I feel like everyone says this, but I really cannot believe it's finally my turn. I feel like the journey has been so long and heartbreaking, it definitely has not sunk in yet... I have spent the last 3 years reading these stories and every message board imaginable, so I want to post my full story below for those of you who have similar situations and need some hope!
We started TTC 3 years ago, of course thinking it would happen right away. After a year I went to my OB, who wanted to have my husband tested since my cycles are super regular. It took us a good 6 months to get the courage to get the test, and it came back with morphology of 1%. DH started vitamins and we retested 3 months later, it increased to 2% (whoopie!) Around that time, DH was in physician assistant school, and they just happened to be learning about varicoceles. He was pretty sure he had one as it would cause discomfort and he could feel it. We scheduled an appt with a urologist, which took a couple months then another month to get an ultrasound to confirm. After that, we scheduled surgery which was pushed back due to DH's school schedule, so it finally happened in February 2015. While waiting for surgery, we did try 6 months of Femara and progesterone supplements, but it didn't work. While waiting for the 3 month analysis post-surgery, we saw the RE who said we could try IUI or go right to IVF. I wanted to do IVF and skip IUI, but DH really wanted to try IUI first. In the meantime, the RE ordered some basic bloodwork and found out I had hypothyroidism, so I was put on synthroid and my levels are good now. Hubby's analysis came back in May and morphology had increased to 4%, which is actually on the low end of normal! It was a small victory, but I agreed to do IUI first given the improvement.
I really wanted to do a hybrid IUI with Femara and injectables right away, but hubby wanted to try one with just Femara first. We did that in July. I had 3 follicles at 22, 18 and 15 mm at trigger on CD 10. IUI was on CD 12. I was devastated when the post-wash count was 12 million, as hubby's count had always been in the 100 thousand's. I knew it would go down post-wash but I was so confused why it was so low! I know they say anything over 10 is fine though, so I tried not to worry too much. I didn't even need to test when my period showed up 13 dpiui.
Next we moved to Femara days 3-7, with 75 iu gonal-F starting day 7. I ovulate on day 11/12 on my own, and triggered on day 10 the previous IUI. My RE wanted to do my first ultrasound on day 10 again, but I asked to do it on day 9 because I was worried with the gonal-F that my follicles would grow faster or something and we would miss it. Well, I was really glad I insisted on day 9 because after the ultrasound, the doctor said I had 7 follicles, 3 were at 14 ish and 4 were 12/13. He said I had to trigger that day or cancel the cycle because of too many. I scoured the internet and could not find one instance where someone triggered with such small follicles! I kept trying to tell myself that my follicles grow fast and there could still be a chance, but I was not that optimistic. IUI was CD 11, and I almost cried when they told us the post-wash count was 39.2 million this time- huge improvement over last time!
Looking back, here are my symptoms. After 3 years of TTC, I tried not to read too much into anything because I felt like I had different symptoms every cycle!
Day of IUI - 4 dpiui- I felt STRONG ovulation pain a couple hours after the IUI (about 38 hours post trigger). My first IUI I felt more cramping at 24 hours past trigger (Maybe another reason that first one didn't work?) My ovaries were fairly sore for a good 4 days. I only took short walks and tried to take it easy. I felt like I could literally feel gas and any sort of pressure from my bladder and bowels. I was worried I had OHSS, but was happy when it started going away.
5 dpiui- 6 dpiui - Nothing too out of the ordinary
7 dpiui- This is when hubby and I both sort of suspected something was up. I had slept 11 hours Friday night, then Saturday (7 dpiui) I took a 3 hour nap, then slept 12 hours Saturday night too. I also woke up in the middle of the night starving which is weird for me.
8 dpiui- I started testing out my trigger. My first IUI I had tested it out and it was still very faintly there until 12-13 dpiui so I was expecting the same. I got a slight sore throat this day, which I attributed to allergies. I have gotten colds/sore throats in the 2WW before, so I was telling myself it didn't mean anything. I continue to get a dry throat/cough at night.
9 dpiui- Still had a sore throat. I also noticed that shoes I always wear were giving me blisters and never had before. I thought it was strange, but thought maybe my feet were swelling? Also had just a small amount of blood when wiping a couple times, and started to think maybe IB??