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  1. #1
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    Default Repeat IVF fails - should we seek another doctor's opinion ?

    Hi everyone, I am a long way into the IVF journey (5 failed stim cycles) and on my 2nd fertility doctor, who is now recommending donor eggs - just wondering if it is worth seeking a 3rd opinion before 'giving up' - and if so, is it possible to just see a doctor with all your results for a one-off opinion? Or do you typically need to 'move over' to them for ongoing tests, cycles etc? (I am in Melbs)
    We have had just about every possible test done (lap, HSG, sperm analysis, ERA, NK cells, MTHFR) and nothing seems to be wrong - in fact we make heaps of eggs, most of which fertilise - but almost all die by day 5 (from 8-20 fertilised eggs we usually end up with 1 crappy embryo and all BFNs). Our doctor seems to think we have a 'genetic incompatibility' because there is no other explanation (I'm 35, taking ALL the supplements and my eggs appear 'healthy' and plentiful).
    Any advice much appreciated!! xo

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumtrees View Post
    Hi everyone, I am a long way into the IVF journey (5 failed stim cycles) and on my 2nd fertility doctor, who is now recommending donor eggs - just wondering if it is worth seeking a 3rd opinion before 'giving up' - and if so, is it possible to just see a doctor with all your results for a one-off opinion? Or do you typically need to 'move over' to them for ongoing tests, cycles etc? (I am in Melbs)
    We have had just about every possible test done (lap, HSG, sperm analysis, ERA, NK cells, MTHFR) and nothing seems to be wrong - in fact we make heaps of eggs, most of which fertilise - but almost all die by day 5 (from 8-20 fertilised eggs we usually end up with 1 crappy embryo and all BFNs). Our doctor seems to think we have a 'genetic incompatibility' because there is no other explanation (I'm 35, taking ALL the supplements and my eggs appear 'healthy' and plentiful).
    Any advice much appreciated!! xo
    Did the sperm analysis also include DNA fragmentation? I was getting excellent fertilization rates (72% for my first cycle and then 100% for my second). My first cycle had high hopes but we got one poor quality early blast using ICSI.

    Second cycle, sought a second opinion with all mine and hubby’s test results (new FS and clinic) and got sperm tested for DNA frag. So we did PICSI which is a different way to select sperm and lo and behold - all my mature eggs fertilised and 4 made it to hatching blast on day 5....3 embryos tested and all normal.

    FYI I had no known issues and all tests were coming back good. We knew it was a matter of sperm but had no idea of the DNA frag until the second FS mentioned it. It explained why the embryos dropped off from day 3 onwards... as usually the sperm dna kicks in.

    Sperm may look good under the embryologist microscope but DNA work up cannot be seen - only a special test can detect it.

    Good luck

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    Quote Originally Posted by PollyM View Post
    Did the sperm analysis also include DNA fragmentation? I was getting excellent fertilization rates (72% for my first cycle and then 100% for my second). My first cycle had high hopes but we got one poor quality early blast using ICSI.

    Second cycle, sought a second opinion with all mine and hubby’s test results (new FS and clinic) and got sperm tested for DNA frag. So we did PICSI which is a different way to select sperm and lo and behold - all my mature eggs fertilised and 4 made it to hatching blast on day 5....3 embryos tested and all normal.

    FYI I had no known issues and all tests were coming back good. We knew it was a matter of sperm but had no idea of the DNA frag until the second FS mentioned it. It explained why the embryos dropped off from day 3 onwards... as usually the sperm dna kicks in.

    Sperm may look good under the embryologist microscope but DNA work up cannot be seen - only a special test can detect it.

    Good luck
    Thanks so much for your reply Polly
    We haven't had sperm DNA frag test but just in case, basically went straight to IMSI (similar to PICSI - high magnification sperm selection) and have had this for our last 3 cycles, all still the same result. So sadly, I don't think this is the answer for us.
    I am really happy you found a solution though, and thanks again for replying x

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    Hi @Gumtrees sorry to hear about your difficult journey so far. If you don’t feel ready to move on to donor eggs or other options it might be good for your own peace of mind to get another opinion.

    My husband and I didn’t get a frozen embryo until our 8th stim cycle which was with our 3rd specialist and we have now also swapped to a 4th specialist for our FET. And although we aren’t pregnant yet I do feel like we are on the right track now and are throwing everything at it.

    We were able to use our results from our previous doctors as long as they were recent. But they normally do recommend having some things re-tested as certain things can change or some doctors order more specific/detailed tests. We are in Melbourne as well.

    Hope this helps.
    Clarry11

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    Gumtrees (02-07-2020)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumtrees View Post
    Thanks so much for your reply Polly
    We haven't had sperm DNA frag test but just in case, basically went straight to IMSI (similar to PICSI - high magnification sperm selection) and have had this for our last 3 cycles, all still the same result. So sadly, I don't think this is the answer for us.
    I am really happy you found a solution though, and thanks again for replying x
    No worries. I’m sure you’ll find that missing piece, but to answer your original question there shouldn’t be any issues at all if you take all your results and see another specialist. You never commit to a clinic until you’re officially booked in for a cycle.

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    Gumtrees (02-07-2020)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Clarry11 View Post
    Hi @Gumtrees sorry to hear about your difficult journey so far. If you don’t feel ready to move on to donor eggs or other options it might be good for your own peace of mind to get another opinion.

