Sunday, December 5, 2010

IVF Instructions

While these instructions are specific to me, I thought sharing them might be helpful for anyone who will be going through IVF.  This is a glimpse into the instructions provided the day before retrieval, paraphrased.

Note, I'm removing references to "partner" since I'm using donor sperm and I have friends on point for drop off/pick up.

  1. Nothing to eat or drink after midnight, not even water
  2. Report in exactly 1 hour prior to procedure (DO NOT BE LATE).  Wear comfortable clothing and socks.  Do not wear jewelry or makeup. Do not wear cologne or perfumed products.  Wear glasses (not contacts). Bring picture ID.
  3. You may experience some discomfort after retrieval.  Bring your Vicodin in case you have discomfort.
  4. Activity: Anesthesia will gradually wear off.  Do not drive, rest quietly at home through the remainder of the day; do not work. Tomorrow, you may participate in light activities if you are feeling well.  Eat light meals as tolerated.  
  5. You may experience cramping or vaginal bleeding.  You may use sanitary napkins and take Tylenol as needed.  Call if you experience continued or severe cramping or bleeding, or if you develop a fever.  Do not use tampons.
  6. Do not stop taking medications until instructed by your IVF nurse.
    • Begin Medrol the night of retrieval.  Take as directed for 6 nights
  7. Day after retrieval, IVF nurse will call and report how many eggs fertilized to make embryos.  
    • The transfer will be performed on day 3 or 5 and occasionally on day 6 following retrieval (retrieval is day 0)
    • The embryologist & physician will determine the day of transfer based on the number of dividing embryos as well as your specific clinical situation.
    • Actual time of transfer will be scheduled 1 or 2 days in advance
    • If the clinical situation changes we may need to move your transfer (from day 3 to day 5 or 6)
  8. Begin PIO shots 2 days after retrieval.  Continue once daily until pregnancy test.  You will be given further instructions after pregnancy test result.
Embryo Transfer Instructions
  1. Arrive 30 minutes prior to your scheduled transfer time
  2. Bring your Valium with you to take at arrival
  3. Prior to your transfer start drinking water to fill your bladder
  4. You will be awake during transfer.  You will stay at rest on the bed for 30 minutes after transfer.
  5. Do not wear perfume, cologne, etc
  6. Your first pregnancy test will be approximately 12 days afer transfer.  Remember you will have a series of 3 pregnancy tests and the first is a baseline.  Your IVF nurse will give further instructions based on test results.  Good luck!
According to my instruction sheet, my first beta will be 12/23... This is pushed up much closer to Christmas than I expected.  I'm going to ask if my first beta can be 12/22... as I plan to leave that day to be with my family for Christmas.  We'll be spending Christmas in a small town in the mountains, about 3 hours from where I live.  I'll have to see if I can find another location that will do the bloodwork, for beta #2 and #3 to confirm a BFP!  ...I'm thinking positive here.

Also, the PIO that was sent expires on 12/19...  I guess I'll have to order more to make it to the betas, and beyond.


  1. Thanks for posting this!!!! My ER is scheduled for later this week and now I have a good glimpse as to what it'll be like, along with the ET. Thanks so much for thinking of sharing all that info. It really helps going through this scary process knowing things ahead of time. :) Good luck with everything!!! Here's to Christmas BFPs!!!!

  2. Hi,
    If you have any questions please feel free to post them on my blog. I just had my egg retrieval on Thursday and my transfer today. Good luck tomorrow!

  3. Not having control over the situation is the worst park of IVF/Infertility!

  4. So many details...but all so worth it, eh! Wishing you the very best!

  5. I have Follistim that has an expiration date of November and December and I asked my RE about it and he said the meds are good for months after the expiration date. Double check with your RE but you should be fine. Good luck! I can't wait to hear your fert report!

  6. Good luck tomorrow! I'll be thinking about you in the morning!


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