First IVF Cycle at Age 43!
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First IVF Cycle at Age 43! Expand / Collapse

10/11/2015 2:06 PM
14 eggs fertilized!

10/10/2015 1:47 PM
Just a quick update. I had my retrieval this morning, and they got 19 eggs!! I still feel a bit like a zombie from the anesthesia, but somewhere under this drug - induced fog, I'm very very excited! Wish I could fast forward the next 5 days to know how many fertilize and develop!

10/7/2015 2:33 PM
Hello all, first of all, thank you so much for sharing all of your stories, and best of luck to all!! Every situation is do different. You really just never know what to expect at every turn. I'm now on cycle day 13. I had and ultrasound this morning, and i have 22 follicles, 18 of which are 15 mm or larger. Most of those 18 are right around 20mm. I know it's quality over quantity, but I am very pleasantly surprised at this result so far! I'm still waiting for my phone call with instructions, but most likely I'll be triggering tonight and looking at retrieval on Friday. Hoping for the best!! I'm really hoping I don't have to stim another day, because I'm pretty uncomfortable, and I've already had to get one refill on my Follistim and Ganirelix, and one dose of each was $400!! Stimming one more day will mean another $400!! Plus with so many follicles at around 20mm now, I'm starting to worry that I could ovulate and lose them. I have been taking supplements for the past 3 months - omega 3, vitamin D, a prenatal vitamin, and melatonin every night. I also started acupuncture 3 weeks before my cycle started. My fertility doc said that acupuncture "neither helps, nor hinders", but my acupuncture doc is adamant that the acupuncture is at least partly responsible for my results so far. This is such a crazy ride - it really helps to hear from other people who are going through the same thing and know what it's like. I'll keep you posted on the rest of my journey from here! Fingers crossed!!

10/7/2015 12:10 PM
Hello all,

The best of joy and happiness to everyone. I am 36 and this is my first time going through IVF treatment. I have already come into difficulties with medications. I did not know what my insurance would/would not cover. Apparently, it covers some fertility meds but not all. So now I have not been able to get past that process to move forward for embryo retrieval. The clinic tried looking for donor meds but could not locate the only two I need. Everything was looking on the bright side for me until this. I have researched the medications and they are very costly even through pharmacies that offer discounts. Any help on this matter would be greatly appreciated.

10/2/2015 7:46 PM
Auracynthia, $26,000??? Oh my goodness!?!? First of all, I want to wish all of you ladies the best of luck. I am 43 as well and had my first little girl with the help of IVF at 39 (one month before I turned 40). I was told by a prestigious hospital here in Philadelphia that I could not have children without donor eggs at 37, due to the fact that I am a poor responder. I found out about Cooper Institute and Dr. Jerome Check through some friends with similar experiences and within 1 year of my first appointment with them, I was pregnant. We are there again trying for a sibling and we pay out of pocket as well. I have to tell you ladies that Dr. Check works with women from all over the country, and he is a brilliant reproductive endocrynologist. They charge $4600 for IVF!!!!! Seriously, that's all! And they are wonderful!!! This is the lowest price anywhere from what I understand, and they treat women from all over the country!!! Aurachnthia, please look into Cooper!!!! You could have 4 tries plus travel fees for the same amount of money! The best of luck to you in whatever you do. We do minimal stimulation and only have 1 or 2 follicles each month... this month only had one but it fertilized! Transferred on fresh and one frozen (from 4 years ago), pregnancy test is on Monday... I can only pray...

10/2/2015 2:35 PM
I am 42, husband 38. We tried for another baby this past summer, but similar to you, only had a couple of follicles, so decided to cancel the cycle.

We also decided that if we go ahead and try again, we will be using donor eggs. At this point, is the safest, and the chance of it working goes from 2 percent to 70 percent.

It is not easy going through IVF, it is extremely draining, financially, emotionally and it takes a huge toll on your body...of course, it is all worth it once we have our miracle babies.

10/2/2015 12:12 PM
I am also 43 and finally found success.
Like you, I've had 3 other children at a much earlier age (same father). We lost a child to cancer a few years ago and decided we wanted to bring some joy back into the family.

I was lucky to have IVF coverage for the 1st 2 cycles. We did a total of 3 IVF cycles - each one resulted in 3 "great-looking" day 3 embryos, which we transferred each time. Didn't work. Ran out of money, but our insurance covered "unlimited IUI trials", so we did an IVF injectable med protocol 3 more times with IUI instead of retrieving the eggs, and it worked on the 3rd try. I'm now 18 weeks and have luckily had normal genetic testing results.

A few things I learned along the way:
1) Consider supplements: there is good evidence that CoQ10 helps improve egg quality, also melatonin before bed each night. There are other supplements that may be helpful depending on certain situations (DHEA, inositol, vit D, fish oil, resveratrol, BioPQQ). Your doctor may or may not believe in these. Many people think you should be on these supplements at least 3 months to get best benefit.

