Overwhelming fertility tests — The Bump
Trouble TTC

Overwhelming fertility tests

Agraf89Agraf89 member
First Comment Photogenic
edited November 2015 in Trouble TTC
Hello everyone!
I am a newbie here. My name is Angela, I am 26, and I live in Northern Virginia. My DH and I have been TTC our first child for 11 months.

Last month we decided it may be in our best interest to see a fertility specialist. The experience (up until last Wednesday 10/28) has been a positive one. The doctor and nurses are super friendly, and I have felt really comfortable with them.

I had my initial consult, two ultrasounds during different times in my cycle, bloodwork, cultures, and an HSG test.

The HSG test is where I got pushed to my limit. The test hurt SO BAD, and I was not prepared for that kind of pain. The doctor had a lot of trouble inserting the catheter, and when he finally did get it in, I felt an intense sharp pain that made me jump off the table. The pain was short lived, lasting around a minute or so, but it felt like the longest minute of my life. It took a good four days to stop cramping from the test. My test came back normal.

I am still suppose to have a sonohystogram and an endometrial biopsy done, but the pain of the HSG test has me a little traumatized. I told the nurse at the fertility clinic that I want to politely decline my remaining tests. She was nice about it. I haven't heard anything back from my doctor, and I am not sure if he wants to do a follow up appointment with me because I have not completed all the recommended tests. I am afraid of getting bullied into doing these other tests. :(

Some other info: my DH did his first SA and it came back with low motility (not sure of the numbers because the doctor didn't tell us). He repeated a second SA today, so I guess we will just have to wait and see what that reveals.

Bottom line... Am I crazy for declining the other two tests? To my knowledge, all my tests have been normal (I'm not 100% sure because I haven't been to a follow up appointment). I am really overwhelmed that I have to go through these procedures, and if my DH's sperm motility/count is of concern, I don't see why I have to subject myself to more painful tests. What do you guys think?

Thanks everyone for hearing my story!! It's a difficult time for me, and this seems like a great place to come for support.

Re: Overwhelming fertility tests

  • I don't think you are crazy at all. You have the right to refuse any medical procedures you want. It is still very possible that those two tests can reveal issues - a decent percentage of couples with infertility have issues with both people - but given your age I don't think there is anything wrong to wait on more invasive tests if there is a known problem with DHs sperm.
    TW: MMC
    BFP1 12/24/14 - EDD 09/07/15 (D/C 8w1d)
    BFP2 6/12/15 - EDD 2/22/16 (D/C 10w3d)
    Diagnoses and Treatments
    PCOS (myo-inositol, excercize)
    Indeterminant levels of APS IgM antibodies (baby aspirin)
    Sub-septate uterus (hysteroscopic septoplasty 12/18/15)
    BFP3 05/02/16 EDD 01/09/17 DS born 01/05/17
    BFP4 01/28/19 EDD 10/?/19 🤞🙏

  • Sorry the HSG was so painful for you.  We were not offered a sonohystogram or an endometrial biopsy.  Is your doctor presenting them as standard procedures, or is there something about your particular situation that makes them particularly important for you?  Whatever the case, you should not be bullied into putting your body through things. 

    Since you're in NoVa, the good news is you should have more doctors to choose from if you want to get a second opinion or meet other REs.  I am in DC, and my RE has DC and NoVa offices.  I've found him to be very compassionate.  Feel free to message me if you want his info.
    About me:
    /loss mentioned/
    TTC#1 July 2014
    dx: MFI (morphology)
    IUI #1 w/Clomid + Ovidrel Sept. 2015 ~ BFN
    IUI #2 w/Clomid + Ovidrel Halloween 2015 ~ BFN
    IUI #3 w/Clomid + Ovidrel Thanksgiving 2015 ~ BFP!!
    hb 146 bpm at 7w5d
    1/28/16 ~ began to say goodbye to our beautiful baby at 11w 
    d&c, followed by cytotec
    TTCAL April 2016
    IUI #4 w/Clomid + Ovidrel Apr. 2016 ~ BFN
    IUI #5 w/Clomid + Ovidrel ~ CP
    IUI#6 w/Clomid + Ovidrel ~ BFN
  • Loading the player...
  • I agree with PP...if nothing has come up on your end, and something is up with DH's sperm, that may well explain your difficulties. I had a sono, but never had an HSG (ultimately they sort of look at the same thing, at least from my understanding of why we did it). Never had a biopsy, despite getting a hysteroscopy. I'd ask your RE what's the reasoning behind these tests, and whether there's anything you can try now (IUI, maybe?). Best of luck to you!
  • Agraf89Agraf89 member
    First Comment Photogenic
    edited November 2015
    Thanks for the replies :)
    I am stressing myself out worrying about if my doctor giving me a hard time, or wondering what's going to happen next.

