My CCRM IVF Journey

Our successful journey through IVF #2 at one of the world's top fertility clinics

Archive for the ‘Chromosome Testing (CCS)’ Category

Treatment Recap Links

Posted by auntiem10 on February 3, 2011

Below I’ve added links to my recaps of the major components of an IVF cycle with CCS testing, Depot Lupron treatment, and an FET. I thought having these links in one spot might provide a clearer picture of what to expect from cycling at CCRM, but you can also click one of the Categories on the right pane of this page to see more.

Our One-Day Work-Up Experience

Instructions for shipping CD 3 bloodwork to CCRM

A recap of all test results, at the ODWU and locally

My IVF calendar

My Egg Retrieval Experience

Our Day 6 Biopsy Report

Our CCS Results

My FET Calendar

My Frozen Embryo Transfer Experience

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), Egg Retrieval, Embryo Transfer, FET, FET Calendars, IVF Calendars, IVF Take Two, Testing | 8 Comments »

Gambling on a Singleton

Posted by auntiem10 on December 6, 2010

The biggest decision we’ve made recently is that we have decided to transfer only one blast next month. We’ve waffled back and forth over this for months. I made it official this week by emailing our wishes to our IVF nurse, and when I pressed Send, I felt a great sense of peace. And here are all the factors that influenced our decision…

When we set out to cycle at CCRM, our driving goal was to achieve the best possible odds for pregnancy. We decided to pay extra for CCS testing because we wanted to weed out embryos with chromosomal abnormalities. I went through the Depot Lupron treatment without even having an endometrial biopsy because I wanted to feel confident that I possessed the beta-3 integrins needed for implantation. We wanted to do an FET instead of a fresh cycle in order to allow all the IVF meds to leave my body. We sought the best lab, made sure they vitrified for the best possible thawing, and never even discussed transferring less than two CCS normal blasts. We were aiming for that 80% success rate (that at least one would stick). Our attitude was: We would rather have twins than fail this cycle.

But last month, our decision to transfer two suddenly did not feel so clear-cut. The silver lining to this excruciating wait is that I’ve been able to observe a lot of other CCRM patients’ outcomes. There are A LOT of twin pregnancy outcomes lately. We were told at our genetic counseling session that 40% of women conceive twins after transferring two CCS normal blasts, but I am dubious about that relatively low number after seeing the successes of my fellow cyclers, just in my tiny corner of the world. Mylifechronicles, Maggie, Lindsay, Susie (and I suspect running_girl because of her superhigh betas)… these are just a few of the CCRM patients who transferred two CCS normal blasts and saw two heartbeats at that first ultrasound. And there are many more out there… I just didn’t list them because they don’t have blogs. It appears to me that if your CCS normal blasts expand well after thawing, you have a ton of reason to hope that twins are in your future.

I’ve written on here before about the fact that my husband is a triplet, a product of unmonitored Clomid cycles. Although he and his siblings are healthy now, they had a rough start to life. Whereas I’ve always thought it would be cute to have twins, he’s always been nervous about multiples. And when one of my fellow CCRM cyclers conceived triplets recently (and then sadly lost the identical twins) after transferring two CCS normal blasts, it is safe to say that the hubby became very alarmed. I asked my IVF nurse about the odds for conceiving triplets after transferring two, and she replied with 2%. So even though the risk is small, it is there. And this is what brought us to re-evaluate our original decision to transfer two.

Huge Factor #2 is the fact that I was born with a genetic bone disease and have a 50% chance of passing it on. As an adult, this disorder has a minimal impact on me (loose joints have required three knee surgeries), but as a newborn and through puberty, I had quite a few breaks and fractures. My collagen is normal quality, but there just isn’t enough of it to keep my bones from being fragile.

It is possible to identify this gene mutation via PGD and rule out affected embryos, but we had to choose between that or CCS testing (which identifies chromosomal abnormalities). And after hearing our former RE insist that I possess zero chromosomally normal eggs (and hearing Dr. Surrey agree that lack of blood supply could have damaged my eggs during my laparotomy), we had to go for CCS testing over PGD. After all, what good is an embryo without my bone disease if it’s not going to stick anyway?

