Tag Archives: acupuncture

Go the acupuncture

I’ve been having twice-weekly acupuncture treatments at a specialised IVF acupuncture clinic, and let me tell you, the difference I feel between this cycle and the last one is amazing.

Last time Рlethargy, night sweats, thumping headaches every second day when I started Gonal-f, puffiness, achy joints, a revolting period, and just general not-feeling-greatness.

This time – perfectly normal. Really – perfectly normal. And I’m also on a higher dose of the Gonal-f – 600 units, which I think is a LOT. Ok, so I did have some night sweats in the first week, but I think even they have stopped. (I had continued to get the night sweats even last month – between cycles when I was not on any drugs – so not getting them now is great, especially since it’s about 35 degrees today, and hot at night.)

Let’s hope that it has the same positive effect on the final result…ie a big fat BABY. Actually not too big, I still have to carry it around for nine months, then get it out.

What’s the deal with acupuncture?

  • Apparently in clinical trials acupuncture has been shown to be quite effective not only for reducing side effects, but also to increasing the chance of success – so I can say empirically it has worked for the side effects for me.
  • They recommend you go for a treatment on the day of embryo transfer as it can help implantation – last time I went for acupuncture a few days AFTER transfer (and not to a specialised IVF clinic) so this time, I’m more prepared.
  • It prepares the uterine lining by improving blood flow and improves hormone levels. Last time my period was, in a word, yuck. This time, I’ve hardly noticed it. Awesome.
  • Apparently it can help women who have a history of infertility or miscarriage (can’t vouch for this one as I have no experience).

So I would highly recommend anyone going through IVF to seek out an acupuncture clinic that specialises in IVF. Apart from anything else, it’s really relaxing, which is crucial in this process.

And I’ve got a week and a half off work now, so I’m relaaxxxed…………. just need the timing to go my way – ie, day in hospital for egg collection next Monday, a couple of days to recover, then back to work Thursday with no-one any the wiser. (Though I may have to take the Thursday off the put the embryos back in… but you know, c’est la vie).

Right, now I’m going to meditate on lots of healthy eggs, and a healthy, happy, fat baby.

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Filed under IVF, side effects, Uncategorized

Dwell in possibility

I feel like craaaaaap.

Have done since last Wednesday, after egg collection. The first few days I presumed were just tenderness after the procedure, but since then, I have felt blaaaah.

eg:

  • majorly constipated (TMI?) but like I’ve never felt before. It hurt to walk. Except that I am no longer constipated and I still feel like shit. ‘scuse the pun.
  • spasmodic spasms in my intestines, like when you’ve got food poisoning. Maybe I’ve got food poisoning?
  • intermittent headaches
  • i’m quite tired
  • period-like pain, quite intense. Took paracetamol earlier to try and deal with some or all symptoms, to no avail. Don’t want to take any more.
  • maybe they all just mean I’m pregnant. I feel bloody awful.

I had acupuncture yesterday, to try and get my energy flowing and balanced, and obviously in particular to get more energy flowing to the uterus. I have some impressive cupping marks on my back (so Gwyneth!). I really hope the guy understood that I had had the embryos transferred. I’m sure he did but his Chinese accent was very thick so I worried halfway through whether we had been speaking at cross-purposes. Of course it was too late by that stage, I had pins sticking out all over me. He seemed to know what he was talking about in any case, seemed very familiar with the IVF process.

He told me this though – if you are in the early stages of pregnancy DO NOT get a shoulder massage! Who knew this?! Apparently there are pressure points on the shoulders – around the traps I think – that if pressed hard enough could cause miscarriage. ¬†Also on the inner ankles towards the back and somewhere else that I can’t remember now. But particularly the shoulders. Huh.

Feeling delicate, must be a woman

I’ve also been googling what symptoms, if any, I should/could/may be feeling, if I can feel anything other than what I’m already feeling. I checked out a few other fertility clinics’ websites for information. One I read said they got the women to stay lying down for 30 minutes to an hour after embryo transfer. My clinic just said to get on with it. This other website also said to avoid doing ANYTHING in the days following transfer. Don’t move, don’t walk, don’t run, you delicate little thing!!!

I mean come on. How illogical is that! Because if you have had sex you could be ANYWHERE when that egg and sperm unite and then implant, because it can take a few days. Cross country skiing. In court. Climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge (so Oprah!).

They also advocated abstaining from sex, and under no circumstances are you to ORGASM! But it’s perfectly fine to give your partner pleasure. Who wrote this!?! Some 1950s man I think.

Anyway, my clinic reckons there is evidence to suggest that sex after transfer could actually help implantation – the seminal fluid contains a growth factor apparently.

Fat lot of good that does me though.

And on the subject of sex, trying to get knocked up without having sex, when you are actually quite a fan of sex, is a bloody cruel irony. And added to that, if this works (and I’m of the belief it will) I might not have sex again for a very long time indeed. And that makes me sad! And toey (how do you spell that ?) already! Friends of mine who are single mothers haven’t had sex in years. Years. Dear god.

Still, as Emily Dickinson said, dwell in possibility. And that also means the possibility of lots of future sex.

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Filed under ART, IVF