PCOS & Recurrent Pregnancy Loss: Elisha’s Story [SUCCESS]

February 17, 2020

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Today’s success story is about a woman named Elisha. She is a 25-year-old paralegal who enjoys spending time with her family, friends, and dogs. After only 1 month of trying to conceive, Elisha sought out a referral to a reproductive endocrinologist. Diagnostic testing revealed she had PCOS, and her husband had mild motility issues. Additionally, once she learned she was positive for BRCA1, they decided to do IVF with PGT-D. After 3 retrievals, she did an ERA, which found she was 24 hours pre-receptive. Then she did 1 more retrieval before her first frozen transfer. Unfortunately, that cycle resulted in a miscarriage. Her doctor repeated the ERA and confirmed the original recommendation was correct. She had a polyp surgically removed and transferred another embryo. Although she became pregnant again, it ended in a missed miscarriage. After seeking out a second opinion, her doctor repeated the ERA a third time, which again confirmed the earlier results. Join us to hear how Elisha did one more frozen transfer with a full immune protocol and finally got her take-home baby.

Episode Sponsor:

Infertility Coaching with Heather Huhman

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Before infertility, Elisha was always goal-oriented
  • How she and her husband met through online dating
  • As a couple, they balance each other and work well together
  • How Elisha realized that she wanted to be a mom
  • How decisions about meeting a life partner and choosing a career were affected by her overriding desire to be a mom
  • Because she had PCOS, Elisha asked her doctor for an immediate referral to a reproductive endocrinologist
  • When diagnostic testing showed the BRCA1 gene mutation, Elisha teamed up with Cooper Genomics
  • The first retrieval produced seven PGS normal embryos, and the second retrieval produced two normal embryos
  • Elisha started vitamins, supplements, and lifestyle changes recommended in the book, It Starts with the Egg, by Rebecca Fett
  • At the third retrieval, nine embryos were normal, and two were of the highest quality, which they didn’t have before
  • Elisha asked for an ERA before doing a transfer, and the results showed that she was 24 hours pre-receptive
  • At the fourth retrieval, eight embryos were normal; they now had 26 normal embryos total and were feeling confident
  • The first transfer in August 2018 resulted in a chemical pregnancy
  • Elisha asked for a repeat ERA, along with asking Cooper Genomics to add a report about mosaicism in the frozen embryos
  • Elisha asked for a hysteroscopy, which showed a polyp that was removed; her ERA results were unchanged
  • She saw a reproductive immunologist and then had the second transfer, along with beginning hypnotherapy; she got a positive pregnancy test, but then no heartbeat, so a D & C followed
  • Elisha’s puzzlement when the products of conception showed chromosomal abnormalities in a “normal” PGT-D embryo
  • When Elisha sought a second opinion, the new RE said they had some “bad luck” and that they should try again
  • With a new immunology protocol, Elisha asked for another ERA, which showed the same results as the others
  • On the third transfer, Elisha became pregnant and gave birth to a healthy little boy just days ago
  • How Elisha’s doctor suspected PCOS when she was 13, and that diagnosis was confirmed during her college years
  • The initial impression at the first clinic was positive, and she felt optimistic and hopeful; the clinic was close to her home, but she felt like they didn’t acknowledge her losses like she thought they should
  • How Elisha went through depression, and her doctor required her therapist to write a letter saying she was “mentally fit” for IVF
  • Why Elisha was determined to bank so many embryos before attempting a transfer
  • How hypnotherapy was a good experience for Elisha and focused on giving her the mindset to welcome a baby
  • Why Elisha asked for recurrent loss tests before she had even had miscarriages
  • Why Elisha chose to do preimplantation genetic testing at age 24
  • Elisha’s work with a Jewish association that reaches out to test for Jewish genetic diseases
  • Elisha’s mom’s condition today as she survives the BRCA1 mutation and ovarian cancer
  • Why Elisha will elect to lose her ovaries at age 35 to protect against ovarian cancer
  • Her husband’s motility issues and the recommended CoQ10 supplement
  • The lowest point for Elisha was after the products of conception showed abnormalities
  • A positive moment was the friendship that developed when Elisha met a friend at work who was also going through treatment
  • How Elisha was able to be open with co-workers and enjoy a very flexible work schedule
  • How Elisha’s relationship with her husband didn’t really change through their journey because they knew they would need help to build their family
  • How relationships with friends were challenging, even causing the loss of an old friend
  • In advocating for herself, Elisha learned to use her background to make insurance appeals
  • How infertility changed Elisha: “Infertility has made me less optimistic. Going into it, I thought that first transfer would work, but it reminded me that I have to work harder to get what others have.”
  • Elisha’s advice to her past self: “Go to a reproductive immunologist earlier.”

References:

Thanks for listening!

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