I was so focused on getting through the first part of this process and actually having CCS normals of decent quality, I really never spent time pondering what it would be like to have twins, one or both of whom may inherit this bone disorder. I’m sure healthy twins are a big enough challenge… now add casts and scary emergency room trips into the mix. I started realizing that transferring two could be a really terrifying situation and suddenly felt like it would be irresponsible to transfer two.

Another factor, honestly, is the stability of our marriage. Divorce rates are higher with multiples, as well as for parents of children with chronic health issues. So far, we’ve weathered the storm of infertility without marital issues. But for the sake of our marriage, I feel that transferring one gives us a better chance of maintaining that strong connection with one another. My hubby remembers his parents struggling financially with triplets, and it led to some discord between them (although their marriage is strong now). We wouldn’t choose to put ourselves in a similar situation (with the additional cost/concern of the bone disease), so that is Factor #3.

Since we started this process, I’ve been underestimating myself. I had convinced myself that this FET cycle will destroy me if it fails. We were originally planning to transfer two because I felt that I needed the best possible odds to avoid being devastated by a negative outcome. When you’re desperate for a child and spending so much money, an 80% success rate (from transferring two) sounds so much better than 60% (from transferring only one). But at some point during this long wait, I’ve realized that I’m stronger than I’m giving myself credit for. It will be very difficult if this fails, without a doubt, but it’s not like I’m just going to fall on the ground and never get back up. The pain of our first IVF failure was bad, but as you can see, we overcame and are enjoying life again. Plus, this time we are so extremely fortunate to still have four high-quality CCS normal blasts waiting for us–a gift we never expected. Acknowledging my inner strength and knowing that more chances await has helped me to feel more comfortable with a single embryo transfer.

There are other, more minor reasons, but these are the main factors that led us to this decision. In addition, Pie and Lisa have both elected to transfer only one CCS normal embryo and have had success, so that adds to my comfort level. I still can’t believe our decision flip-flopped like it did, but we are both at peace with the knowledge that an eSET is in our best interest on all fronts. Our lone blast could split into identicals, and we will be happy with twins if that happens, but we’re doing all we can to reduce our chance of multiples. And that just feels right to us.

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), FET | 9 Comments »

Trisomy 2

Posted by auntiem10 on October 25, 2010

The genetic counselor at CCRM recently told us that our lone abnormal blast (Embryo #3) had Trisomy 2. An extra copy of the second chromosome was found during PCR testing.

Chromosome #2 is the second-largest chromosome in the genetic code and contains 8% of the entire DNA in cells. The CCRM genetic counselor said that this embryo would likely never have survived implantation. Trisomy 2 mosaicism appears to be the outcome if the embryo does implant, and I wouldn’t recommend researching it. You will see some pretty terrible results and images.

This embryo was graded as a 6AB, one of the highest-rated blasts. I’m guessing it would have been chosen third in line for transfer, behind our 5AA and 6AA. I am very thankful we elected to add CCS testing!

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS) | 5 Comments »

Surprise Call from Dr. Surrey

Posted by auntiem10 on October 23, 2010

Earlier this week, I was leaving work when my cell phone lit up. I was surprised to see CCRM on my Caller ID and even more surprised that the caller was Dr. Surrey. My first thought was that they mistakenly gave us the wrong CCS results! : ) But actually, he was calling to give me our results, not realizing that I had already received a phone call last week. I was happy that he called so I could get his perspective on our chances for pregnancy.

He seemed very impressed at the number of normals that resulted from our six blasts. Apparently, he only expected 30-40% to be normal. I’m not sure if he was basing this prediction off general statistics or his personal thoughts about our cycle. He also seemed very impressed by our grading. Apparently, our best CCS normal blast is the 5AA (which he called “a perfect Day 5 blast”) and our second-best blast is the 6AA (which he called “a perfect Day 6 blast”). He did mention that the 6AA has hatched out of its shell before vitrification, so it will be more delicate during the thawing process. Hopefully it will survive!

