IVF egg collection

by - September 11, 2023

We had our first round of IVF egg collection in March 2023 after 11 days of not-very-fun belly injections for the wannabe mum. We had the option of doing the egg collection knocked out in the hospital or mild anaesthetic at the Life Fertility clinic. I opted for mild anaesthetic at the local clinic because I'm not particularly fussed by a pap smear, colposcopy or any other procedure that some women find invasive and distressing. Also, I am cheap and do not want to pay hospital and anesthetist fees unless I really have to.

On the day, I had to fast since nobody wanted me throwing up from the green whistle (anesthetic) I would have before the procedure. Boyfriend Pham drove us there since I'd be too woozy to drive after and he had to provide a fresh sample of sperm - double duties. I just had to rock up, strip off my bottom half, put on a medical gown with an open back and sit in a chair.

We arrived an hour before my procedure was scheduled, and Boyfriend Pham went first. When they called his name, another guy stood up and also approached the nurse. We were very confused since the guy's name turned out to be Ryan, which didn't sound anything like Boyfriend's name. The nurse took Boyfriend to a private room and checked his name and DOB a half dozen times to be sure she had the right person before he was left to produce sperm.

A half-hour later, it was my turn. I was taken to a second waiting area where my blood pressure was checked. The nurse then walked me through the post-procedural area where I saw a handful of dazed women in recovery chairs. I was quite happy to see them eating snacks. I was hungry. Then I was in the procedure room where there was a chair, screens, trays of medical devices and two friendly nurses. One was there to give me the green whistle and help me through the procedure. The other was there to assist the doctor. A scientist in the room adjoining popped his head in to say hi and let me know he'd be checking the eggs as they were collected.

When the doctor and his student doctor arrived, the nurse gave me the green whistle. I quickly started to feel light-headed and was soon giggling away. The doctor showed me the many follicles I'd grown on both ovaries. Once it was clear I was feeling the effects of the green whistle, the doctor applied the local anaesthetic. The injection hurt a bit but not much.; I barely noticed the procedure had started. The doctor started retrieving the contents of the follicles using needles. A nurse would take each tube to the next room where the scientist would check the contents for eggs and call out the count as we went.

Once the doctor was done and gone, the nurses packed up while I sat there for a little bit. I was still lightheaded but felt OK to walk so told the nurse I was ready to get dressed. They provided pads in case there was any spot bleeding but I'd worn my period undies so didn't need one. In the recovery area, I sat in a comfy lounge chair, applied a heat pack to my lower belly and stared longingly at the packet of potato chips I was given but couldn't eat because I was too tired.

At some point, the doctor walked through with another patient and called out that I must be OK because I was smiling. I don't know what I was smiling about - maybe dreaming of eating. After a short rest, I told the nurse I was ready to go home. She gave me a take-home heat pack and instructed me to take Panadol at home if needed for the pain. Boyfriend Pham greeted me in the main waiting area and I made him do a pit stop at a fish & chip shop where we dined in with my little heat pack and a funny walk. At home, I curled up on the couch and took some Panadol. I was a bit achey but it was similar to a bit of bad period pain. Nothing major.

One more thing worth mentioning is the anaesthetic makes you mega constipated so make sure you have poop-friendly foods like prunes.

All up we retrieved 19 eggs, which I'm told is on the higher end of the scale. Though, what matters most is the quality. That will come in my next post about the wait for embryo news.

Our fertility and pregnancy experience

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