We had a successful IVF cycle . . .so this is a positive experience . . . those who do not succeed will probably paint a very different picture.
I am 34 and my husband is 36 - our diagnosis was unexplained infertility. After 2 1/2 years of trying - 3 IUI's with Clomid and 3 IUI's win injectible medications that all ended in failure - we completed our first IVF cycle in December. The egg retrieval was on December 25 - what a way to spend Christmas - under anesthesia!
I worked my entire cycle (more or less). The cycle started with a couple of weeks on the pill to supress my cycle followed by Lupron and Gonal F injections. The injections were not bad - the needle is very small and it is really just a quick pinch. I did not have any mood swings - in fact, I felt more peaceful on the injections - nothing like that evil Clomid. The only pain was not actually knowing when the retrieval would be because they monitor you, monitor you, monitor you and then tell you . . . ok, do the trigger shot tonight and come to the office in 2 days. Our retrieval ended up being Christmas so it took over the holidays but did not impact work. Our transfer ended up being on a Friday so I just took a sick day - just wanted some me time. The only days that I really would not have been able to work would have been the retrieval due to the anesthesia.
Here is my actual experience - We arrived at the office at 8:30 AM, got changed into a hospital gown and they checked the blood pressure and took my temp. When I went into the procedure room, they put me under anesthesia and then it was over. I think I was under for about 15 - 20 minutes. I woke up in recovery. I stayed in recovery for about an hour, they let me eat crackers and drink some water. When I was ready, DH got the car, pulled it around to the front and I walked easily from recovery to the car.
As to actual pain - not too bad - I compare it to slight cramping and the sensation of doing too many crunches at the gym. Sore in the mid section. The anesthesia did a number on me, I spent the rest of the day sleeping on the couch. The next day was better - gradually the soreness started to fade.
Transfer was a breeze - the worst part was hanging out with a full bladder while they transfer the embryos. It was much like an IUI. I did spend the day taking it easy . . . but it was not due to any physical limitations - just my personal choice and based on the days of the week that our appointment fell.
My advice is to not read into everything. They only retrieved 11 eggs and only 2 fertilized - much less than we were hoping for. Instead of going for a 5 day blastocyst, they did the transfer of both embryos at day 3. It definitely felt like things were going wrong . . . but in the end we got the good news!
We got our BFP on January 8th. AND found out on January 29th that we are expecting twins! I am now 22 weeks 6 days pregnant with our daughter and son (knocking on wood) all is going well!
Feel free to contact me with any questions - you can contact me through my profile!
28w3d pregnant with twins from IVF