So...now that the blogroll is growing and growing (keep sending in those links to your blogs!) it's on to the next part of the Infertility Crusade...
Operation Heads Up.
So, my idea is that this blog--in addition to addressing the emotional side of infertility AND figuring out the things that are helpful/hurtful to the community (a tour book to the Land of If)--could be a friend's guide to infertility. Not the whole sterile, medical, look-at-my-shiny-speculum side, but the this-is-how-I-got-through-it side.
I received more information about IF from the bulletin boards and chat rooms than I ever did from my OB. And my RE was fantastic when explaining things, but he never told me how to make the injection as painless as possible. He just showed me how to do the injections (without having gone through them himself--so he couldn't give me insider information). The bulletin boards was where I turned before a procedure or before I tried a new medication.
But then there were the times when I realized I had a question five minutes before I was due to give an injection. And I wished there was one place where the advice was written in an easy-to-read form. Where I didn't have to wade through a google search. Enter Operation Heads Up.
I want to compile a list of the most common procedures, treatments, and medications and give tips and a "heads up" from veterans to newbies. I've already written one as an example--how to give sub-cue injections. The post is below. I will then add a link on the side bar so that people can easily click and find this information in the future. But the best part--since it's a blog, people can add their feedback. Sort of like the Epicurious of Infertility, where people are talking about their own experience with the procedure instead of commenting on a recipe for Tandoori chicken. So a person can read the original write-up as well as all the comments and be prepared for anything IF throws their way.
Just some comments on my write-up: there are four categories. (1) Why would you be doing... (fill in the blank). (2) What you can expect (either the details of the procedure or how to do something). (3) Problems that might arise and ways to troubleshoot (this section may be blank in some cases). (4) My personal tips (this section was redundant for me because I added my personal tips into section two, but in other cases, you may list things you brought with you to a treatment or things you're happy you asked for in advance--like a sonogram picture). Obviously, with some topics, the categories may need to be tweaked.
I've been compiling a list, but it's hardly even scratched the surface of A.R.T., surgery, or drugs.
Basal Body Temperature (how to take it)
D & C
Oral (Clomid) and vaginal (Prometrium) medications
What else? Write in with things to add to the list. Should we include common side effects like OHSS? What about things like an ectopic? There are also things that could probably be listed together under one umbrella topic.
Write me directly (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you want to take a stab at one of these. I'll coordinate it so that we have one person working on each topic (also feel free to write and suggest a topic AND offer to write it). As they come in, we'll post it to the list, create a link on the side panel, and people can add their comments.
Ideas? Thoughts? Comments on my own small-mindedness for leaving something important off this starter list?