    My husband and I didn’t get a frozen embryo until our 8th stim cycle which was with our 3rd specialist and we have now also swapped to a 4th specialist for our FET. And although we aren’t pregnant yet I do feel like we are on the right track now and are throwing everything at it.

    We were able to use our results from our previous doctors as long as they were recent. But they normally do recommend having some things re-tested as certain things can change or some doctors order more specific/detailed tests. We are in Melbourne as well.

    Hope this helps.
    Clarry11
    Thanks so much for your reply Clarry11.
    And I'm sorry to hear your journey has been so long and difficult too!
    I think you are right that it is more for peace of mind that we want one more opinion. We're just hoping we can find a doctor that is happy to review our case and give an honest opinion, rather than trying to 'recruit' us over even if the truth is it looks like there's not much point.
    May I ask if you have any Doc recommendations for Melbourne? There are so many doctors out there it's hard to know where to start! Happy to take this to DM too if confidential. Much appreciated x

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumtrees View Post
    Hi everyone, I am a long way into the IVF journey (5 failed stim cycles) and on my 2nd fertility doctor, who is now recommending donor eggs - just wondering if it is worth seeking a 3rd opinion before 'giving up' - and if so, is it possible to just see a doctor with all your results for a one-off opinion? Or do you typically need to 'move over' to them for ongoing tests, cycles etc? (I am in Melbs)
    We have had just about every possible test done (lap, HSG, sperm analysis, ERA, NK cells, MTHFR) and nothing seems to be wrong - in fact we make heaps of eggs, most of which fertilise - but almost all die by day 5 (from 8-20 fertilised eggs we usually end up with 1 crappy embryo and all BFNs). Our doctor seems to think we have a 'genetic incompatibility' because there is no other explanation (I'm 35, taking ALL the supplements and my eggs appear 'healthy' and plentiful).
    Any advice much appreciated!! xo
    Hiya Gumtrees

    Sorry to hear of your repeated issues with embryos. We had similar issues although I’m much older than you so know how you feel.

    Definitely get a second opinion and I recommend my OB Dr Alex Polyakov from MIVF as a Dr. he wasn’t my FS but as a Dr he’s amazing!

    In terms of Donor Eggs it’s a hard thing to wrap your head around. Definitely something you need to think long and hard about. When I hold my daughter I can say she’s 100% mine even though we needed her awesome donor to make her happen. It was a journey to appreciate that though and I found the EDA community amazing. Having a known donor she can go to for info and meet is amazing.

    Best of luck and I hope a 2nd opinion is the one that makes all the difference.

    Remember to take care of yourselves in all this too.

    MnM

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    gypsychild (05-07-2020)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moonlight n Magic View Post
    Hiya Gumtrees

    Sorry to hear of your repeated issues with embryos. We had similar issues although I’m much older than you so know how you feel.

    Definitely get a second opinion and I recommend my OB Dr Alex Polyakov from MIVF as a Dr. he wasn’t my FS but as a Dr he’s amazing!

    In terms of Donor Eggs it’s a hard thing to wrap your head around. Definitely something you need to think long and hard about. When I hold my daughter I can say she’s 100% mine even though we needed her awesome donor to make her happen. It was a journey to appreciate that though and I found the EDA community amazing. Having a known donor she can go to for info and meet is amazing.

    Best of luck and I hope a 2nd opinion is the one that makes all the difference.

    Remember to take care of yourselves in all this too.

    MnM
    Thank you so much for your reply!
    And your recommendation
    I am slowly coming around to the fact that we might need to go down the donor path, I just want to make sure there is no looking back.
    I agree that having a known donor would be good, I think this would be our priority too - I am so glad to hear you found one and it worked out so well for you.
    All the best
    Gumtrees x

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gumtrees View Post
    Hi everyone, I am a long way into the IVF journey (5 failed stim cycles) and on my 2nd fertility doctor, who is now recommending donor eggs - just wondering if it is worth seeking a 3rd opinion before 'giving up' - and if so, is it possible to just see a doctor with all your results for a one-off opinion? Or do you typically need to 'move over' to them for ongoing tests, cycles etc? (I am in Melbs)
    We have had just about every possible test done (lap, HSG, sperm analysis, ERA, NK cells, MTHFR) and nothing seems to be wrong - in fact we make heaps of eggs, most of which fertilise - but almost all die by day 5 (from 8-20 fertilised eggs we usually end up with 1 crappy embryo and all BFNs). Our doctor seems to think we have a 'genetic incompatibility' because there is no other explanation (I'm 35, taking ALL the supplements and my eggs appear 'healthy' and plentiful).
    Any advice much appreciated!! xo

    Get another opinion! At 35 you do not need donor eggs

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    Gumtrees (18-07-2020)

  14. #10
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    hi @Gumtrees, i'm sorry that your journey has been so difficult. IVF is the pits!
    As you seem to have done a lot of testing the only thing i would say is a huge YES to seeing another specialist. I know dr Nick Lolatgis is well known for finding things other FS didn't and so is Dr Lynn Burmeister. Dr Lynn isn't charging for phone consults (during lockdown) but Dr Nick is, so i would go with both if you can get an appointment! what have you got to lose? Making the leap to donor eggs is huge and if your heart is telling you to seek another opinion, do it!

    Finding a FS can be less FS and more FFS but it's worth it in the end.


 

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