Desperately need your input - OE or DE

(13 posts)(9 voices)
  1. I'm 40 (FSH 14.7, AMH 0.4) and DH is 38
    - Endometriosis, tubes removed, DOR, AMA

    - 2 natural pregnancies (miscarried @ 10 & 7 wks)
    - 3 IVFs (#1 (3 retrieved / 2 fert / 2 transf)- bfn, #2 (4 retrieved / fert / transf) - best response & quality) - chemical, #3 (4 retrieved / 3 fert / 3 transf) - bfn
    - all MDL protocol
    - Continuous acupuncture since IVF #2
    - no chromosome / immunity issues

    - RE suggests moving on to DE
    - Consulted w/ Dr. Acacio - he advices to use OE again with DHEA + 9 other supplements
    - I have a consultation with Sher Institute next week

    My head says move on to DE but my heart wants to keep trying with OE. Financially, we can't keep doing this. I'm soooo obsessed with this issue. I'm driving DH crazy. Although he wants to move on to DE to increase our chances, he supports whatever decision I make. I desperately need your input, please help me.


  2. You can't force yourself to feel a certain way. The decision to go forward with DE is always tough. Give yourself enough time to process it, research it, mourn your losses, and/or whatever you need to do to move forward.

    You might want to consider taking a little time off. You're only 40. Taking 3 months or 6 months off to get your head on straight wouldn't be the end of the world.

    For me, the decision took a year, even though I knew the numbers were definitely not in my favor. I conceived naturally when I was nearly 45 but miscarried. After spending a year continuing TTC naturally, mourning, reading about the donor egg process and having a really hard time with the decision emotionally, one morning this May I literally woke up and thought "If I want to be a mother, it's time to accept donor eggs." I have been absolutely at peace with the decision since then, and the whole thing has moved very quickly. I am very, very hopeful.

    I guess what I'm saying is, give yourself some kind of a break and the right answer will become obvious. Good luck!

  3. Mags- hey- i know this is a difficult decision- with that said I am going to present "the other side of the fence" even if someone wants to shoot me.

    I am only 34 years old- my amh is only 0.5, my chance of success with OE at the age of 34 with a completely normal fsh (always less than 8), normal e2, uterine cavity, prior successful pg at 30 with ivf, is only about 15%. And that is at a good clinic with great success rates for poor ovarian reserve. A low AMH tells an updated RE that you have very low ovarian reserve with an AMH of 0.4 - plus very questionable egg quality b/c of your age and fsh, i doubt your chances of success are close to 15%, but that is of course my opinion and i am no RE. My very good friend just had donor egg b/g twins at the age of 41 after MULTIPLe attempts with her own eggs, with a "normal" AMH level of greater than 1 and normal fsh and her success chance with OE at a good clinic was only about 5%, she got pg with her eggs, only to m/c or have a chemical. She got pg first attempt with DE and is so happy, she doesn't even think about it.

    I just finished my FINAL ivf with my OE. I am happily moving onto DE- not that i wasn't devistated to find out at 34 i was pretty much done trying to have another biological child- of course- miracles can happen- and if i had a ton of money i would cycle until i hit 35- but i dont and i know that my chance of success with DE is around 70% at a good clinic.

    I know lots of people will fill you full of "hope" but at the end of the day reguardless of what your heart says, you have to be realistic. I honestly think that the doctor wanting you to cycle again with your eggs on a bunch of alternative drugs is really "cheating" you of the truth or fact of your fertility. YES women in the 40's get pg and have babies with their own eggs- but the fact is it isn't as common as people lead us to believe.

    If you want to increase your chances of bringing home a baby- i would really research donor egg- really evaluate your finances, delve into your emotional health, and also read about the scientific facts of having a low amh, age, and high fsh on your actual "take home baby" chances.

    My own OB gyn told me- i could forget it, that the odds are against me with an amh of 0.5, i did the college try- switched to a better ivf clinic- tried a different protocol, even added donor sperm, and at the end of that cycle i was 17k more in debt and nothing to show for it except a last Hoorah- I TRIED!!!

    I have done 3 complete ivf cycles- 1st successful ( age of 30) prior to ever knowing i had low ovarian reserve- 2nd c'x on trigger day ( age of 33). Most eggs ever retreived 10, 6, and last one only 3 mature.

    As much as my "heart" wants to keep going- my "mind" wins out b/c it is the road that will lead me to what I ultimately want, to be a mommy, not a genetic mother- but a mommy- b/c when a baby grows inside of you you cannot help but have a mother/baby love and bond.

