Anyone inspire me with success stories?

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2004
Anyone inspire me with success stories?
10
Tue, 05-25-2004 - 1:41pm
Hi everyone,

I am feeling pretty blue today and I guess it would really help my spirits if I could hear some success stories of women who had their first baby over 40 after recurring miscarriages.

I went in for the 4th m/c D & C yesterday and was doing OK physically but woke up feeling really really sad and just overwhelmed with how I am going to handle all of this.

My original insurance won't cover Dr. Beer and I thought I had found another affordable plan that would cover it partly but it turned out to be a scam. I just don't have the financial means that would help me see him and yet I know that it would probably be very beneficial to have a slew of tests done and consult with him. From what I can see I probably need to fork out several thousands of dollars just to have initial consult and testing. I simply do not have that money and neither does my BF.

I am feeling so down about this. Does anyone have any positive words or suggestions for me? I don't seem to have any trouble getting pregnant so far even this last time(and I am 43 years old) but I just haven't been able to hold on to the pregnancies.

Is someone like me just doomed to have m/c's because I don't have the money to see good doctors who can help me? I really thought I would be able to see Dr. Beer because of this new health plan and am so upset that it is a scam.

Does anyone have any suggestions about maybe some other way that I can get on some kind of affordable insurance that would cover him? Anyone on an affordable health plan now and seeing him? Or know of anyone? It would need to be a plan for individuals not a group plan.

best to all of you

Jadu

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-28-2003
Tue, 05-25-2004 - 5:47pm

Jadu I wish I had a story to tell you.


There are test that can be run by your ob or your re that can give them some idea on bood clotting problems.

Cathie

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-18-2004
Tue, 05-25-2004 - 8:57pm
I am very sorry you are going through this pain and know first hand what you are experiencing. I was 44 when my DH and started TTC #1 and although I was able to get pregnant easily each one ended in early m/c. My first at 8 weeks and the others earlier than that. We sought the help of an RE and went through testing and fertility treatments too. My FSH/E2 levels fluctuated from cycle to cycle but on my good cycles we did stimulants to produce multiple follicles. There are many reasons for m/c ... some which can be tested for and corrected and others, unfortunately, are simply natures way of doing quality control. One person mentioned testing for immune antibodies .... this testing may be expensive and the counter measure for this type of problem is simply to take Daily therapeutic low dose aspirin (this is the coated 81mg aspirin used by people with heart problems). Anti bodies (or heightened immune system) can be a cause of early m/c as the body does not recognize the embryo as 'friendly' but treats it as a foreign substance and tries to shut down the blood supply to it. The aspirin works by increasing blood flow to the uterus and counteracting the immune system response. You can start taking this NOW on your own as it does no harm. Take it throughout TTC. IF you have heavy duty immune response problems then the next step is to take a steroid (Prednisone) which suppresses the immune system OR take Heparin shots when you get pregnant. THese measure of course should only be done with a positive diagnosis of immune disorder and must be done under doctor supervision.

Have you ever had your progesterone level tested? as low progesterone after O can also cause early m/c. There are a number of other things and you may want to check out the TTC OVER 40 WEBSITE (just do a GOogle search) as I have lots of information on preventing m/c. Just to inspire you .... after many m/c we FINALLY concieved our son when I was just shy of my 46th birthday... so you see, I had not only age but also multiple m/c as challenges. I think one thing which inspired me and kept me going was the fact that I COULD get pregnant ... many women I knew never got that far so I had the advantage of knowing that at least things were working.

Sometimes it is just a matter of time... but it is so difficult to wait!

Healing wishes.... Pat

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2004
Tue, 05-25-2004 - 11:57pm
Pat,

Thank you soooo much for your post. It is truly an inspiration to me that there are women like myself out there who have no problem conceiving, have had recurring m/c's but have gone on to have had at least one successful pregnancy!!! Congratulations on your son!

When you were pregnant with your son did you do anything different with that pregnancy? Where do you live and can you reccommend a good RE in New York City?

