Tuesday, February 24, 2009

High LH level

I got this letter today (edited slightly) and was wondering if anyone has had this experience or has any suggestions:

I am asking a question for my best friend as I really hope she can have a healthy baby soon.

She is 32 years old now and has been trying with her husband for more than 3 years, but has never gotten pregnant. Both she and her husband have been tested
thoroughly but no problem has been found.

They are trying to do in vitro fertilisation but she has raised LH every time even the doctor gave her the drug to lower the LH level. (She said the normal level is 3 but hers is 5.1) Her doctor couldn't tell her why her LH level wasn't effected by the drug, and of course couldn't tell her what might happen if she tries another cycle.

She is very desperate now.........could you please give me some advice?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Gemination or Fusion

When Yirmi's right front top tooth started to come in, I would look at it, wondering exactly how it was going to work itself out. I'd never heard of teeth being abnormal (except for mine that are yellow - both my baby and permanent teeth). It took a few times before I realized that something really wasn't right. It looked like either the tooth is split into a larger tooth and a smaller tooth or that two teeth were coming in fused together - either way, the larger tooth was too small to be a middle tooth and together they're too big to be a middle tooth.

I showed Ohad, who agreed that something was wrong and then, as soon as I got a chance, I called my really good friend (who happens to be my SIL too) who's a dentist. She knew right away what it was - tooth gemination or fusion. She said she'd seen quite a few cases and that the two main issues are that 1) you can't treat the teeth - if they get a cavity you can't fill it and 2) they sometimes don't fall out on their own when the permanent teeth come in & therefore have to be pulled. I read up on it and found that it's not that rare (1 in 200 in general, far less in front teeth) and that it rarely effects permanent teeth.

We realize this is not a big deal at all - more interesting than anything else, I guess.

I just wonder what we're supposed to answer when people ask how many teeth he has ;-)

*Edited Aug 12, 2009*

So many people have come into this blog looking for pictures of tooth gemination and since I have more recent ones, since the tooth finished growing in, I’m putting them up here. Surprisingly, it’s much less noticeable than I thought it would be.

gemination - front tooth split into two teeth gemination - another view

This is what Yirmi thinks about me taking so many pictures of his teeth. Such a cutie :-)Yirmi's feeling about the photoshoot...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Out of surgery

My sister called a little while ago to say that Ephraim Yehoshua is safely out of surgery :-)

I hope he has a speedy recovery! They should be coming home tomorrow.

I thank you all for your prayers :-)

Monday, February 16, 2009

Prayers please

My sister's son, Ephraim Yehoshua (ben Leah Gavriela) was born with PHPV - Persistent Hyperplastic Primary Vitreous - in his left eye. It's a very rare condition (big clinics will usually see about 2 cases a year), which is likely to leave the child with no sight at all in that eye, unless surgery is performed before 11 weeks of age.

His surgery is Tuesday morning (Israel time). Please join me in praying that all goes well!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Implantation vs. Transfer

Yes, I'm still around, still reading quite a few blogs (I even comment sometimes). Many of the last posts I've read have been about how angry women are at the fact that the media (in general) can't get the term right - specifically, they're referring to the Nadia Suleman octoplet story, which is all over the news.

I think that everything that needs to be said has been, but I'll just give my personal take on a few things:

First, any doctor who agreed to transfer as many embryos as s/he did (the current claim is 6) was extremely irresponsible - because I believe that the goal of IVF should be a singleton pregnancy (this from a mother of twins... and has also read studies on eSET and its alternatives and the results of such decisions - and I am very pro eSET for the recommended group - I'm sure I had another post, but I can't find it...)

Second, Ms. Suleman is clearly a masochist because otherwise I can't understand her agreeing to transfer so many embryos. I can understand an "addiction" to being pregnant, giving birth and having a neborn or infant, but the toddler stage is... well... very draining, if you ask me. Especially when you've got a few strong-willed toddlers with a high tolerance for screaming and fighting (not to mention any names from my personal experience). For a long time I could not imagine reaching a point when I would not want another baby. Since Yirmi was born, I feel that our family is complete. I don't think it's a doctor's decision to make, though (when a family is complete, regardless of the circumstances). [To address comments I've read like, "How could anyone treat a woman who already had 6 kids?"]

Third, parents don't always think things through, but after 6 kids, you should know the implications of having more children. Counting on others to support you (if that was her plan) is reason enough not to have another (even "just" one). Again, if that was her plan.

I can't talk about selective reduction because I would have avoided the need to consider it to begin with in her case. (Though admittedly, personally I was just lucky because in 1993, it was common to transfer 4 embryos, which I did - and ended up with one baby. In 1995, I transferred 4, but only one was considered really good enough to transfer - explain fraternal twins? By 2001, I knew enough to transfer 'only' 2.)

And now to the part you've all been waiting for. Implanting or transferring embryos. Clearly the medical term is transfer. It would be nice if the media would use the correct term, but is implanting really wrong? Implant means "to insert in living tissue (as for growth...)" or "to fix or set securely or deeply". And what happens during embryo transfer? The doctor inserts the catheter into the uterine lining and places the embryos there. IN the uterine lining. S/he doesn't just randomly shoot them into the uterus and let them land wherever they please. If that were the case, probably most of them would just immediately fall out, when actuallythe effect is more like super glue. So... in fact, the embryos are literally being implanted into the uterus. Kind of like plants that you put in the ground. Sometimes they take root and sometimes they don't. Getting upset about the terminology seems silly. As if women who've had IVF form some exclusive club... I find the awkward pronunciation of nuclear (nook-you-ler) much more annoying.

You might also be interested in "How many embryos should I transfer?"