Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Now is the easy part. I'll be taking birth control pills normally until my baseline appointment, which will be about a month away. I believe this appointment will consist of the usual - blood work, hormone testing, and ultrasounds. I'm also taking prenatal vitamins for an extra healthy boost. I'll meet with my donor coordinator next week to go over all of my medications and refresh on taking shots. Tentative retrieval date is early July!!
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
The application process was pretty similar to that of SG, but with a few interesting additions. I went through the typical blood work, ultrasounds, interviews, social worker visits... the works. I also had to get professional photos done - Glamour Shots!! (Paid for by the clinic.) Probably a little excessive, but the donor coordinator assured me that the girls who have them done typically get picked sooner. The most interesting part of the application was the audio interview. The questions were pretty basic - Who is your role model in life? How would you describe your personality? Goals in life? etc... After listening to my tape, and maybe a few from other donors, I realized how much you can really learn about someone just from listening to their voice. What a great idea...
After spending a few months working with the new and improved clinic, I feel a little cold towards SG. I never really felt like the doctors there truly cared about my well being... Saying that I felt exploited might be a little much, but I definitely feel like Clinic B has my interest and the recipient couple's interest equally balanced. During one of my first ultrasounds with SG, Dr. Yazigi noticed a small cyst on my right ovary. Laying vulnerably on the table and hearing this was both scary and shocking. Before I had an opportunity to ask whether I should be concerned, and whether I would still be going through with the donation, the Doc's were pretty much out the door and shooing me off. After doing my own research, and contacting my own OB/GYN I learned it was nothing to be concerned about.
While applying to Clinic B, I requested copies of my entire medical record from SG. Almost 50 pages of paper work documented every phone call, every email, blood test, ultrasound, etc. I knew from a previous blood test that I had high cholesterol, but it had been a few years since I got an updated test. Apparently SG had tested my cholesterol 5 times throughout my time with them, and each time it came back high - I had no clue. Not once was I ever told that I should be concerned by my test results. This was not the case with Clinic B - every time a test result came back good or bad, my donor coordinator emailed me an update with genuine concern.
Needless to say, I am glad I have found a better clinic to work with.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
In one of my previous postings I described Shady Grove's "Shared Donor Program." Basically up to 3 couples can share a single donation from a single donor. In my case, I donated 14 eggs to two couples (each couple got 7 eggs). As a first timer, I was told that this is a pretty good number. However, if I would have been involved in a shared program between three couples (each receiving 4 or 5 eggs), each couple has a slimmer chance of getting viable eggs. Remember that the couples can freeze unused embryos, so they next time they want to try to get pregnant there is no need to call back in the donor... which costs more money. The bottom line is that SG makes more money per cycle when multiple couples are involved, and each couple gets many many eggs. I was told by the staff member that SG wants girls who can consistently produce 20+ eggs, and I just didn't meet the cut. (She worded that a little nicer...) Did your jaw drop too?
Still wanting to donate again... I was back to square one.
Monday, May 21, 2012
So... Did you donate?
Yes - I was chosen as a donor by 2 recipient couples, and successfully donated my eggs. I produced 14 eggs!
Why did you stop blogging?
To protect my anonymity, SG asked me to stop blogging once I was chosen as a donor. They were receiving a number of calls from people who had read some of my postings - some of who were actually requesting my eggs. Flattering, but not what I had expected to happen.
Will you donate again?
Short answer is YES, I would love to. The shots were no big deal, the pain was minimal after the procedure, and overall it was a good experience. However, I was not invited back on the donor database with Shady Grove... more on that later.
Did the couples get pregnant?
I have no idea - the donation was anonymous, and I might never find out that answer to that question. I am comfortable with never knowing what the result of my donation was.
I am currently working with another fertility clinic, and I am officially back on the donor database with that clinic. I hope to donate at least one more time with them. Now that my donation is done and over with, and my relationship with SG has ended I've decided to start writing again about my experience (and continue on with any future donations). Stay Tuned!