He asked whether we had decided how many embryos to transfer (one or two), and I asked him about our chances of twins based on the grades of our embryos. He said if we transfer one embryo, we have a 60% chance of that one embryo implanting. If we transfer two, we have an 80% chance of at least one sticking. The current twin pregnancy rate with two CCS normal embryos hovers around 40%.

I told him that although we aren’t seeking twins, we are leaning more towards transferring two simply for the increased odds of a pregnancy. If both embryos stick, we’re going to have a temporary freak-out, but we would rather have two children than no children after this FET. Dr. Surrey agreed with our decision and asked me to just tell our nurse if our plans change. We will transfer the 5AA (Embryo #15) and 6AA (Embryo #20). As long as there is at least one heartbeat at that first u/s, we will be absolutely overjoyed.

Then he asked if we had received an FET date. I told him 1/21/11 and he said jokingly, “Okay, I’ll try to be there for that.” I guess even though you may not see your doctor at all during your IVF cycle at CCRM, they do try their best to perform your embryo transfer. If he is there, then great, but if not, then no big deal. Any of the doctors there can handle it, I’m sure!

We discussed the dates of the depot lupron injections and the lead-up to the FET, and with that, our conversation concluded. He seemed very optimistic for us!

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), Dr Surrey, FET | 8 Comments »

Our CCS Results Are Already In!!!

Posted by auntiem10 on October 15, 2010

Wow, this has been one exciting day in my world, and one of the happiest days of my life. I awoke this morning with a terrible headache–like, the kind where it hurts even to move your eyeballs from side to side. At lunchtime, I realized AF had started, so I guess my headache was hormone-related. Since today is CD 1, I needed to set up the Depot Lupron stuff. I spent an hour coordinating shipment of the first injection, so I’ll be going to my local RE’s office to receive the injection on Sunday morning. Hot flashes, here I come! That was Exciting Development #1!

Then came Exciting Development #2. My wonderful CCRM nurse called to discuss faxing orders for the injection to my local RE’s office. She asked if I had received the CCS results yet, and I told her we were expecting to wait another week. As it turns out, the results were already available, and she was so excited to tell me!

5/6 embryos are chromosomally NORMAL!!!!!

Wow, I am still beaming 30 minutes later. Sixteen months ago, we were sitting in our local RE’s office, crying as we sat in an u/s room, listening to someone else’s baby’s heartbeat in the next room while we waited for the u/s that would confirm our chemical pregnancy. Fifteen months ago, the same RE advised us to consider a donor egg cycle because she felt I possessed no chromosomally normal eggs and it would be the fastest way “from point A to point B.” And today, here we sit, with these amazing results that FAR EXCEEDED our wildest expectations. 

We are SO thankful that we turned to CCRM for help. It was a pain in the butt to sit in limbo for over a year while we threw as much money into savings each paycheck as we could in order to cycle there. From our perspective, CCRM was worth every penny!

Embryo #1: Fertilized abnormally
Embryo #2: Made it to early blast stage, but wasn’t good enough quality to grade or biopsy
Embryo #3: Day 6 blast, Graded 6AB; very expanded and already hatching  ((ABNORMAL))
Embryo #4: Didn’t develop after fertilization
Embryo #5: Day 6 blast, Graded 6BA; looks very similar to Embryo #3  ((NORMAL))
Embryo #6: Didn’t develop after fertilization
Embryo #7: Fertilized abnormally
Embryo #8: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #9: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #10: Degenerate and poor quality
Embryo #11: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #12: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #13: Day 6 blast, Graded 6BA; expanded and hatching  ((NORMAL))
Embryo #14: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #15: Day 5 blast, Graded 5AA; hatching  ((NORMAL))
Embryo #16: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #17: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #18: Did not pass the cleavage stage
Embryo #19: Poor quality
Embryo #20: Day 6 blast, Graded 6AA  ((NORMAL))
Embryo #21: Day 6 blast, Graded 5BA  ((NORMAL))
Embryo #22: Did not pass the cleavage stage

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), IVF Take Two | 16 Comments »

Feedback from Fertility Lab Insider

Posted by auntiem10 on October 14, 2010

Earlier this year, I found the blog Fertility Lab Insider. Carole Wegner, PhD writes blog entries covering some of the ins and outs of infertility and IVF labs. Having a great interest in all things medical, I feel like her posts have given me a porthole into what happens in an IVF laboratory. Check it out, if you haven’t already!