    I hope i haven't offended- but you asked for opinions- and this is mine. Embrace your desire to have a baby, and my advice is to choose the route that will get you that baby. Donor egg is expensive- more expensive than OE- if you don't have a ton of finances and are nearing the end of the road- i would most definately consider DE as your next cycling choice.

    I wish you the best in your decision- for me- there just wasn't one. Infertility sucks, that is all there is to it.

  4. Mags:

    I don't know what to say. It is a hard decision you are faced with. I have just decided to retire my tired ovaries and move to DE. I was a bit upset at first.. but then I realized that my desire to be a mother was so strong that DNA would not matter. I would still carry the child and I would be the first person the child will open its eyes too.

    I have found a lot of support on these Internet sites. I have spoken with amazing women that have gone through sometimes more than me. Many have had babies with DE and say that there is absoltely no difference.

    Relax.. breathe.. the right choice will come in time. Good luck.


  5. Hi Mags,

    I think I'm moving to DE, too. I made the appointment today, but of course once I actually get ready to take the step I can't get in for 6 weeks (RE is only at this clinic one day a week).

    I'm 41, FSH was 20 something last spring. (Honestly, I can't believe that can be true so I want to test again.)

    I never had insurance all these years of IVF until now. Can you believe the irony?! Someone will pay finally but now my eggs are so old. Sigh.

    Because it will take time to get through all the tests and paperwork to get matched for DE, I am somewhat tempted to cycle with OE while waiting. I mean, we can whip out a fresh cycle in no time. If you can spare the money and the emotional drama and trauma, don't choose yet. Do both.

    Please remember, though, that I don't know what I'm talking about. I'm also just struggling through each day with this decision.


  6. hi there, we have a different dx but similar journey to make.

    for me i just focus on what i can get out of DE and not what i'm giving up. i've got a 10+% chance of success w my eggs and maybe an 80% chance w DE. hello, no brainer. sure i'd love to have my 'own' kids but that's highly unlikely. in the mean time, i want my life back!!! IF completely and utterly sucks and is literally sucking the life out of me. i'm obsessed and can't focus on anything else.

    there's lots of great info on here about DE and also on

    the PPs are right that you need to give yourself time to get your head around the idea and consider your options, but i don't think you'll find one person on here who moved to DE and regrets their decision.

    the other thing to keep in mind is that it will take you 3-12 months to find a donor and get synched up, and the DE cycle may not when time is of the essence you need to at least have a plan.

    if you go DE, will you go with a known or anonymous donor? if anon, will you use frozen eggs, fresh eggs, use a clinic w an inhouse pool or find your donor through an agency and have her travel to your clinic...there are a lot of options and we'll all be here to help you along.

    don't underestimate how tough this decision is to make or how hard it will be to sort through all the options. be gentle w yourself, tell DH you're going to need some extra tlc, keep up the accu and anything/everything that can help you to feel sane if you take this step.


  7. Thank you for all your replies. Who needs a therapist when I can open up to all of you and not have to talk about the rest of my family. I just get to the point and get your inputs/opinions on the matter.

    SnowGgirl - I'm waiting for that day when I wake up and fully accept DE. I hope it doesn't take too long, time isn't really on my side anymore. I'd like to be around to see our grandkids grow up.

    Jenga - Thanks for your candid input, this is exactly what I was hoping for. After our bfn last March, I was opening up to using DE and I even convinced DH that it's the best option. But when I consulted with Dr. A, he gave me such high hope (maybe "false hope") in using OE again. I had to stop DHEA due to s/e - heart palpitations, hair fallouts. My levels were normal to begin with anyway. I'm tempted to give it that old college try but I'd rather be realistic. DH feels that raising a child together is all that matters.

    zahide - I do hope that the right choice comes to me soon. You're right, I'm glad that I found this site. It's been a tremendous help in this difficult time.

    markantonis - You need to make use of that insurance coverage. If we had the money, we would do both (OE then DE), just like you said. Goodluck with your appt.

    mairead - I also want my life back! I'm in limbo because of IF. I need to change my mindset and focus "on what i can get out of DE" just like you said. Thanks for the link I'm sure I'll be obsessing through it tonight.

    We are going to Prague (Gennet), whether we use OE or DE in November. We can afford to go there several more times if the next cycle doesn't work and that includes travel expenses. We are also looking forward to the change of scenery. According to the clinic, they have Asian donors but it doesn't really matter to us. Did anyone consider going out of the country to cycle?

    I hope you all don't mind if I PM you one of these days while I struggle through this decision. Again, thanks for sharing and Goodluck on your journeys. May we all hold our little angels very soon.


