View Full Version : Mary Kay - May I ask you some fertility questions?
11-17-2009, 12:33 PM
Mary Kay, I saw that you were giving some great info on the pregnancy thread and that you gave birth at age 47 (WOW!). Do you mind if I pick your brain on some things?
I am 38... my husband and I have conceived four times (between 2005 and 2008) but lost each baby at the end of the first trimester. We had genetic testing done on babies #3 and #4, and they each had unrelated genetic problems (Trisomy 16 and Turner Syndrom) that doctors said were both flukes.
I've been tested and everything came back within normal range. Most recently, I had my day 3 FSH tested and it was 6.5. That cycle, I did the Clomid challenge test (CCCT) and that too came back normal and my doctor said I "responded well." My RE wants me to try injectables (same effect as Clomid without some of the negative effects) to bump up the number of eggs we produce, and (hopefully) increase the chances of having one healthy baby.
The only thing that is NOT normal is that I had ballooned to 45 pounds overweight. (I've lost 9 lbs. of that so far, being on a raw anti-cancer diet in the last few weeks, and know that I'm on my way to my peak weight again.) I have never been able to conceive at the 45-pounds-overweight weight, and I'm convinced that at that weight, my estrogen and progesterone were out of balance.
I was diagnosed with cancer recently, but thank God, it's now only a non-invasive form of cancer that can be treated with surgery (though I'm self-treating with a raw diet and related lifestyle changes). (SO glad my doctor isn't going to try to cram chemo down my throat or that would destroy my chances of becoming a mother.)
My new game plan is:
1) stick with raw eating and healthy lifestyle (daily exercise, sunshine, sleeping well in complete darkness) and
2) once the cancer thing is behind me and I'm "only" 10 or so pounds overweight, try to conceive with the help of injectables. (Oh, all our conceptions were natural/unassisted, so we'd like to try that again.)
The only monkey wrench I can think of is if my doctor tries to get me to take an estrogen-suppressing drug as part of my cancer treatment (I'm sure my kind of cancer feeds off of excess estrogen though I won't get confirmation of that until later this week). I'd rather NATURALLY get my estrogen/progesterone back into balance by getting healthy again... not throw myself into menopause with a drug!
I know my eggs are getting old so I don't want to waste any more time... since you know such much about fertility, I'd love to get your take on my plan and see if you had any input or other suggestions! THANK YOU so much if you've read this far!!
11-17-2009, 12:54 PM
I am not Mary Kay -- but have a similar history to you (infertility and four miscarriageas), though I was *much* younger during my journey.
i had every test known to man and no cause ever showed for the infertility or losses. i only had genetic testing once and it was deemed random trisomy.
i did find success after switching from evil clomid to injectibles. and, if you're not already doing so, may i highly reccomenf IUIs (intrauterine inseminations).
i would not think that 45 extra pounds would make THAT big a difference. i wholeheartedly embrace releasing them, but i know MANY overweight women with wildly successful success stories.
the only thing i would add, is maybe have an IVF consult or two. depending on your course of cancer treatment, it may behoove you to fetilize and freeze some harvested/inseminated eggs.
i wish you all the luck in the world. i've alluded to my story before with the miracles DO happen tagline. if you e-mail me privately, i'd be happy to share my long, heartbreaking/warming story with you.
11-17-2009, 03:00 PM
Thank you for your reply!! I'm SO sorry you had to go through the heartbreak of all those miscarriages too... I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy. :(
I know that 45 pounds wouldn't make a difference to most women... I know women who are 200+ pounds (sometimes quite a bit more) who conceived with no problems... but, based on charting and knowing what my estrogen/progesterone do when I'm various weight levels, unfortunately that does make a critical difference to me... or maybe it's the fact that when I'm on an "upward" (weight) trend, I'm eating SAD, not exercising, and not taking care of my body, whereas when it's headed downward, I'm engaging in healthful habits that are good for fertility.
Thank you for the IVF suggestion... we hadn't wanted to go there, but with this cancer detour, you are probably right that we should at least look into it.
Thanks so much for your reply!! Hugs to you and I'm so glad your story has a happy ending! :)
P.S. I tried to PM or email you but it won't let me... I'd love to hear more about your story... my email address is julia dot greer (at) gmail dot com if you do have a chance to share your story with me!
11-18-2009, 11:25 PM
Kim, I'd like to hear your story too....if you don't mind posting publicly, post it here because this is a fertility thread after all!
Julia, DH is waiting in bed for me, but I just couldn't pass up answering you!!!...I'm hurrying so may come back tomorrow to edit/add some stuff!
You said your FSH was 6.5 on CD3. More importantly, what was your E2 in relation to it? I'm guessing it was high and that possibly this was bringing your FSH down falsely? Ideally, E2 should be around 40. Have you ever had endometriosis or fibroids?
I'm also guessing that your doc wants to put you on lupron to suppress the estrogen? I definitely wouldn't do that (however, I'm not totally against the use of lupron in other fertility matters where you're trying to coincide with a donor, or you need to keep from ovulating while upping your estrogen or something so you temporarily use it.....or if you have bleeding fibroids for example, so the only way to avoid surgery is to use lupron temporarily.....)
Geez, I'm going to write a dissertation....LOL
Anyway, you don't NEED to do lupron to get your body to stop producing bad estrogen/ start producing favorable estrogen. If you have cancer, then your body is metabolizing what it does have badly/improperly. The best way to get the estrogen methylization-thing down is to eat cruciferous veggies. Lots of 'em. Raw. In the meantime, you can take Indole-3 Carbinol , a phytochemical in cruc veggies to jumpstart you. But the veggies contain the synergism, so that's the ultimate....
And you say you've gained 45 lbs....What about your thyroid? Is your TSH betw 1 and 2 and is your Free T3 and Free T4 within normal range?