I’ve been curiously searching the Internet for information about embryos with a grading of “6” and have found very little. The CCRM embryologist told me that the designation means the embryos are very expanded and already hatched or hatching at the time of vitrification. I was so dazed by the results, I failed to ask her whether this is actually a good thing, or if hatching too early can have a detrimental effect on embryos. Mo left me a comment (very much appreciated), explaining that occasionally embryos with a grade of “6” don’t make it through the thaw, but otherwise I couldn’t find much info online. Searching for success stories didn’t lead me to many results. So I reached out to Carole and asked about her experience with blastocysts that have hatched in the lab. I posted her response below. I thought perhaps others searching for similar information in the future might find it helpful.

(Posted with Carole’s permission):

The “6s” designation is a new one for me (maybe CRRM specific scoring?) but if it means hatching blastocyst  on day 5, then the good news is that your embryos are progressive and not stalling out. Hatching is the process whereby the embryo shrugs off the zona pellucida like a coat it doesn’t need anymore. It must hatch in order to implant so hatching is a good thing.  To biopsy the embryo, an opening is made in the zona pellucida  to pull out the sample cell(s) and this opening can sometimes hasten hatching. (Making a hole in the zona was used before biopsy existed as a technique to “assist hatching’ of day 3 embryos.)

The shell is handy when they are being picked up in the catheter or other handling tools, but not absolutely necessary to their survival at this point.  It just means that they need extra special care in handling until they are placed in your uterus. (CRRM has some of the best, if not the best pregnancy rates in the country (as per CDC rates) so they have certainly encountered and had to handle hatched embryos before with success– that is also good news!)  We have had pregnancies from embryos that hatched in the lab before we could get them back to Mom so be happy at this point and don’t rule them out. I don’t have any statistics but it certainly wasn’t the end of the road if they hatched in the lab.

I know this waiting time is so hard but be cheered by all the hurdles your embryos have jumped over already- fertilization- early cleavage- biopsy- development to blastocyst and now hatching. They are on target so far.

Wishing you a positive beta and a healthy baby!!!

Carole

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS) | 4 Comments »

The Next Two-Week Waits

Posted by auntiem10 on October 12, 2010

It’s been a few days since my last post… I think I’m kind of coming down from the “high” that came with traveling to Denver, stimming, retrieving all those eggs, and then waiting for the day 6 report. I still can’t quite believe that we ended up with such good results! Although we were very much hoping for at least five blasts to biopsy, we never dreamed that they would receive such high grading. Not bad for two people who were told 18 months ago locally that we should move on to a DE cycle! : ) There’s no doubt in my mind that the expertise of CCRM’s lab, as well as a carefully chosen protocol selected by Dr. Surrey, played a huge part in our success up to this point.

So now, we’re in two different two-week waits, the most significant of which is for the report that will indicate if any of our six blasts are chromosomally normal. A technique called “polymerase chain reaction” (PCR) is used by CCRM’s lab to determine how many copies of each chromosome is found for the embryo. This technique has been perfected by CCRM’s lab personnel during the past several years, but has only recently become their primary method for testing embryos. A “normal” embryo has two copies of each chromosome–one inherited from the mother, and one inherited from the father. When an embryo has more or less than two copies of a certain chromosome, then a miscarriage or serious illness may occur. If you choose to have your embryos undergo CCS testing, then CCRM only transfers chromosomally normal embryos, or embryos for which testing showed “no result” (meaning the testing was inconclusive but also did not indicate chromosomal abnormalities). If an embryo is reported as “no result,” the patient can have it retested or choose for or against transferring it. This information was all explained to us during our genetic consult.

