Tuesday, April 04, 2006

A Change in Scenery

In other non-reproductive news, it looks like I have, in addition to my lovely bout of sinusitis,
a small case of fungal infection of the toe (my big toe). When I got out of the shower this morning, I looked down, as I was drying off, and saw that a bit of my toe (close to the outside part) was discolored. I thought at first it was a bruise, since sometimes the little kids step on your feet accidentally. When I looked closer, though, it didn't look like that-it was soft and a little flaky, but didn't hurt. And, just for the record, I have extremely strong nails that never flake. Uh-oh. Although I've never personally had one, I know what they look like, so I freaked out and looked it up on Dr. Google. Fuckfuckfuck. There goes the pedicure for the cruise.

I called M up to pick her nursing brain (she also used to be a manicurist, pre-nursing days), and she told me that if it isn't spread across the nail, which it's not, you can soak the nail in hydrogen peroxide three times a day for about 5-10 minutes and it should clear up in about a week. I have to make sure that I keep it clean and dry, and disinfect everything-nail clippers, etc.-because you can spread the infection (apparently it's a type of ringworm-urgh). Just what I needed, right?

13 days until vacation. I'll be really pissed if I can't have pretty toes by then.

So, on to today's consult. Well, what's to say?

Holy crap. What a difference. It's like comparing a beat-up Ford station wagon to a Mercedes.

The meeting went very well. We got there on time, checked out the waiting room-very large, with a coffee machine and pastries/muffins available for patients (as well as a mini-fridge). The staff was very friendly and professional. The doctor personally came out to get us, which I wasn't expecting; usually, a nurse does that. The RE is a very tiny, cute Asian lady in her 40's (all the RE's in the practice are women, which is cool), so let's call her Dr. Petite. Firm handshake, looked you in the eye and gave us a smile while she led us to her office.

She had our medical information right in front of us, and seemed like she took her time to review the records. She told us that she feels that the combo of drugs that I've been on (long Lupron protocol with Follistim, HcG trigger and PIO) is good, however, since it's been proven that I can produce a fair amount of eggs, to start at half the dosage I've been having, maybe stim a bit longer to let us get the most amount of mature eggs. The problem, she feels, is that my estrogen levels were way too high and that it might have impeded in implantation. She also feels that the lab played a big part as to our success. Yes, I know that they're trying to sell their lab; but, to be honest, it IS one of the best around. And, let's face it-the lab that Dr. Vest uses is okay, but nothing spectacular. Like comparing a Ford to a Mercedes.

So, Dr. Petite said that we can start a cycle in May, if we'd like. I did ask her about whether, due to the tubal issue, a laparoscopy is in order; she felt, since the original HSG showed that the bulging tube was spilling, that tube is still considered viable. She did explain that when you use a large amount of dye during an HSG (which they did), sometimes it will cause a bulge in the tube. She feels that if no other ultrasounds, especially during any of the stim phases of my cycles, showed a hydro that there's a good chance there either really isn't one, or that there is a small one but the tube is still opened, so it's okay. Just in case, she's going to schedule a saline sonohysterogram once I get my period, to see what's going on-which is a hell of a lot easier than another HSG or a lap-woot!

I had an ultrasound, done by the doctor (which we got to watch on a monitor that's right above the exam table-cool), where she pronounced that everything looks great-normal uterus, saw the ovaries and showed me where I ovulated. She also took some cultures (required), and we met with our patient coordinator who seems really nice, scheduled an IVF class (also required, but no big deal) and a financial person. Luckily, insurance will cover this, so it's just a formality.

So, now I have to get a shitload of bloodwork that apparently Dr. Vest never had me do-CMV, syphillis, Hepatitis B and C, HIV, Indirect Coombs, Varicella titer, Cystic Fibrosis profile, type and cross match, TSH, prolactin. Sean has to go for bloodwork too (hah!) and another spankfest at the semen analysis lab. I also have to get the results of my last Pap, and then get blood drawn on cycle day three and schedule the sonohysterogram. Whew! That seems like a hell of a lot of work, doesn't it? But, once we're done, we'll meet our IVF nurse, and we're back on the rollercoaster. I really wasn't expecting this. I was fully prepared to talk about surgery, what to expect, what would happen. I'm starting to feel like it's a new lease on my (reproductive) life.

The upshot was-if it were legal, I'd marry this woman. I liked her a lot-she took the time to answer our questions, really listened to us, and was very reassuring. She feels, especially since I got pregnant once before, that it will happen. I just find it kinda funny that I was orignally referred to her, couldn't go because of cost at the time, but was led back to her anyway. It looks like it was meant to be.

Perhaps a change of scenery is just-at least, in this case- what the doctor ordered.


UtRus said...

congrats on the change of clinic and the nice FE! hopefully will do the trick and at least you will be in a better place regardless. Dr Vest never tested you for STDs??? it's the law here in CA (both partners must be tested every 6 months).

UtRus said...

p.s. good that they're doing some of that pre-genetic testing... i tested positive for CF, and then husband was tested and is negative, so we're in the clear.

cat said...

This all sounds really really good. So glad you don't have to go the surgery route.

We are sending you some good luck vibes and will be rooting for you every step of the way.

May is a very fertile month and in the pagan calendar it is the month with Beltane in it... the fertility big rite of the year. I will light some candles for you this year and keep you close to the heart through it all.

Yeah I'm a heathen but it can't hurt *wink*

Betty said...

wow, that new clinic sounds very organised. I feel very excited for you and May is not too far away!
As for your toe...oh dear!

hormonebitch said...

I am so glad to hear about the change of doctor and clinics!! I know when we changed it was like night and day and made ALL the difference in the world!!! I don't think I would have ever gotten pregnant at my other clinic...but they are really good at accepting tons of money for doing nothing at all. I am surprised your last doc didn't do all those blood tests. It sounds like you have a MUCH better chance with the new doc.

candy said...

we just switched doctors too, and if nothing else mentally it just makes a world of difference. he "redid" a test that our old doctor had done at the wrong time, and was just so much nicer, more personal maybe. it almost felt like i hadn't been at this for 3+ years, like i was starting fresh. everything you said sounds so encouraging. best of luck to you in may! (and to your toe until then.)

Shelli said...

woo hoo!!!!!!!!!!!!

And, um, I loves me some hydrogen peroxide.

boo-boo baby bite face sends her love and LOTS of good ovary energy.


ilyse said...

Wow that is great that you had such a good experience there. I hope they will make you be successful. :)