My Story

sansar28

0 Posts
Reply My Story Posted on: Feb 27, 2011 at 5:29pm
I am 28 years old and married for seven years. We started trying to conceive after the first year of marriage. I got pregnant in the end of December 2004 and started miscarrying at the fifth week (January 2005). We sent the tissue for genetic testing. The test revealed a genetically normal female. My doctor told me that many women miscarry but she wanted to run some blood work on me to check out a few things. She found that I have a prothrombin gene mutation and she said that the next time I get pregnant, I will need to be on heparin injections. I got pregnant again in May 2005 and was started on progesterone suppositories, heparin injections, and baby aspirin. I miscarried again at 6-7 weeks. We again sent embryonic tissue in for testing and again it was a genetically normal female. My doctor said that I need to go for further testing, so she sent me to Dr. Richard Grazi, a reproductive endocrinologist here in Brooklyn. He has run many tests and came to the conclusion that nothing is wrong. He thought to induce ovulation even though I ovulate regularly because it might help to produce a stronger hormonal response. I took injections for 3 cycles and did not even conceive. When I stopped them in September 2005, I got pregnant. He put me on baby aspirin, heparin injections, and crinone (progesterone cream). I miscarried again at the same stage- 7 weeks. In March 2006, I got pregnant again, did the same regimen and again lost it during the same time frame. At four miscarriages, Dr. Grazi suggested IVF. Knowing what the costs would be for IVF, I hesitated because I believe we would get a better outcome. Nevertheless, we tried it and the procedure was unsuccessful; I did not get pregnant with IVF. He wanted me to do it again but I told him I could not afford to do it again. I also said that I did not believe it was the right course of action for me because I am able to conceive on my own. I felt that even if I conceived through IVF, I would still miscarry at 7 weeks.

I decided to leave him and to see another doctor-one who came very highly recommended but one who doesn't take any insurance-Dr. Sami David in Manhattan. The initial consultation was over a thousand dollars including a few tests he was going to run. My husband and I felt that he was by far the most thorough. His tests found 2 things-one, my husband had a bacteria in his ejaculate that was given to me and can possibly harm the fetus (though has never been medically proven to); two-my body had a high level of NKa cell activity. We treated the bacteria with antibiotics as a precaution and once I got pregnant again (May 2007, I was started on prednisone (steroids to suppress my immunity), prometrium (progesterone pills) 4 times a day, heparin injections and baby aspirin. I still miscarried at 7-8 weeks and again it was genetically normal. We took a break for 2 months and started the tedious task again. I got pregnant again in October 2007 and I went for blood work and the HCG levels and progesterone levels did not rise as expected. I do not think I have to mention how difficult this was for me- going through this loop for a sixth time. There was barely a heart rate. I was 7 weeks and the embryo measured 5 weeks 6 days. The heart rate was 40 beats per minute. It was a genetically normal male. With the previous miscarriage the heart rate was 109 bpm.

My husband's friend gave us the number for A T.I.M.E and he said that this organization may be able to help. They referred me to see Dr. Jonathan Scher. We went to see him and he performed a battery of tests only to come to the same conclusion as everyone else. He said I have a luteal phase defect and he wants me on clomid. He also said that although my sugar levels are within normal levels, he feels that they are high and so he wants me to take metformin (which caused me severe abdominal pain). The cost of this visit was BEYOND outrageous (over $4,000). Dr. Scher changed a couple of dosages of the same medications and changed the indications. I did not feel that this will work. He seemed to be very confident that this is the correct course of action. I tried to explain to him that I have changed indications before and it didn't make the slightest difference in the pregnancy. All the research I have done says that IVIG is the next thing to do. It is not FDA approved but it can severely reduce a person’s immunity so that the body would be too weak to fight the pregnancy. I suggested this to him and he didn’t seem to care. I was treated horribly in that office. I found out that I was pregnant (May 2008) but the heart rate is very low once again and the size of the gestational sac measures less than what it should be for 7 weeks. This is the story of my life. It is always at this point in each pregnancy that things go wrong. Why can’t anyone figure this out? I don’t even get a chance to be happy about the pregnancy and I find out that it is going downhill. Before I had the sonogram done to see the size, I had called Dr. Scher’s office and left messages for him to call me back so that we can discuss IVIG. He called me back 3 days later and said that I have to come in to discuss this medication in person. I didn’t see why he couldn’t just say what he needed to over the phone. I was told that after the visit he would send the prescription for the medication to the insurance company. I called them and they didn’t get it. I called the office the next day to see if it was sent and they said that the girl that handles this is off today and that I would have to wait until she comes in the next day. I said to them that it was supposed to be sent in the day before and it wasn’t and I can not afford to just wait because every second that passes counts. They said ‘Sorry, you have to wait for her to come in tomorrow.’ I was very upset because I expect better treatment for what this office charges. Also, I was instructed by them to go in for blood tests twice a week. In every other doctor’s office that I have been to, I have received a phone call by the end of the day with the results of the blood tests and any directions necessary with regard to modifying the medications. I never received a phone call from them. I had to keep on calling them to find out and I could sense the annoyance they felt by my calls. It ended up taking a little over a week after I got a positive pregnancy result to do the IVIG transfusion but I think it was too late. I had to wait for the heartbeat to stop so that I can have yet another D&C. I just can’t believe that I am in the same situation again. I went back to Dr. Grazi to get his opinion. He said that the sac is so small that he doesn’t want to risk another D&C. He thinks it’s best for me to pass it. I waited a whole week and I wasn’t even bleeding. I was worried about hemorrhaging like the first miscarriage I had, which after many hours of bleeding, resulted in a D&C. I ended up just asking him to take out the sac without scraping the uterus because I just wanted this to be over with already. The waiting was driving me crazy. He said that I will be bleeding for a while due to the request to not scrape and I said I could deal with that instead of continuing to wait for it to pass.