Recently, the wait from the Day 6 report until the “normals” report had only been taking about two weeks. However, the embryologist let me know that the results may take a little longer currently because of the demand for this technology. I’m still counting down the days as if it’s a two-week wait, because once we hit the two-week mark, the news may arrive at any time. Eleven days to go!

I’m honestly much calmer with this wait than I was with our day 6 report. Perhaps I’ll become more nervous as the days pass, but psychologically, I felt the day 6 report was the biggest hurdle we would face during this process. I knew my body was capable of making lots of eggs, but I wasn’t sure we could make blasts, especially any of good quality. It is definitely possible that all six of our blasts could be chromosomally abnormal, but I finally feel the teeniest bit optimistic. And that feels pretty good!

The other two-week wait I’m going through currently is the wait for my lovely AF. I was told that I could expect her about two weeks after the egg retrieval. Once she does show up, I will have my first of two Depot Lupron injections at my local RE’s office. The second injection will be scheduled for 30 days after the first. This medicine will put my body into menopause for 60 days (read: hot flashes), and in the process it will work its magic on my uterine lining so that I will have the sticky proteins needed for implantation. Lack of these proteins (beta 3 integrins) is sometimes associated with moderate to severe endometriosis. So even though I didn’t have the endometrial biopsy to test for the sticky proteins due to a mix-up, Dr. Surrey decided to take a “better safe than sorry” approach because of my history and encouraged us to do the Depot Lupron treatment anyway. I don’t have insurance coverage for this medication, and it is expensive–$754.99 per injection. Yuck! But if it works, it will be worth it a million times over!

No AF yet, but that’s okay. I’m perfectly content to be free of injections, bleeding, and hormonal side effects for the time being! : )

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), Daring to Hope, Depot Lupron, IVF Take Two | 2 Comments »

Keep the Good News Coming (Fert Report)

Posted by auntiem10 on October 4, 2010

Dr. John (CCRM embryologist) called this morning. Out of the 24 eggs retrieved yesterday, 22 were mature, and 19 fertilized with ICSI. That’s an 86% fertilization rate, which is a little above average for their lab. We are happy!!!!!!! This feels like the second hurdle cleared.

However, for us, the most critical hurdle is yet to come. Last year we had a great number of eggs retrieved (16), a great number of mature follicles (14), and a pretty good number of embryos (13) initially thanks to a great fertilization rate (93%). We were very optimistic that we would have not only two awesome blasts to transfer, but also a few to freeze. Then on Day 4, something terrible happened in the local lab, and all but two embryos arrested. By Day 5, we had only one okay-looking blast and one okay-looking morula remaining. And the result was a biochemical pregnancy. Our local RE determined that I possess no chromosomally normal eggs. The embryologist was totally befuddled and didn’t have any suggestions. So without any obvious ideas to improve our odds for the next attempt, we instead went to the Big Guns. Now is the time when CCRM’s lab will hopefully show us what they’re made of! They obviously can’t make blasts out of crappy eggs, but our hope is that this slower protocol and more reputable lab will make all the difference for us. If not, we agree that we’ve done everything we can.

The embryologist from yesterday said that we’ll probably hear the next report on Saturday, which would be Day 6. At that time, they’ll let us know how many embryos were biopsied for CCS testing. The genetic counselor told us that statistically, half of the embryos that fertilize in the lab become blasts, and half of those blasts test “normal.” If our embryos follow suit, we may have 4-5 normals left at the end of this. If I really do have terrible egg quality, then we may only have a couple. Our hope is that we have at least 2-3 normal embryos at the end of this process. Anything less would be terribly disappointing, and anything more will leave us totally ecstatic. This is going to be a long week!

Today I’m feeling sore, like I did a million sit-ups yesterday. We’re working on unpacking, doing loads of laundry, grocery shopping, giving our dogs some attention, and putting our house back in order. We just traveled to the airport to pick up my car after a six-day stay in the parking lot. Tomorrow I’ll recap yesterday’s retrieval for those of you who haven’t gone through an ER at CCRM yet. And as the week progresses, I’ll post some pictures from sighteseeing during our last few days in Denver!

