Fertility/Infertility testing in the UK

Discussion in 'Trying To Conceive' started by twinmami07, Oct 1, 2008.

  1. twinmami07

    twinmami07 Well-Known Member

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    What are your experiences with fertility testing in the UK? I had to wait months for my initial appointment with the GYN so im concerned at how long things will take! I'd love to hear anyones experiences of fertility testing on the NHS, who you went to see, what happened and how long things took...

    My first appointment with the GYN was back at the end of 2007 (in anticpation of TTC) where I had an ultrasound (I already knew I have PCOS). After waiting about 12 weeks I had the follow up appointment in March 2008 to discuss the u/s results. Just the fact that it took 3 months for this is rather worrying to me!! I was told all my pelvic pain was probably a mix of IBS and ovarian cysts bursting. They said although both ovaries are very cystic, it shouldn't cause us any problems TTC and i was sent on my merry way.

    Im 'blessed' with all the usual problems of PCOS, and i also have very heavy painful AF and pain when BDing. We are now starting month 9 TTC and i'm concerned that with all my symptoms i should really be getting a lap&die or HSG done NOW. So id be interested to find out how other women ended up getting their Lap or HSG, and how long they had to wait? Or how much it costs to go privately?

    Im due back at the GYN on our 14th month TTC, where they will begin more tests if we are not pregnant by then. My concern is that I already know that i don't ovulate regularly, and i have pelvic pain and abnormal periods. (I've only ovulated 4 times this year). Should I be pushing for more testing to be done now? We only have a few years left to have all our children, so we dont have all the time in the world to wait around. I guess im just getting very frustrated and not sure what to do next.

    Sorry if that was too long, thanks for letting me vent and for any answers :)
     
  2. Omi

    Omi A Mummy At Last!

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    Hiya,

    where in scotland are you? Im in glasgow and alltough my situation is different than yours i too am looking at testing in the new year, when doc suggested i come back.

    Both my friends who are now on ivf said it took them 2 years :)shock:) from beginning til end. But Arcanegirl, on here (and pg, woohoo!) said it took her 9 months.

    As far as tests..i think it depends on your doc as well. Mine said he'd do a SA on DF anytime he wants. Just needs to get apmt , get a cup ( lol), instructions and letter of referral. then DTD when he wants to and go to hospital within hour.

    I have no idea what my doc will do when i go back. A friend at work had bloodwork done recently at her GP's. I suspect i might get a fsh test to check on my ovary reserve etc. One of my friends on ivf did have a lap and dye. Both came out ok. One has a partner with 'slow swimmers' as she calls it :)

    Im not the best to answer these questions but i thought id throw in what i know. I am aware however, it all depends on the GP and waiting lists. Maybe check out fertility clinics online? i dont know...the lttc forum?

    All the best and GOOD LUCK, hun!!

    :hug:, Omi xxx
     
  3. twinmami07

    twinmami07 Well-Known Member

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    Hey, thanks for posting :) I thought more people would've gone through this, as its not as much of a 'US site' as the other TTC websites.

    I think you're probably right about the waiting lists etc. I heard today the wait for a Lap is 6 months. By the time i get back to the GYN (in the western general - byres road!!) and they schedule it, it might not be until Aug 09. Although im only in my 20s (DH in 30s), I do have spinal/neurological health problems myself so we dont have long left to conceive at all.

    So how does the S/A work then? - the GP gives you the cup and instructions, he does it, then you drop it off at a hospital? What hospital is it that does it? (Thats funny we are both in Glasgow! I've been living in the westend for a few years now).

    Its been nearly 3 weeks and im still waiting to hear what my progesterone level was last cycle! I tried calling the GYN today but to no avail. They said they will send the result out to the GP - so im guessing another week or so. The GYN gave me a slip to get my CD 21 tests with the local practice nurse for the next 2 cycles as well. Im charting though as my cycles are so irregular, so i will be getting them done 7 days after my chart shows i ovulated. Im just praying i actually ovulate these months and my progesterone level is suitable for pregnancy.

    I think we will get the S/A done as soon as. But my pelvic pain is just so bad i dont know what to do. I was given meds for the pain and excess bleeding, but im really concerned that it is getting much worse and preventing us from conceiving. I dont think my mind will be at rest until i've had an HSG or lap. I wonder what these things cost in the Nuffield? I called and asked them about something else in the past and they were very vague and said i would have to have a consultation to find out - that alone is £150!

    Ugh, TTC is so hard :( I really wish the doctors were more supportive and proactive. Im sitting here with painful cramps right now (only CD 10) and it's really playing on my mind.
     
