Especially not when there's a mountain of construction on Sherbrooke and we're stuck taking a detour and stupid taxi drivers are cutting you off, and pedestrians believe they can cross the road willy-nilly, and the cars are double parked (often in a no-parking zone!) and you have to 'slalom-weave' around vehicles to get anywhere, and... and... and...
I could go on. But you get the point.
Neverthless, we had an appointment in Montréal yesterday. We took Petite with us, because as I mentioned, I didn't want to take advantage of her daycare provider and have us delayed for our arrival, if perchance our appointment finished late.
The construction mess meant that we showed up about 20 minutes late for our 1:45 appointment, but we were quickly registered at the desk to see Dr. Tan. We had to pay the consultation fee up front. What was $60 last month was $100 this month; nice huh? The explanation for that jump is because of the whole "Quebec now funds IVF so our prices have changed." Lovely. I made a mental note to ask Dr. Tan about the other costs associated with the IVF; what else has changed?!
Anyway, in the waiting room, Petite wasn't the only child there; a few other infants and young children were there as well and Petite obligingly walked up and down the hallways waving 'hello' to one and all. ** She's such a social butterfly.
Anyway, we were soon ushered in to see Dr. Tan and he went over our file, tests, etc. As he indicated, all is normal. And there's no reason why we can't get started. He did ask why I wanted a general anaesthetic (GA) though and I replied that for safety's sake, because sedation uses an IV, and IVs are a bit of a sticking point with me, that it's better for all concerned if we use GA in my case.
And apparently that poses a problem.
You see, now that Quebec funds IVF for residents, that funding doesn't provide for GA, only for sedation when you have the retrieval. If GA were to be used, the fees would only amount to $80 and no anaesthesiologist is willing to work for that, so there are no anaesthesiologists available at McGill anymore. However, there is a solution.
Montréal Reproductive Centre.
Yup. You read that right. Montréal Reproductive Centre.
Brand, spankin' new.
Back in November 2010, Dr. Tan started up a new fertility centre in Montréal. Given that he's started a few centres in Canada, and there is a current need in Montréal to fill the gap that Quebec's funding doesn't cover (e.g., out of town patients, like us), he procured space, hired staff and has started Montréal Reproductive Centre, located on Decarie Boulevard, near Autoroute Decarie. Much closer for us in fact, as we don't have to wind our way through downtown Montréal! WOOT! For those curious, the clinic's website is http://www.mtrlrc.com but many pages are still blank; information is forthcoming.
Dr. Tan immediately referred us over there. But not before I asked some pertinent questions:
- Is the cost the same? Answer: Yes. All costs are the same as the costs at McGill and he went over the costs with us again.
- Who will do the work? Answer: The same doctors who work at McGill also liaise with Montréal Reproductive. We will still have Dr. Chan for Hubby's PESA (sperm aspiration); we will still have the same embryologist as is at McGill; and Dr. Tan can oversee the whole procedure more personally than at McGill.
- What protocols are used? Answer: The same as at McGill because Dr. Tan is still my doctor and will still use the same process and protocol for our cycle. This was crucial to me; I didn't want to try my hand at the Ottawa Fertility Centre only to find that they're more conservative (as is rumoured on ivf.ca) and to learn that they don't use the same drugs or type of protocol, that obviously worked so well for us the first time around.
- What about our files? Answer: We have to sign a release form so that Montréal Reproductive staff can access our files. The electronic files are shared via the same filing system. Hard copy files, notes and tests will be copied and within three weeks, will be available to the staff at the new office.
- Bonus... parking! There's no cost for parking at the new clinic, while McGill has a nightmare of a parking lot and it costs $18 if you are there for anything more than 90 mins. As of course, we always are. There's lots of on-street parking at Montréal Reproductive and it's very close to the highway on which we come into the city.
Keep in mind that I was on CD 23 of my cycle.
Well, they had a helluva time finding the left ovary; it's always hiding and lots of folks have trouble with it.
The right was easier to locate, and so were the NINE follicles visible.
And so was the cyst... *sigh*
And *screams* bloody hell, my endometrium is only 4.0 on CD23? What gives?! Very weird. I attribute that to the whole "bleeding like a stuck pig, needing Provera to thin the lining" incident back in the fall of last year. Obviously, the Provera did its job and thinned the lining but wow, time for it to recover methinks! Yikes!
Anyway, the scan was done, reports printed for the file, and I got dressed again.
Dr. Mumcu believes, as does Dr. Tan, that they can once again aspirate the cyst prior to the retrieval. Which, by the way is tentatively scheduled for early in the week of March 13 and transfer on or before March 18.
Did you see that my dear readers?
RETRIEVAL and TRANSFER scheduled.
I am terrified.
Ladies and gentlemen, I have an IVF calendar in my hand. As long as I start my next cycle before February 12, I am to start taking BCP in preparation for IVF #2.
And I am so scared that it's not going to work as well as IVF #1 did. It's paralysing. It really is.
In the meantime, I'm trying to figure out getting all these medications. The list is as follows:
BCPs (Marvelon; suppression)
Follitropin-alpha (Gonal F)
Choriogonadotropin -alpha (Ovidrel; trigger)
Pregvit folic acid
Oh yeah, and to throw even more fun into the mix:
March 18, the tentative transfer date, is also the date that our church choir has been asked to sing the anthem at an Ottawa 67s game to be nationally televised. Nice huh? I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.
Hold on. I'm back on the rollercoaster. Dear Lord... am I insane?
**Note: I do realize how hard it is for us IFers when someone brings a child into a clinic. I wish I had another choice. However, I also recognize that most will understand she is the product of infertility and ART and hopefully, they can see past the fact that there is a child right in front of them. Until the clinics all offer separate waiting areas (for those IFers without children, and those who have children with them), there's not a lot I can do. I wish there was.