Innovative test on embryos helps New Iberia couple successfully have baby
New Iberia couple Leslie and Greg started trying for a baby a few months after they married in 2015. Initially they sought the help of their OBGyn who did three rounds of ovulation induction with Clomid. After over a year of nothing happening, the couple decided that it was time to see someone who could give them more answers. They ended up at Fertility Answers in Dr. Susan Conway’s office in early 2017.
After conservatively trying two IUI procedures, Leslie and Greg decided they were open to more aggressive treatment and began preparing for an in vitro fertilization IVF cycle for August 2017. Neither had heard about preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) when Dr. Conway suggested it, but the couple didn’t want to wait the additional time for the embryos to be tested. “Like many couples like us in their thirties battling infertility, we felt like we were racing the clock and didn’t want anything else holding us up,” says Leslie.
Their IVF cycle yielded just two viable embryos and both were transferred. To the couple’s surprise, they had their first ever positive pregnancy test! But, when they returned a few days later for a second test they were dismayed to learn Leslie’s beta numbers were declining and she was experiencing an early pregnancy loss. While they were upset by the result, they felt somewhat relieved just to know that they could actually get pregnant.
They immediately began preparing for another round of IVF but were pleasantly surprised when Leslie learned she was pregnant on her own. They heard the baby’s heartbeat on the ultrasound, but when Leslie went in for a checkup, that little heartbeat had disappeared and they learned they had lost that baby too.
Preimplantation genetic testing determines if each embryo is chromosomally normal.
Leslie and Greg were still not convinced that this was the end of their story. After meeting with Dr. Conway again, they decided to give IVF another try. But this time they would do the PGT testing, which determines if each embryo is chromosomally normal. The couple wanted to do anything they could to prevent having to go through another loss.
“Research has shown that many instances of early miscarriage after IVF are caused by chromosomal abnormalities of the embryos,” says Dr. Conway. “This test helps ensure that we transfer embryos that have a real chance of implantation and, ultimately, a healthy baby.”
This time, Leslie & Greg ended up with three embryos to send off for PGT testing. Unfortunately, all of them came back abnormal with faulty chromosomes. Initially, they felt like everything they had gone through was for nothing. But then they realized that if it weren’t for the PGT testing, those embryos would have been transferred and would have ended up in losses as well.
PGT testing helps ensure only embryos that give hopeful parents the best chance of conceiving a healthy pregnancy are transferred during IVF.
The couple immediately went into their third IVF and ended up with two embryos to send off for PGT testing. This time, both embryos tested normal! They transferred one of the embryos, cryopreserved the other and just prayed for the best. And then, a positive pregnancy test! “We could not have be happier,” says Leslie. “Our prayers were indeed answered.” Baby Max was born in March 2019.
“This journey is an emotional rollercoaster, to say the least!” says Leslie. “The best thing you can do is educate yourselves with all your options and maintain an open line of communication with your doctors and nurses. Fertility Answers was definitely the answer for us, and we are forever grateful to everyone there! We look forward to working with them again in the future when it’s time to try for #2!”