Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Quandries in preparation for my doc appt

Tomorrow I have another appointment with my napro doctor. I scheduled this one myself because in my opinion, it doesn't seem like I've made any progress since my hysteroscopy and polyp removal back in September. We were told to try for six months and then we'd re-evaluate, but at four months in, I'm frustrated that the irregular pre-peak bleeding that was supposed to be corrected by the hysteroscopy is back, and just as much and often as pre-surgery.

It's a mystery to me why we haven't conceived yet. I guess you could understand "mystery" in the theological sense - God knows my heart's desire and I trust that hidden in His will is the reason why I'm still not a mother. I pray for the faith to accept His timing.

But biologically speaking, it's a complete mystery why I'm not pregnant yet, meaning I haven't received a diagnosis of anything that could be interfering with my fertility. The only abnormal symptom my charts seem to manifest is the pre-peak bleeding. It's always very light (or even very, very light) - I probably wouldn't even notice it if I wasn't looking. There's never pain associated with the bleeding, but it's so darn consistent! From pratically the time I began charting (early 2011) until now, every cycle has at least one day of spotting, and more often 3, 4, or even 5 days after my period and leading up to peak day. Post-peak: nothing.

My doctor said that the bleeding could be from a polyp, so I had an HSG (ouch) and pelvic ultrasound done, and they both confirmed the polyp. The cycle immediatley after my hysteroscopy, I had no irregular bleeding. But the cycle after that, up to and including this most recent cycle, the bleeding was back. I'm nervous that the polyp has returned, and I'm not liking the possibilty of going through an HSG, pelvic ultrasound, and hysteroscopy again. And for what? To have one cycle without irregular bleeding? Plus, it was expensive. We don't have the money for that kind of treatment every six months!

But the thing is, I haven't received any direction as to what else could be going on with my body, and to me my chart looks very normal other than the bleeding. I average the textbook 28-day cycle, with peak day around day 17 and a luteal phase of 12 days. I don't have PMS (I'm more moody mid-cycle) and I don't have brown bleeding. When I was charting my temps, they weren't too high or too low. I would like to get some more hormone tests done, because I've only been tested on P+7 (that came back normal).

One thing that's been on the back of my mind ever since Christmas is a conversation I had with my mom, in which she told me that her fertility problems (which I knew she had) were from very irregular cycles, sometimes 3 months in length. She used clo.mid to conceive me - other than me and my brother, she had 3 miscarriages. I'm no expert here, but could her irregular cycles been from PCOS? I don't know if they diagnosed that 30 years ago. Also (and this is embarrasing, but maybe useful) I've always struggled with unwanted facial hair and acne, as did my mom and her mom. I read that that's a secondary sign of PCOS? But my cycles are so normal in length.

Endo doesn't seem like a reasonable possibility either, since I don't have much pain during my periods - it's bearable with a few tylenol. But I've heard that endo can be symptom-less?

I don't know. I'm so confused. I wish I had a solid answer for why I bleed irregularly, and whether that's the real and/or only reason that I haven't gotten pregnant. I'm very much practicing trusting in God with our future family and fertility, but I'd really like some answers too on a medical level.



  1. I have heard the stats from my doctor that 1 in 10 people have it. Even guys Get PCOS. Most who have it don't even know it because the symptoms manifest themselves differently in everyone. The severity of PCOS ranges for everyone.

    I have made many PCOS friends in the last 3 years who have had kids without any help at all. They have regular cycles and maybe have one other symptom like fat, cysts, acne or facial hair. I met one PCOS person who looked like a beautiful barbie or model and everything was normal except she was having a hard time getting pregnant. She got the PCOS diagnosis because she kept pressing the doctors to find out why she was not getting pregnant. Now she has a beautiful baby girl.

    I am not a doctor but if you think you might have something you should just go get it checked out. If you don't, the worry and stress might get the better of you. Stress and worry can do crazy things to the body and especially the mind.

  2. I'm so sorry you're having trouble being diagnosed, that is always so frustrating! Could you maybe ask your doctor to do a month long blood work thing? That is, 30 days where you get your blood drawn and they monitor your hormone levels? Once I had that done I felt like the doctors were able to do a lot more for me since they hada better idea of what my body was doing.

    I don't know much about PCOS :( but I do hope you get the answers you're looking for soon!

  3. With the acne and facial hair I'd bet your testosterone levels are elevated which could interfere with getting pregnant. Ask your dr to draw a testosterone level. I have PCOS and mine was elevated. I too have had really bad acne.

  4. It could be PCOS, for me it was the elevated testosterone levels in my blood work. I wonder what your estrogen level is in the pre-peak phase. I believe a high estrogen level can cause intermenstrual bleeding. Praying you get some answers soon! The not knowing is so tough sometimes.

  5. Let us know how the appointment goes! I'm hopeful that you will get some answers for this mystery (and I agree, it is a mystery)!

  6. Your appointment is probably over by now, but I'll say some prayers anyway! I'm also finding this pre-diagnosis phase really frustrating... That is, they're treating me for a couple different things right now (elevated prolactin, ectropion [something to do with my cervix being weird, I'm having a procedure to fix it in a couple weeks...]) but I really feel like there's something bigger going on that we have yet to find. I have an HSG next week and surgery in May or June.
    I hope you get some answers soon!

  7. I've had unwanted facial hair & acne, but have never been diagonsed with PCOS. Maybe that is a track for you to explore?? I have high prolactin ... if that helps any.