I am just so overwhelmed and saddened by all of this, it all happened so fast. I had just started trying to get pregnant(after a miserable, traumatic m/c Feb 2003) and boom got pregnant right away and I was on such a high, and things all happened sooo fast after that. The original OB I was working with was happy with my progesterone levels and gave me no supplementation which I am really angry about, because I kept asking if he was sure. I then found out from Dr. Beer that they believe that anything below 20 is really unacceptable especially in older women. My progesterone was always hovering around 20. Dr. Beer said that more like 30 was what he likes his over 40 yr old women to have in early pregnancy. Well I guess hindsight is 20/20 and I am definately never going back to that OB. He also did not recommend taking a baby aspirin as a possible preventative. He didn't know anything about any of these issues and I am really upset about that. I guess I had a higher opinion of him. Also when I got pregnant I literally had just joined these boards and in this whole process I have found out so much valuable information that I wish I had known before.

But maybe now equipped with all of this information I can move forward and handle all of the testing etc. and get to the root of the problem. It is just so frustrating to be at the mercy of insurance plans. I just want to move quickly!

Of course my most intense desire is to just get pregnant right away again. I just don't know if I should try or not? What would you do? Would you wait and get results back from everything? (I was told that I should probably wait for 3 months but I am not sure about that)

Also could someone suggest specific tests I can have done? Maybe I can have my new OB order them. She just doesn't want to see me in her office until 2 weeks from now and I want to get going already. I can't stand waiting!

Anyway, thanks again Pat for sharing your story with me. You have inspired me not to give up!!! I dream of babies every night! I know everyone here knows what I am feeling.

I wish all of us wonderful mature moms and moms to be mountains and mountains of beautiful ******************baby dust****************************

Jadu

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-28-2003
Wed, 05-26-2004 - 9:54am

Jadu I am trying to find my old ivf blood testing form from my ivf cycle which I was testing for blood immune issue.

Cathie

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2004
Wed, 05-26-2004 - 4:53pm
Hi Cathie,

Thanks so much for your post. I have to say I am really frustrated with doctors right now. I have been through 3 different OB's and am not happy with any of them. The one that I have been seeing most recently (a woman) just got off the phone with me and said that she would speak to me about RE's at our next visit 2 weeks from now. But I told her I want to make an appointment now. She keeps insisting that what I should do first is to go get genetic counseling. Even though I have no problem in seeing a genetic counselor I really want to see an RE at this point and ASAP. I don't feel like she is sensitive to my needs right now and every time I speak with her either on the phone or in person she seems like she is in a hurry and needs to get off the phone. I feel like screaming.

I have to say she did an excellent job with the D & C and I have had no cramping at all and very little bleeding. I don't know, maybe she is the best I can find in NYC for now, with the insurance that I have. If you know of anyone in NYC who could recommend someone I would really appreciate it, even though I hate to keep changing doctors and I am not sure my they would take my insurance.

I really want to figure this insurance thing out though. Can anyone help me in this department? Any ideas about a particular plan that is not more than $300 a month where I could still go out of network and get a lot of these tests etc. covered?

Cathie, do you think I would have a more successful pregnancy with ivf? I know so little about it and what the advantages are. Is their a way that eggs can be selectively picked so that the best ones are the ones that get merged with the sperm? How is it all done? And what is the success rate for over 40 year olds?

Thanks again Cathie for your support and help. I really appreciate it!

Jadu

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-18-2004
Wed, 05-26-2004 - 7:34pm
Here are my thoughts on your situation.... in addition to reading everything you can get your hands on about infertility etc. I really do recommend that you seek out an RE instead of relying on OB/Gyn. OB/Gyn do NOT specialize in infertility and your best bet is to see someone who does. There is a good link where you can find certified Reproductive Endocrinologists in NYC. Make sure you see an RE and not just someone who calls themselves a fertility specialist. A REAL RE is able to treat both YOU and your DH so if any fertility specialist refers your DH to a urologist this is a red flag that they are not an RE. Here is the lookup for REs: http://www.angelfire.com/moon/satie37/Female2.html

check out the 'Find a certified RE in your area' link and also read about the testing which may also be useful. And here are some specific links on pregnancy loss:

http://www.angelfire.com/moon/satie37/Female6.html

I know many doctors will tout IVF as the best choice for achieving pregnancy. IVF certainly has advantages as it does maximize the opportunity for sperm to fertilize egg. Essentially, with IVF you do a stimulant protocol to maximize the number of follicles (eggs) in the cycle. JUST prior to ovulation, you are given an HCG shot which ripens the eggs inside the follicles and then 36 hours after the HCG injection the eggs are surgically removed from the follicles. A very small hollow needle is put up the vagina, into the uterus and then through the uterine wall and the eggs are sucked out of the follicles. YES you can select the best eggs for fertilization with a process called PGD (pre-genetic diagnosis ?). The eggs are then mixed with the sperm and hopefully they fertilize. IF your DH has sperm motility problems etc. you can also have the sperm injected into the eggs (ICSI). You can also have assisted hatching whereby the casing of the egg is broken prior to tranfering the embryo back into the uterus. I might mention that some clinics require a minimum number of eggs before they do an IVF cycle and often the numbers are based on the response of much younger women. Also... PGD is great if you have lots of eggs to play with but if you have only two or three ... well... you may end up with none to put back.

