Blimey, it’s Friday already. In that case, we had better talk about Wednesday. Remember, I unleashed H and the Power of Testosterone Voice on the NHS a couple of weeks ago, and he came galumphing triumphantly back having swapped the not-until-effing-May (why yes, May was effing and blinding) gynaecology appointment for a brand new this-month appointment.
And I wangled most of the day off work.
On Wednesday morning, then, I went to visit the GP, to see if I could get hold of the recurrent miscarriage panel blood test results (oy vey the saga) before having to deal with Miss Consultant about them. I wanted to be braced and prepared because Miss Consultant is so very efficient and brisk and teflon-coated I get the yips in her presence. Doc Tashless was not available, but I did get to speak to the sweetie GP I saw in October, when I thought I might be miscarrying that time. And I got to feel almost cruel, because the way Doc Sweetie’s face fell, and went right on falling, when he realised I a) wasn’t pregnant with the October baby, b) had lost another one since as well, and c) was being seriously investigated by Mothership Hospital, was like kicking a puppy from here to John O’Groats. At which point he was prepared to somersault backwards through burning hoops for me.
And this was just as well, because my test results were not forthcoming, and he nobly tried two computers, three log-ins, and one animated discussion with the secretarial staff before realising that this GP’s surgery did not have access to Mothership’s computer system, and had never had access to Mothership’s computer system, and the Mothership nurse had misinformed me (GAH!). And that Mothership, despite having sent over the results of every single HCG beta I’ve had in the past few months, had not sent the RM panel results. And they should have. And we sat and looked at each other blankly for a few moments.
Anyway, we vigorously agreed that the RMC clinic was not behaving very well, even if the staff at the EPU were lovely (but confused).
On which note, I asked about NHS referrals to Lesley Regan’s RM clinic. He looked that up on the GP intranet, and said, eventually, thoughtfully, that the waiting list appeared to be six-to-eight months long, as we weren’t in the catchment area for that hospital. But he’d start the paperwork, if I liked. I did like, but am also going to make H call them and ask about going private (I have savings. I have a wealthy and anxious-to-be-useful mother). We can always wait or rush forward depending on what Mothership pulls out of the bag.
In the afternoon, H and I went down to the Hospital Out In The Country, where Mothership sends her Assisted Conception patients for monitoring and clinic visits (confused? Aren’t we all). We sat in the waiting room (hot, crowded, shared with the ear-nose-and-throat clinic, full of stone-deaf elderly ladies and flustered parents with toddlers) for over an hour. Apparently, the nurse had put the patient’s folders not in the order the appointments were booked, but in alphabetical order. So we were being called through in alphabetical order. I live about the middle of the alphabet. Pity the poor couple at the back end of the alphabet who were made to wait for nearly two hours. Also, smack the nurse for being an eejit.
Miss Consultant was in good form, however. And not in the least teflony. I felt as if H and I had passed some kind of special ‘fine, we can take you seriously now’ threshold. Apart from the moment when she smiled brightly at the pair of us and said ‘it’s excellent that you are getting pregnant!’ and I felt H flinch beside me. That made us both a little stabby.
Anyway, she did have my blood tests.
And, and, no clotting issues.
No clotting issues! Factor V Leiden, Lupus anticoagulant, Anticardiolipin, Prothrombin Clotting time, Partial Thromboplastin Time, all came back absolutely negative for clotting issues.
She then asked if my LH/FSH/estradiol had been taken at the right time of my cycle, and I said no, as it had been the week after ovulation, which even I now know is totally not the right time of the cycle. (Senior Doctor didn’t even ask what cycle day it was before ordering those, you know. Coupled with the Thyroid-Doesn’t-Cause-Miscarriages FAIL, this makes me think Senior Doctor may be a charming person but a dick-wad as a doctor). So Miss Consultant flicked briskly past those.
The eighth test had been a full blood count after all (I could see the screen) but Miss Consultant didn’t mention it, so I assume it was boring.
