Unexplained Infertility: Meaghan’s Story [SUCCESS]

December 3, 2018

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Today’s success story is about a woman named Meaghan. She is a 38-year-old reproductive endocrinologist who enjoys reading, going to the beach, and spending time with her family. While she was finishing up her OB/GYN residency and about to embark on her reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellowship, she became pregnant but miscarried at about 6 weeks. She tried IUI twice but neither worked, all while struggling to keep her battle with infertility a secret from her colleagues. At that point, she moved on to IVF. Her first cycle, she only had two day 5 blasts and decided to transfer both. She became pregnant with twins but went into labor at 29 weeks. Thankfully, they are happy and healthy today but both spent a considerable amount of time in the NICU. Join us to hear how Meaghan returned to IVF several years later, this time transferring only one embryo, which resulted in her son.

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What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Before infertility, Meaghan was busy with her residency, but says life seemed easier then
  • She met her husband when they were in pre-med classes together at UNC-Chapel Hill
  • As a couple, they have become stronger together, with her husband being the logical and calm one in the relationship
  • Having kids was a logical next step that she wanted even more when infertility struck
  • How she found out she was pregnant during her residency, but a scan showed no heartbeat at about 8 weeks
  • How she went on letrozole and had two IUI’s through the clinic where she worked
  • When she moved forward to IVF, she went to a different private clinic to avoid embarrassment with her colleagues
  • Although they planned to transfer a single embryo, the doctor recommended putting both the good one and the lower quality one in together
  • She became pregnant and had twin girls at 29 weeks via C-section; they went to the NICU for several weeks
  • Since they wanted another child, they did IVF again two years later
  • The first IVF cycle failed, but she got pregnant with her son on the second cycle–and he was born full-term at 39 weeks
  • In the beginning, it was irregular periods that signaled to Meaghan that something was wrong
  • Eventually they had all tests done, and the diagnosis was unexplained infertility, poor egg quality, and suspected endometriosis
  • Why Meaghan chose to be an REI
  • How personal experience impacts how Meaghan approaches her practice with her patients today
  • The lowest point for Meaghan was the pre-term delivery and NICU stay of the twins and the fact that she went back to work too soon
  • Getting the courage to have another baby before too much time went by
  •  A positive moment of getting pregnant on the first try at IVF
  • Balancing residency and fertility treatments with supportive co-fellows in the residency program
  • How her relationship with her husband grew closer and stronger because of infertility
  • Why Meaghan kept things private and didn’t share their journey with many friends and family
  • How her parents offered to help with financial costs of treatment
  • How infertility changed Meaghan: “Infertility made me realize that I can’t control things in my life. Infertility was a huge blow that was hard to deal with. I realized I had to grow and build myself as a person.”
  • Meaghan’s advice to herself back then: “Calm down about the process, realize you can’t control it, and listen to the doctors.”

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