We are now 12 days into our IVF round 2.
As we are on slightly different drugs to suppress my own hormones this time around (Cetrotide instead of Buserelin), and I’m two stone lighter than last time, part of me is hopeful it’ll shake down differently this cycle. Part of me is denying that it cares.
The different drug regime means that my hormones are surppressed in a slightly different way. Buserelin bombarded certain hormone receptors in my brain, desensitising them to receiving any signals. This effectively shut them down and stopped them issuing the signal (Leutenising Hormone – LH) to make me ovulate. Buserelin is called an agonist for this reason, because it goes on and on and on until it completely shuts down my own hormone signals. This should have stopped my brain telling my ovaries to ovulate away the eggs during the last IVF cycle. But for whatever reason, that didn’t work. I ovulated them away and only 1 egg was harvested when the time came.
This time we are using Cetrotide, which is an antagonist. This means it competes with the normal hormone at the hormone receptors in my brain, and acts like a giant rock in the way, switching off the receptor by blocking it from binding to the hormone that would normally activate it to start the signalling cascade that causes ovulation.
Because of this difference in approach, this time around we started the “artificial” FSH injections *before* surpressing my own hormones signals with Cetrotide. But from a practical point of view not much has changed from last time around. The Cetrotide injections are a bit more involved, with multiple needles and a complicated faff of reconstituting the drug in the vial prior to injection. But otherwise it’s the same – two injections a day, and being scanned twice a week to see if my follicles are responding and growing.
So far, they are not.
My next scan is Tuesday. We’re on our third dose increase now and I’m feeling a bit sore in my tummy, but I’m not sure if this is because follicles are growing, or just down to the Cetrotide injections in my abdomen, which are quite ouchy.
I feel less hopeful this time around. Somehow that’s easier. I suppose I’m less naive about what can go wrong and all the grey areas along the way. I’m not expecting to be wowed by follicular growth at the scans. This means I’m less disappointed. But as things haven’t started growing yet, I can’t help but feel that we’re just repeating the same pattern again. Obviously I know there’s no way to know this at this stage, but sitting there in the same waiting room, on the same days of the week, seeing the same staff, and having the same response in each scan so far, it’s hard to see how the outcome is going to be any different this time.
Toby is much more aware of what’s going on than he was last April. So he’s told daddy off a few times for giving mummy the injections, he’s also been chief nurse – holding the needle caps for daddy, and he’s been the doctor in charge, overseeing things with plastic doctors’ kit in-hand. And he knows these injections are to help mummy try to have a baby in her tummy. We didn’t see any point in lying to him about it.
He may well now think this is how all babies are made…