Confused and feeling low

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-05-2006
Confused and feeling low
Tue, 12-12-2006 - 7:16pm

Hi Everyone:

I just recently went through my second round of IUI with Clomid and it did not work. When I initially started taking the test back in October, I was told that my ovarian reserve was good and my FSH was 6 which I understand is good for a woman aged 42. I have since talked to my RE about next steps, and he did not sound very positive at all. He said that I only have about a 3 to 5% chance of getting pregnant with the IUI and if I were to try IVF with meds, it would only jump to 5 to 7% chance. What kind of odds is that? I told him that I was never told what the problem is as to why I can't or haven't gotten pregnant and he said to me that after looking at my profile that a lot of women have problem with their eggs. So now I am confused, I thought to have good ovarian reserved had to do with the quality of your eggs and the egg supply, right? I am not trying to see things or find hope that isn't there but this is so discouraging. I read that if the FSH is a good number you have a better chance of getting pregnant. I am willing to try IVF but if I only have a 2% higher chance than IUI with clomid what is the use? Is it that they have to give you these grim ass percentages of success in order not to give your hopes up? This doctor is one of the best in the state. I live in a state that doesn't cover fertility treatments, while I am willing to try the IVF, I don't want to just through $12G's to the wind and be foolish. I have an appointment with the dr. on the 21st, I have more quesitons. When he told me that it looked very grim for me, it just knocked the wind out of me so I could not question what he was saying verses what the test results initially said. AM I tripping out? Could it be that your ovarian reserve is good and fsh is good but you are still not able to get PG? What should I do? My hubby is trying to support me. I want a baby so bad. How should I approach my doctor?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-2003
Thu, 12-14-2006 - 10:16am


I am 41 and getting ready to do an ivf cycle with pgd. I have two daughters, conceived in one month when I was 34 and 36. At age 38, the wheels fell off my fertility engine. I have had two miscarriages in the first trimester requiring a D&C. They were able to test one of the babies and it was a trisomy 22. This is caused by older eggs that do not divide properly. I have also had 6 chemical pregnancies over the last 3 years. This is a positive blood test that miscarries very early before anything can be seen in the uterus -usually in the first week into the pregnancy. I have been tested for everything under the sun and the answer to the miscarriages is the obvious - older eggs. Nothing is wrong with me and I have conceived and carried to term successfully in the past - at a younger age. All of the miscarriage pregnancies were conceived naturally.

I am seeing an RE in Atlanta and was told that my chances of success for IVF with PGD are around 10%. That was before my fsh levels were tested. My day 3 fsh is 5 and after the clomid challenge test, it was 7.5. This is excellent. What a good fsh number means is that you will repsond to the drugs and produce many eggs. However, while we still have a lot of eggs left, the quality will be that of a 41 and 42 year old woman. My numerous miscarriages are evidence of my declining egg quality. While we will produce eggs in response to stimulation, we will lose some at each stage of the process because of quality and lose more than a younger woman will. Some will not fertilize, some will not make it to day 3, and many after the pgd testing will be found to be abnormal and not transferred back.

Your best shot is IVF with isci and assisted hatching and pgd. This is what we are doing. I will do it one time because the results each time are usually the same and it is too expensive. If it does not work, we will pursue embryo donation which is much cheaper than egg donation. ISCI is where they inject the sperm into the egg. This is because older eggs can be brittle and harder for sperm to penetrate. Assisted hatching is where they use a little acid to break the shell on day 5 so the little embryo can "hatch" out of the egg and implant in the uterus. Brittle older eggs also make it harder for the embryo to hatch.

10% of the time with pgd they will find that none of the embryos that did fertilize and survive are chromosomally normal. Also, they do not like to do pgd if there are less than 6 day 3 embryos because it is hard for the embryos to survive in the test tube solution until day 5 when the pgd results come back and they have a better chance in the uterus. So some plan to do pgd but do not get it. I will do it no matter how few because I cannot go through another miscarriage or face a child with special needs.

Acupuncture has been proven to increase IVF success so since this is my last best chance, I am doing acupuncuture before the IVF cycle we will do in January.

Hope this helps answer your questions. I think my odds go up from 10% if I get a lot of eggs and some of them make it to day 3 and test normal with pgd.

I would recommend that you go with what I am doing if you can afford it. It is the best possible chance of success. For me, I have to know that I did everything before I can let go of having another child that is mine. And, please know that some REs are very concerned about their success rate so try to push people toward egg donation. You have a good fsh so I think one try is worth it.

Finally with all these extra things, you need a very skilled embryologist in the RE office. Make sure they have done this stuff for a long time. Pick the best for your long shot!


iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2003
Sun, 12-17-2006 - 8:02pm

I'm so sorry that you are feeling so bad. I don't know if I can help or not. I got married at 38 and my DH was 40. neither one of us had ever been married. I had been on the pill for 22 years due to cysts on my took my body a year to get back to normal. I then got pg on my own but m/c early at 6 weeks. My OB then put me on clomid for 3 months but nothing happened so then my OB did and HSG and they found my left tube was blocked. I then had the tube removed and was pg 2 months later...I m/c at 8 weeks.

I then got sent to an RE. We tried 4 IUIs and 2 IVF's. I too had an FSH of 7.8 and thought my problem was just my tube. My first IVF they got 17 eggs out of me. 14 mature. We did 1/2 ICSI and 1/2 natural. ICSI seemed to damage my eggs but the naturally fertilized eggs did GREAT !!! They put back 4 beautiful 8 celld embryos and none of them took. That IVF cost us 15K. The next IVF they got 16 beautiful mature eggs out of me. 14 fertilized naturally...YAY --we put 6 8-celled embryos in me...and none of them took again. So, we are now 30K in debt. My RE had given me a 17% chance it would work due to my age (40 & 41 at the time)

I just had my FSH checked again....keep in mind that the level will fluctuate. It is now down to 7.2. I have to say though that we aren't going with my own eggs again if we do anything else high tech. We are having faith and trying on our own.....hoping that there is at least ONE good egg in there. We might consider DE or adoption...just not sure.

I say that if you want to try on your own then go for it. We HAD to try in order for us to be ready to move on to another way of building our family. We are still trying on our own as I said but need to be real about our options.

If you would regret not trying on your own then do it. MIRACLES DO HAPPEN !!!!!

Go into your RE appt with questions written down. In addition there is a great book by Sherman Silber called How to get pregnant". I bought it on for 10bucks. GREAT book ! Explains everything you need to know about how your body works. So, to answer your ?? about if you have good FSH and good ovarian RSV, I have both but it didn't work for me...but it COULD work for you !

Follow your heart. It sounds like your DH is very supportive which is 1/2 the battle. Keep us posted on how things go !