Uterine Septum: Arielle’s Story [JOURNEY]

July 22, 2019

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Today’s journey story is about a woman named Arielle. She is a 30-year-old entrepreneur who enjoys traveling. Before they started trying to conceive, her OB/GYN told her to come back in 6 months if she still wasn’t pregnant. After a few unsuccessful months, she started tracking her cycles. When she had a chemical pregnancy a few months later, she knew something wasn’t right and returned to her doctor. An HSG revealed she had a large uterine septum. After it was corrected, her doctor once again said they should have no trouble getting pregnant. They eventually moved on to three cycles of IUI, one of which resulted in another chemical pregnancy. It was time for IVF. Their first cycle resulted in 2 PGT normal embryos. Because they were worried about having only 2, they did a second IVF cycle with the same results. Join us to hear how Arielle has since undergone testing by a reproductive immunologist — and what’s coming up next in her journey.

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What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Before infertility, Arielle was outgoing and had a big type-A personality
  • How she met her husband in college through mutual friends
  • As a couple, they are partners in every sense of the word, and they help each other through thick and thin
  • How motherhood always felt like a natural part of who Arielle is
  • How infertility has impacted many decisions, travel plans, and finances
  • When they tried to conceive for a few months, Arielle had a gut feeling that something was wrong, so she started tracking her cycles
  • When she had her first chemical pregnancy, she went back to her Ob, who ordered the HSG and discovered her uterine septum
  • Arielle found a reproductive endocrinologist who said she shouldn’t have trouble conceiving after the septum removal
  • After several timed intercourse cycles with no success, they moved to IUI
  • The 2nd IUI resulted in another chemical pregnancy, and then IVF was recommended
  • While Arielle and her husband were figuring out the details of IVF, they did a 3rd IUI cycle
  • The first IVF yielded 18 eggs, but only two were genetically normal
  • The 2nd IVF yielded only eight eggs, and again, only two were normal
  • One embryo was transferred, and Arielle had her 3rd chemical pregnancy
  • After extensive tests, Arielle pursued reproductive immunology
  • Detailed blood work revealed a gene mutation that can result in blood clots and recurrent loss
  • AS they moved from NYC to Boston, she became pregnant spontaneously—and they were elated
  • The first ultrasound showed the possibility of an angular pregnancy, which is risky and similar to an ectopic pregnancy, but the follow-up ultrasound gave better results until there was no heartbeat at seven weeks
  • Now they look forward to their next transfer in September
  • Why Arielle never had an ERA test but is considering talking to her doctor about it
  • Her fertility clinic in NYC was an entirely positive experience from start to finish, and she loved the doctor and the team
  • How Arielle felt about the diagnoses she received
  • The lowest point was her recent miscarriage after the move to Boston
  • How Arielle moves forward in her work with CoFertility as she helps others feel “less lost”
  • How the excitement of the positive pregnancy test was a complete and unexpected miracle
  • Why she wanted to transition careers and create CoFertility
  • The fertility questions that Arielle had that CoFertility answers for other women
  • Why the infertility community still needs access to reliable information
  • Why it was difficult to balance work and treatment, but Arielle’s advice is to be honest with your work team about what you’re experiencing
  • Why it was tough to work out the finances of treatment when their insurance in NY had a $10K lifetime maximum infertility coverage; in MA, six IVF rounds are mandated with insurance coverage
  • How Arielle’s relationship with her husband has grown stronger and more supportive
  • How friends and family have been supportive, but they don’t always understand the struggles of infertility
  • What’s next for Arielle? She looks forward to the 2nd IVF transfer of a frozen embryo in early September, the first try with a full medication protocol

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