Archive for the ‘Lupron’ Category

A comment today on this post reminded me that there’s a bright side to being at the last resort after all. I mean, the last resort is Ganirelix. Which means? No Lupron.

Admittedly, I don’t know a lot of women who’ve done an antagonist protocol, and even fewer women who have done a Lupron protocol followed by an antagonist protocol (most women I know who’ve done ganirelix have simply started out there), so truthfully, I don’t really know how the side effects are going to compare. Maybe they’ll still suck. But I’m guessing that I’m not going to be describing headaches that slice through my head like a piece of broken glass. I mean, that was pretty graphic and gruesome, wasn’t it? Ick!

It’s bound to be better than that, right?

Admittedly, starting the Ganirelix protocol requires me getting my period at some point. And my dear, sweet period is still MIA, which, I must say, is definitely not amusing.

Honestly, there simply *must* be something interesting to say about waiting, but there just… isn’t.

Hey, so, have any of you out there used Ganirelix? More importantly, have any of you who have used Ganirelix also used Lupron in the past? How do they compare (specifically with regards to side effects)? I’m thinking of posting this question to the LFCA in my copious spare time, but, um, you all know about me and my copious spare time. I’ve got so little copious spare time that I haven’t even managed to put one of those handy dandy little buttons in my sidebar that says “post my news in the LFCA” which would make it super easy to just go and do it now, wouldn’t it? And in the space of time it took me to type this little paragraph about how I don’t have time to go post this in the LFCA, I could have popped it into Mel’s google spreadsheet. Or picked up the phone and called Mel and told her I’m too lazy to post it in the LFCA and could she please do it for me? But no. I’m not as industrious as Mel. I, as they say, am lazy.

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Well, my E2 level didn’t go up as expected, which probably means those two gorgeous follicles aren’t as gorgeous as they look. Typical for me. Whatever.

My E2 level was 98.3 (down 0.7 from Tuesday, but essentially that means it’s stabilized, not that it’s gone anywhere). My P4 level was 0.75. So I’m not gearing to ovulate any second as SuperDoc had feared, and I get to stay on the Lupron through the weekend and return on Monday (Lucky Me!!). The likelihood is still that I will ultimately end up cancelling this cycle, but I guess we have to give it the old college try, right?

Of course, right.

Anonymous asked if I could try the old fashioned way since I’ve got those two follicles hanging out – there are a couple answers to that question:

1. The first is, the two follicles are both on the left side, which was the tube that was blocked in my last HSG. Assuming that wasn’t a fluke – that would preclude them being useful.
2. Assuming the blocked tube WAS a fluke, I’m not doing anything at this point that involves two follicles on purpose. If you think I’m being extreme, that’s fine, but I’m dead serious. I am petrified of ending up with twins – my perinatologist scared the crap out of me in December when I saw him and he made it clear that a twin pregnancy is not an option for me.

Tagging along with that question, Anonymous asked if, in light of this development, whether it would make sense for me to try on my own for the next cycle and see if I ovulate all on my lonesome. A few thoughts:

1. If anovulation alone were my sole problem, sure, maybe. But it’s not.
2. If I were uninsured and needed time to pull together money for a cycle, sure. But this cycle is already paid for. My portion of this cycle has already been paid for, it’s just being deferred until whenever we DO get started, so the money has already been set aside.
3. I ovulated every single month from the time my HOMs were 6 weeks old until they were about a year old. Then I started spreading out to about every 6 weeks. I used no birth control. I even did my best to, um, make the best of our… timing. I did not get pregnant in that entire time.
4. If there were something inherently healthier about getting pregnant spontaneously vs. via IVF, then sure, maybe there would be some advantage to waiting another month just to see. But aside from slightly lower birth weights in IVF babies (even singletons), there doesn’t appear to be any inherent health differences in IVF babies vs. spontaneously conceived babies. So why wait?
5. If I *am* ovulating on my own, I can just as easily TTC spontaneously later, after I don’t have insurance covering my cycles, as I can right now. So what’s the difference?
6. What SuperDoc implied to me was that it is, oddly enough, the Lupron itself responsible for my response so far. His words were that sometimes in women you get the opposite reaction to the Lupron than what you’re hoping to achieve. Note, I’m not so sure about this one, because, honestly? I sort of started tuning him out right around the time that he started making fun of me for always being opposite girl.

Anywhozit, it’s just more fun for me. A girl’s gotta get her Lupron fix somehow, right?

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Wait, does Lupron make you beyond exhausted?


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Thumb Twiddling

Not much to report on the fertility front. My head is pounding AND I have a toothache. This is not making me very happy. I am not thrilled about this development. But the toothache, I’m sure, has nothing to do with my fertility (or lack thereof). Though it might have to do with the fact that I’m constantly clenching my teeth from the throbbing in my head. Sigh.

Still hate Lupron. Shocker.

