Quickly now, I have a train to catch

Item: IVF clinic says no. But in a nice, caring way. I still have to lose weight, so I have been discharged from the waiting list, but, the day, the very DAY, I hit fighting weight, I can leap back on the list and get seen a month or so later. So it’s not the gigantic snake that wiggles from Square 98 to Square 1.

Item: The IVF clinic consultant gynaecologist (do we even have RE’s in Britain? Do we simply call them something different?) was a sweetheart, and was happy to spend ages answering every single question we could come up with.

Item: H was in Marvellous Involved Husband Mode, the angel, and asked quadrillions of sensible questions about the extra risks owing to my mono-ovary-of-crappitude state. Yes, I am at a higher risk of OHSS. Yes, Satsuma will produce as many eggs as two ovaries would – a single ovary somehow usually compensates for its sibling’s absence. (Fuckin’ OW).

Item: I was weighed and measured again, this time by a nurse who was DETERMINED to get it right and took a great deal of care about my height, and, guess what? At the last visit to Miss Consultant her nurse had got my height wrong by about three centimetres – yes, I thought she was measuring it off my hair-line, and did say, but she assured me it was OK. Ha ha. So I have less than a stone and a half to lose, but a stone and a half is recommended ‘to be on the safe side’, which I assume provides me with a medication-induced-bloat cushion.

Item: Meanwhile, on with the Clomid, and the Sweetheart doctor said kindly that she really hoped she wouldn’t have to see us again. Well, ditto, Sweetheart.

Item: And then I went to work, and work sprung about half-a-dozen career-opportunity-related surprises on me, good ones, which is actually slightly scary, and I ended up discussing IVF as being possible next Academic year, and infertility generally, with my line-manager, in a cheerful, matter-of-fact way, and there she was, planning how to get me out of all the physical aspects of my job (lifting boxes, shelving, cart pushing, etc) if and when I needed it, which, now that I think of it, sounds very like someone who has a clue what IVF involves.



Item: H and I are off to spend the night with friends, so I simply must stop talking to you, shower, and pack my toothbrush and clean unmentionables.

Item:By unmentionables I also mean 47 tampons in assorted sizes from pencil to carrot, panty-liners, great big super pads, and four varieties of painkiller, for I took the last provera Thursday, and though it’s unlikely The Period will turn up before Tuesday or Wednesday, I wouldn’t put it past the Cute Ute to pull a fast one and ruin my weekend. I have found the remains of the diclofenac sodium I was prescribed when I last had surgery, and as I won’t be driving or operating heavy machinery, am seriously considering using it to blot out the pain, and, hey, names, dates, faces, and which way round shoes go on as well. At least I won’t be white and green and dizzy and crumpling in the middle.


14 responses to “Quickly now, I have a train to catch

  • Hairy Farmer Family

    I am so, so glad that things are turning around a bit. I was so sure the 2 stone figure must be wrong. SILLY nurse. 2lb a week is usually achievable without flagellating yourself too hard (says she, who’s put on 10lb since Christmas). Call it 3 months, which you would need in order to run through the next two cycles anyway if Satsuma isn’t in a hurry.

    My infertility chap headed up the Centre for Reproductive Medicine and was chair of the British Fertility Society at the time. He was about as reproduct-y as you can get, and was still termed a consultant gynae, so I think RE must be a term we don’t ‘do’ over here.

    Work sounds very exciting. Does Head of Section-ship call?

  • Pamela Jeanne

    Hey there…now that I’m not up to my arse in cardboard boxes I’m back to reading my favorite blogs. Hope you have a lovely evening with your friends…good to hear you in good spirits!

  • Betty M

    your obs/gynae will have sub specialized probably when he was a registrar but re is not a term we do.
    Glad your boss is so sympa.

  • geohde

    I am glad the weight loss number has been revised down. Weight loss is hard work.

    I hope that the clo.mid does the magic trick first, though. Or that new svelteness kicks satsuma into gear all on her own.


  • katie

    I think we call them gynaecologists, because the specialist lot I see in the UK probably know more about the up to date research stuff than my RE over here, and don’t deliver babies or do tubal ligations or that boring stuff, but are still called consultant gynaecologists.

  • Lori

    I’m totally confused. Do you have to weigh a certain weight to be eligible for IVF? And 25 pounds or whatever it is, is enough to keep you off the list? Wow. I didn’t think weight affected fertility that much, especially 25 pounds. Maybe 100 pounds? Are there studies to confirm this?

  • Rita

    I am confused too. I am thinking and it’s a dumb question: Why do they care about your weight?
    Yes. I know. Dumb question.

  • womb for improvement

    Sounds all very positive.

    And talk about an incentive to lose weight! But as the Doctor says, lets hope you don’t need to see her again and get weighed anyway.

  • Aphra Behn

    So pleased to read all that good news. 🙂 We do all so want the sun to shine on you in your part of England.

    Lori and Rita, being over-weight increases the risk of maternal thrombosis among other threats to a successful pregnancy. Ok, it’s a very small risk which is increased to a small one, but behind the numbers are real women really dying because of complications from being overweight and giving birth. (Case in point: a colleague of my other half, life support machines turned off last week, though that was a natural conception not an assisted one).

    Additionally, multiple births are significantly more risky for the babies as well as for the mother, so IVF is inherently riskier in the first place unless there is a single embryo. I don’t know what other risks are associated with the treatment itself.

    It would be irresponsible for the medics to just let those risk factors multiply and multiply together without at least trying to do something about the ones where the risk can be reduced. It might also leave them open to litigation, but that’s a slightly different matter.

    Sorry, not the most tactful post in an infertility blog, but I happened to know part of the answer to the question. It is certainly not a matter of aesthetics or prejudice, it is a matter of ethical and responsible reduction of risk.


  • Aphra Behn

    Oh – PS – Lori yes, there are studies. If you want references I can probably get hold of them for you.

  • Jane G

    It’s great that things are looking up for you. I think a stone and a half is doable when you have a very clear goal in mind. Bring on the no point veggie soup : )

  • Hairy Farmer Family

    OHSS is the biggie factor to look out for with IVF, particularly PCOS ladies, as May says. Very very occasionally the retrieval needle puncture goes a bit agley. And there are always risks – particularly from excess tonnage – associated with the sedation used during egg retrieval.

    But essentially, you are less likely to conceive in the first place if you are overweight. It makes no sense to undergo all these hasslesome and expensive procedures whilst simultaneously getting in your own way.


    It feels harsh, though. I was told to lose, and I did. I obviously looked slimmer, because no-one followed up with a weigh-in.

  • Helen

    I just called my IVF doctor an RE. Well, secretly I called him an Asshole, but in blogland it was easier calling him an RE than explaining that he’s a gynae who looks up hoo hoos AND works with IVF.

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