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Forum: Trying to Conceive with Medical Assistance

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  #1  
February 12th, 2007, 04:20 PM
KittyMom's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I have so many questions so I thought I would ask those of you with more experience than me

What is a GIFT cycle? This is more a curiosity on my part - I have seen the term on FF but can't figure out exactly how it works or how it differs from a regular IVF cycle.

How often do they do an IVF? It seems like it's not a monthly occurence from what I can tell from all of your posts. Too hard on the body to be stimulated like that?

FET's - is that what most of you do the month(s) following IVF if they got enough eggs?

Do all IVF cycles start with birth control pills? That step worries me because of the breast cancers in my family.

Do RE's only book so many women at a time for IVF? My clinics website says you must pay $1000 to reserve your space for an IVF cycle. I wasn't sure what that menat and the 19th seems way to far away to ask.

Okay that's all for now. I can't seem to take in enough information lately
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  #2  
February 12th, 2007, 04:39 PM
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hi,
GIFT is alot like IVF you take the same meds and you extract the eggs, the only difference is its a laparoscopic procedure. They extract the eggs and mix the eggs and sperm together and then right after that they place the mixture in your fallopian tubes. So fertilization happens naturally inside the body.
Gift used to be more popular before IVF. My dh and I are thinking about doing a cycle of GIFT in May.

Some insurances like mine will cover Gift and not IVF just because fertilization happens inside the body and not outside.

Yes Fet is a frozen cycle as long as you had enough viable eggs to be frozen during the first IVF cycle.
Im not sure how many women they schedule during a month. My RE said they have 3 target dates during the month for you to pick from...

Hope this helped you just a little bit
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  #3  
February 12th, 2007, 04:47 PM
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I just wanted to chime in about the birth control pill thing... for starters, I didn't have to use them before my fresh or frozen cycles. However, I think the risk in breast cancer comes from all the hormones, not the birth control pills themselves. So if you were on IVF meds for years and years, then those would be a risk factor since they're even higher doses of the same hormones found in birth control pills. So if your clinic uses a protocol involving the pills, I wouldn't worry about those any more than all the other hormones you'll be put on. The upside is that it's not for all that long so I don't think it greatly increases your risk for breast cancer (I have breast cancer on both sides of my family).
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  #4  
February 12th, 2007, 08:04 PM
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Here is my input based on the experiences I've been through:

GIFT - I think Christin covered that question off for you. I have not tried this one myself, I've done only IVF.

How often for IVF? - I have always had one full non-IVF cycle in between each attempt. They want to give your ovaries time to "quiet down" before starting in again with the meds.

FET - Frozen Embryo Transfer. If you're fortunate enough to have extra embryos left after your fresh transfer, you can choose to freeze them for future use. That can either be the next cycle (if your fresh cycle fails) or years later for a 2nd baby, if that's what you want. I have always followed by BFN fresh cycles by an FET. For both of my retrievals, I have had enough embryos left for 2 FETs each. Right now, I have 2 frozen embryos left and waiting on the decision on whether or not to use those or go straight into a 3rd fresh cycle.

Birth control pill - Only my fresh cycles have started with the BCP, none of my FETs required it. The difference being, there is no stimulation with FET, so the prep of BCP is bypassed.

RE bookings - This is probably unique by clinic. With mine, once you've gotten the original consult in, then you're in the rotation at that point. My clinic requires payment up front and is due on Day 3, which is the first u/s scan date of the cycle. If you're booked in already for the 19th, then I wouldn't worry about this just yet. If they're anything like my clinic, they'll be sure they have your money when they need it. DH and I always joke that we rarely get out of that place without a nice charge on the Mastercard!

