IVF Questions

Hello, oldie DTC-er here hoping for some IVF advice as I know a number of you lovely ladies have been through it. I am doing the long (microdose flare) protocol so just about to start on the pill. Specialist has suggested we throw everything at it so we are also doing the Colorado protocol alongside it (which means taking pencillin, oestradiol, aspirin, steroids and wearing testosterone patches all together at some point in the process). Has anyone else done this? The  number of drugs on top of the injections seems a bit overwhelming! 

Did you have any side effects? 

Did you take any time off work at all? Specialist suggested taking 3-5 days off around time of egg collection.

Anything else that is helpful to know? 

Also if anyone has any success stories doing IVF with a pretty much non existent AMH level I would love to hear them! 



  • Hello D, sorry I haven't done your protocols but did one round of ivf icsi last summer which led to our little boy.

    It is a bit overwhelming anyway I think - getting the amounts of medicine right, timing the injections etc. so totally normal to feel how you do, especially as you are doing extra. Are you planning to do acupuncture alongside it?

    My Consultant said I only needed to take the EC day off but personally I don't think that's enough. I was a bit sore after the op and was on tenterhooks emotionally so wouldn't have been ready to go in to work. As it happened we had bad news the next day wrt our fertilisation rate (only one of 11 eggs fertilised) so we had a 2 day transfer not 5, so I would have needed to be off work 2 days later anyway. Sounds like your Dr has it about right with time off, but if you can I would leave the option of having more. I think I had 9 days in total as I felt I needed to do everything possible to help our little runt of an emby as it wasn't the best grade and I was a bit knackered from it all. I did go out of my mind a bit though and was desperate to get back to work in the end to take my mind off the 2ww! I did scans etc. before work so didn't need any other time off.

    Though I haven't done your protocol, if it helps, I had a really positive experience physically. Barely any side effects, the odd rough and tired day when DR but on the whole we were both pleasantly surprised by how it went and how I felt. It also passed really quickly, bar the few days before testing, which obviously crawled by! If I can help or you want to talk anytime, just give me a shout.

    When do you start? Wishing you loads of luck.

  • I have no idea about ivf protocols, but just wanted to say hi, and hope it's successful for you Wave

  • Thanks BW.

    Lamby thanks for sharing your experience. I will be freeing up my diary then around egg collection time, shouldn't be too hard to get time off. Glad to hear it was physically ok for you. I am nervous about the emotional side as I have been on clomiphene most of this year and at times have felt really low on it. I am starting the pill tomo and will get a more detailed plan in the next few days. It's good to hear you had a positive outcome in the end despite bad news. I will definitely shout out with any more questions that arise.

  • The micro flare/dose protocol  is very American in my experience! Those meds have different names over here (lupron is prostrap for example) and the protocols aren't typical for first time use here. 

    I've heard of all components of the Colorado protocol (although not that term!) being used for second or third cycles when the first has been unsuccessful. Again, the British seem to be quite conservative and only like to add extras when necessary rather than attack from all side from the very start.

    My EC was under general and on a Friday. If I hadn't had complications, I think I may have been fine with one day off, but would have preferred more. However I developed OHSS which got gradually worse after EC, but I was unlucky (although did get a hen house full of eggs!) so I got a lot worse before I got better.

    I also second Lamby in that until I did my trigger injection 36 hours before EC, I felt surprisingly normal. I expected to feel different but I didn't. It was only after the trigger, and the onset of OHSS that I began to feel horrendous. Hopefully that won't happen to you though x

  • Hi Ducky - yes the reason we are going all out first off is because I am 40 in a couple of months, my AMH is very low, we are paying for treatment and apparently they often suggest the Colorado protocol as they have had a lot of clients come back asking did they try absolutely everything. Although there is no hard and fast evidence for the protocol, it certainly does no harm. I hope you are feeling better now, awful to develop OHSS! I don't think there is is any chance that I will have this issue. Do you know when your FET will be?

  • The risk factors for ovarian hyper stimulation syndrome  (OHSS) are under 35, high AMH and PCOS. I tick all three!

    I imagine as your AMH is low, they will be in much better control of your response to the drugs and you'll be able to tolerate much higher doses. I was on a really small dose and kept recruiting more tiny follicles rather than the big ones growing to maturity. They almost had to cancel due to poor response which I though was quite ironic given I ended up oversrimulating when they increased my dose by a smidgen.