Received a good response from RESOLVE after I wrote to them asking if they knew anything about the Maryland Personhood Amendment:

RESOLVE has a policy statement on Personhood bills and amendments, and can be found here:http://www.resolve.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ta_pap_personhood

There are actually about 13 states that have some level of Personhood legislation in the works. To be honest, we have heard from a number of sources in Maryland that this bill will not go anywhere, however, we really should update our website and let folks know what is going on. We have a very small staff and with so many states taking action on a variety of issues we have had to pick and choose how we spend our time. We have been working on 2 other bills in Maryland that improve the current insurance mandate, as well as other bills in GA and MO that are directly affecting infertility treatment. If we get information that a bill is not going to go anywhere, we know we can put it aside and the outcome will still be favorable. I realize that is not going to please everyone, but all of our advocacy work is done by me and a handful of volunteers scattered around the country (about 3-4 people). I don’t have any designated staff person on advocacy, and I try and do the best I can while running the organization as well. The legislative session can be a very busy time for us – especially this year with so much outrage regarding the Octuplets and now the personhood issue popping up in more states.

Thanks again for contacting RESOLVE. If I find out any further information about this bill I will let you know.

Other than that, not much going on here in boring Perky-land.

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Ninety Nine (edited, twice)

What? No, really, WHAT?


That’s my estrogen level. Seriously, when I’m not on Lupron and I have actively growing follicles, I barely have estrogen that high.

Now I have the most boring looking ovaries I’ve ever seen, I’m on 20 units of Lupron a day, and… what? My estrogen is double what it needs to be?

Stupid body.

No Follistim or Luveris tonight. No dropping the Lupron dose in the morning. Status Quo for now. Return for re-check on Friday. Yeah. I can’t believe I failed the Lupron Eval. Man.

Edited to Add: Shit, wait, you don’t think it was the Nectar of the Gods, do you? Seriously, I really only had one a day. Once I had two in one day. But seriously? One 12 ounce can a day can’t have done me in. Could it?

Edited, Again: Yes, it could potentially have been the increase in caffeine level that affected my estrogen level. I will note, however, that I drank probably 4-7 cans of coke per day while doing my six IUIs and never had any affect on my estrogen level. Admittedly, back then I simply had a constant blood level in my caffeine stream. Perhaps I am more sensitive to caffeine now than I was then, since I nearly never drink caffeine anymore (I don’t ever drink coffee or tea and I hadn’t had a coke in months before the last couple weeks). Should I ask my doctor about it? Meh. Possibly, but I’m simply going to cut out the Coke and suffer through the headaches until Friday.

As for whether I need another re-check before Friday – not really. He’s leaving it until Friday to give the Lupron more time to work. The only reason to get a recheck before Friday would be if there were serious concern about over-suppressing me between now and then, and there is not that concern. It’s just a few more days lost on my schedule, is all. But all that means is that my beta isn’t going to fall on Pesach – which it was going to do before – so now at least I won’t have to push that off. Right? See? Silver linings all around.

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Okay, so? How many of you thought I was wrong and there would be a mobile in Room 1 today? How many of you had more faith in Dr. S. than I did? Admit it! Well, you would all be wrong. Wrong, I say! He’s off on a cushy vacation on some tropical paradise while his patients lie bored on a table staring at… a blank ceiling. Seriously.

What. Is up. With that?

Dude. Seriously? There are going to be serious consequences for this – and I don’t just mean that he didn’t get fudge today. I have on good authority that my fudge was pretty damn awesome, though I admit I wouldn’t know myself. But no fudge for him!

Now to think up some appropriate consequences for him.

And now on to the fun stuff. My lining is nice and thin (5mm)- I’m told this is a good thing. Truthfully, I’m a sucker for data, and as much as I hoard it, this is one piece of information I’ve never paid much attention to – the starting lining thickness. I’ve never really much cared about it. Mine’s always been fine and I’ve never much fretted about it (though I remember once or twice it was alarmingly thick… but whatever… it thinned out soon enough, so it was all good). Somehow very little about the whole fertility/IVF process feels intrusive to me anymore. But there’s something about this doctor telling me the thickness of my endometrial lining that feels awfully… up close and personal. I know that sounds ridiculous. There I am with my legs up in stirrups, chatting away about mobiles and whatever. I’ve appeared on the local news, and spoken with a reporter for a national newspaper about my fertility issues. I write a blog about my daily cycle details for crying out loud. And yet, the thing that feels up close and personal is the thickness of my endometrial lining?

Go figure.

Anyway, whatever. My lining is good, my ovaries, they are quieter than I’ve ever seen them. Not so perky.

Much fudge was delivered. And I even delivered an adorable gift to my nurse. No, really!

Does it get cuter than this??

My nurse was already having a really tough day, even that early in the morning so, it turns out, I made her day. Go me. And the fudge was just a bonus.

“Admit it,” I said, “You don’t have any patients as cool as me.”
“No way!”
“Aw, you’re not just saying that are you?”
“Definitely not!”