I hope that helps. If you have any other questions... ask away!
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  #5  
February 13th, 2007, 09:19 AM
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Thanks so much ladies - this is a whole new world and I am really trying to absorb as much as I can before my next appointment. I want to go ahead and book my IVF cycle - assuming that's what he is going to recommend, and I want to be as fully versed in everything before I get there. I knopw the whole cycle can take up to 10 weeks but I assume that includes testing? In my perfect world (note: LOL) I would start BC at the end of this cycle which would put me into IVF in March/April. BUT I wonder if he is going to keep me on the thyroid meds to watch my TSH levels for a while first - I don't know. He did say that we needed to get started "sooner rather than later" so I am hopeful.

Gosh where has all my patience gone? I want my appointment now
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  #6  
February 13th, 2007, 12:00 PM
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I hear ya on the patience, I have next to NONE and it makes all this really tough.

Your cycle length is really going to depend on your individual case and the protocol your doctor sets up for you. With my first cycle, we did not go the BCP route so I went in guns a blazing on CD1 and had the transfer 12 days later in that same cycle. It was all very quick.

The cycle that I did do BCP, I did it for only a few weeks, so that entire cycle length (from start of bcp to date of transfer) was about 6 weeks.

I hope you get all your answers in our upcoming appointment and if you do end up with a transfer March/April, then we can be cycle buddies. I'm pretty sure my next one will be early April timeframe.
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  #7  
February 13th, 2007, 12:56 PM
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Quote:
I hear ya on the patience, I have next to NONE and it makes all this really tough.

Your cycle length is really going to depend on your individual case and the protocol your doctor sets up for you. With my first cycle, we did not go the BCP route so I went in guns a blazing on CD1 and had the transfer 12 days later in that same cycle. It was all very quick.

The cycle that I did do BCP, I did it for only a few weeks, so that entire cycle length (from start of bcp to date of transfer) was about 6 weeks.

I hope you get all your answers in our upcoming appointment and if you do end up with a transfer March/April, then we can be cycle buddies. I'm pretty sure my next one will be early April timeframe.[/b]
An IVF cycle with no BCP? Oh I will dream about that all day now. I just assumed he would start me off that way from reading different stories here.

Now I know I have heard everyone talking about a mock cycle - did you not do that your first IVF cycle? Well again I am assuming they do that while you are on BCP....

Thanks for all your help! I hope I will be joining you in March! (April whatever, it's all running together at this point)
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  #8  
February 13th, 2007, 01:40 PM
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Quote:
An IVF cycle with no BCP? Oh I will dream about that all day now. I just assumed he would start me off that way from reading different stories here.

Now I know I have heard everyone talking about a mock cycle - did you not do that your first IVF cycle? Well again I am assuming they do that while you are on BCP....

Thanks for all your help! I hope I will be joining you in March! (April whatever, it's all running together at this point)[/b]

Well, not to dash your hopes on the bcp, but now that I think back to that first cycle (it's well over a year ago and my memory is starting to fade lol), I was not that long off of the depo shots so that may have had something to do with it. Plus, we were being very aggressive on timelines based on my age. Because of that aggressiveness, my doctor also opted to skip a mock cycle the first time around - it's actually not a full mock cycle, just a mock transfer. They do this to ensure there won't be any surprises when it comes to doing the real deal. I would assume that could happen anytime and probably while you're in a holding pattern on the bcp.

I'm currently in a mock FET cycle, but that's to have an endo biopsy done.

March/April really isn't all that far off now - I hope it brings success to us both!
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  #9  
February 13th, 2007, 01:58 PM
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A girl can day dream though

There website states they do the BCP so I am expecting I will be no different although my age and egg quality isn't getting any better. This is what I am going on at this point:

Schematic Summary of an IVF Cycle

Birth control pill for 2 weeks
–
Add Suprefact – and continue the Pill – for 1 week
–
Stop the Pill – continue Suprefact
Expect vaginal bleed – continue Suprefact only
–
Ultrasound and estradiol (blood test)
If satisfactory, start HMG (Gonal F, Puregon, Repronex)
–
After 7 days of HMG, repeat ultrasound and estradiol
Further monitoring until follicles are “ready”
Trigger with hCG (Profasi or Pregnyl)
–
Egg retrieval – Fertilization – Embryo culture
–
Embryo transfer
–
Pregnancy test
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  #10  
February 13th, 2007, 06:16 PM
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Hi there. I hope you don't mind, but I just wanted to let you know that my protocol (I had the long one as they called it) for my fresh IVF cycle called for no BCP. I was on Lupron in the beginning to shut down my ovaries in preparation for stimulation.

