A Lesson in Organization and Infertility

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I’ve realised throughout this process that I need to be excessively organized, always looking two steps ahead, anticipating problems and not trusting anyone to get something done for me, or getting it done right. Case and point, the past few days trying to coordinating the next steps in my FET protocol, and the days to come.

I started my period Wednesday, called the clinic to advise them of such (around 11am) and asked that they call me to review my next steps as my cycle is slightly modified due to me going out of town. I received a call back on my cell phone (when I specifically left them my work number) at 3:30pm telling me to please call them back tomorrow, on the reception line and ask to speak to a nurse. I couldn’t call them back that same day because the phone lines close at 3:30pm. There is an IVF message box that I normally call… because I am an IVF cycler. But anyways she told me to call reception instead so that was the game plan.

Then yesterday morning just before 8am the clinic calls me (they get points for not making me call them). The phone lines don’t open until 9am so I couldn’t have called them this early anyways. The nurse tells me to get my schedule (they had sent me a fill in the blanks sort of sheet with treatment start day, CD8 in my case) and goes over what I’m to be doing on each day. They need me to come in for a baseline ultrasound on CD7 (Tuesday) before I start my meds. They also need bloodwork done to go with the ultrasound but for some reason this bloodwork will not be done in the clinic as per the norm. Not sure why, I did verify with her that they will not complete my bloodwork, and she said not this time.

The nurse explained I’ll start estrace and an antibiotic on CD8 (Wednesday) and continue with my suprefact and ASA. I will admit, they are very efficient in sending everything over to the pharmacy so it is always there when I go in. I’ll also need more suprefact because I am running through that stuff like nobody’s business. With 10 (two in each nostril, five times a day) sprays a day from a rather small bottle it’s no wonder. The nurse also tells me that there is an RX for antibiotics for J as well. “For my husband?” I asked her quizzically. He’s done his part, what does he need antibiotics for? She delicately explains to me that they assume we are having “intercourse” (her word, not mine) and it is just a prophylaxis so he doesn’t pass anything to me. Ah. Ok, that makes sense, moving right along. She tells me that generally I will have another ultrasound 14 days after starting estrace which would put us at Oct. 29, but she said that may change after they’ve done all of my baseline stuff on Tuesday. She misspoke several times during the conversation so I would repeat things back to her to clarify because I knew what she was telling me was wrong (based on what my timetable said and the notes I have from the last nurse I spoke to). I have worked with this particular nurse before and I have to say she is not my favorite, nor does she inspire confidence. I’ve learned to write everything down when I am speaking to any given nurse so I can verify it against my next set of instructions.

She initially told me I could get my bloodwork requisition when I came in for the ultrasound but then called me back shortly after we spoke to advise me I’d need to do the bloodwork the day before the ultrasound as they need the results the day I am coming in to the clinic. Ok, fine. She tells me she can send it to a lab convenient for me, so I tell her the approximate location of the one I’d like (I couldn’t remember the exact name of it, but it is a part of a “chain”), lab A and she tells me no problem, she’ll fax it over to them.

It’s later on in the day that I realised the bloodwork has to be done on Monday, which is the Thanksgiving holiday in Canada, so there are only a couple of labs open for limited hours that day. I quickly hopped online and took one of two remaining appointments at a lab that is open for the holiday, lab B. I called the fertility clinic back and asked if they could send the requisition to lab B instead of lab A that I initially asked for. The receptionist asks if I could just go and pick it up from lab A as they were very busy at the moment and didn’t want it to get missed. She apologized and said she didn’t mean to be rude but it wasn’t something that was going to be a priority at the moment… Fair enough, if they’re not going to get it done I may as well do it myself. So I hang up the phone with the clinic and think to myself, the labs can probably just transfer the requisition saving me a trip in to them.

So I call lab A telling them my requisition has been faxed over from my Drs office, could they please send it to lab B instead, but she can’t find my requisition. I then realise my clinic probably sent it to lab C which has a similar name to where lab B is actually located. You still following me? I then call lab C to ask if they have my requisition but I get a recording saying they are closed and to call back during business hours which they then list. I am currently calling them during their business hours. Humph.

I then call the main switchboard for city wide lab scheduling. The woman who answers asks me for my phone number, proceeds to pull up my file, starts to ask me when I’d like to book an appt for when she sees I already have one. I tell her I am trying to get a requisition transferred but when I call lab C I get a recorded message, and wonder if they haven’t forgotten to turn off their messaging system. She puts me on hold to try and get someone at that lab. She eventually succeeds and patches me through. I find that my clinic did in fact mistakenly send my requisition to lab C. I ask them to please transfer it to lab B as I need the bloodwork done on the holiday Monday. No problem.

Not trusting anyone to complete a simple task, I call lab B about an hour later to confirm that lab C did in fact forward my requisition. They tell me they do have it. If it goes missing between now and Monday, so help me I may lose my marbles.

So then I needed to coordinate getting to my pharmacy, which has rather limited hours of operation, to pick up all the meds for the next week or so. They’re closed weekends and holidays (so Saturday through Monday this week) and their business hours coincide pretty closely with my own office hours. I can’t go Tuesday as I have to go to the clinic for my ultrasound and then directly to work as I am on the opening shift and they are closed by the time I am off work. I need everything for Wednesday because I start my estrace at 8am that morning, plus I may not have made it through the weekend without anymore suprefact. My only window was today. I had to get up at an ungodly hour to go to our lawyers office on the way south side of the city and officially sign off on our new home (eeeek!). Luckily I was on late shift today so I didn’t need to be at work until 10am and it gave me enough time to drive all the way from the south side where the lawyer is, to the north side where the pharmacy is located (because my clinic deals with one pharmacy that specializes in IF meds). Luckily the pharmacy is very close to my work and I made it in on time.

Now that I have antibiotics and estrogen to add to the mix as of Wednesday I’m going to need some new reminders in my phone. Currently I have alarms at 7am, 11am, 3pm, 7pm and 11pm for my suprefact. When I wake up in the morning I have to take my synthroid (thyroid medication) on an empty stomach. I also cannot take any vitamins or minerals within four hours of synthroid which means I have to wait until around 11am to take my omega 3, vitamin B6, and the first half of my two part prenatal vitamin. When I start estrogen there will be one pill at 8am and one at 8pm for the first four days, it then increases to two pills twice a day, and then four days later to three pills twice a day. I have to fit the antibiotics in once a day (only for five days though) and lastly the second part of my prenatal, plus my ASA and vitamin B complex just before bed. If you’re keeping count by the time I am up to three estrace pills twice a day, that will be a total of 13 pills and 5 nasal sprays a day. It’ll be a wonder if I find time to work with all of this pill poppin’.

Now all I have to do is count on my clinic to get my uterus primed so I can switch from estrogen to progesterone at the end of the month and snuggle my embryo in for 9 months!

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3 thoughts on “A Lesson in Organization and Infertility

  1. Good luck! Your FET protocol sounds a bit different than I’m told mine will be, they say I’ll be on estrogen patches instead of pills and I believe I’ll start those on day 3. Hope all goes well!

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