I've touched on some of our diagnoses in the past but I figured now is as good of a time as any to fill y'all in on exactly what we are dealing with in this battle. We are one of those lucky couples..the kind where both The Coach and myself have infertility problems. Double trouble, right? I'll start with him..
So since we knew of my history of ovarian cysts, at the start of this journey, we just assumed that that was our issue. Our one and only. Ahhh to be so naive. At our initial appointment with our RE The Coach had to give a ton of blood and had a Semen Analysis (SA) performed. Those results took a few days to come back but we thought for sure there wouldn't be an issue. I was the issue, The Coach was not. Well, when we finally heard back on the results of the SA we were a little shocked. His overall count was good (30 million)..above average and well within the "normal range" at our clinic. Check! His motility was great (64%). Check! His morphology on the other hand, was low. His was at 9% and our clinic wanted to see at least 14%. Hmmm..doesn't seem so bad right? Essentially the morphology is the size and shape of sperm. So, with The Coach's results, that meant only 9% of the sperm in his sample were correctly shaped and sized. He had enough players to play the game but instead of bringing the football team to the game, he brought the baseball team. Lots of athletes just not the right size and shape. You get my drift. The RE wanted to do a few follow up SAs..just because the results can change so drastically. In his repeat SAs we only saw his morph go down (7% and 4%). The Coach was on all types of vitamins and supplements and he'd even cut back on his beer intake and his steamy hot showers. All things our RE recommended.
Well, after we got the SA that showed 4% morph, I made an appointment with a urologist that specializes in Male Factor Infertility. When The Coach went to his first appointment with her she diagnosed him with a double vericocele within minutes. A vericocele is an enlargement of the veins within the scrotum. It can affect the sperm which causes MFI. She recommended a double vericocele repair surgery. She had an opening the following week. The Coach went under the knife the last week in August 2009 to have this repaired. His post-surgery SAs have shown a much higher morphology (pretty much normal) and his count--which was never low to begin with--has went up as well. Surgery has been deemed successful. That said, I still consider us to have MFI because no one knows how long these increased numbers will last. Hopefully it is permanent but we won't know for sure.
The Coach's Wife
Now on to my laundry list of problems. First of all, we all know of my huge cysts. I've had to have them removed via surgery. Most have been about the size of a cantaloupe. During my first ultrasound with my RE, the u/s tech thought that I had PCOS like ovaries. PCOS typically shows lots of small follies/cysts in a "string of pearl" type pattern. This isn't really the case for me though. Unless I have a large cyst, I don't have any cysts. And I never have lots of follies at my baseline ultrasounds. My Nurse Practitioner, who performs my ultrasounds at my RE's satellite office, isn't convinced. So I potentially have PCOS. Hasn't been confirmed. Isn't totally being denied. On top of that, I also had some disappointing results from my Cycle Day 3 blood work. My FSH levels are high. Not necessarily truly high but they are high for my age. So now really is our best time to try to conceive because in a few years, it will likely be too high. My clinic isn't super concerned about my FSH level because, like I said, it still is technically within the normal range for now, but because of my age, it is a huge concern for the future.
Back in July of 2009 I had my HSG done and I wasn't expecting to have any issues arise from that test. After all, my problems are with my ovaries not my tubes or uterus. Wrong again. The HSG showed some sort of mass in my uterus. It needed to be removed by surgery. Another surgery. Again. Hysteroscopy, D&C, and polypectomy. My surgery was scheduled for two days after The Coach's vericocele repair surgery. The mass was removed but the results were inconclusive. It wasn't a polyp..just some type of mass. I also have hostile/lacking CM. This was discovered through a post-coital test. This was not the least bit surprising to me since I've never had CM..I honestly didn't even know what it was. Because of those results, TI will likely never work for us. Thus the continuing IUIs.
Those are all of our issues. That we know of. For now. I never feel confident that something else won't pop up..it is rare for us to get good news/results so I'm always waiting for the next shoe to drop. What a way to live, huh?
And...tomorrow is a big, exciting day! I have my first day of monitoring tomorrow for this cycle. Hopefully I have 2-3 good follies and have not yet ovulated. If you have any good vibes or thoughts to spare, I could use them! I'm a little panicked about what tomorrow may bring. But also excited and hopeful that all will go well! T-24 hours...