Tubal Factor, DOR & Recurrent Loss: Ashley’s Story [SUCCESS]

August 17, 2020

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Today’s success story is about a woman named Ashley. She is a 33-year-old senior resource manager who enjoys exercising and traveling. Ashley’s journey was difficult from the start. Over a year of trying to conceive, she got pregnant twice but miscarried both times. She had a D&C after the first, and an ectopic pregnancy with the second. A year later, she had her first round of IVF, which yielded 3 embryos. She transferred 2 of her Day 3 embryos and became pregnant with twins. Her twins were born at 35 weeks, but sadly, one of them passed away shortly after birth. She transferred her remaining embryo about 6 months ago, which resulted in another miscarriage. Join us to hear how Ashley and her husband will begin their second IVF cycle shortly in an attempt to have another child.

Episode Sponsor:

Infertility Coaching with Heather Huhman

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Before infertility, Ashley was a type-A person who was impatient and wanted control over everything
  • How she met her husband while they both were dating other people, but it wasn’t long before they got together and became inseparable
  • As a couple, they are a fun, energetic team and enjoy many of the same things
  • How kids were always part of Ashley’s plan, but she realized things don’t always go according to plan
  • When they started trying to conceive Ashley tracked her cycles and saw a naturopath about her short luteal phase
  • She began progesterone suppositories and got pregnant two months later; bleeding led to a miscarriage at ten weeks and a D&C
  • How she decided to consult a reproductive endocrinologist and got on the one-year waiting list
  • More tests revealed Ashley’s diminished ovarian reserve and her husband’s low morphology
  • When their goal became improving his sperm morphology and her egg quality to boost their chances, they made lifestyle changes, took supplements, and Ashley did acupuncture
  • How Ashley felt optimistic when her RE consented to Letrozole, and she was pregnant again in a couple of months
  • Sharp pains sent Ashley to the hospital, and the ultrasound showed no gestational sac and a confirmed ectopic pregnancy
  • After the surgery was scheduled to remove the tube, heavy bleeding led to a natural miscarriage; six weeks later there was strange spotting, another positive pregnancy test, and a miscarriage a few days later
  • Because of Ashley’s suspicious tubes, she had the laparoscopy, but the other tube was removed because of a hydrosalpinx
  • The first IVF cycle was in January 2018, and they were prepared for low egg numbers
  • With three good embryos, two were transferred at Day 3; even though Ashley was bleeding, tests confirmed two sacs and a suspicious hemorrhage
  • Weekly ultrasounds kept Ashley feeling optimistic, and they saw both heartbeats; both babies were found to be girls
  • When they went to a clinic for 3-D pictures, the technician suspected a problem with one of the babies, and a later ultrasound showed anencephaly, where the top portion of the brain was not present, making this baby “not compatible with life”
  • The devastating news was the lowest point for Ashley; they were given abortion options but didn’t want to endanger the other baby
  • An amniocentesis showed that Baby B was healthy, so they carried forward with the pregnancy and decided to let nature take its course
  • After a good pregnancy, Ashley went into labor at 35 weeks and delivered two baby girls; one lived four hours, and the other was healthy and perfect
  • How Ashley felt at peace in the overwhelm of the four hours of her daughter’s life but was thankful for the sweet time they had as a family of four
  • How they started talking about having another child, had an HSG test to check Ashley’s tubes, and then started trying naturally
  • How they were able to move forward with a relaxed mindset, taking things day by day
  • In January 2020, they transferred their last remaining embryo, and Ashley became pregnant until massive bleeding signaled a miscarriage at six weeks
  • They planned another IVF cycle for April–and then COVID-19 hit, and their clinic closed; the clinic is now open, so they plan the next IVF for the end of this summer
  • Ashley’s tips for staying positive: “Research any bad news you receive so you can learn more and wrap your head around it. Try to connect with other families who are facing the same issues.”
  • Why Ashley and her husband decided to pursue another round of IVF
  • How infertility has changed Ashley: “I’m more patient and relaxed now, and I can see the bigger picture. I feel that I can function better now as a person and a wife. I’m happier overall, I have my daughter, and life is good.”
  • Ashley’s advice to her past self: “Don’t be so hard on yourself. This isn’t your fault or something you could control.”

References:

Thanks for listening!

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