It seems to me though that your challenge is not fertilization as you are achieving pregnancy on your own. Your particular challenge is staying pregnant (and IVF does not address this). It may be as simple as resolving some hormonal imbalance or it may be that your eggs are not dividing properly (egg quality) and I don't know of a way of dealing with this. This is the issue I was faced with.... egg quality. My approach was to maximize the number of follicles per cycle by finding a protocol which worked well for me. I then just hoped that I would chance on a good egg... I knew I must have ONE left! Yes, I tried everything... clomid, gonal-F with IUI, gonal-F without IUI, IVF, trigger shots and bd naturally.

Well... I hope the links I provided give you a good start. I agree with you totally... I would go ahead and get a referral to an RE either through your OB or your family doctor.

Fertile thoughts.... Pat

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2004
Wed, 05-26-2004 - 11:09pm
Pat,

You are a doll! Thanks for explaining all of that to me. I have been reading everything I can get my hands on but it has made my head spin! I appreciate hearing things from real people though who have been there done that. You have given me a lot to get started with and I really appreciate that.

I did check out the site to try to find some REs in NYC but a couple of the links didn't work. And of course I am really interested in personal recommendations from women in NYC who have gone to someone they have really loved and perhaps have had successes with.



How old are you now may I ask and are you trying for another baby? My sister is 48 and wants to try for another baby with her new husband. I told her about the doctor I have just started seeing for my Epstein Barr/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. He had a 53 year old woman get pregnant with her own eggs. She was on his program of supplements, homeopathy, herbs and a very specific diet. She did have a perfectly healthy baby. That is definately a story I love to hear!!! I would just like to inform myself and my sister of all the options we have available to both of us. Our cases our slightly different as she has had a successful pregnancy at the age of 40 (twins), very healthy vibrant kids.

thanks!

Jadu

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-01-2004
Sat, 05-29-2004 - 2:32am
Jadu

my heart goes out to you, I too am ttc and 41 with 3 m/cs, had a d & c 2 weeks ago.

I know just hw you feel! On the one hand I feel lucky compared with those who arehaving trouble conceiving, on the other hand I wish to damn thing would stay in there!!

re IVF my dr that recent research is showing that the best method for older gals who can conceive is the natural method, however, how to keep them?

my friend of 44 with one ovary and 12 failed cycles of IVF fell pregnant after being diagnosed as infertile:

1. seeing a chinese dr and daily taking the herbs prescribed

2. taking vitamins e, ecq10 & cartinine (sp) a body building substance & I think magnesium

3, exercising regularly

4. drinking moderately

So, it does happen. I am trying all of the above, which are not expensive. The chinese dr also mentioned I should wait 4-6 months before trying again (a bit difficult to adhere to as we do not have time on our side, but then again if it helps...)

I would also add I think it helps not to fly in the early stages if you are prone to m/c ( personal view, 2 of mine happened after flying)

I am thinking of you, stay in touch. I will keep my fingers crossed for you

Kate

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-09-2004
Tue, 06-01-2004 - 6:35pm
Hi Kate,

I love this story and even though it was really distressing and painful to go through this last m/c, I am feeling really optimistic right now and am determined to get past the first 12 weeks the next go-round. I just need to stay really healthy and positive and hear more great stories like the one you told me.

I must say that I did hear another great story about a woman who had over 12 m/cs before she had 2 healthy babies. She just never gave up and told me that if she could do it anyone could. She was a real trooper.

Did you have any testing done to see if you have any immune issues?

Lets keep in touch, I am sending you lots and lots of baby dust!!!

best to you,

Jadu

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-21-2004
Fri, 06-04-2004 - 5:00pm
My grandmother had her last 3 children after she turned 40. And, she of course wasn't "helped" by any fertility treatments, I don't even think those were available back then.