Final Steps of Preparation

Well, it’s been a while since my last post. We’ve still been plugging away at getting all of our testing done – as it turns out, the doctor’s office forgot to send out my genetic testing back when I had my blood drawn in the spring. The bad news is that I had to get my blood drawn again, but the good news is that my genetic testing came back totally clear – except, you know, for that cystic fibrosis thing.

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While this result doesn’t eliminate the risk of having a child with any of these diseases (since they don’t test for every genetic mutation under the sun), it significantly reduces the risk. They only tested me, since for these diseases it takes two copies of the defective gene to make a baby with the disease – just like CF. Since I’m negative my husband doesn’t need to be tested. If I had been positive they would have had to test him too to ensure he isn’t also a carrier. But luckily, we’re all good.

As I discussed in earlier posts, I will definitely pass on one copy of the CF gene to my baby, but since my husband has had his genome sequenced and no CF mutations were found, our child will only be a carrier of CF – he or she will not get two copies of the defective gene and therefore cannot have CF.

My husband was also required to undergo testing for sexually transmitted infections prior to IUI. It makes sense – the doctors don’t want to get slapped with a lawsuit for injecting sperm mixed with a healthy dose of pathogens into a lady’s uterus. However, given that my husband and I have been, um, intimate for many years now, it seemed a little sllly. My husband wasn’t really a fan of having it done. But rules are rules, so that’s done and it came back clean as a whistle.

So – I think that’s it. I think we’re finally done with testing! Here’s everything we’ve had done to this point:

For me:

  • Pap smear: normal
  • Transvaginal ultrasound and pelvic exam: fallopian tubes appear open; good amount of uterine lining present; lots of follicles on both ovaries (potentially enough to be borderline PCOS, but the doctor would rather have it that way than a depleted ovarian reserve); heavy cervical mucus with thick mucus plugs that are likely the culprit preventing natural conception
  • Antibody tests: I have immunity to both Varicella Zoster (Chicken Pox) and Rubella (German Measles)
  • Hormone tests: my thyroid, progesterone and prolactin levels are all normal. My AMH (anti-mullerian hormone) levels are a bit high, indicating a large number of follicles. That could be indicative of PCOS, but the doctor feels it is in line with the transvaginal ultrasound findings and isn’t concerned.
  • Genetic tests: The results show I’m likely not a carrier for Sickle Cell Anemia, Alpha-Thalassemia, Fragile X or SMA.

For him:

  • CF carrier testing: negative (via genetic sequencing)
  • STI testing: not infected
  • Semen Analysis: a bit on the low side, but pretty normal

Man… who knew it was this much work just to get READY to try to have a baby?

The final step prior to the IUI itself is to schedule an “IUI Orientation” at the clinic where they will go over what to expect and which, if any, medications need to be discontinued prior to the procedure. We’re scheduled for August 18th. If all goes well we’ll be undergoing our first IUI when I ovulate in mid-September! At this point our doctor doesn’t want to use any fertility drugs like Clomid or Femara because they increase the chance of multiples, which would be pretty tough on my body. So I’m just going to keep tracking my cycles and wait for that smiley face that means go time.

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