If you are hypothyroid, I'd still eat the veggies --just make sure you monitor your TSH within six weeks. (I did an experiment on myself and WAS hypothyroid, but the cruc veggies did not affect it. ) My hypo was cured after my second raw-juice fast...by accident....Another tangent/story....
Darn. I'm doing it again...jumping all over....Sheesh....
Anyway, my thoughts are that your game plan looks great. You are being very patient, which is not something everyone on the IF rollercoaster is ---so good for you!
Sounds like your upping your raw and you'll be doing all the right things: drink 1/2 your body weight in water in ounces, exercise, NO caffeine, I'd definitely be doing
progesterone beginning on ov day for oh, 12 days with 6 dpo the peak/most, de-stress, breathe deeply every chance you get (cancer hates oxygen), and the exercise will also help (42% of Americans get cancer, but only 14% of those who exercise get it), no sugar, I'd even cut down on the sweet fruits, take enteric-coated digestive enzymes (cancer cells have an HCG protein-like coating on them), when you take enteric-coated dig. enz, especially on an empty stomach, like at night before bed, they can actually get into your bloodstream and help digest this "wolf-in-a-sheepskin" coating. They are cloaked like this to hide from your body's immune system....
and very importantly,
CHECK YOUR PH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! No doubt with cancer and excess weight you are acid.
I know someone who just cured herself of a quick-spreading form of breast cancer within five mos by keeping her pH high (alkaline) at 8.
Get some pH strips. I'd get two kinds: pH-ion and Enzymedica. Enzymedica is a long strip that you tear off, but it only goes to 7.5. But you can save $ by tearing off tiny pieces. The pH Ion comes in sticks, are not as ecological, so end up to be more expensive, but it goes higher, so once you get your pH up, you can make sure it's 8. Check your second urine of the day.
I think it's great that you're incorporating more raw. After the holidays, I think you should go on a green-smoothie cleanse. You are already leading up to it by incorporating more raw food. You could begin now, but this is quite difficult over the holidays.
I like green smoothie cleanses better than raw-juice fasts (feasts-whatever!) because you don't have to worry about poop elimination. Well, if you were near death or really bad off, then IMO raw juice is quicker/better, but then you have to worry about elimination and none of the ways to eliminate poop is easy or good.
I led a green-smoothie cleanse with a Yahoo group that was only temporary, so you can go there if you are relatively new to cleansing and this will tell you more about it:
I don't know how new you are to all of this. A newbie would be totally overwhelmed with all this info. I hope it's not too overwhelming.
What I'd like to know right away is:
your E2 on CD 3
Your TSH and if free T3 and free T4 are within normal
What's your second urine's pH
Also, ALWAYS get pritouts of all your results from the docs and keep in a file. They may come in handy. The doc's office also can make mistakes and tell you the wrong thing over the phone..
11-19-2009, 12:43 AM
Mary Kay, YOU ARE AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you so much!!!
It's after 1am here and I am 3 hours late getting to bed (geez, lifelong habit that I'm sure has contributed to the infertility AND cancer), but very quickly, these were the notes I took when they called with the results of my Clomid challenge:
Day 3: FSH 6.5 -
Below 11 is normal – start clomid Thursday night – day 10 for second half of hormone testing
Estradiol normal [note: she said it was "below 40 which is good" but I don't know the exact number]
Day 10 after 5 days of Clomid:
Estradiol 264 (good response to Clomid)
I passed the Clomid challenge!
Next step – mid-cycle ultrasound on Friday (or Thursd. if I get a peak Thurs.)
8:15 am Friday
Bloodwork – everything indicates I’m responding to Clomid
Progesterone still low so I haven’t ovulated yet
Lh is low so I’m not surging yet
BTW, this testing was done early in the year... after which time I was on a self-destructive, uber-SAD path (very dark depression after our fourth loss) so I'm sure my estrogen and progesterone became out of whack since then.
I've had my thyroid tested twice and it was normal... which confirms my theory that I got this overweight by eating a bunch of addictive SAD garbage and not exercising! I do shed fat pretty easily when I'm eating raw and exercising (10 pounds so far over the last few weeks).
I don't have endometriosis or fibroids, nor any other abnormalities that my RE was able to spot. He actually referred to my uterus as "beautiful," tee hee. Why doctor, I'm a happily married woman!! :p
I just bought pH strips the other day and I'm still acidic... 6.5... so I've got a ways to go in that department. That was saliva (a couple of hours after eating)... haven't tested urine yet. My puppy grabbed one of the strips before I could use it... when I pulled it out of his mouth, the slobbery part was deep indigo... I'm happy to know that HE at least is very alkaline!! :D
The Traditional Chinese Medicine view of fertility says that it takes three cycles to create a very healthy egg. My theory is that good diet/exercise/lifestyle has been what's helped my hormones get into balance, and allowed me to conceive easily (with no intervention), but I never ate raw/exercised/etc. for three solid months in a row before conceiving... thus, a bad egg = baby genetically destined not to survive.
I really don't want my cancer doctor putting me on anything that will completely/unnaturally suppress all estrogen (e.g. tamoxifen)... I'd much rather do what I know I need to do to get my estrogen/prog back into balance naturally.
Oh! Thanks for the GS encouragement... I loooove green smoothies, but all the homeopathic cancer experts say to juice. That's a really good point about that being the case if you're REALLY bad off. My digestive system is fantastic (until recently, I just assumed EVERYone had 2-3 good healthy BMs a day -- and to this day, I can't remember ever having been constipated) -- I don't want to mess with that by stripping fiber from my diet!
You've given me so much food for thought (I had heard about enteric-coated digestive enzymes but haven't tried them yet -- I will be buying them TOMORROW thanks to you!)... THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU, you are an angel!!
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