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Sunday, June 22, 2014

the setback

our donor cycle with k has been going smoothly. the ease of this cycle and peace that we've felt continues to reinforce our decision and reaffirm that this is the way we are supposed to build our family.

k has been a blessing and has been keeping in great communication with me. her frequent updates make me feel more a part of the process and everything on her end is going perfectly.

the only hiccup we encountered along the way was with me. and i want to blog about it in case anyone else comes across this issue. i learned a lot and hope that i can help someone else advocate for their own health...should they find themselves in this situation. 

my nurse at SDFC sent me an email stating that my titer (a test that detects whether you are immune to chicken pox) came back negative. i've never had chicken pox so that wasn't surprising. but i did get the varicella vaccine (a series of two shots timed 30 days apart) back in 2010 before we started our first IUI. i must have tested negative for the titer back then (4 years ago) as my first clinic told me that i needed this vaccine before moving forward with my IUI. i remember it very well because it was a two month delay to get started. 

my SDFC nurse said in the email that she sent me…i have two options because i don't show immunity. 1) to get the varicella vaccine and wait 30 days for the second injection and then another 30 days to move forward with a transfer. since varicella is a live vaccine, you need to wait a month before you become pregnant. or 2) sign a waiver declining the vaccine and hope that i don't get chicken pox while pregnant. 

if you develop chicken pox while pregnant, it can be devastating for mom and baby. birth defects. pneumonia. developmental problems. it can even be life-threatening. even though we were anxious to move forward, we've waited this long so we didn't want to take any chances with my health or the baby's if this cycle works out.

so reluctantly, i went to my general practice doctor to get the vaccine. but i wasn't happy about it because i was going to have to wait two months to move forward with our donor cycle.

when the general practice nurse administered the shot, she said "we will see you back here in 30 days for the second shot and then you probably won't have to worry about this again for the rest of your life." huh? stop the bus. what do you mean, i thought? i informed the nurse that i just had the varicella vaccine series four years ago and already i am not showing immunity. she thought that was odd but didn't really have any information for me.

it was really bothering me so i started doing some research. i read that the vaccine doesn't work for some people. i called my SDFC nurse to discuss it because i didn't want to continue getting a vaccine that potentially wasn't going to give me immunity anyways. 

when i started telling the nurse my concerns, she said "you had the vaccine in 2010? that is new information." i kindly (through gritted teeth) told her that information was in my immunization records that i sent her when i became a patient at the clinic. 

she started shuffling through my file and found my records. she never saw them prior. silly me. i assumed that my nurse actually review my records before issuing an email stating my options. i thought she might think to perhaps look at the immunization records that i provided when my titer came back negative. i was livid. 

as i began to ask questions. she basically told me that since SDFC doesn't administer the vaccine, she doesn't know much about it. she directed me to my general practitioner. i explained my situation to my gp doc who didn't know much either and said he needed to contact the center for disease control

at this point, i was very frustrated and discouraged. it was really irking me that i couldn't get answers. i decided to call CDC myself instead of waiting for my doctor to call and translate the response back to me.

here's what i learned.
after being transferred to a specialist at CDC, i was told that titers are not recommended for people who have already received both varicella vaccines. he stated that the commercially available titer testing is not that reliable or effective at detecting antibodies in your body after the boosters. he also stated that according to CDC, I should have protection against chicken pox after the first 2 vaccines I already received in 2010 and didn't need the third vaccine i just received…and definitely don't need a fourth.

i was so annoyed. my cycle had been delayed and i put a live vaccine in my body before a transfer (God willing) that i don't need. i told my nurse at SDFC that do not want to take another titer as it is not accurately reporting my immunity and i will not be getting a fourth booster as it is not needed.

the nurse never took any accountability for the mix up. or the delay. and the clinic made me sign a waiver stating that i was refusing the additional vaccine. how freakin' dumb is that.

anyways, in the big scheme of things…
if this is the worse setback we have in this cycle…we are doing pretty darn good. 
when i get riled up, i just need to breath and remind myself of that. 