  4. honey08

    honey08 mum2two boys/2mc

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    well this is un-real !! omg !! when i was 21 i went2the docs and told him me n partner had been ttc for a yr, and about 12wk later i was in hospital aving a lap&die done i didnt even see a gyne as everything was fine :) we split up, then i got with gary when i was 25 and i was addoment that i cudnt get pg uknow,but id sort of accepted it (so silly i know!) but i got pg with gary after 8mth...we'd split up n got bk2geva, we werent reallt trying,unfortually we mc in mar08, in may gary had a testostrone test and it was low,after 3mth of taking MACA he was bk2normal, then i ad hormone testa with consultant (4somat eles) and found out at gp that i ad low estrogen,but we didnt know wot cd these test were takin on...this was cd5 of this mth,had cd21 this mth and gp said i will after wait 4wk 2see a gyne with my results,and either get estrogen replacment or clomid...4wk is nowt is it!! in the meantime between cd5 and cd19 we went2see garys doc2get his sperm tested and in this time hes had the test and results..whitch were grt, so i will defo keep u posted about the lengh of time i wait 2see gyne and get medication...as i think ur not been treated fairley at all !! wish u the best of luck hun x x
     
  5. twinmami07

    twinmami07 Well-Known Member

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    I guess it really must depend on the area then. Im so upset about this, everything is taking so long. I understand if my cycles were "normal" then we should just keep trying, but i already know i don't ovulate properly - so why should we have to wait?! Im on CD 13 now and hope so badly we get pregnant this month so i dont need to go through the stress of battling the NHS. I think its because my health is bad that the GP does not support our TTC. But this is as good as it gets, so now is our only time to have kids ya know.

    I called the GYN again today, they wouldnt tell me the CD 21 number over the phone. How stupid! I told the receptionist i want to speak to a consultant over the phone and she said that wasn't possible, and i have to wait till my appointment in the new year! So i quite blantantly told her we are TTC and my pelvic pain is so bad i cannot even bare to have sex so im distraught and confused as to what im supposed to do now (slight exaggeration lol). So she said she would write a letter on my case notes and call me back ASAP with advice ... whatever or whenever that may be?!?

    So now i know 12 weeks for a Lap is normal in other areas, im going to push for this even more. I've read about maca and bought the organic powder. I even sat one evening and put it all into capsules!! I cant stand the taste of it, but it takes about 5 capsules = 1 teaspoon, so it seems abit "wrong" to have to pop so many pills LOL!! Thats great it worked so well though! DH is saying he's too embarassed to go to the GP for a S/A (they know his family) but im really going to have to push him to get this done. Whilst we are there i will ask about his hormone levels incase there is anything we could be doing to help.

    I just wish this didn't all take so long. The cost of the HSG and all the tests privately is the money we would've spent on the babies first year & pregnancy itself, so i will be very upset if we have to go privately.

    Thanks for your replies, its good to have others experiences to go on :) *BFP dust*
     
  6. Omi

    Omi A Mummy At Last!

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    Hiya,

    Just wanted to add that my doc said it is in the western. And yes, oh goes to him gets the pot (lol) a letter of referral and then he goes home dtd and takes it to the western. I too am in the west end :) Our doc's surgery is in fact across from Oran Mor! :)

    I would really urge you to find another doc if your's is not sympathetic, however if he's more cautious than unhelpful or negative than it may be perhaps worth listening to his advice..i dont know. i very much understand your frustration though, hun...

    Apart from the (perhaps) embarrasing fact your oh has nothing to worry about. Docs deal with this stuff all the time. In fact when we where there the doc said he'd had discussed SA results with another patient that day! :) So as you can see its fairly routine. And so what that the doc knows his family?? Its not like he's gonna discuss your ttc or anything related to you two with anyone else. And even if you run into someone its not like you discuss why you're at the doctor's, is it? Worst case scenario- make up a little white lie and point out to doc that no one knows you are ttc yet etc, etc... He has nothing to worry about. And the SA itself. Well, seeing as he'll doing it in the privacy of his own home there really is nothing to worry about there either. He sticks it in his coat pocket and takes a brisk walk down byers rd. Once in the clinic..well... its just another day, another sperm sample to them, lol! Does your surgery have other doc's perhaps that OH can see?

    Although, as i mentioned in the last post my friends personal experience has been a bit of a long wait on the nhs. I will say they both say they're treated very well. I think once you are in treatment it seem to be moving along well. One friend did actually mention in passing that she had been 'bumped' down the waiting list due to other people being moved up as more urgent in need (we thought perhaps people getting cancer etc and/or where time is of essence...) Anyway, some people have more luck then others i guess. I like you hope we're one of them! :)

    Please dont despair! I know and understand the frustration of having to wait not only in your personal experience but on the NHS as well...and although i am not a professional and dont know your history, im not going to patronise you and say you can maybe take the one-two year wait. Id go and find a doctor that is supportive of you ttc. Honestly, someone out there will help you as i have seen and read many stories with really serious medical histories/issues and all it took was finding the right doc.

