Some of my posts are going to be TMI for the random reader. So, if you’re here to check out my project365 pics, read my 101 list, or if you just don’t want to read about my uterus (hello, Mom’s co-workers or my baby brother), don’t click the link below. I’m putting all of the TMI under the jump for that reason.
To those who want an update on our infertility battle, click below:
If you missed the background, you’ll need to start HERE. I’ll include some links for people who don’t know the terminology.
On June 1, I had my first major diagnostic test – a hysterosalpingogram (HSG). During this test, my reproductive endocrinologist (RE) was able to confirm what he thought he saw on vaginal ultrasound – either a uterine septum or bicornuate (heart-shaped) uterus. However, since this test only shows the inside of the uterus, we have no idea whether or not the outside of the uterus is also malformed (heart-shaped) or if the outside is normal and the septum is only extra tissue inside. This condition is a developmental defect, so I’ve had it my entire life without knowing. It’s strange to find a birth defect for the first time at age 31. My insurance covers diagnostics for infertility only (no treatments) but since this is a congenital defect, they are covering the corrective surgery.
I grabbed this image from a random website. This is a normal HSG with a normal-shaped uterus (sort-of a triangle) and clear tubes. You can see the dye spilling out of the tubes on either side.
Mine was shaped similar to this photo instead:
This Wednesday (June 23), I have a septum resection via hysteroscopy scheduled. In this surgery, my RE will attempt to remove the excess tissue. How much tissue he can remove will depend upon whether or not the outside of the uterus also dips down. In addition, I will be having a laparoscopy, in which he can view the actual ovaries, tubes, and outside of the uterus. In this surgery, he will also be able to see whether or not I have other conditions, such as endometriosis, on the outside of the uterus.
I’m terrified of this surgery, mainly because I’ll have to have general anesthesia. I’ve only had to go completely under one time (when my gallbladder was removed at age 20) and the anesthesia and I didn’t get along very well.
One note: having a uterine septum or bicornuate uterus doesn’t cause infertility. It just increases the chance of miscarriage (in some studies it has shown to greatly increase miscarriage chance). In other words, this isn’t stopping me from getting pregnant. Since I’ve never been pregnant at all, something else is the culprit.
During infertility testing, the RE found an increased level of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH). This is bad news for me. FSH begins to increase the closer you get to menopause. My level was already slightly elevated (he wanted to see a 10, mine was at 12.2) which means my reproductive system is functioning at a more advanced age than the typical 31 year old. In other words, we don’t have as much time as we would like to find answers and try to treat problems.
I will update again as soon as possible post-surgery to let you all know how it went. If you’re the praying kind, we’d appreciate prayers. If not, kind thoughts and vibes should do the trick. I appreciate everyone who has been supportive of us, and hope we’re one of the stories that has a great outcome.