Next week, my husband and I will meet our new fertility specialist. I was starting to write down a list of questions to ask at the appointment, when it hit me that… I have no idea what questions to ask at the appointment, ha!
To recap for context, DH and I have been TTC #1 for almost 2 years, with zero pregnancies. I have PCOS & hashimoto’s hypothyroidism. I’m on thyroxine, as well as metformin, and I take daily vitamin supplements as well as (mostly) eating a low sugar diet. DH has had 2x SA, both have come back within normal ranges. I’ve done 8 months of letrozole cycles, the first on 2.5mg and then moving up to 5mg for the rest, at which point for at least the 2 monitored cycles, I was ovulating.
Now this is not to say the the doctor won’t answer every single one of these questions without my having to ask. But, I am a bit of a crazy obsessive control freak (aren’t we all when TTC) and having something prepared does make me feel like I’ve got some degree of control over this whole process. Also, I do freaking love lists.
With that in mind, I’ve put together the below list after doing a bit of research in the hopes that a) I can one day help some other ladies going through something similar and b) and much more selfishly, some other ladies who’ve been through something similar can help me!
1. My DH’s SA results – while normal, the morphology in particular seemed to be on the low side, and in some countries at 11% and 12%, would actually be under the ‘normal’ threshold. Given one of our choices is IUI, will those morphology results have any impact on our chances of success? Is there anything we can do to improve those results?
2. IUI – what is the process here? I know in some countries you’re able to do a sandwich IUI where you are inseminated on 2 consecutive days. Is that an option here, and are there any studies showing an increased chance of success?
3. My aunt, who has very similar conditions to myself, has also let me know that when she was going through fertility treatments she discovered she was the carrier for a genetic illness. Should myself and my DH therefore also be tested, and what is the process for that? What are the next steps if something is revealed?
4. IUI with ovulation induction success rates for someone of my age/medical conditions, VS IVF success rates?
5. What will the day to day of the treatment look like for each option – IUI vs IVF? Will my work be interrupted by daily blood tests and frequent ultrasounds, as it was in my aunt’s case, or will it be a little less full on?
6. At what point will they start the treatment – with the start of my next cycle, or will they artificially kick off a new cycle?
7. What are the side effects of each option?
8. What is the risk of multiples with each option?
9. How many cycles of each treatment option would they recommend if unsuccessful?
10. What additional tests will we need to do before commencing treatment & what will those tests involve?
11. Who will our doctor be throughout treatment? Will we be able to contact them only at appointments, or will we be able to call to ask questions throughout the process?
12. What will happen if we are successful, who will monitor the early pregnancy? Will we be referred elsewhere straight away?
Let me know any other questions you can think of, ladies xx