I called Dr. Scher’s office to ask him what I should do next. He thinks that I should do IVF with IVIG. Dr. Grazi thinks I have 2 choices- IVF but without IVIG, or surrogacy. He stressed the second option to be the better course of action. I just cannot believe that I am able to get pregnant naturally and yet I have to seriously consider a gestational carrier. How is this fair? There has to be a reason behind this. There has to be other women in the same boat as me.

After a long conversation with Dr. Grazi, I tried IVF for a second time. This is the last option before surrogacy. I transferred four healthy embryos in hopes that most would stick. Our logic was that if my body was going to fight the pregnancy, there might be a surviving embryo. I did get pregnant (September 2008) and like always, the hormone levels rise nicely and then drop within two weeks of knowing I was pregnant. This time however, when the sonogram was taken, there was no gestational sac. I didn’t do a D&C because the lining was beginning to shed. I suffered while it all passed, not understanding why even now this happened.

We took a break for a while and began trying again, this time with a different physician- Dr. Matan Yemini in July 2009. He feels that I should be on HCG support during pregnancy. He also felt I should take HCG around ovulation (I think to strengthen ovulation). We did it for two months, but unfortunately I did not get pregnant. My husband and I decided to take a month off and start again without doing anything in hopes that it will work. Also during this time, I began seeing a chiropractor because I was told that this was another course of action to pursue. I spoke with one of my previous physicians about the possible connection to my problems and the physician felt that he never heard of this type of treatment being used for recurrent miscarriages. I was very skeptical but my physician said, “What have you got to lose at this point.” I went for a consultation and the chiropractor did a brain-stem scan which showed that there is a severe miscommunication (or lack thereof) between brain and body. He felt that the reason for the miscarriages could be due to a weak hormonal response since the body is not receiving all the messages from the brain. He termed it ‘brain-stem subluxation.’ He believes that through 4 months of treatments twice a week, he could fix the problem. I did not believe that this could work, but what was I supposed to do?? I don’t believe in any of this. My husband and I resumed trying and we are both surprised that I didn’t get pregnant since I used to get pregnant so easily. I don’t know what to do anymore.

In May 2010, I found out I was pregnant. I notified the doctor's office only to find he was away at the time. The nurses asked if I want them to monitor the pregnancy and I said yes since I did not have any other physician. They followed his protocol of HCG injections and progesterone support. I was closely monitored, with blood work every 2 days. The first sonogram at six weeks was good. The second sonogram at 8 weeks was not. Once again, the embryo stopped growing around six weeks. I was scheduled for a D&C a week later.

No matter what we do, the results don’t change. A lot of time and money was spent in the past six years and we are forced into a difficult position, emotionally and financially. I am so unhappy and spend much of my time crying. I need a doctor who can figure this out and direct us to real solutions.

Any suggestions?

sansar28@aol.com

Dr. Braverman

1998 Posts
Re: My Story Posted on: Feb 27, 2011 at 7:57pm
Hello Sansar I am very sorry for all your losses. It seems you have spent quite a bit and not recieved any results. I care for many of the patients from ATIME(they refer most of these cases to me in fact) and we have had many successes with your type of history.
I would be happy to give you my opinion, as you can see from the discussion boards many of my patients have made the rounds before getting the correct treatment.
The decision on which treatment to use must be based on "all" of the testing as well as your past clinical experience.
You really need to call me, set up a consultation and bring all of your testing that was done with you. I am confident I can at least give you answers , and there are many treatments available that you have not done yet. Many not requring IVF.
I hope I can be of service to you.
Dr. Jeffrey Braverman MD FACOG
Medical Director
Braverman Reproductive Immunology P.C.

sansar28

0 Posts
Reply Re: My Story Posted on: Feb 27, 2011 at 8:30pm
Thank you for reading about my history and replying as fast as you did. I will call your office and make an appointment for a consultation.

Dr. Braverman

1998 Posts
Re: My Story Posted on: Feb 27, 2011 at 8:41pm
My pleasure, please be aware that I can see you in the Manhattan or Long Island office please book which ever is fastest and let me know if the wait is too long Ill try and work something out. Clearly there is quite a bit to review. Im looking forward to helping you with this challenging case.
Dr. Jeffrey Braverman MD FACOG
Medical Director
Braverman Reproductive Immunology P.C.

sansar28

0 Posts
Reply Re: My Story Posted on: Feb 27, 2011 at 8:54pm
I would like to make an appointment as soon as possible in the Long Island location. Will the cost of the consultation be my copayment since your office accepts my insurance? I am asking so that I can be prepared when I come in.

Dr. Braverman

1998 Posts
Re: My Story Posted on: Feb 28, 2011 at 4:39am
I am not up to date with all insurance requirements, but when you call my staff will be glad to answer those questions for you. I look forward to meeting you.
Dr. Jeffrey Braverman MD FACOG
Medical Director
Braverman Reproductive Immunology P.C.