2nd ultrasound and radiology report

I just received a call from Dr. Shapiro.

He asked me if I was at home, and if DH was nearby. Yes to both.

He said that he is always cautious to make pronouncements until we have proof. He said that what we found out today could be a harbinger of bad news to come. Of an abnormal pregnancy. He wants me to get scanned again this Friday or Monday. “It could go either way,” he said. “There is no way to know for sure until you’re re-scanned.”

He said that the increase of the heartbeat from 80 to 120 in one week is the piece of news that is good. “Usually,” he said, “all the news is bad when it goes bad. If the heart-rate is low, it stays low.” He said that usually when the heart rate is normal—and 120 is normal—the pregnancy is normal.  (Dr. Brenner at LI IVF says that 120 is still “a little lower than we like to see at this point,” and that an increased heart rate is not necessarily an indicator of a healthy pregnancy.)

Dr. Shapiro said that I should actually be measuring about 7 weeks 1 day today (not 7 weeks 3 days, as I was previously told). So measuring 6 weeks 3 days just barely puts me within the 5+/5- day range of variability for an ultrasound. (The radiologist measured me 6 weeks 3 days; LI IVF measured me 6 weeks 0 days this week, and 6 weeks 1 day last week.)

But if the baby measured only 6 weeks 1 day a week ago, doesn’t that mean it grew, at most, only 2 days in 1 week’s time?  Neither the radiologist nor LI IVF has me anywhere near 7 weeks 1 day today—what are the chances of both places being so off? Again, he pointed to the variability. It is possible…

He talked about the fact that an ultrasound is a digital image of analogue information. “It’s not accurate,” he said. He also said there could be a structural reason, such as a slightly titled uterus, that could be making an accurate reading difficult.

I told him that I was concerned that my gestational sac was measuring 9 weeks. “Isn’t that an indication of an abnormal pregnancy?” He assured me that it is not—he said that it’s of concern when the yolk sac is abnormally large, not the gestational sac. “In fact, your gestational sac measurement could be throwing things off,” he said, explaining something about the machine’s measurements of the embryo being thrown off by the discrepancy of the measurement of the gestational sac…I didn’t understand this…

He said that recently, a patient of his was told by her OB and radiologist that she was going to miscarry, and she is now going to give birth. He said that he is very cautious to make pronouncements when analyzing data coming from outside sources. He also said that early in his career, he made pronouncements too early and scared women when he shouldn’t have.

And so on.

So it will drag out another few days or another week. I appreciate his cautiousness; I know it’s the best way he can be right now.

We went to a park and pond near the radiologist today, DH & I.

I walked barefoot in the grass and wailed. Neither Dr. Brenner at LI IVR nor the radiologist at the lab were nearly as cautious as Dr. Shapiro in what they related to me.

A huge part of me knows that it is over. That I will have to relive my worst nightmare for the 6th time. That I will most likely have to get yet another D & C. That my holidays are ruined, as is my 40th birthday. That I will have to try to find that numb-space, from which I am able to partially function. This week will feel like putting off the inevitable.

A sliver of me has an even tinier sliver of hope. But it’s just the balm to help me survive until the next scan.

I really don’t know why this is happening. That’s because there is no why. And there is no limit to what I will have to endure.

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  1. Oh hun, this is impossibly tough. I really understand your emotions right now, the hopelessness and confusion. I’d never been more scared in my life. The waiting seems endless. Try to be good to yourself. If you can, try to picture that oak tree, just for a little bit of strength, a little bit of calm. Sending you loads of support and love xxx

  2. Oh there’s just nothing to say, is there? I’m hoping desperately that this turns around. You have been through so much, and there is absolutely nothing fair about you having to endure this after you have come through this process with such a sense of peace and an open heart. I am local if you decide you need to cry over a piece of that chocolate cake with someone who gets it. Sending all my love your way! Xo

  3. Danielle

     /  October 7, 2013

    I am so truly sorry you are going through this. I also know about multiple losses, and there are simply no words. You are in my thoughts.

  4. Lori

     /  October 8, 2013

    Ughhh…I’m so sorry you are dealing with this. I’m holding out hope that your baby pulls through this and hanging on to Shapiro’s story of his patient who was in similar situation and it worked out. Fingers crossed for you and your baby!

  5. Absolutely nothing I can say. The pain in your words says it all. I’ll be holding out hope for you. Thinking of you and sending you love this week. xo

  6. hope

     /  October 8, 2013

    i am so sorry… just so sorry.

  7. My heart is hurting for you, and I understand that you have to protect yourself. I will hold onto that sliver of hope for you… prayers coming you way.

  8. p

     /  October 8, 2013

    I just can’t wait until Monday. I am holding out hope. I’m with Dr. Shapiro — many times docs can be wrong. My very nephew was pronounced a miscarriage. He just turned 3 years old and is brilliant. So we just don’t know. Holding on to sanity until the next u/s will be the challenge. But I know you can do it!!! Sending you much love and support. Please keep us posted. I am new to your blog but feel so connected to you and your experiences given my own losses and continued efforts to conceive. Much love.

  9. I am so sorry you are dealing with this. I can’t images how stressed you must be with all the uncertainty. But you are limitlessly tough!