2) The success rate is dismal at this age, I personally believe it's all a game of chance/ probability.
We retrieved a total of 15 eggs using "high-dose" IVF protocols, of which 9 survived to day 3 transfer. Obviously none worked.
During the 3 IUI cycles, I had 5 follicles one cycle, 4 the next, and 6 the third (which is the 1 that worked). So however you break it down, 1:30 was normal (if you count the IVF cycles), vs 1:15 was normal if just counting IUI cycles.

3) Find a doctor who is very experienced in treating women of your age. I now believe the "lower dose" med protocol I used in the last 3 cycles were what helped egg quality improve.

4) Consider several cheaper "mini-stim" IVF cycles, rather than sinking all your money into a single try.

5) I personally didn't "waste" money on PGD testing, figuring almost all abnormals just wouldn't implant. And there are many stories out there of women who have normal PGD tested embryos that still failed to implant. (There's only a 60% success rate even if genetically normal.) This is a personal decision.

Good luck!

10/2/2015 10:46 AM
I'm 43 as well. I'll be 44 in Jan. We did our first cycle in June and retrieved 5 eggs and 1 made it to day 5. We biopsied and froze embryo and did a 2nd cycle in Aug. (We are doing chromosome testing and the clinic does up to 8, so we are trying to get as many embryos to have tested because 1 or 8, the cost is $5000) So cycle 2, didn't go as well, only showed 2 follicles. My husband and I decided to NOT go through with retrieval because with only 2, and it doesn't mean eggs would be in those follicles, the chances of one the eggs fertilizing when we had 5 last time and only 1 made it, we were looking at the numbers. We tried to have timed intercourse but nothing happened so because of no retrieval, we are able to do another cycle with no additional charge because we paid everything up front. (we have to pay for Meds again)
I'm trying to be hopeful but I'm keeping my options opened for donor.
My story in a nutshell, I have 3 kids from my first marriage. Then I divorced and met a wonderful man, my husband, who never had children. We have been pregnant 2times in a year but resulted in miscarriage. So that's why we are now trying IVF with my eggs. If we are successful, then it will be all worth it. I need to do more research and look into donor as well.
Good luck to you and No I don't think you're crazy.

9/30/2015 7:41 AM
YES, you are crazy, but is not impossible. I was in a very similar situation, four years ago. I was 39, and my new husband was 35, I had two kids from my first marriage, he had none.

I was also so confident that since it was just my tubal ligation that prevented me from getting pregnant, that for sure i would get pregnant on the first try.

I got pregnant on the second try, and have a handsome three and half year old son.

I was grateful that we had chosen and qualify for the assurance package that gave us two tries for one price.

However, some of the ladies on this forum had been successful on the first try. if you are a woman of faith, just pray, to whatever god you pray to, with all your heart and soul, as I truly belive that we have our miracle baby because God made it possible.

Best of Luck.

9/24/2015 8:12 PM
First of all, let me just say, I can't believe I'm 43! When the heck did THAT happen. We're starting injections tomorrow for our very first stim-cycle. My husband and I have been considering IVF for about 3 years now - we've known since we met in 2008 that we would need treatment of some kind if we were to have a child together, because I had my tubes tied after my 3rd child was born waaayyy back in 2001. His father passed away - I eventually remarried and my current husband is 8 years younger than me with no children of his own. At first, we were daunted by the cost and had almost convinced ourselves that parenting my 3 sons, now 20, 18 and 14 - was enough. But this is just something that we, and especially he - really want. So we secured financing (insurance is covering absolutely nothing due to my "condition" being related to my elective tubal ligation) and we're going for it. Here in Vegas, the total cost for one cycle is about $26,000 - including genetic testing - so we've got one shot at this - we absolutely can't afford to do this again. I've been taking a crash course in IVF treatment - reading blogs and forums and books of all kinds, and at first I was really shocked and dismayed by the dismal statistics for women my age. I actually assumed this wouldn't be much of a big deal for me - I'm healthy, a marathon runner, non-smoker, no fertility issues at all - never had problems with periods, etc., 3 easy pregnancies, all three times I got pregnant in the same month that my husband and I decided to start trying. I have two friends - one 46 and one 43 who recently got pregnant spontaneously and gave birth to healthy babies, so everything I've read since starting my research has been very discouraging and unexpected. It never occurred to my that the age of my eggs could be such a problem. I've adjusted now, to the shock of that. My husband remains steadfastly optimistic - like its an absolute no-brainer that I will get pregnant with this one cycle and that's that. I'm terrified of disappointing him. Am I crazy to expect to get pregnant with just one cycle?
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