Monday morning found Brian and myself en route to the fertility clinic for a quick ultrasound and visit. Since I didn’t ovulate last cycle, I needed Provera to start a new cycle. You may remember that massive doses of progesterone have not worked in the past, and until I finally asked the doctor to check and see if I even had any uterine lining we just kept doing the same thing with no results. Seems to be a trend for us. So Provera has only worked twice for me, and I wasn’t holding my breath this time.
I finished the seven pill course on last Thursday and expected a new cycle over the weekend. Since Brian will be in Lynchburg for the next two days I knew that if I wanted him to go along I’d need to make an appointment for Monday at the latest. I arranged for a half day of vacation and we were ready to go. Except for that part where my body didn’t cooperate with my timing and my new cycle hasn’t started yet. So I was in Charlottesville for no real reason. The doctor reminded me that Provera can take up to ten days to work, but the few times it’s worked for me it’s been almost immediate. The ultrasound looked fine and we set down to talk about our options and the injectible gonadotropin cycle with IUI that we’re planning on doing next.
The basic plan for our gonadotropin cycle (called a GNT cycle at our clinic) is to go in on CD 1-3 for a baseline ultrasound (or CD 49, if you are Antsy Impatient Pants like me). Then I will start with the injectible gonadotropins on a CD 3, 4, or 5. I’ll inject whatever the dosage is every day. I learned how to mix the meds, fill a syringe, and inject myself Monday at the doctor. Every five days or so I’ll return to the clinic for an ultrasound and blood work to see how my eggs are doing. This can take anywhere from 10 days to three weeks or longer. We expect a dominant follicle or two to develop and when the doctor decides it’s “ripe” (seriously, it’s the word they use. *shudder*) then I’ll do a trigger shot of human chorionic gonadotropin, or HcG. It will cause me to ovulate in 38-40 hours so we can do an IUI at some point in that period.
During the IUI, the sperm are procured from Brian and then washed. I’m serious. I have images of them scrubbing his swimmers with tiny brushes and soap, a la the spa scene from The Wizard of Oz. Anyway, they’re washed and then ready for insemination. They’ll be dropped off in my uterus via a catheter about an hour later. Then I’ll lie there for about 20 minutes before being sent home to wait the longest two weeks of my life.
That’s it. That’ s our master plan at this point. Unfortunately, there are a few monkey wrenches. I’ll be out of town for two nights and two days at the end of August. I somehow doubt that I’ll be able to make it from DC to Charlottesville for an IUI or any ultrasounds during that time, and asking YaYa Princess for the use of her spare room for baby makin’ would just be awkward, even for us. So if we start this GNT cycle right now, we could be derailed by the only trip I take by myself all year.
The other monkey wrench is the price. In a best case scenario with only two ultrasounds during the cycle and all my drugs being covered by insurance, each cycle will run a minimum of a thousand dollars. It’s seriously expensive. This is our pull-out-all-the-stops-balls-to-the-wall so it’s costly. A GNT cycle in an of itself runs over $700 at this clinic. If my drugs weren’t covered by insurance and we had to get them through the “budget pharmacy” at the clinic, it’s $55 per vial. We’ll start with a conservative 25 vials. You get the idea.
So, needless to say, money is a huge issue. We have enough saved/allocated/moved around and finagled to do two cycles. After that, we’re done until we can save $1000 more. So this may very well be the beginning of the end. If this doesn’t work, we’re probably done. In light of this, we’ve decided to hold off until after my trip to DC so we have no giant plans standing in our way. We’ll start our GNT cycle as soon in September as we’re able.
That’s it. That’s our big plan, complete with timeline and cost analysis. I personally spent much of yesterday in tears over the sheer stress of it all, and knowing that if this doesn’t work we won’t be going any further. It’s so strange to think that we’re putting all our eggs in a basket that isn’t iron-clad, and that when it’s over we’re done.
Hope you all have a lovely day, and that you can stay cool if it’s half as hot as it is here!