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Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Operation Heads Up 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)
IM injections
IVF (transfer/retrieval)
Semen analysis
Post-coital exam
D & C
Testicular biopsy
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 ( 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?


C said...

Just a couple of things to add to the list:

-endometrial biopsy
-laproscopic surgery
-saline sonogram
-accupuncture (not sure about this one, but I've done it for IF and know quite a few others who've tried it as well)

This is a wonderful idea!

Lollipop Goldstein said...

Which one(s) is Carolyn going to write...that's the real question

Thanks for the list additions. Want to write any of them?



(this is Melissa on her hands and knees begging. Come on, Carolyn! Begging.)

soralis said...

What a great idea! A one stop shop for everything you need to know about infertility!!

Good luck

Lyrehca said...

Just found this blog a few days ago when I noticed you'd linked to me (Thanks!). This is a great idea, and while I can't write a section, I can certainly comment on a few (HSG, giving a sub-q injection, acupuncture, so far). Best of luck with the book and I look forward to reading it.

Somewhat Ordinary said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am fairly new to this and will be going back to the RE in the Fall if I'm not pregnant on my own by then. I think giving the low down on the procedures from the people that are actually going through it is a great idea! I can't wait to read more of your entries

Anonymous said...

I know you asked for email, but I'm in a rush (the stepson is here this week, continuing his pleading for ME to produce his next little sister- he wants a girl, wants her to share his room even). I am willing and able to supply the requested information in reference to laparoscopic surgery, when done with the intent of diagnosis and treatment of endometriosis. I know nothing of cysts (another reason for lap), or anything else, but the endo thing I have down. Sign me up, Mel! I'll try to get something typed up this week and email it (the child returns to another parenting party tonight, so I will once again have free time not supplied by Spongebob).

Anonymous Infertile said...

I have some....

OPK's (for some reason I have always struggles with these and without fail end up on the boards asking questions about them!)
transvaginal u/s - that first one was definitly a shock!

I'd be happy to write about one of them.


Lisa P. said...

I can only comment on an HSG (since I doubt you'll have chapters for natural miscarriage... damn, I wish I weren't experienced at that)... but this is a good list.

Thanks for commenting so that I found you; I will add you to my blogroll as well.

Ella said...

A few more to add to the list:
D&C warnings of what could go wrong - such as Ashermans Syndrome which I now have (I can write about this if you'd like)
Also, I can cover hysteroscpy and HSG. I'm like a pro at this by now. Also, sonohystogram, which is the same thing as a saline ultrasound - ouch.
Topics I'm not well versed in but would like to see: antibody deficiencies, ways to increase uterine lining, Provera and baby aspirin, Chinese herbs. I might think of others.
I'm adding you to my blogroll as well.

Anonymous said...

How about diagnostic techniques, like dye testing to make sure your tubes aren't blocked?