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), IVF Take Two | 13 Comments »

Back in Stirrups

Posted by auntiem10 on September 30, 2010

This morning we headed in for another ultrasound at CCRM. Today is my eighth day of stims. I wasn’t very happy with the u/s tech today; she didn’t really share any details with me and rushed me right on out of there, ignoring my questions along the way. I mentioned to the nurse that I would appreciate a little more information, and she gave me the report that the nurses receive after the u/s. This document had way more detail.

My left ovary has 6-8 follicles, along with 3 smaller ones that probably won’t make the cut at retrieval. The six that were measured today were 16.5mm, 14.5mm, 14mm, 14mm, 13mm, and 13mm.

My right ovary has 8-12 follicles, with the leading six measuring at 17mm, 17mm, 16.5mm, 15mm, 15mm, and 13mm. Even though it doesn’t matter because we’re doing a freeze-all, my lining is 12mm with a triple stripe pattern. This is good to know for later, when we get closer to the transfer. Everyone seems universally pleased with how everything is going for us. I then had my blood drawn and will receive those results this afternoon.

Then my DH went downstairs to provide his back-up sample, and I headed to the other side of the main lobby to check in for my IVF physical. First they weighed me, and then I was asked about the medications I’m taking. My temperature and blood pressure were recorded, and lastly they pricked my finger to test my iron. Then a nurse practitioner came in and asked me a few more questions about my medical history and then gave me the pre-op instructions. The only appointment lasted about 15 minutes and was no big deal.

Finally, I met up with my DH and we checked in for the genetic counseling session. A counselor named Danielle met with us, and she was fabulous. She was very thorough in her explanation of the process, and she made us feel at ease by getting to know us a little. Their current success rate for euploidy (normal) embryos is in the high 70s/low 80s. She told us that based on their statistics and our age, we can expect about 50% of the fertilized embryos to become blasts, and about 50% of the blasts to be “normal.” Overall, she sounded very optimistic, although she did let us know the risks and the possibilities that things might not go our way. We signed about as much paperwork as we did when we bought our house, and then we were done. She was nice enough to write down a few restaurant recommendations and talked to us about our plans while we’re here. I loved her!

We’re now heading out to grab some lunch and explore downtown Denver. Later this evening, I’ll update with tonight’s dosage instructions. At least from the follicle measurements, it seems like I still have at least a few days to go before triggering, but we’ll see what Dr. Surrey thinks! My calendar lists Saturday as the tentative trigger date, so we’ll see if that sticks. More later!

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), Follicle Scans, IVF Take Two, Testing | 5 Comments »

T-Minus 13

Posted by auntiem10 on August 2, 2010

It was a crazy weekend, but all of our plans kept me from obsessing too much about our upcoming IVF cycle. Some of my family was in town, and the minute they left, we headed over to my in-laws’ to celebrate DH’s grandma’s 73rd birthday.

My pregnant SIL was at my in-laws’, of course. She has a very thin frame, and I’m pretty sure her belly was looking a bit rounder already. It may have just been her shirt, though. Surprisingly, I didn’t feel devastated about being around her this time. I winced a bit when they referred to my MIL as “Grandma” once or twice, and when they happily discussed who will change diapers, but for the most part, I was okay. I guess the fact that I plunged the Lupron needle in my belly in their bathroom helped me get through it–I know that we’re moving forward, making progress, in our own quest to have a baby. We’re doing everything we can, and that has to be good enough right now.

Regarding my last post, I found out this morning that ICSI is NOT included in the costs of CCS testing. Thanks to everyone who provided feedback. The business office only told me our remaining balance today. I should have asked for the breakdown, but I was in a hurry to get to my next meeting. However, the letter we were originally sent (for a freeze-all cycle) included all of the costs related to the retrieval process–monitoring, bloodwork, nurses’ coordination time, ER costs, ICSI, etc. We just had to add $6850 onto that amount to figure out our final total. My panicked post yesterday was the result of thinking ICSI was not included in the letter we originally received from CCRM. We are definitely near the very tail-end of our budget, so I was glad that I was wrong!

