain shot (no putting under) l for retrieval. They had to take me out in a wheelchair. Then, I got OHSS. On the transfer day, the dr could not get through my cervix - everything was distorted due to fluid in abdomen, even though OHSS got slightly better by day 5. The nurse was pushing down with the u/s thingy on my belly for like 20 minutes… it was almost as bad a the retrieval. If I have to do it again, I will negotiate with the dr on the lower stim levels - the pain is mainly caused by a large number of follicles, which in turn may cause OHSS. Good luck, everyone!