Blow my brains out…

As I prepare to undergo IVF treatment, I’ve been asking others what their experiences were like doing IVF, especially the dreaded shots.  I received some excellent IVF notes from a friend, and they were…in a word…TERRIFYING.  Here it is:

Stim Cycle:

  • The supplements (Vitamin D, CoQ-10, etc.) have to be taken for about 5 months, so buy the biggest bottles possible.
  • Acupuncture at least once a week, twice a week if possible.
  • Take the Follistim and Cetrotide out of the refrigerator about 10-15 minutes before injecting so that it comes down to room temperature. It will hurt less.

Egg Retrieval:

  • Take a probiotic. I like Mega Foods (it’s in the refrigerated section of Whole Foods).  Start at least a few days before the egg retrieval.
  • Two days before egg retrieval start taking Miralax (or some other stool softener) and keep taking it for three or four days after the egg retrieval (or longer if needed).
  • Acupuncture appointment day before egg retrieval.
  • Take off 2-3 days after egg retrieval. There will be bloating and maybe some discomfort and it may be difficult to move around.
  • You may want to wear a panty liner for a couple of days after the egg retrieval. The Crinone causes a thick discharge that may last a couple of days.

FET Cycle:

  • Acupuncture at least once a week, twice a week if possible.
  • Continue to take the probiotic. The estrace may cause stomach issues.
  • Take the estrace with food.
  • Put the Progesterone vial in your bra 30 minutes before injection.
  • Use heating pad and massage 15 minutes before injection.
  • Alternate sides for injection every three days (e.g., R, R, L, L). They tell you to alternate sides every day, but one day is not enough for that side to heal, and the extra shot the next day does not do much.
  • Have your husband keep the prepared syringe in his hand so that the Progesterone stays warm before injection.
  • Ice the injection site for 30 seconds before injection.
  • It helps reduce the pain if your husband pinches the injection area while injecting.
  • After removing the needle, wipe the area with an alcohol wipe, then use a tissue to put pressure on the injection site.
  • Use heating pad and massage for 10-15 minutes after injection.
  • After massage, move around for 30 minutes. I would go on my elliptical for 30 minutes.
  • Massage the injection area in the shower to try to break up the knots.
  • If the injection site starts itching, use Benadryl and ice as needed.
  • Use a small amount of lubricant when inserting the vaginal progesterone insert. After a few days, it will become very dry.
  • Wear a panty liner when you start using the vaginal progesterone insert. The discharge will get worse as the days go on.  There is a particularly heavy discharge first thing in the morning.

Embryo Transfer:

  • Start taking Miralax a couple of days before and a couple of days after the transfer.
  • Acupuncture day of (or day before if can’t day of) and the day after transfer.
  • Acupuncture at least once between transfer and first blood test.


Oh fuck no.

Don’t get me wrong, I am SO happy to get these notes, as they are amazingly descriptive and helpful…yet I am utterly terrified.  Apparently, the medications have side effects, so you need to take stool softeners to combat the constipation, and a probiotic, to combat the upset stomach issues.  And then there’s excess discharge of the vagina?  And vaginal inserts??  Not to mention, I have to do shots every fucking day for like 10 weeks.  Some in the stomach, and most of them in the ass.

Now I ask myself…is this really worth it????