The results were the same as yesterday.
My doctor didn't seem to think this was anything to worry about. Probably due to my poor quality of mucus, she said. Had I done the post-coital earlier we might have caught the more peak-type mucus and the sperm would be alive.
That sounds reasonable, except yesterday's test was on cycle day 13 (ovulation day), and those dead sperm first hit the mucus on cycle day 12. Not to mention that I only started seeing mucus on cycle day 11, and it's still getting better and better each day, today being the best quality yet. If anything, maybe we'd have a better result tomorrow, not last Monday.
Apparently there's a discrepancy between what she sees under the microscope (cloudy, full of "cells") and what I see when I chart (today has been 10KL). Am I just really bad at making Creighton observations? I suppose anything is possible, but that would mean I don't know the definition of clear, and cloudy. I feel strongly that I have those down.
So I'm thinking this may just be further evidence that there's a discrepancy between when I ovulate (yesterday, or the day before) and when I see my "peak day," according to Creighton. She assumes the mucus was better a few days ago, but maybe it has yet to reach its peak (which is so far the case according to my chart).
And what about everyone saying sperm can live in mucus for up to five days? Is that a myth, or is that just another thing that's true for "healthy" people? Because if my mucus kills sperm on the day of ovulation, then when doesn't it kill it?
Oh, and I asked her about why the ultrasound yesterday could possibly affect the results and she said the gel on the outside of the wand might kill sperm. When I asked then why we do the ultrasounds around ovulation, she said the sperm gets where it needs to go in the first five minutes.
I left the office not sure how to feel. My doctor acted like it wasn't a big deal, but the news that was replaying in my head did seem pretty serious. Two post-coital tests that showed a total of three living sperm? I tend to think this is a bigger deal than she does.
I know a lot of doctors don't believe in doing this test anymore, and there must be a reason they don't like it. Is it due to the possibility of timing it wrong and getting a false negative?
In my gut I don't think the poor result was due to my lack of peak-type mucus. I tend to think my mucus is hostile; it would explain a lot. Yes, I have had numerous problems that all separately would cause infertility, but I ovulate, my cycles are normal, and the problems are under control.
And, like I said before, if the result is due to not testing on a day of good mucus, then that's an issue too because we tested on the day of ovulation and the day after. If my mucus kills sperm on those two days, then when is my fertile window?
Either way, I'm okay with it. Finding this out this morning was as if I heard my progesterone was 16 on peak plus 7 - just average, boring news. It didn't upset me and the thought of a future filled with either no shot at conceiving or grasping at straws to find a treatment for some immune problem with my mucus doesn't stress me much either.
And I feel that no matter what, something was revealed today. We just need to take these clues and examine it further, probably with another doctor.
The next step is getting Ryan's semen analysis done. Although he just took ben.adryl this morning and I heard that can possibly affect the results. Does anyone know how long you should wait after taking something like that?
If there's a problem on his end, we'll figure out if it's treatable. If it comes back normal, we'll look more into what is causing it on my end. This actually intrigues me. Dr. L seemed to think there's not much you can do for that other than trying steroids (I think she said we could do this if it's on my end), which is great and I'll try them for sure, but I can't imagine it's the only option. Hopefully we'll find a doctor who is willing to look into it more. (By the way, a quick google search showed that Clomid can cause hostile mucus. This is my first cycle on it. Anyone know anything about that?)
I also asked her, again, about what to do if the timing of ovulation and good mucus is just off, and she said sometimes things just don't click at the right time and there's nothing they can do. I'm still holding out hope that there is.
I'm exhausted. I think I've driven about ten hours in less than 24 hours. I almost didn't go this morning when my alarm went off at five and Ryan was sick, but I'm glad I did. Even though I didn't really find out anything conclusive (well, at least according to Dr. L), I would've regretted not knowing anything.
I know it might sound corny, but I'm resolved to take each day as it comes. Praise God for this grace, and for hearing this news right around the time when my progesterone is probably rising.
*As I was writing this post, the pharmacy called to tell me that my insurance doesn't cover the post-peak progesterone (endometrin) I was supposed to take this cycle. "Supposed" to take because at $100, I won't be taking it now. So I'm trying to remind myself of what I just wrote - that I am taking each day as it comes. I am being made low and I should rejoice in it.
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Second test results
The results were the same as yesterday.