- 5 months ago
I know the answer to most of my questions will be “ask your doctor” – and I will! But I need help knowing what to ask? And what resources to read? I feel like I’m not working with enough information so I’m hoping you can help guide me. Also – I don’t know what all the abbreviations are in the TCC boards, so if you can write it out I’d be grateful!
Where we stand:
Darling Husband and I are 37 and 38 years old. We’ve been TTC for 13 months, no miscariages, no conceptions. General health: I am healthy, in shape, good BMI, etc. I have a history of low blood pressure but genetics for high cholestoral. I’ve actively cut down on sugar and processed foods – I’m probably eating the healthiest I ever have, taking supliments. Darling Husband is a little overweight – maybe 25 or 30 lbs. His diet matches mine but he also needs to cut down on sugars, he has a thyroid condition, healthy blood pressure and cholesterol. We both gave up alcohol a year ago. He smokes about 3 or 4 cigerets a week (less than 1 per day). He’s quitting now that we have his first sperm results.
In Dec, when we hit 6 months of trying, I got all my tests done. All were normal. My thyroid was higher than “ideal” but was within normal range. All other numbers were good or better than average for my age. My period is pretty consistant between 28 and 29 days – and ovulation seems to be pretty consistant within CD 15 to CD 18. Darling Husband was also suppose to get tested in Dec, but he was scared and procrastinated until now.
A few days ago we got his first results and his sperm info isn’t good, but the doc says it’s also very inconclusive at this stage. The doctor said we need 3 samples that have more-or-less the same results, and that any single sample could be an outlier. As of now we only have the 1 sample, so we will need to do more before this info is official. All that being said – the numbers aren’t good for 3 reasons: sperm count, mobility, and morphology. The actual SIZE of the samle was small (poor guy must have been nervous!). As a result of the small sample size, the sperm count looks very low. The way the doctor spoke, I infered that this seems to be the least of the concerns to the doctor (that’s how I interpreted it- not sure if I’m wrong?). The morphology is very bad – but he didn’t give a number becasue we don’t have 3 samples yet. This bad morphology seems to have a direct impact on the mobility which is also very bad. We are setting up additional appointments so we can get 3 samples to confirm or correct this information. They don’t suspect a blockage, but they want to run a test to rule it out as a possibility.
All my questions:
I suspect we cannot concieve natually and I want to understand IUI. IUI is much more affordable for us, and at this point IVF is cost prohibitive. But I don’t know anyone who has done IUI and I don’t know how successful it is? I also dont know if we are good candidates for it?
My doctor explained the proces to me, but I was a little overwhelmed and I didn’t get everything. She told me they would take a sperm sample (or multiple samples consolidated into one) and “wash” the sperm so only the good viable sperm is left. I don’t understand if this is good or bad for male infertility options? Does “washing” make the sperm sample more healthy? Or do you need a healthy sample to begin with?
Almost all info on IUI says the first round is not usually successful, but no one says why? There is a lot of internet information that 4 cycles seems to be the right number of tries – but again, no one says why that number? Do the 4 cycles go back to back months, or do you take months off in between? What are the implications if you want to have a second child? If it works once, is it likely to work again?
There seems to be conflicting info on if the woman is hormonally treated – it might depend on if the infertility is male or femal driven? Some IUI processes seem to include medicating the woman to manipulate her ovulation – others don’t seem to do this? Wouldn’t it be better to do everything possible to increase the chances it works?
What are the details of the actual proceedure, the day of the insemination? Is your husband with you, or is it all just doctors? Did anyone have any luck with insurance paying for this? As of now this looks like it will be out of pocket for us.
If you have any advice or stories, anythign about the success or failed attempts, I would really like to hear it. If you’d rather PM me I’d be happy to read that too. Thank you for all the help and support on this!