The day of embryo transfer had arrived. After the egg retrieval we started with 37 eggs. Of those 37, 15 were able to go on a first date with a single sperm. Those 15 were left alone for 5 days to see if they would indeed begin to split, form cells and begin the process of becoming an embryo. By day 5 we had 7 embryos of good quality. Imagine that; 15 eggs fertilized and yet no one was pregnant.
Now the big decision had to be made…do we put in one or two embryos? If we put in two our chance of getting pregnant is much better but we also have a higher chance of getting twins. It was a very difficult decision. With one embryo the chance of implantation is 40% (for women under 35), two embryos and the chances go up to 60%. However, the chance of both embryos implanting and possibly having fraternal twins is 30%. We decided to play the better odds and take our chances with creating twins.
The procedure of transferring embryos to my uterus was surprisingly easy. It was very similar to a pap smear exam the only difference being that my bladder needed to be full. The uterus and bladder are positioned so that if the bladder is full it is pushing the uterus down into a position so that it lines up with the vagina thereby making it easier for the Dr to access it. I drank water on the way to the office and again when I got there. When I was doing the pee-pee dance they knew I was ready. In the next room was the embryologist who is in charge of preparing the embryos for transfer. I like to think of him as the gate keeper. He puts two embryos into a catheter about the size of an angel hair pasta. The embryos are microscopic so he also has to put a bubble next to each embryo or else the Dr. doing the transfer wouldn’t be able to see them on the ultrasound. So there I was on the exam table, feet in stirrups, needing to go to the bathroom, covering myself with one of those horrible blue paper gowns they give to protect your modesty, the nurse pressing on my bladder with the ultrasound wand and in walks the embryologist with the precious cargo. The Dr. inserts the catheter vaginally into the uterus and deposits the embryos. At this point I have to go to the bathroom so bad I can actually see my bladder filling up on the ultrasound. It all took just a few minutes but they want you to lie there for 10 more minutes just to let everything settle down. 10 more minutes?! I was about to pee myself and even asked the nurse if anyone had ever had an accident while lying on this exam table. After 5 minutes I couldn’t take it any more and waddled to the bathroom across the hall.
Our instructions were to go home and rest. The embryos were in my uterus but had not implanted yet and wouldn’t decide to do so for a few more days. In 10 days I would go back for a pregnancy test. It would be too soon to take a home pregnancy test so we would have to draw blood to check my hormone levels.
Stay tuned for the pregnancy test.