Another one of the reasons that my postings have been spotty as of late is because my grandmother (my father's mother) is in the hospital. And, some very interesting things have developed due to this.
About three weeks ago, my grandmother (who lives in Boston with my 95 year old grandfather) was on the phone with my mother; she had been to the dentist earlier in the day and had Novocaine, and wanted to know how long it would take for the medication to wear off. During the conversation, she suddenly started babbling and garbling her speech-my mother went directly into "nurse-mode" and was trying to tell her to call for help.
At which point, my grandmother hung up the phone. And, my mother had no emergency numbers to call anyone else (my grandfather's nephew and his family live on the third floor of the building). Frantic, my mother kept redialing and tried to see how to call 911 when out of state.
Finally, my grandmother answered the phone. She was able to talk, and everything seemed fine. My mother insisted that she go to the doctor's the next day, but of course, my grandmother being the stubborn old bird that she is, hemmed and hawed about it.
Until the next day, when she still didn't feel well. My grandfather's nephew brought her (under duress) to the doctor. Who promptly admitted her to the hospital.
It was determined that she did have a stroke, but luckily it didn't affect her speech. She's been hospitalized before due to clots-once with a DVT (deep vein thrombosis) of the leg and a PE (pulmonary embollism) in her lung. But, up until this point, it never resulted in a stroke. So, she was observed, given medication, and released.
Three days later she ended up back in the hospital, because the arm in which they placed the IV began to swell. It turns out that she has a blood infection from the IV line (can we say "potential negligence due to a non-sterile field"?? Yah..). They also find ANOTHER CLOT in her arm, where the IV was, so they had to put in a PICC, gave her Coumadin, and now have to release her to a subacute facility for four weeks of additional IV antibiotic therapy. The hematologists then decided to do a more extensive blood analysis to see what's going on.
The testing shows that she has Factor V Leiden and Protein-S Deficiency. We're not yet sure whether the gene mutation is homo- or heterozygous, or what else is affected. But, she's had it her entire life. Which explains why it took so long for her to get pregnant. And why she had miscarriages before and after having my father, who is an only child, since FVL increases the risk of miscarriage, preeclampsia and placental abruption.
Ah, the wonders of modern medicine. For years, my grandmother thought that her infertility was "God's will", but it was just a case of genetics. It only took her 89 years to find it out.
So..........guess who's now getting tested for it? Yup. It's very likely that I have the mutation, given the family history (a few of my grandmother's sisters and brothers had strokes and similar clotting issues), but we won't know for sure until the tests are run. My father and brother also will need to be tested, and my mother is thinking of it also, because she has no idea if it's in her family.
Could this be the missing piece of the puzzle for me? Will finding this out help me get pregnant? Not that I want an additional diagnosis, really........but, if this is what's keeping me from getting (and staying pregnant), and it can be treated, then bring it on. I'm more than ready.