Egg Retrieval Procedure What to Expect IVF Blog 2

Well my friends, that cycle went FAST. I have a lot to update you all on.

Last we left off, I had gone in for my monitoring appointment on stims day 8. Things were looking good, slow and steadily where they should be based on my previous cycles and my doctor’s expectations. The doctor had me scheduled to be back on Monday, November 20. In my previous cycles I stimmed for 11 days and 13 days, so I suspected I’d be in that range again, but with a new protocol and different meds, it was hard to say.

I went back to the clinic on Monday and things had progressed nicely.

Day 10 Follicles: 18mm, 17mm, 16mm, 15mm, 14mm, 14mm, 13mm, 13mm, 12mm, 12mm, 11mm, 11mm, 11mm, 7mm

The doctor wanted me back on Tuesday, and said it was now time to monitor me daily for progression and timing my trigger shot to mature the eggs. The next morning I had another ultrasound and measured as follows:

Day 11 Follicles: 19mm, 14mm, 14mm, 9mm, 17mm, 12mm, 15mm, 14mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 14mm, 11mm, 9mm (measurements seemed a bit funky on this day, but it’s all an estimate anyhow)

Annnd again on Wednesday Nov 22:

Day 12 Follicles: 21mm, 19mm, 19mm, 16mm, 15mm, 12mm, 13mm,, 15mm, 15mm, 16mm, 17mm, 11mm, 13mm, 18mm, 16mm, 10mm, 6mm, 5mm

On Day 12 of stims, my doctor let me know it was go time. I’d be finishing my stim meds that day, and taking my trigger shot that evening. They’d call me later in the day with a time for my shot, and I picked it up from my clinic dispensary.

A challenging part of living on an island is having to get off it to go to these big appointments like the retrieval of transfer. Especially on short notice. We booked a ferry and hotel for that following day, for our retrieval on Friday November 24.

I got my instructions for my trigger shot around 3pm in the afternoon. I was to take 3 injections (totally different from my previous protocol of 1 shot), consisting of a GnRHa and hCG. The kicker, I had to take it at 1:30am! My retrieval appointment would be Friday at 12pm approximately. Staying up that night after my 7:45am appointment that morning was no cake walk. I am normally a night owl, but when I am up earlier than normal it throws me for a loop. I did everything I could to stay awake, and finally 1:30am arrived and I took my shots.

Similar to my previous cycles, I tested the next morning to see if the trigger took, using a pregnancy test. There is was, that double pink line indicating it had worked. I packed my bags, packed up the dog for boarding, and we were off for the ferry.

When we have retrievals on the mainland, it’s recommended to book 1-2 nights in hotel, at the very minimum the night before the retrieval since it’s such a time sensitive thing. We decided to YOLO and we stayed for three nights.

My husband’s appointment for his sperm collection was at 8:30am, so he went solo and did his thing, and came back to get me. We went together to the clinic for my appointment and I went in right away to start prep for my procedure. I had never been to this particular clinic before, so it was all new to me – the processes, environment, nurses, etc. Some people had their partners there to accompany them, but I tend to want to just get it over with and not make a fuss about it, so I went in solo. My husband waited in the lobby and eventually went for a walk around the area while he waited for me.

Things were running a little behind, but I got placed in my little room, separated by a curtain, which had a chair, blanket, and my outfit for the day (this clinic lets you keep your top/socks on, and you just remove the bottoms and put on a skirt of sorts and booties for your feet). I got an Ativan, tylenol and gravol, juice and cookies, and the nurse eventually placed my IV. I waited for about an hour in a bit of a daze before they called me to head into the OR. I walked with my IV stand, and they got me in position for the procedure.

The biggest difference this time around was that the sedation was different. Quite different. It was the same meds, but a lower dosage. They warned me in advance that my previous clinic’s dosage was quite high and not the norm for them. This sedation would be more mild, I’d be more conscious and I’d feel a bit more. They prepared me for what to expect and started my medication drip.

I felt a bit woozy immediately, like I was seeing double. They placed the speculum, did what I assume was local freezing in my hooha (this hurt like a bad pinch), and then they gave it a moment and started the retrieval. Unlike my previous two cycles, I remember the whole thing and I felt it, albeit in a dull and subdued way. I experienced a few very intense cramps, similar to my biopsy the month prior (with no meds). Similar intensity, which tells me the meds took some of the edge off as I expected this procedure to hurt a lot more (it definitely does if not sedated). I remember the girl in the room next to me came back from her retrieval before I went in for mine and she was sobbing, wimpering and crying in pain. This freaked me out a bit but it did make me prepare for the worst.

The procedure wasn’t a dreamy sleep land like I felt before, it sucked frankly. But it was fast, and before I knew it the doctor was finished and I was walking back to my little curtained room. They placed what looked like a puppy pad below me when I sat down, and I experienced some spotting which I noticed after. I sat for about 30 minutes while they monitored me to make sure all was well, and waited for the results of the retrieval. For some reason they tipped me back in my chair with my feet in the air (no idea why) and I texted my husband to come meet me shortly, and they brought him back to walk out with me when I was ready to go.

Drum roll please….

My third retrieval yielded 14 eggs. This is more than my first two cycles where I got 13 each (more isn’t always better necessarily, the more you have the lower the quality can be in women of a certain age). I was pleased to hear this and was told that I’d receive a call the next day to update me on maturity and fertilization. The hunger games have now begun.

I went back to the hotel and rested for a bit, but not after gorging myself on A&W which was conveniently located in the building that my clinic was in. I took it easy for a bit, and then we decided to go for a walk since I got a surge of energy. The meds had worn off by this point and I popped a couple of tylenol in case pain started up. I felt some mild discomfort, but ended up being okay. We walked about 2km (probably not my best idea ever), went to a few record stores and grabbed a coffee before heading back to the hotel. I then proceeded to eat an entire big bag of kettle chips before nodding off to sleep. The bloating was a bit bad overnight, and I was definitely uncomfortable, but I survived and was ready to hear our results.

One Comment

  1. The chair tipping is for circulation! That position is the least difficult for the heart to manage and prevents any passing out (unless its extreme).

    I’ve had to have the same after giving blood (I get vertigo easily and its often triggered by low blood pressure).

    Can’t wait to read of the result!

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