I went in for my transfer yesterday and I got some really bad news and a little good news.
The bad news first. Dr. Zed reviewed the results of this cycle and last cycle and the fact that both resulted in a high percentage of immature eggs leads him to believe that there's something inherently wrong with the quality of my eggs. His recommendation was to look into using donor eggs and although I respect his opinion, this is a really hard pill for me to swallow. I'm going to get another opinion at SI.RM in Sacramento and also probably do a phone consult with CC.RM.
There are a few things that I know after doing hours of research over the last few days. 1) I have very low estrogen levels throughout my cycle, hence, my thin lining, very light periods, and low estradiol value of 32 on CD 3, and 2) low estrogen can cause immature eggs. Scouring through the different message boards, I've found a few women in the same situation as me have their doctors prescribe them metformin even though they do not have PCOS.
Actually, I toyed with this idea in the very beginning of my IF journey, but a lot of the literature I read said that you had to be overweight and have cysts (hence, the "C" in PCOS). However, I didn't realize until now that lean PCOS can manifest itself in different ways and can be caused by other things. You don't necessarily need to have cysts or be overweight, the main factor is the hormonal imbalance of excess testosterone and reduced estrogen and possibly some insulin sensitivity.
Way back in 2001, I went on this highly restricted calorie diet and started to exercise excessively. I monitored my calorie intake and made sure it was always between 1100-1300 calories/day plus I exercised anywhere from 2-3 hours/day (once in the morning and once in the evening). I wanted to be skinny, really skinny. And it worked for awhile, but then I noticed that I started to gain weight and around my stomach and my periods started to get really, really light. Since then, my body has changed dramatically. I gain weight around my stomach (which I never did before) and my periods have always been really light (think: pantyliners for 2 days).
Up until I got married, I sort of maintained this diet/lifestyle, albeit a bit less extreme, but still calorie restricted and lots of exercise. I really think that my lifestyle has caused a hormonal imbalance. I haven't had my testosterone tested, so I'm not sure what that is, but I have some of the symptoms that have been listed for lean PCOS including hair loss/thinning, difficulty in losing weight, oily skin/acne, and irregular periods.
Ok, sorry this is getting so long, but what this led me to believe was that maybe the addition of metformin will help. All of the women on that board said that they had better egg quality with metformin. So, if this cycle doesn't work, I've already discussed with Dr. Zed about putting me on metformin.
Alright, so on to the somewhat good news...our 7-cell embryo, the only one that made it, had turned into a morula by the time we had a transfer. So, we had one 3-day morula to transfer. Typically, embryos are morulas by day 4 or 5, so the fact that this little guy had already grown to a morula is a good sign. We're hanging on for dear life to the one hope that our little bean makes it. PLEASE!!!
Do genes matter?
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