  10. Do whatever you need to do to protect yourself. I’m sending out thoughts of hope, peace and love to the universe for you and your family.

  11. I’m so sorry. This isn’t the way it’s supposed to go :(
    I’m holding out hope that things turn around. Sending lots of positive growing vibes to your little one.

  12. So awful you’re going through this, thinking of you

  13. Laurel

     /  October 8, 2013

    I wish I could give you a big fat hug… I’m soo sorry to read this update. I know you want to use your optimism w/ caution to guard yourself, but this update sounds as if you’ve been given an opening to be hopeful. I pray this one goes your way. We are sooo used to falling on the minority side of the statistics- may that continue in this moment, and may you be the one that comes out of this on the other side. Positive vibes to you, your husband, and your little star.

  14. J

     /  October 9, 2013

    I am so sorry to hear about your day and I want to offer one bit of info in case it can help you at all. I had a loss (and am still trying) and my D & C was done by a brilliant and gentle miscarriage specialist who has written a book on the subject. Dr. Jonathan Scher is in Manhattan and works out of a smallish office and small clinic associated with Mt. Sinai. If you are not nearby you could do a phone consult and send him scans. I hope you can find some more strength inside you and wish you the very best on this journey.


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  • About Me

    Me: 41
    DH: 38

    Fertility issue:
    Recurrent Pregnancy Loss
    6 pregnancy losses
    All early
    5 with my own eggs
    1 with donor egg

    Abnormal embryos

    Factor V Leiden heterozygous
    MTHFR heterozygous

    AFC: 2 - 12
    AMH: 0.2
    FSH: 6.8
    E2: 40
    LH: 2.8


    April 2011 -
    Natural conception, first try. Blighted ovum (gestational sac only). D&C to remove products of conception at 9 weeks.

    Oct 2011 -
    Natural conception, first try. Blighted ovum (gestational sac & yolk sac). Took Cytotec to induce miscarriage at 9 weeks. PTSD, depression, anxiety, insomnia, night terrors followed.

    Winter 2012 -
    Two rounds of Femara/Clomid + IUIs at Columbia and RS of NY. The idea: to produce more eggs and increase chances of catching a good one. BFNs.

    April 2012 -
    Natural conception, first try. Ultrasound showed activity in the uterus, but no complete sac. Diagnosed with "missed abortion." Natural miscarriage at 5 weeks.

    June 2012 -
    Conception after 7 mg Femara for 5 days + IUI. Diagnosed with chemical pregnancy. Natural miscarriage at 4.5 weeks.

    August 2012 -
    Natural conception, without trying. Chemical pregnancy and natural miscarriage at 5 weeks.

    October 2012 -
    ODWU at Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine (CCRM).

    January 2013 -
    IVF with Dr. Schoolcraft.
    Straight Antagonist protocol

    What he predicted:
    I will produce 11 eggs
    Good chance 1 will be normal
    30% chance 2 will be normal
    Transfer 1, then a 45% chance of success
    Transfer 2, then a 65% chance of success

    What happened:
    7 follicles stimulated
    6 mature eggs retrieved
    2 died during ICSI
    4 fertilized
    3 out of 4 embryos CCS-tested
    All abnormal

    Aug/Sept 2013-
    Frozen Donor Egg IVF at Reproductive Biology Associates (RBA)
    What Dr. Shapiro predicted:
    6 or 7 will fertilize
    1 we will transfer
    1 - 3 we will freeze

    Protocol: Lupron, Vivelle patches, Crinone

    8 frozen eggs from donor thawed
    6 fertilized
    1 Day-5 Grade A XBbb blastocyst transferred
    1 Day-5 Grade A EBbb blastocyst frozen
    1 Day-6 Grade A XBbb blastocyst frozen

    September 13, 2013: Pregnant

    Prenatal vitamins & baby aspirin,
    Vivelle patches & Crinone

    Beta #1: 171
    Beta #2: 706
    Beta #3: 7,437

    6 w 3 d: measured 6 w 1 d
    FHR: 80 bpm
    Fetus did not grow
    7 w: FHR 121 bpm
    8 w: heart stopped
    9 w: D and C

    Test results: We lost a normal karyotype male for unexplained reasons

    Quit stressful job
    Anti-inflammation diet
    Gluten-free diet
    Vit D, DHA/EPA
    Therapy/energy work
    Creative Visualization
    Art Therapy

    March 14, 2014:
    Double FET at RBA
    1 Day-5 Grade A EBbb blastocyst
    1 Day-6 Grade A XBbb blastocyst

    March 24, 2014:

    Prenatals, baby aspirin, Folgard, Vivelle, Crinone, Lovenox

    Beta #1: 295
    Beta #2: 942
    Beta #3: 12,153

    1 fetus implanted

    Measured on track

    Fetal heart rate:
    7 wk: 127 bpm, 8wk:159 bpm, 9wk: 172 bpm

    Due date: Dec, 4 2014!

    NatureMade (USP Seal) Prenatals and 4000 Vit D3
    Baby aspirin
    40 mg Lovenox
    DHA and EPA
    Folgard 2.2

    Born: One perfect baby boy 12.4.14

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