Anyway, unless I hear otherwise from her, I’m to start Follistim 166IUs, and Luveris 50 units tonight. And tomorrow! Tomorrow! (I love ya, tomorrow!) I drop the Lupron to 10units! (You’re only a Day! A!Way!)

(cue orchestra)


On a more serious note, Maryland sucks. Stay tuned for why.

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Nectar of the Gods

It’s possible that some of you have been reading various iterations of my blog long enough to know that there was a time that I had quite the affinity for Coca Cola – herafter referred to as the Nectar of the Gods (or, simply, The Nectar). In fact, I was quite offended to discover during my pregnancy that it tasted disgusting to me, and a few of you found out the full extent of my loyalty to The Nectar when you foolishly suggested that That OTHER INFERIOR so-called-Cola product *cough*pepsi*cough* might be a reasonable substitute.

Well, since then I really haven’t had much Coke in my life. Though I could say in all honesty that I was a full-blown Coke addict (not THAT kind of coke, silly! The yummy caffeinated cola kind!), I really don’t touch the stuff all that often anymore. Now, it is simply a special treat now and again.

But here’s the thing!

I have discovered a very important use for The Nectar. It turns out that caffeine actually is the one thing that actually helps these stupid Lupron headaches. Um, well, a little bit, anyway. Look, I’ll take ANY little tiny bit of relief I can get, okay? Mel was actually the one who told me that caffeine would help Lupron headaches. “But,” she cautioned, “only if you have enough caffeine that it raises your estrogen so much that it sort of defeats the purpose of the Lupron.” So not really a good solution.

Obviously caffeine wasn’t a good option. This cycle, I happened to have a Nectar one day when I was in the middle of a terrible Lupron-induced stupor/headache and while the headache was still horrifically bad, it DID take the throbbing out of my eyeball, so it no longer felt like I had a jackhammer slicing through my right eye. Definitely an improvement. I have, therefore, felt absolutely no inhibition about drinking a coke or three per day since then. Go me. (I’m kidding about the three)

That being said, yesterday I found a far more effective way of avoiding the Lupron headache. Yep. I forgot to take my Lupron until mid-afternoon. By the time I took it, I’d already had a Nectar, so I didn’t get a headache right away. The headache hit me in full force at about 3am. Getting out of bed this morning was nearly impossible. Today’s headache was far worse than usual and no amount of caffeine was going to help it. My Nectar had failed me.

There is, however, light at the end of the tunnel. Tomorrow should be my last day on 20 units per day. I have my CD2 monitoring appt. and I should start Follistim and Luveris tomorrow night and then drop to 10 units of Lupron Wed. morning. Plus, with higher starting doses on the stims, my estrogen level should go up faster, so the Lupron headaches should subside faster regardless of the drop in dose. So it’s all good. Right?

Last order of business – who wants to place bets on whether Dr. S. has gotten a mobile up in Room 1 yet? I’m betting on a Negatory.

No fudge for him if he hasn’t gotten it up yet. I made fudge for everyone else though. With nuts.

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So the good news is that I confirmed with my doctor that I am doing a 20-10 decrease on the Lupron once I start the stim protocol. My poor nurse. I made her check with him about 6 times. “But you’re sure he knows that last time I did 20-20, right?” “No, I mean, really sure because I think he thinks I did 20-5.” “Okay, but you’re absolutely certain that my record reflects 20-20, right?” “I mean, definitely he knows I did 20-20, and even though he said increase on the phone, he actually meant decrease, right? He *does* know what he’s doing, right? RIGHT?”


Not like I didn’t think SuperDoc knew what he was doing or anything.

I, um. I mean. Of course SuperDoc knows what he’s doing!


Ohmygod whatthehelliswrongwithme? When did I turn into *that* patient? I must be stopped. Hopefully they just think it’s the Lupron talking? Maybe they just think I’m a little knackered? A lot? Surely they *must* know these drugs make their patients crazy, we don’t all start out this way. Right?

The bad news is my head hurts. Shocker. Maybe when I decrease to 10units, life will be dandy again. I can dream, right?

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Like a sword

The pain ripping through my head is like a sword stuck into my head. Through my eyeball, perhaps. The pain is palpable.

I forgot this was what it would be like. My head hurt so much and I couldn’t figure out why. Not my normal migraine. And then, then I remembered what I did this morning.

The news I’ve been trying not to say out loud, in case SuperDoc rips it away from me next week, is that it appears I’ll have a reprieve this cycle. Last cycle I took 20 units prior to stims and stayed on 20 units after starting stims. But despite his original statement to me that this cycle we’d increase or stay the same on Lupron… it appears that this cycle I’m decreasing the Lupron dose to 10 units once I start stims.

That…. that would be lovely. If it happens. I hope it happens. I’m afraid it won’t.

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L – 1

Lupron starts tomorrow.

You have been warned.

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