Friday, March 26, 2010

Here I am googling antral follicle count...

and guzzling green tea. LOL


So, Christopher and I went in for the consultation regarding trying to conceive our second child with our reproductive endocrinologist. I actually left feeling pretty positive.

And even more disgusted with our previous RE, famously known as Dr Creepy Skulker.

Let's back track a few days....

I had some Cycle Day 3 blood work and an AMH assay drawn on Wednesday. When I saw that she ordered the AMH, I cringed inwardly. This is the test that Dr Creepy Skulker was so proud of 2.5 years ago. (Let's go back to 2007....) He had been on the news about this cutting edge fertilty testing yada yada. AMH indicates the number of sleeping follicles in the ovary. This is a constant hormone that is released. Low levels indicate low or poor ovarian reserve. Hoever all the labs were quick to add fine print that this was not a diagnostic test. AMH testing was for research only. Well in 2007 my AMH level had come back as .075. That's extremely poor according to his scale. Dr Creepy told us that we would need IVF to conceive based on this AMH level.

Well, back then I wasn't satisfied with this test, especially based on my antral follicle counts and other hormonal bloodwork. So in 2007 we had gotten a second opinion with the good Dr G. She thought IVF was a huge leap considering we had gotten pregnant twice on our own without treatment. She discounted the AMH level as it was too new of a test and not really standardized yet. Also for my age, it wasn't an awful number any way.

Okay, back to today....

The results from Wednesday's draw were back today so Dr W was prepared to go over them.
My AMH level was 1.9. Um, anything over 1.0 is NORMAL!

In fact, that's great for an almost 40 year old! We would have expected it to be a little lower than the previous .75. Dr W was very happy with 1.9. Of course we had some questions about the accuracy of this or the previous test. She was quick to point out the the tests were analyzed at the same lab but that she did not know if the assay had changed in the previous two years. We repeated the AMH test again today just to be sure.

My FSH number was 6.3. This is also better than I had tested back in 2007. With Dr Creepy my FSH was running 7.9 to 8.3. My antral follicle count was 22 plus. (Amd yeah, not too shappy for a soon to be 40 yo.)

So overall the outlook is very positive. We have reason to hope that conceiving our second child could be as "easy" as before. Granted having two back to back miscarriages before Andrew was no picnic. But getting pregnant 3 times in 5 (non consectutive) cycles of actively TTC isn't anything to sneeze at. It was all the emotional turmoil and infertility testing between all those pregnancies (a year total of TTC) that was an ordeal.

The good Dr W wants me to wean Andrew before going on to any fertility drugs.

That's not happening any time soon if it all. My dream would be to get pregnant and Andrew naturally wean himself.

Any whoo, in the mean time we're going to do some "natural" cycles. But her use of natural is a little fast and loose.

We're gong to have timed intercourse with OPK. At the first positive OPK, I will go in for an ultrasound. If I have mature follicles, then I will trigger with Ovidrel. That will help me ovulate in a timely manner. We'll then do a post coital the next day and see what's going on. If we see low or no sperm, then Christopher gets to do a semen analysis later on.

We'll then do a progesterone test at 7 DPO to see how things went. Beta at two weeks.

So we have a plan to move forward and I can still breastfeed while TTC. For now. We'll have to make some decisions regarding that later on. I would much prefer to let him wean naturally with respect to his needs.

But there does need to be some balance. Isn't balance always the tricky part?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Too many c-sections? Giving Birth Safely - ABC News

Giving Birth Safely - ABC News

Bradley® on ABC News Alternative Birthing Methods

Alternative Birthing Methods - ABC News

Here are five popular natural ways to having a baby. You should, of course, ask your doctor if you are considering any of these natural methods.

Why are a growing number of mothers at risk during childbirth?
The Bradley Method
In this technique, women are encouraged to give birth in the presence of their partners, without the use of epidural anesthesia, intravenous drugs, surgery, or tools. The technique is taught in a 12-week class conducted in the last trimester of pregnancy.

HypnoBirth trains mothers-to-be to achieve complete relaxation during labor and delivery. The method involves courses with an instructor, along with home self-hypnosis exercises that teach women how to eliminate the pain of labor by staying completely focused and in control of the birthing process.

Lamaze is a birthing technique that emphasizes breathing. Women are generally taught to control their breathing, change positions and walk around at certain points during labor. Partners are also encouraged to participate in the delivery. While Lamaze is generally a natural technique, a woman can have an epidural if she feels she needs it.

Home Birth
As the name suggests, this technique allows you to give birth in the comfort of your own home. According to the American Pregnancy Association, home birth is not for you if:

• You are diabetic.
• You have chronic high blood pressure, or toxemia (also known as preeclampsia).
• You have experienced preterm labor in the past, or may be at risk for preterm labor now.
• Your partner does not fully support your decision to give birth at home.

Water Delivery
Some women may find that giving birth in a warm tub of water will help them relax and the buoyancy may help alleviate discomfort and pressure.

"Water delivery is not recommended for women with high-risk pregnancies and preparation should be made for delivery to occur out of the water if complications arise," according to the American Pregnancy Association.

Source: American Pregnancy Association