Right. Next steps. Miss Consultant decided that H and I needed karyotyping. Chromosonal issues are very rare, she pointed out, but then, so are three or four miscarriages in a row, and as we’re waiting for IVF, it’d be better to find this out as soon as possible. Today, even! (I reeled, mildly gob-smacked).
I then took a deep breath, and said, firmly as I could, ‘thyroid’. I pointed out my mother had thyroid problems. I pointed out that her thyroxine levels had been near-normal but her TSH (I think? Probably) had been completely out of whack and it had taken a while before her doctor had thought to check it and this while my mother was growing an actual goitre. Miss Consultant agreed thyroid issues could be hereditary. I stated that I had quite a few symptoms of burgered thyroid, see, for example, the painful heavy periods and crocodile hide. Oh, she said, have I noticed any hair thinning? Why yes, look, here is the thin patch on my temple. She promptly added a full thyroid panel to the list of follow-up tests.
And she may as well double-check my Anticardiolipin, as it’s usual to do that one twice.
H remembered my possible fibroid (seen on the where-the-hell-is-Zombryo ultrasounds) and valiantly spoke up. We discussed it briefly, though Miss Consultant thinks it won’t be a problem (what? Even if it’s submucous?) and she didn’t seem overly concerned, (so perhaps it isn’t). And yet she then casually mentioned that one of my many ultrasounds had shown three (THREE) small fibroids. Really? Seriously? What the fuck? Meanwhile H was struggling to remember the term ‘adenomyosis’ and I was too busy ghasting my flabber in confused silence (three fibroids? Seriously?) to be of any use at all at this point. (Three? But, the last ultrasound showed possibly one ‘area of vascularity’, and why is this all maybe-possibly-whatever let’s-not-bother-telling-May? Have I ever mentioned my periods are a bloody hell? Have I? Ever? So, you know, a diagnosis might be interesting to me? Why don’t I say this out loud?)
Miss Consultant understood something of the ghasting, as she signed me up for yet another ultrasound, ‘to make sure’. Only, not for another few months (oh), because pregnancy hormones can make fibroids grow a great deal, and we’d get a more accurate picture when they’ve had a chance to return to their cruising weight.
(Speaking of which, Miss Consultant is quite sure I started ovulating again because I lost weight, encouraging smile, encouraging smile. Indeed. I pointed out I have put some back on again. I knew she was going to have me weighed and I wanted to get in there first).
And we are to go back for a follow-up appointment when the karyotype results come back. This won’t be for three months at the earliest, for which she apologised, so we are seeing her again in June. Until June, we can hurl aside the condoms after all (and H had gone and bought lots, bless him) and see if we can get knocked up the standard way again.
Oh. OK. Good. I think.
And then H and I went off to the phlebotomy clinic with our blood test request forms, and ended up sitting facing each other across the room getting needled at the same time. H was very cheerful and brave about it, and deserves a lollipop, because the feeling of a needle in his vein (not the pain, just… the sensation of it) squicks him out. I was all gung-ho bring-it-on, swapping jokes with the phlebotomist (‘I always take an extra vial so I can have a snack later’), because I am a dusty-booted veteran of this kind of crap now and anyway, I used to donate blood for tea and biscuits. Am not bothered by needles. H gave two vials, for two sorts of karyotyping, and I gave six, for karyotyping plus thyroid panel plus anticardiolipin (I win!).
And as we were wending our way back from The Hospital Out In The Country, H suddenly said, but what about the FSH? Ah. Argh and ah. We’d agreed the FSH/LH/estradiol tests Senior Doctor had ordered were pointless, and that is as far as we’d got. I felt deeply half-witted indeed. Surely, I need a day 3 FSH/LH/estradiol test? I decided then and there I could get Doc Tashless to do those for me, though. He could write the request form and I could simply go to the GP phlebotomy service on the right day. It’d be fine. I could get it done with minimum fuss.
But still, AAAARGH. My gynaecology/ACU/RMC trifecta of dropped balls is still complete (dropped balls! Teeheehee).
We shall be sent the thyoid results in a few weeks, allegedly. I hope so, and I have my doubts. And I have H on stand-by for phone-call-making purposes.
So. Well. So. Hmmm.