39 comments:

Caroline said...

The enemy is going to keep causing setbacks!!! Keep on pressing forward girl!!!

conceptionallychallenged said...

Thanks for sharing! I had chicken pox as a child, but my titer prior to starting IVF still came back negative. So I got the two shots. Not sure if anyone has retested since then, but in case they do it'll be good to know that this isn't reliable. Shame that your nurse neither knew nor read your records though :(

Nina S said...

Ugh, how frustrating! I hope you're back in about 30 days!

Isabelle said...

That is so majorly frustrating! Sorry you had to go through with it. But happy that you are not delayed for an extra month! Good luck with everything with your DE cycle!

I can haz babyz? said...

I'm so, so sorry you have been delayed!!! I think you should make a formal complaint to your clinic for the oversight. Hang in there. I know how hard it is to wait after waiting for so long already. The time will fly by before you know it!! ((Hugs)) -mm29 (Mindy)

ADSchill said...

Ugh! I would be SO annoyed. I hate it when the people who should fully understand all this stuff basically shrug their shoulders while you figure it out. I'm sorry this mishap happened - it shouldn't have. Now you know to always dig before doing something that doesn't feel right. We are supposed to be able to rely on our medical care providers to be on top of our care - right?

Marcy said...

How frustratating! I think this is a very common issue for fertility clinics. I was pressured to get the vaccine again when I had a negative titer and declined based on intuition. So glad you posted this info for others. Hope this is your only setback!

Northern Star said...

Good luck Jessah! You have had enough setbacks ... time for rolling on full steam ahead!

Haisla said...

That is so annoying!! The amount of time nursing staff do not read patient notes properly and cause unnecessary frustration and delays. I'm so sorry you've had to go through this, but hope it'll be the only setback you'll have to encounter during this cycle!!x

Gypsy Mama said...

How frustrating!! I'm so sorry for the delay... it seems pretty common that nurses don't check your file well , I know it's happened to me before too! Its bad enough all the stress of a cycle let alone having to deal with these kind of things!

Infertile625 said...

Crazy! I am one of those adults that never got the major childhood illnesses as a kid. It's amazing that one of your doctors didn't catch this. Doctors see too many patients and aren't invested enough. I'm sorry you are facing this setback but glad it's only going to end up being 30 not 60 days. Xoxo

Susan said...

Well now that does stink! So many are confused about vaccines. You've educated others and shared it with us, so maybe spared another for the same issue. Consider these setbacks as protection for you and your sweet baby. Hang in there!

shay said...

UGH. that is so super annoying, but thank god you followed up yourself and figured out what to do. it's amazing how no one took initiative to find out the facts. just goes to show that you have to really be your own advocate in this entire process. hoping the rest of the process goes smooth!

Lilee said...

That is so frustrating. I'm sorry you have to deal with this during an already stressful time.

Amie said...

The thing is this just isn't acceptable from the nurse! It outrages me what you and I and everyone else pays these clinics to have issues like this come up! Wow I am fired up for you girl!

Amanda said...

Oh. My. Gosh. I would be sooooo mad. I know the medical world is vast and not every nurse or doctor can know everything, BUT you can AT LEAST read the chart... I mean really. Not reading my chart is my BIGGEST pet peeve, even more than charging me more than the agreed upon rate. It takes like 2 minutes, and it is simply unforgivable. I would be LIVID! You're handling this really, really well, Jessah!

acoursetothefinishline said...

UGH - I'd be annoyed too. You are paying LOTS OF MONEY for these treatments, I too would expect that my nurse would read through my records. Or, knowing that we are all human and accidents DO happen, admit the mistake!
So do you still have to wait out some time or can you move forward at this point?

SmallTownFamily said...

ugh. any hiccup, at any point is annoying! and to not take any part of the blame is beyond silly. sorry for the temporary set back....but, soon! you'll be well on your way to getting pregnant. :)

waiting and wishing said...

