Egg Retrieval


*The hopeful view from the MGH Fertility Center, Boston

Day 12

Well, Egg Retrieval came and went, and I am now through the first of the three big events during an IVF cycle. I have had minimal pain, no bleeding (a first!), and a good appetite. Hopefully we will have some fertilized eggs and healthy embryos to follow. Then it is on to Big Event 2: the Embryo Transfer and Big Event 3: the Pregnancy Test. But one step at a time.

I felt very calm and at ease today at the hospital. Everyone was extremely nice as usual. This time I decided to ask if my husband could come into the retrieval room with me. I explained how my last doctor had “gotten into some trouble for things he did to women under anesthesia”. The nurse said he couldn’t join me but tried to assure me that I could remain calm because all my doctors were female. I had to laugh when she added, “except the anesthesiologist and he will be at your head the whole time!”

I had all the ladies backing me up!

I could tell the nurse had relayed my concern to the doctor because as I was inhaling the gas and falling asleep, she rubbed my arm and kept repeating that I was safe. That’s some bedside manner!

*As a side note: if you ever have to have anesthesia for anything, ask for a nausea patch behind your ear! I have never had a negative side effect from one and the few times I didn’t get one, I felt like my recovery was slowed down because I was unable to eat and drink, plus I was spending the majority of the day nursing my stomach woes.

When I woke up for the first time, or at least when I think I did, I immediately asked the nurse repeatedly, “Was I talking? Did I say anything?” I’m extremely paranoid about this aspect of egg retrieval. You see, the anesthesia they give you for this process is very light. I’m guessing that is because the procedure is short but I don’t really know. Some people don’t even fall asleep for it. I always have but I have also woken up afterwards and had conversations that I don’t remember at all. After our first retrieval, they were wheeling me out to my husband and when I saw him I announced, “You have the easy part! You get to sit in the Lazy Boy!” (This was a couple hours after he had described the specimen retrieval room to me.)

Since then my sensitive husband has tried to plant things in my brain in order to try to get me to say hilarious… and embarrassing things. He used to call my doctor, Dr. Hardy-balls in hopes that I might call him that one day. Now we know how awful that would have been! Although, one time I did come out of egg retrieval and privately (and unknowingly) said to my husband with pride, “I didn’t even say Dr. Hardy-balls!” So who knows what I have said in there. *Cringe*

Anyway, the nurse this time relieved my fears by telling me that I hadn’t been talking at all. I’m sure they say that to everyone, though. Then the next most important question, “How did it go?” She responded that they retrieved 13 eggs. 13 is very good. I was cranky and groggy from the drugs, however, and I felt pouty about this number. I think because it is one less egg than last time. My husband’s advice: I know of a blog you should read about numbers. Touché!

Nevertheless, tomorrow we will find out how many have fertilized! 😊


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