Aug 25, 2011

FET #2: craziness ensues!

First off, I have been pretty horrible commenting this ICLW (and actually in general over the past few weeks). For someone reason, reading blogs lately has been stressing me out a little, so I apologize. I hope I will be back in full blog commenting gear soon.

Here is the craziness I shared with my message board buddies earlier today:

Yesterday was our 2nd FET. I was told to arrive at 10:30 am. When I arrived, the nurse told me that there were many transfers today and to expect a long wait. I figured I must be last on the list, because I noticed that they were having both the women who came in before me and the women who came in after me change into gowns but not me.

Around noon, Y decided to speak with the nurses and as usual, he got more information than me. They told him that it wasn't that I was last on the list, but that they were putting my transfer on hold because the thawing had been problematic and the lab was waiting for the doctor to make a call on whether we would proceed or not.

According to the fertilization report, we had 2 frozen embryos remaining in a straw together: a 5-cell BC grade and an 8-cell B grade (my clinic uses an A-D scheme to rate fragmentation, with A being the best). My RE had told me not to expect much from the 5BC, it was not such a good embryo and would be likely to not survive thawing.

Anyhow, the RE doing the transfers comes out and tells us that our embryos were initially a 9-cell BC grade and an 8-cell B grade and that after thawing, the 8B only had one surviving cell and wasn't viable (this was supposedly our good embryo) and that the 9BC had 7 surviving cells and was viable to transfer.

Objectively, none of this information added up at all to the original information we had about these embryos: a 5-cell BC and an 8-cell B were supposed to be in a straw together but it turns out that it was actually a 9BC and 8B and that now they are 7BC and 1B? It just didn't make very much sense and I guess that is why the lab was waiting for the RE to make the final call about whether to proceed with the transfer of the one remaining mystery embryo. I saw in marker on the updated report print-out where someone had crossed out "5 BC" and written "9 BC."

The RE told us that it's possible that the 5 BC just "grew a lot" (almost 2x?) in the time between the final grading report and being frozen. This explanation really doesn't make much sense biologically, and all of our other embryos remained the same in cell number, so it doesn't seem that a lot of time elapsed between the final grading and the freeze.

We went ahead and transferred the one remaining mystery embryo at the RE's urging but I am still so confused. In other news, I got a horrible migraine yesterday after the transfer and spent the night vomiting (sorry for the TMI). It seems like there are 3 possibilities here:

1) They got confused between the 5 BC and 8B in the same straw - it makes a lot more sense that the 5 BC wouldn't survive and only 1 cell would remain viable and that the 8B would remain viable but lose 1 cell, making it a 7-cell embryo. I think this is the most attractive and reassuring explanation, even though it's not the one they were offering us.

2) The 5BC miraculously almost doubled in cell number between the final grading and the freezing although during that same time period, every other embryo remained the same in cell number.

3) The 2 embryos in the straw didn't resemble the original embryos we froze because they weren't our embryos (this is the most horrifying explanation but also the most unlikely). I know this is probably almost impossible but the thought crossed both Y's mind and my mind independently.

Thank goodness we have our long-awaited appointment next week with the new RE. I am ready to run, not walk to a new clinic. I am curious, in this situation, what would you guys have done? Would you have still gone ahead with the transfer? I like to believe I would have at least asked to speak to the embryologist and the lab directly and see what they have to say, but in the pressure of the moment, when everyone was trying to work quickly and there were still several women waiting behind us, I guess it was hard to press for more info or reassurance.


  1. I probably would have gone ahead with the transfer too.I always feel like things are very rushed at my transfers as well, not much time to ask questions, etc.

  2. Yeah, I always feel like they just want everyone in and out as soon as possible (which I understand since they are very busy and have many transfers to do) but to us as the patients the transfer is so important and it would be awesome if there was even a few minutes to speak directly with the embryologist!

  3. #3 is the scariest thought every but as you said, the most unlikely. I think you did the right thing. But, yeah, run to a new clinic!!! Fast!!!

  4. I think explanation #1 is what happened. In fact I'm pretty much 99.9999% sure that's what happened. I suggest for your peace of mind to try to speak to the embryologist anyway now. You don't need more stress and more unknowns during this TWW.
    Behatzlacha motek!

  5. I think I would have gone ahead and done the transfer, too. I know I'd be incredibly confused, too, but I would be terrified to miss the opportunity. It would be nice if these offices were a little more organized in communication, though, and realized how flipping important this is to all of us!

  6. There's just so much that we have to leave in the hands of experts and trust them to do right everytime we go into any of these clinics. I agree that #1 seems like the most likely response based on all of our collective-internet-based knowledge (snicker at that one a little). In the end, I think you just got the confirmation that you really do need to try a new clinic. My experience has been 180 degrees from yours - both with my IVF and my FET, I spoke with the nurses, the docs, and the embryologist both before and after. They explained everything to me and encouraged questions all along. It sounds like my experience is better than most, but I think it shows that you should shop around and see if you can't find something more comfortable.

  7. I think I would have opted to move forward w/ the transfer as well. I'm sorry it was such a clustereff there today. I hope all this chaos results in some wonderful news for you!

  8. I think I would have moved forward with the transfer also but, I would have demanded as soon as possible to find out what was going on. I'm a worrier and I know that my brain would have been screaming "But, what if the embryo isn't mine". I think I would find out what happened before switching to another clinic.

    ICLW #110

  9. I definitely would have gone ahead with the transfer and hoped for the best. And that is what I'm doing for you - hoping for the best - that this works!!!

  10. That sounds crazy!! I would have gone ahead and done the transfer but asked more questions at a better time. I am the same way, I would be trying to figure it all out and make sense of it. I think we learn to be more pro-active about our care going through IF as we have to be our own advocates.

  11. If it was me, I would have done the transfer too. I usually have to process things for awhile before I come up with questions. This is usually after I have gone home and feel too annoyed/stupid to call back. It's hard to react in the moment sometimes. I hoping for the best!

  12. wow, sounds intense. i don't know what i would have done as i've never been in a situation like that. i agree though that i'd call up the embryologist now though to try and get some more answers. sounds like the best plan is one you've already commenced to get a new RE!

    Happy ICLW from #97

  13. wow, that sounds stressful!!

    I don't blame you for wanting to take a bit of a blogging break...

    Wishing you all the best for this cycle!!!

    Happy ICLW

  14. I probably would have gone ahead with the transfer with urging from the RE. I would also get records or explanations from the embryologist, especially if you are transferring to another RE. With our latest OHSS scare, I have received all records from the clinic and hospital and am eager to take them to an RE to see if this was all completely mismanaged or if my body simply overreacted to a normal, appropriate protocol. It is hard when you can't trust your healthcare professionals anymore.

    Thanks so much for your support and comments through this tough time. It means so much! Best of luck this cycle!

  15. I probably would have gone through with the transfer too. I'm also sure my mind would have gone to all the horrible places it could go.

    Wishing you the very best of luck.

    ICLW #19

  16. Like everyone else, going ahead with the transfer was the right thing to do... #3 is really scary and #1 is most likely ... but at this point who knows, and with that sort of discrepancy ... I'd be interested in changing clinics too. That is just .... odd ...


    Happy ICLW from # 86 <3

  17. Whoa! WTH? I'm so sorry. I just hate healthcare and doctors any more. I don't understand how that could have happened. Best of luck to you.