Breakthrough bleeding stopped all day yesterday and then picked up again in the evening. I thought it had stopped completely and stupidly went to my in-laws’ house without an emergency liner. I went into the bathroom to inject the Lupron and realized that I had bled through my khaki shorts. Ugh. I made an excuse and had DH take me to the store, where I bought liners. The stain wasn’t visible to anyone else, thankfully. Crisis avoided–but lesson learned! So far today there has been zero spotting. Hopefully it’s gone for the rest of this week!

The Lupron injection went off without a hitch last night. I nonchalantly walked over to my purse and stuck the syringe (which I had pre-filled right before we left) in my pocket along with an alcohol pad, and then went into the bathroom. I’m not squeamish about sticking my belly, so I was in and out of there in under a minute. I’m due for the next one in 50 minutes!

 This morning I made all of our appointments at CCRM while we’re in Denver, assuming the dates on my calendar stick:

Monday: IVF physical, u/s + b/w, cycle review
Tuesday: u/s + b/w
Wednesday: u/s + b/w
Thursday: u/s + b/w, DH’s back-up freeze
Friday: u/s + b/w, genetic counseling
Saturday: u/s + b/w

Time is moving right along!

Posted in Cancelled IVF Cycle, Chromosome Testing (CCS), Money, Struggles | 4 Comments »

CCS Question

Posted by auntiem10 on August 1, 2010

Does anyone know if the cost of CCS ($6850) includes the cost of ICSI ($2600)? We are trying to figure out how the costs work out now that we’re adding chromosome screening to our plans. Is it just adding the $6850 to the package price ($12k)? I’m planning to call the business office tomorrow, but I’d appreciate your input!

Posted in Chromosome Testing (CCS), Money | 5 Comments »

I’d Like a Side of CCS with That, Please!

Posted by auntiem10 on July 29, 2010

The hubby and I experienced a mutual realization last night: we aren’t cut out for cycling at CCRM more than once. We have come to peace with the fact that this is our one and only shot. Based on this decision, we e-mailed our nurse last night and asked for approval to add Comprehensive Chromosome Screening (CCS) testing to our protocol.

Edited to add: This will be our last IVF cycle. But if we are lucky enough to have several normals, we will still cycle at CCRM in the future for an FET or two. Just wanted to clarify!

Sure, this will leave our savings account a little threadbare, but we want no regrets. When this cycle is over, we want to move on with our lives, one way or the other. We don’t feel like we can continue doing this to ourselves. I greatly admire you couples out there who have gone through numerous cycles, putting your lives on hold to try to achieve your goal. We feel spent already, and we haven’t even actually cycled yet! We simply feel that it’s unfair to continue pausing our lives, living on the bare minimum in order to save another $20K+ for a third cycle, and putting this kind of strain on ourselves. It’s not for us.

Therefore, we’re throwing everything we can at this cycle. Go big or go home. We were planning to do a freeze-all and do two months of Depot Lupron anyway, so the addition of CCS doesn’t impact our timeline. We’ll likely wait until early 2011 to transfer in order to rebound a little bit financially, but despite that delay, we feel that we’re making the best decision. Hopefully we’ll have some normals at the end of the day, but if not, we’ll save a lot of heartache + cash that would have come from transferring abnormals.

So that is our plan. I should hear from our nurse today about whether Dr. Surrey’s on board. He didn’t recommend CCS for us because we’re young and have normal test results, but we know that youth + normal test results doesn’t always equal good eggs. We did attend the initial genetic counseling appointment at our ODWU in April, so I can’t imagine he would be opposed.

We (Hubby + Me + our Bank Account) feel a lot lighter today! : )

Posted in Cancelled IVF Cycle, Chromosome Testing (CCS) | 8 Comments »