So frustrating! The big thing I learned while we were doing all our cycles was to ask a bazillion questions before taking any action. The lack of chart reading is SO frustrating to me, but I just always told myself that I knew my history best and my chart was the size if a phone book, so relaying anything that seemed marginally important was a small price to pay for better care- even if it made me SO stinking angry!!! I hope this is the last of the set backs for you guys- on your way to baby in 30 days- breathe, greatness is heading your way :)

The Run Away Stork said...

Oh Jessah what a nightmare! You have every right to be livid - I would have been too! I'm so sorry that you have to delay when there isn't even a valid reason for it. How frustrating. However I'm glad to hear everything else is going well and that you are finding such peace with this decision and cycle. I will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers!

Whitney B. said...

Ughhhhh I've had so many similar experiences where paperwork is missing, things get screwy! I love it when doctor's office don't look thoroughly over paperwork!! It's like they don't think before acting sometimes. At least you learned something through the experience, happy you don't have to wait too much longer!

Before Baby Lady said...

Oh my gosh!! How frustrating is that! I would be so mad. Hoping the next month goes quickly!

Lisa {Amateur Nester} said...

How frustrating! I'm glad you seem to have a good attitude about it though. Hang in there!

Emily said...

I'd be annoyed too with the lack of attention to detail on part of the medical staff with your past immunization record, but unfortunately this crap happens all the time. Good for you for once again being your own advocate! You learn something new every day!

So glad to hear the donor process is smooth sailing. This K...what a blessing indeed.

holly said...

That's got to be frustrating. You trust your healthcare provider to actually read your charts and records before doing anything!!!

JoJo said...

Rant on my friend. I cant believe she didnt bother to check. Seriously, you make a big deal about sending proper paperwork but dont bother to review it? Glad u were ur own advocate and got some answers instead of waiting around.

TwoPlusOne said...

Trust on these things to happen when you need it the least! Its great that you can move on forward and don't need that second shot. Good luck with the transfer next month.

Ashley said...

Oh man, that's so frustrating! Ugh- why can't people do their jobs right??
Sorry you had to go through all that!

Brittnie said...

So true that if this is the worst thing you encounter along the way then you are doing pretty good. . . BUT that said, girl. . . I know how all the little setbacks or hold ups while in the midst of an IVF cycle just feel plain ANNOYING and frustrating. We had set back after set back until our successful transfer in August 2011. Hang in there!! You will get through!

Just T said...

Oh my gosh how frustrating!

Aubrey said...

Oh my goodness! What a hoopla! I'm glad that you called the CDC yourself to get this information! Praying for you.... XOXO

JenS said...

That is super frustrating! At least you figured it out after the first shot and are only delayed a month instead of 2. Sorry. But, you are right...if that's the worst that happens this cycle than you are doing pretty good :)

Krystal Sullivan said...

I would be extremely aggravated as well. You have been through so much already, and this could have been avoided. But you are right, if this is the only hiccup, then all is well. I truly hope this is the only obstacle on your way to your baby!

Laura @ Making Baby Provence said...

How very frustrating! It sounds like you're keeping a positive outlook, though. Good job on that. Sometimes, that seems to be the hardest part!

futureMom said...

OMG, how ridiculous! I hope the rest of the cycle is clear sailing. Do you just have to wait 30 days now, not 60? Glad to hear everything is going great with your donor.

Julia Spencer said...

Ew. Soooo annoying. X1000

Mrs. E said...

Um, that is unbelievably frustrating! I give you credit for handling it so calmly, and I'm praying that you don't run into any more setbacks. I think after everything, you deserve a smooth ride from here on out!

Lisamarie said...

What a crazy issue! I'm so sorry you are having to deal with this. Its tough when things are pretty much out of our control. But it seems like you took this matter into your own hands as much as you could. Just keep looking ahead. Good things are to come!

Janna Renee said...

Ughhh!!! It's so frustrating dealing with doctors and nurses that don't fully know how to do their job. How hard is it to check the file for the proper information, and I don't see how doctors can be so flippant about not having the right information. If they don't know it, they should figure it out and not force you to figure it out on your own. Sorry girl.

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