Thursday I had my follow up appointment with my doctor since my chemical pregnancy. I was meeting with him to go over everything that had happened, and to talk about what comes next. For some reason I had this idea in my head that I would leave the appointment feeling encouraged, but I left just the opposite. It’s kind of a long story, so bare with me.
The facility I go to has several different locations, and when my appointments fall on the weekend I usually have to go to one of the other locations and see a different doctor. I really really love my doctor, and so whenever I get stuck seeing someone else it is always a little disappointing. So anyway, the day of my transfer during my last cycle fell on a Saturday, and so I had a different doctor do the procedure. This doctor told me I had definitely 4 but probably 5 embryos that were going to be frozen (the fifth embryo was a little behind in development, but he was confident it was going to make it to blastocyst stage). So, I was happy to know that if this cycle didn’t work I still had 4 or 5 chances.
Fast forward to Thursdays appointment. I sit down with my normal fabulous doctor, and he informs me that I only have ONE embryo frozen. One. He said that they freeze the embryos on day 7 because they feel they freeze a little better on day 7 than day 5. He told me that the rest of the embryos stopped developing between days 5 and 7. He told me that considering I only had one embryo out of my 17 eggs that fertilized, that this usually indicates there is a problem with either male or female infertility.
In this case, he thinks the problem is on the male side. I responded to my stimming meds just like a healthy 26 year old woman should. 19 of my 20 eggs were mature, and they looked to be of great quality. He says usually if it was the female side, I wouldn’t have produced the amount of eggs that I had, or only a few of the 20 eggs would have been mature. My doctor believes that since my husband had stage 3 cancer at the time he gave his specimen that it was most likely damaged. He explained that it is very possible that the cancer had taken more of a toll on his body at that point than anyone really thought.
So here’s the thing. This whole time I’ve never even worried about that. Why would the doctors have suggested he freeze sperm if it was possible that they had been affected without ever testing it first? I am so angry. We were supposed to freeze it before chemo made him sterile, not the cancer. My doctor brings up a good point; we can do genetic testing on my husbands specimen, but it’s pretty pointless because there isn’t anything we can do to improve the quality at this point. If Dennis were here that would be a different story, we’d have options. But he’s not, and so we don’t.
The one positive thing I learned during the appointment was that the remaining embryo I have is a perfect graded embryo. He said it cannot be graded any better than what it is. He thinks I have a 50/50 chance of this working. I have one final shot, this is my last chance. You better believe that I am taking my chances. I need to know that I have done everything in my power and have exhausted every option. I don’t know what I will do if this doesn’t work, but I’ve decided not to even entertain the idea. I will cross that bridge if and when I get there. For now I just have to try and stay optimistic and also realistic, and just do the best that I can.