    Phew.. thats my essay over, lol! All the best, hun..hope you both have a lovely saturday (although the weather is pants today..perhaps a duvet day, no? :))

    :hug:, Omi xxx

    ps..if you wanna have a read at costs etc when private take a look here... http://www.gcrm.co.uk/index.htm ...they do NHS patients as well! :)
     
  7. honey08

    honey08 mum2two boys/2mc

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    yeh if i was u i wud complain about the doc u av now and change doc's ...even surgery, so let me get this right, uv had cd21 bloods done but u after wait till the new yr2get the results?!?!?!? no this cant be right hun at all, think i said i had my cd21 on 1oct (last wk) and ive a gp app for 8oct, exactley a wk later 2get my results, n gp said we'll go from there, imight not even have 2 see a gyne if my estrogen osnt 2low my gp can prob sort it, however saying that my gp said i wud still prefer u goin 2 see the gyne wot ever the results! instead of goin private,how far from england r u ? cos tell u somat i wud drive2the nearest gp in england!!! ur been tret unfairley and puttin up with it !! u shud register ere, dont uknow any1 ere? obviosley if ur hrs n hrs away than maybe its impossible but u cant carry on like this !! its unheard of somat ike that goin on ere!!!!
     
  8. tickledpink

    tickledpink Mum to Zachary <3

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    I'd also be interested to hear what others have to say! CAn't you get a second opinion and see another doctor? perhaps they will do things differently or suggest something else?

    My OH has a low SC and people can't seem to do enough for him. In this past year, he's had tests, xrays, scans, numeruous appointments,they've put him on tamoxifen, testogel and is now going in for a small op in two weeks time to close off a vein.

    But I can't seem to get anywhere. I went to the docs the same time as the OH (Oct 2007), I've had three blood tests - they weren't happy about the first one, second came back fine, third was to test for more serious illnesses, again all fine. The doc told me that acoording to the results, I was 'probably' ovulating (I also have irregular cycles, only had 9 these past 12 mths) They said would refer me to the hospital for further tests but managed to 'misplace' my referral so I ended up waiting 2 months before i got an appt (I hear that's pretty quick?!?!) Anyways... hospital told me to have sex often, lose some weight and come back in a year when I would qualify for IVF :growlmad: They've even sent me a letter confirming my appt for 19th May 2009 :huh: I'll be 35 by then and the OH will be 39 and I feel as if time is running out. It's all very well getting the OH sorted out but what good will it do if there's something wrong with me?? Everyone seems reluctant to help me! :hissy: I did go back to a different doc in August and she specialises in infertility and acupuncture. I'm going to start in a couple of weeks (unless i get my :bfp: before then), so it will hopefully help with my irregular cyles. Unfortunately she can't do anything about the hospital appt next year :cry:

    My SIL finished her third failed IVF attempt a couple of months ago. She's now been signed off for depression and now has PCOS - apparently it was due to the fertility drugs she was on. But her docs have been great and they can't do enough for her. She's never had to wait long for appointments and they keep her upto date on everything. I just wish I lived nearer to her, then I could use her doctor instead :growlmad:


    That's my rant over... but best of luck to you xx
     
  9. twinmami07

    twinmami07 Well-Known Member

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  10. twinmami07

    twinmami07 Well-Known Member

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    Tickledpink, im sorry you are being messed around abit too. How frustrating!

    At least they are sorting things with your OH, that is half the battle right? Although im surprised they told you to have sex often with a low count, i've consistently read that you should wait at least 2 days between BDing otherwise their will be very little spermies there to do the job.

    Let me know how the accupuncture goes? Im seeing a medical herbalist and take several different supplements. Im considering seeing a reflexologist in the near future as they are supposed to be very good with regulating cycles for TTC. I hope we all get our BFPs this cycle so we cant start worrying about pregnancy rather than ttc lol. *hugs*
     
  11. honey08

    honey08 mum2two boys/2mc

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    hi girls ...ive my app this thurs to get my cd21 bk...got a feelin this mth wud cum bk normal as im sure i only O every other mth ...long story,but i did get told from another test that i had low estrogen like i said b4, so will let uknow, if it cums bk fine i will demand 2 be done next mth aswell,if not fine will let u know how long they say it be b4 seein a gyne, im praying its not guna be to long :( wish u all the best:)
     
  12. twinmami07

    twinmami07 Well-Known Member

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    Apparantly it can change month to month, so you should really get it for 2-3 months for a good idea of whats going on. The level should be over 25 (or possibly 20). How did you find out about your estrogen levels? is that the same thing as estradiol, as i will be asking them to test my LH, FSH and estradiol on CD 3 next month.

    Keep us updated, hope it comes back good :)
     

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