    If my DHs SA comes back with abnormal results, my RE is going to refer him to a urologist, so hopefully we will get some answers in the near future.

    In the meantime I have my DH eating 1/2 cup of walnuts a day, and taking ashwagandha supplements in an effort to boost sperm motility/count. I read some studies that report improvement with these methods. Can't hurt I guess!
  • The HSG was so so so painful for me too and left me traumatized! Thought I was going to pass out from the pain. And by later that evening I couldn't stand up straight and could only hunch over I was so sore. No blockages were found on me either.

    I've been told that no other procedures hurt like that one does... But outside of the HSG the only other test I've had was a blood test for AMH levels so I can't speak from personal experience. I wasn't recommended for anything else by my RE. Did your RE give you reasons for the other tests?
    ***BFP & Child Warning***

    Me: 33, DH: 37 ~ TTC since 2014
    IUI #1-3 (Nov 2015, Feb 2016, May 2016) = BFNs
    IVF ER (July 2016) = 7 PGS normal embryos
    FET #1 (Sept 2016) = BFP! DD born 5/30/17
    FET #2 (April 2019) = BFN
    FET #3 (July 2019) = BFP! EDD 4/4/20
  • I think the tests that my RE recommends are standard for his practice. He didn't really give me a reason why, but I haven't talked to him personally about not wanting to complete the rest of the testing yet. I talked to a nurse and she was understanding. My husband spoke to a receptionist today about scheduling a follow up and said that the doctor doesn't usually do a follow up until all the tests are complete. :-/
  • Hey there. 

    I can tell you at my RE's office all of the test you mentioned are 100% required for them to proceed with treatment for you. Their logic is that fertility is expensive and they absolutely don't want to proceed with any procedures unless they're sure there are no compounding issues. There are definitely clinics that will treat you without those tests, but the one you're at may not be one of them. 

    I don't think that you're crazy for declining tests, but I would gently advise this. If you do end up needing any kind of treatment, many of these processes are hard and long. You may want to mentally prepare. 

    Good luck on your journey!
    Me: 41, DH 38, Diagnosis DOR
    Started TTC 12/2013
    First Trip to RE: 11/2014
    IVF Round 1: 2/2014 - BFP
    DD Born 11/9/2014
    TTC a Sibling Started 5/2015
    First IVF Round 8/15 - BFN
    Taking a break to go on vacation + enjoy the holidays before FET and/or another IVF round in 2016!

  • Thanks for the info! I will complete the procedures if it comes down to it. I am going to wait and see if my DHs sperm motility/count is something that can be improved. If his count/motility does not end up improving, or if it improves and we still don't get our BFP, I will probably continue with testing.
  • DH just got off the phone with the doctor. They said I can do without the endometrial biopsy, but the sonohystogram is required before a follow up consult. They will not discuss DHs SA results until the consult... Bummer, but understandable. I guess I will put on my big girl pants and get it over with next cycle :-SS
  • @Agraf89 Just think about it as getting closer to your end goal, the delivery of which will be more painful and uncomfortable than any infertility test. You can do it!
    Married to DH 10/6/12
    TTC since 5/14
    Unexplained with (controlled) hypothyroidism and suspected ovulatory dysfunction (but, I do ovulate on my own)
    Clomid 50 mg 3/15 (unmonitored) - BFN
    Clomid 50 mg + metformin 4/15 (unmonitored) - BFN 
    First RE appt. 5/15; Natural cycle 5/15 monitored with 2 mature follicles and Pregnyl Trigger (full dose) + prometrium - BFN
    6/15 HSG - clear tubes & normal uterus; great PCT test results
    TI - 100 mg Clomid + prometrium (AM & PM) + vaginal estrace (AM & PM) 6-7/15 (monitored) --> no additional response and thinned lining - BFN
    TI - Injectables (follistim + Gonal-F, Ganirelix, & 1/2 dose Pregnyl) + prometrium (AM & PM) 9/15 --> 3-7 mature follicles (3 definites and 4+ that could have matured due to trigger) @ O -->BFN + 5 large cysts
    BC for 2 weeks due to cysts
    TI - Injectables (Gonal-F, Ganirelix & full dose Pregnyl) + prometrium (AM & PM) 10/15 --> 1 mature follicle --> BFN 
    TI - Last attempt at injectables (Gonal-F, Ganirelix & 1/2 dose Pregnyl) + crinone (AM only) + vaginal estrace (AM & PM) 11/15 --> 3-4 mature follicles --> BFP!! 11/27/15 @ 13dpo (shockingly, actually waited until then to test)

    Beta #1 @ 16dpo (11/30/15) = 1,075
    Beta #2 @ 19dpo (12/3/15) = 3,150
    One baby: Saw heartbeat @ 5w5d (114 bpm; baby measuring 2.3mm)

    "Great Things are Happening"
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