  8. Mags, i can only tell you my experience, and if i had to do it all again i would have moved to donor egg earlier on. i got married (2nd time) at 39 years, 11 months and started ttc right away (actually a few months prior, don't tell my mom). had an early miscarriage, then went to RE. i have a son from an earlier marriage, no problems ttc, fsh was 4, all testing normal, dh all normal w/ sperm and such. no luck at all for 4 IUIs and 3 ivfs. took a while to do DE, wasted another year with a poor donor, then had to wait nearly a year for another donor. when we finally got a fertile donor, got pg on the first try (eSET), then again 2 years later with a frozen (eSET again). i love my little boys, but i sure wish i was 42 with a 2 year old and 4 month old instead of 47.

    best of luck. it's a tough decision


  9. hello wishtobe mom....

    ultimately your decision but some of your info registered with me. (42 at IVF time, FSH 23)
    i skipped IVF with OE and went right to DE with DS. if i had the $ and lived near a clinic I would have tried reg IVF at least once, knowing DE was an option. however i did not have these 2 things so I went to the Zlin clinic, east of Prague last May and am now 21 weeks. i had a great vacation for way less than the cost of one treatment in N. America. my donors were 22 years old which gave me the confidence that I would carry a healthy baby to term (instead of m/c and genetic anomalies).

    i highly recommend looking outside N. America. I experienced professionalism at every step and had a great vacation. you could check out

    good luck on your journey!
    ps. i posted a thread "great story on DE" under the 'options' thread a while back. check out the link to the story from fit pregnancy magazine, ( "i used donor eggs") it helped me to decide.

  10. Hi Wish! DE for single cycle is about $30K. I would even budget a few extra $K as costs come up. You could do a half for about $18K at Cornell but then you get half the eggs and it isn't always enough if it is a not so good haul. There are things you could try to do to mitigate that risk, like use a proven donor. Cornell's system uses anonymous donors where you may or may not get to see a baby picture (unless you have a friend or relative who will donate to you for free). Sometimes, DE is more expensive if you use an agency but then you get to choose the donor. Also, there are cheaper and still reputable clinics out there (but I haven't yet done the research so I can't name them) so you should first figure out an estimate for DE costs and work backwards.

    If you can afford DE plus one more OE cycle and are mentally up for it, I would try EPP which has been known to help women in your situation. I would try Cornell since Dr. Davis is known for helping women with high FSH and AMA. During his consult, he'll give you your odds and you can decide if it is worth the money, time and effort.

    Good luck!

  11. Thank you so much for all your input ladies. It's nice to find support from others that understand IF challenges.

    pilma - congratulations on your little boys. I'm sorry about all the obstacles you had to go through. IF is such an unpredictable journey.

    pauldsteury - thanks for that article. DH and I read that together and it helped in our decision. We are going to Czech, but not in Zlin. Congratulations on your pregnancy. May you have continued good health and a safe delivery.

    keke - I had a free consult with Sher Institute and they gave me a 5% chance of pregnancy with OE. He said that he would use EPP or Antagonist protocol, but suspects that I would still respond poorly. He strongly advised me to move on to DE and have a baby sooner.

    AFM - After analyzing the pros and cons, DH and I decided to move on to DE. To be honest , I still have doubts - what if a regret not trying with OE again, what if a resent not having bio ties with the baby, what if I should have gone to CCRM, so many "what ifs"... But, I strongly want to be a mom now and raise a child/children with DH, no matter how we get there.

    Another influence in our decision was my liver health. I've had an elevated liver panel since our 3rd IVF in March. For several months, it was monitored and then I had an ultrasound. They discovered that I have a liver hemangioma - noncancerous liver tumor. Only complication - "Pregnancy and estrogen-based medications can cause cavernous hemangiomas to grow." So, I want to give DE a try now and if it doesn't work move on to adoption.

    We will be cycling with Gennet in November. Everything is progressing very quickly. I guess since matching my looks and blood type weren't priority, we got a donor in less than a week - so shocking! She's 26 and is proven. We're so excited but nervous too. We're looking forward to our cycle + mini vacation. I just hope I don't have a panic attack and back out.

  12. good to read your post, you have nothing to lose and so much to gain by trying DE. for myself, the more 'real' my pregnancy becomes, i hardly think about how my baby came to be. i am sure there will be discussions with my child in the future, but i hope s/he will understand why i chose this path in order to love him/her.

  13. Just wanted to post your previous link. It's a must read!

    Goodluck everyone!

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