Sunday, May 29, 2011

My Personal Pharmacy

Tonight I was going through all of my med lists for my upcoming IVF and I decided to get organized. I made a list of everything that I would use for the first month of the cycle. As I was writing the meds down, I would take them out of the "fertility" box and my fridge and check them off. After looking at my pile, I suddenly remembered how much really goes into this.

It is hard to believe that this is one month of medication. For those who have never gone through fertility treatments or IVF, this is a sneak peek into what we go through. From left to right we have Crinone which is a vaginal progesterone used after retrieval. On top of the Crinone is Follistim (stimulated egg growth) which is an injection that I give myself in the stomach beginning on the third day of my cycle right up until I trigger the eggs. Next set of boxes over is my Lovenox which is a heparin based blood thinner which I start after retrieval (also injected into the stomach) and is continued through the 32nd week of pregnancy. Next to that is Menopur (also stimulates egg growth) which is injected along with the Follistim. The bottles of pills consist of Prometrium (another vaginal progesterone supplement), Estrace which is also given vaginally after retrieval and this supports your estrogen, B6 supplement which helps support the endometrial lining, Dexamethasone which is a corticosteroid that prevents your body from rejecting the embryos once transferred back, DHEA which helps to lower FSH levels for better stimulation, and Baby Aspirin which used in conjunction with the Lovenox. The small boxes next to the bottles are Progesterone in Oil which is a shot given nightly in the butt until the 12th week of pregnancy. The other small boxes are vials of HCG which are given every third day through the 12th week of pregnancy once pregnancy is confirmed. The larger short box is Lupron which suppresses the pituitary gland (injected into stomach) which is given along with the Follistim and Menopur. The 2 blue boxes are ZMax (antibiotic) that both my husband and I have to drink before I start my stimulation cycle and the other small box is the injection that I give myself (stomach yet again) once my eggs are big enough and I am able to stop the Lupron, Follistim, and Menopur. This shot is often referred to as the trigger shot as it triggers your body to release the eggs from the follicles in the ovaries (Novarel). The only thing that I am missing is my Viagra (yes Viagra) which I will be using vaginally 4 times a day to help increase blood blow to my uterine lining as my lining has a habit of not thickening properly.

So that is what my next month is going to consist of. This is why I get so frustrated when people don't understand that it isn't as simple as saying "oh, you can try again next month," or "you have plenty of time." This isn't something that I want to prolong as it isn't the most enjoyable experience. Since I have been doing this so long it kind of triggers PTSD as you know what is coming and you really don't want to face it. Trying to keep all of this straight is time consuming, especially considering that all of these medications are specially timed throughout the day. It's not like I just pick and choose when I am going to stab myself in the gut. Plus these medications are like a mind altering substance where at times you feel possessed. They make you have hot flashes, give you headaches, make you get the point. So the moral of my story is this; if you haven't ever been through IVF, do your best to be supportive. Understand that our lives revolve around this process once it starts. We are not bitchy because we want to be, we can't help it. You wouldn't be Positive Polly either, trust me!

1 comment:

  1. wow krystyn, you will be in my prayers as you embark on this next chapter. i admire your determination and you have every single right to want to feel any which way you want...i have only taken clomid, prometrium, another form of progesterone and fertility antibiotics so far...and i know how they make me are one tough cookie and i'm hoping this is "it" for you!! :)