I adapt my post on one journey for a child whose French version can be found here.
This post on "One journey for a child" will be a little more scientific (medical) than the previous ones and for good reason we will, at last, take action! I wondered if I should avoid this period a little bit and I came to the conclusion that no because,
If this post could help, if only one of you, or a family member, or one of your friends, because what you are about to read will allow you to make the decisions you want to make with full knowledge of the facts, I would have won it all.
I'm not sure if I'm clear (I rephrased that sentence ten times) but to be clearer,
If at twenty years old, instead of telling me that I was in pre-IOP (pre-menopause) by devoting only ten minutes standing in an office, they had explained to me what HMA was and what my rate was, I swear to you that I would never have had to lead this fight, to live this hell.
I went to the analysis laboratory to perform a long blood test which included, among other things, for the xth time the determination of my AMH level (Anti-Mullerian Hormone). I would like to tell you more about this because it seems to me that every time I have to talk about it, the majority of people look at me with wide-open eyes.
It's possible to measure (approximately, it'snt mathematics) the ovarian reserve of each woman.
All that is needed is two tests.
- A pelvic ultrasound to quantify the follicles present in the ovaries. A follicle becomes an oocyte at the time of ovulation, usually around the 14th day of the cycle,
- A blood test with AMH dosage. This hormone is secreted by the follicles. A low AMH level (close to 0) is a sign of a low ovarian reserve.
The correlation of these results makes it possible to measure the ovarian reserve.
From the age of thirty onwards, it begins to decrease significantly. In a western society, where people decide to have a child more and more later, it's important to be aware of this.
There are two main reasons that can cause a low ovarian reserve when one is young, which are not always the same.
- If you have undergone chemotherapy. There is then a strong chance that the treatment that allows you to live will condemn you to "infertility". In the majority of cases, today in this situation, it is proposed to vitrify (I will come back to this notion) the oocytes before chemotherapy.
- If, like me, one is menopausal before the age of thirty, instead of after the age of fifty. Approximately 0.2% of the world's population is affected by menopause before the age of thirty and 2% before the age of forty. There are several possible causes, for me it is probably an autoimmune origin but in some cases the origin is not identified. At the same time, I would tell you that as much as I hate that the consequences are treated without knowing the causes, here it doesn't matter the cause, the consequence is there, right there and irreversibly. We are born with a defined ovarian reserve and when it is exhausted, it is over.
- And finally, if you have a disease that you can pass on to your child.
It was feverish that I went to the laboratory where two years earlier all our hopes had been stopped dead in its tracks and our fight put on hold.
48 hours later the majority of the results were available and guess what? Everything was normal, not always the same problems but nothing new, no bad news. It took another three weeks or so to get the karyotype results which according to Wikipedia,
Is the process by which cytogeneticists take photographs of chromosomes in order to determine the chromosome complement of an individual, including the number of chromosomes and any abnormalities. The term is also used for the complete set of chromosomes in a species or in an individual organism and for a test that detects this complement or measures the number.
While waiting for the results of the karyotypes, I actively continued to tick each step of my to do list. The following were simple steps that were quite easy to accomplish.
I couldn't just sit back and wait for the results, so I decided to do two things, and not the least.
- Contact the CECOS (Center for the Study and Conservation of Eggs and Human Sperm),
- Find my fairy (understand a donor).
It's in front of my PC by typing "CECOS" that Google hastened to propose me,
What! CECOS Marseille ?!? no, it's impossible, there's a problem ?
I couldn't believe my eyes. I had to check it out right away. The reason I was referred to Paris two years ago was that, apart from being a state-of-the-art service, there was no care in Marseille for patients who needed oocyte donation.
If this information was correct, it was for several reasons very important to me and I had to hurry up and check. Was there really a CECOS in Marseille and if so, I had to contact them immediately to find out more. I told myself that I would check the reputation of the CECOS in a second step...
Great, that's right, Google is right, where is it? where is the phone? Here? it's ok, my heart is beating at 2000, I need to calm down.
It's with a lot of stress and a certain excitement and impatience that I dialed 04.91...
After a very long wait,
"PMA Service La Conception, Hi.
— Hi, I would like to make an appointment with a gynaecologist.
— Is this your first appointment?
After answering all the questions, I finally got the date. Nothing in our conversation so far made me fear that I would have to wait a year, as initially planned in Paris.
"Do you have something to write down?
— Yes, that' s all right, I'm listening.
— You'll have to come to your appointment with your medical record as well as a recent blood test and a letter from your general practitioner.
— Yes, yes! I answered him in a tone showing my impatience to get the date.
— It will be in July. I'll call you back during the day to confirm the day and time".
After I hung up, I let out a shout of joy that must have swept the whole street. I let the excitement subside for a while, and when I came to my senses, I did some research on the hospital's PMA.
In fact, the service had lost its approval for a while for various official reasons (quota...) before getting it back a few years later. I discovered, a little less enthusiastic, who was the head of the service, Professor G. whose reputation was far from being good on the human level in any case. I had told myself that it was not very serious, that with a bit of luck I would not have a consultation with him. I stopped looking for information because my decision was made, it would be Marseille and for several reasons.
First of all, all my family lived there, my brother, Jean-Philippe and my cousin Marjorie whom I am very close to, my mother, whom I am less close to but also all my aunts and uncles, all my friends. At each stage of my fight, I always tried, as far as possible, to find positive things, situations that would bring me a little happiness. And these return trips between Corsica and Marseille would allow me to see my family, whom I hadn't seen for too long.
Then, as with all Marseilles people, it's my city, it's where I have my roots and it's the place where I've lived most of my life. To go through such an ordeal, which was going to be long, I thought it was more reassuring.
Of course, I also secretly hoped that the waiting times would be shorter.
We were on the eve of the appointment and the pressure started to rise, crescendo. The medical record, which already weighed a few kilograms, and the suitcases had already been ready for a few days. All we had to do was wait and the night was going to be white...
You will have to wait for the rest, hoping that you enjoyed it, allowed you to reflect, and especially to learn more about medically assisted reproduction with oocyte donation.
See you soon.
One journey for a child #1
One journey for a child #2
One journey for a child #3
One journey for a child #4
One journey for a child #5
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