    It is all very clever and an emotional rollercoaster to say the least. I was somewhat relieved when I was told they were freezing all embryos and not going to embryo transfer (I found this out the morning of EC). At first I was disappointed but not I'm not sure I'd have the energy to be in the 2ww, I am in awe of ladies who go through I whole cycle, I cheated and got a breather!

    I think FET will probably be November time. I'll find out more at our follow up appointment this Friday. Good luck with everything, really hope it is all straightforward for you x

  • No personal experience of all the drugs, and the ones I was taken not a clue what they were all called.

    For EC I was similar to Ducky as I had GA on the Thursday rested over the weekend (our weekend is Friday/ Saturday) and was fine to go back to the office on Sunday. As yet my 1 embryo is frozen and for various reason due to may body failing we have not had a chance to put it back it.

    I didn't really find EC as bad as expected. Hope it all goes well for you!!

  • No experience but Diamonds, lovely to see you back and I really hope you have a straightforward and successful round of IVF.

    I really hope you can't drink on your 40th as you are upduffed xxx

  • Hi, I remember you from the DTTC threads Wave

    No experience of your protocol - we did the short protocol last summer as I had 90+ day cycles.  I didn't have any noticeable side effects from taking the drugs other than localised irritation from the injections (although we didn't do the down-regging so don't know if that made a difference)

    I didn't take time off work, but I did work from home between egg collection and testing.  I actually found the egg retrieval ok.  I was a bit freaked out about being sedated so I just did it with painkillers instead, and we went home about an hour after the procedure.

    Like Lamby I also had acupuncture, and I found it really helped.  I also used the Zita West IVF CD which was really good for visualisation.

    We had 12 eggs retrieved, 6 fertilised, and only 3 were any good.  Even then they weren't great quality, but we had the best one put in and our 6 month old is now asleep in the bedroom!

  • Thank you VE, let's hope so!

    LC I don't think there is the option for GA here, just sedation. Hope you don't have to wait too much longer for your transfer and keeping everything crossed for you.

    SC hello again, nice to her it all worked out for you. I'm not sure about the acupuncture ..... How many sessions did you have and at what stage? I might check out that CD.

    Ducky good luck for Fri, keep us posted on the DTC thread. It seems very quiet on there since the separation of the boards .... Shame as it was good to chat to all you lot regularly.

  • Hi, sorry for the delay getting back to you!  We started the acupuncture at the same time as starting the IVF.  I know that it is recommended to start before treatment, but we weren't able to, so it worked for us just doing it from the start of treatment.  I had sessions pretty frequently to start with and then carried on having them every 4 weeks while I was pregnant.  Not sure if it had any effect medically, but it definitely helped me feel better about it all, so it was worth it for that alone.

  • Hi diamonds! I was on the MTTC boards with you before...had a name change. We didn't do that protocol but I found the whole experience not as bad physically as I feared and I just took it easy. I actually took EC off and left it open about my return, I was in really bad pain after for a good week or so but it sounds like that isn't normal. The 2ww is tough and we only had 2 embryos fertilise and of those only 1 was suitable for transfer. My little miracle has just woken up so even bad news during the process doesn't mean a bad outcome :-) Wishing you all the luck in the world x

  • No idea honey but SO pleased to hear you are receiving private treatment. You so deserve this to work. Good luck x x

  • I have no experience/advice, but just want to say hi Wave and wish you all the luck in the world.  Will have my fingers firmly crossed for some good news from you soon x

  • Sorry I am late getting back to this.

    SC, thanks for that info. The thought of it puts me off but I have heard people say how relaxing it is, so I will have a look into it.

    Smarties ..... what was your username before? It's good to hear a number of people have had success despite not so good news during the process.

    Hello Hollywood and BG, thanks for the good wishes x

  • Good luck with your treatment! It sounds like they're really trying to optimise your chance of success which is great. I'm an embryologist so don't know a great deal about the drug regime aspect of ivf but I can do my best to answer any questions you might have once you've had your egg collection. X

  • Hi, it was NL for short...sorry I have 'company' online now :-/

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