Monday, January 24, 2011

The Conception Chronicles: Moving on Up

This is the fourth installment in a short series about baby-making.

After the miscarriage (though to be honest, I tend not to think about it like that - we never got to the heartbeat stage. As our doctor put it, the whole thing was just a dud.), we got back on the wagon.  When my dear wife cycled again, we went back to the RE, did more high dose Clomid, and had a dud cycle. I mean dud. Nothing from the ovaries. She ended up on Provera to induce a new cycle, and we started talking injectibles. I think there was another month in here somewhere because her hormone levels were all screwy around Provera time, but its a little foggy at this point.

Injectibles are a weird thing. First of all, you're INJECTING YOURSELF WITH HORMONES.
This is is no way normal (unless you're a Type I diabetic, in which case it is normal, if sucky). There's a variety of different medications out there to induce ovulation, and what I gathered from our doctor (and message board stalking) is the meds you are prescribed vary based on your specific diagnosis and a bit on the doctor's preference.

And they are EXPENSIVE. I mean $$$. Some pharmacies are cheaper than others, and some insurance plans pick up some.  Praise be to my little paycheck, my insurance has pretty nice coverage.  It is capped, but enough to cover 3 or 4 cycles of the meds Princess Charming was prescribed with just a $75 copay per box (a savings of about $1500 compared to what the insurance bills my employer, or whoever exactly pays that bill, and about $900 cheaper than the cheapest non-insurance pharmacy (I looked since there's always the chance of running over the limit)).

Ordering these meds is kind of surreal like ordering sperm is.

Me (faking being my wife, as I always do on medical calls since it is just easier than explaining to 19 people per call that she is my semi-legal spouse AND on my insurance and is not my sister/mother/me): "Hi, I need to order 3 of the crazy-ovary-stimulating-pen-thingies"*
Mail-Order Pharm Lady: "OK. Do you need a sharps container and alcohol wipes?"

I know I would be upset if ordering these things was harder, given how people get pregnant without clearing it with Big Brother all the time, but it is still just weird.

*Fun Fact/Fertility Drug Information: A lot of these drugs come in "pen" and "vial" format. Should you have the privilege of using these things, a nurse will likely walk you through them in an "injectibles class" (in our case, a one-on-one appointment).  The pen is simple - prime pen, click to the dose, add injection needle, inject, return to fridge. The vials are easy-ish, but much more complicated - take Giant Horse Needle, mix stuff in syringe with stuff in vial, suck into syringe, change needles, get air bubbles out of syringe and prime needle without losing the $$$ drug, inject. We did both alone the way and I honestly found the vial method to be rather stressful and am glad we only had to do it two nights and got the nice pens for most of the drugs.

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