Maybe you won't have to worry about BCP with your protocol. It will be interesting to find out.
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  #11  
February 13th, 2007, 09:41 PM
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Kitty... you are definitely well prepared! The protocol you've listed out may very well be the one you'll end up with, but there can be variations.

I did not take the superfect, I went straight into the Gonal-F - it was called an Antagonist protocol.

Your RE will know what is best for you - but I think you've got your expectations well set. I can't wait to hear how your appt. on the 19th goes!
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  #12  
February 14th, 2007, 01:50 PM
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Quote:
Kitty... you are definitely well prepared! The protocol you've listed out may very well be the one you'll end up with, but there can be variations.

I did not take the superfect, I went straight into the Gonal-F - it was called an Antagonist protocol.

Your RE will know what is best for you - but I think you've got your expectations well set. I can't wait to hear how your appt. on the 19th goes![/b]
Thanks for the info - does Lupron do the same thing as BCP then?

Prepared or obsessive Gillian? I am probably the latter

I talked to my clinic today when she called to confirm my appointment for Monday. They do only schedule x amount of women per month because there are only two doctors that work together and so they don't want more than they can personally handle together I guess. Not to worry she just checked and said they still had spaces for March/April and that I have a penciled in spot pending Monday I don't know if I can swing it all this fast mind you since wouldn't you know it, I am ovulating early this month (today CD12) and with my short LP usually being around 9-10 days that brings me to next Friday as a new cycle. I have to see my Dr Monday and then see the clinic coordinator to arrange payment (LOL that has ot be done first) and to go through protocols - whether or not we can get that all in in less than a week is a big IF, but I will certainly try. At least things seem to be moving fast, faster than I ever expected
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  #13  
February 14th, 2007, 02:40 PM
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Well... since you mentioned the obsessive word... maybe lol. But I'm right there with ya.

You never know, they may just be able to get you up and going for your cycle coming due next Friday. When you're in there on Monday, let them know you're expecting AF any day and they'll probably be able to do it.

With one of my cycles, I was in for surgery on a Thursday (that was to remove my tubes) - AF showed up that weekend. I was on the phone with them Monday and started a cycle immediately. Just goes to show, they can turn it around quick... especially when you have payment ready lol.
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  #14  
February 14th, 2007, 02:56 PM
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Quote:
Well... since you mentioned the obsessive word... maybe lol. But I'm right there with ya.

You never know, they may just be able to get you up and going for your cycle coming due next Friday. When you're in there on Monday, let them know you're expecting AF any day and they'll probably be able to do it.

With one of my cycles, I was in for surgery on a Thursday (that was to remove my tubes) - AF showed up that weekend. I was on the phone with them Monday and started a cycle immediately. Just goes to show, they can turn it around quick... especially when you have payment ready lol.[/b]
I need a blinkie that instead of pregnancy says pregnan-ocd LOL. I am sure I will mellow out here soon once I have peaked on information I can find (now I am watching videos online of how they do ER and ET and all the lab work in between - WOW!). She did say the wait to see a hospital coordinator is not like the wait to see the doctor - for which I said I've been lucky, this has all fallen in a 2 week period - she said most women are waiting 2 months just to get in so I am very lucky/spoiled. Anyhow she said basically if thats what he wants us to do we can schedule it Monday and the coordinators are available pretty much whenever works for us (which is good with a 2 hour drive each way and hubby working and going to school full-time).

Okay must get off JM and do some work - the bills are about to start piling up
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