What happens when you decide to travel abroad for IVF? How long does it take? What do you need to do?
To answer these questions we want to share with you a conversation that we had with one of our readers who reached out to us on Instagram. D was contemplating travelling to India for her IVF treatment and asked us for some guidance. Thereupon started our 3 month journey together
D: Hey I’m in Wigan Lancashire and have come across your website/Insta. I have been researching clinics in India Ahmedabad and am now deciding between two clinics – Nova IVI and one other. After reading your article I’m going more towards Nova IVI. I’m planning on going on the 11th or 12th April for ICSI treatment. Is there anything in particular I need to be made aware of, or how can I prepare myself before going there?
Ivfb: Oh my goodness this excites me soooo much as I loved the clinic when I went for the visit!! The staff are absolutely amazing. So tell me, what have you discussed/organised so far. Have you had a consultation over the phone?
D: I have emailed my UK reports and a doctor at the Naranpura branch is looking into it and should be getting back to me with the cost. I haven’t arranged anything at the hospital. Is there someone you can put me in touch with?I know I’m having the ICSI treatment. I know where I’ll be staying but that’s all that’s organised.
D:They have sent me costs for my treatment and have answered all of my questions. I have made an appt to see them on Friday 12th April. I have butterflies in my stomach as I’ve just booked my tickets and it’s actually happening now.
Ivfb: Dr Banker is amazing!!!!!!!!!!! I’m so excited for you! What’s your email my darling. I’d like to put you in touch with Santosh Ghadia, the chief Operating officer. We would love him to talk to you to make sure you are comfortable with everything!
D: What made you go to Nova IVI clinic in Ahmedabad? I hear that another clinic in Ahmedabad is also good as 3 people I know have been successful
Ivfb: Oh that’s wonderful! We met Nova at the UK Fertility Show. We turn to them for expert advice. They invited us to India to see for ourselves what the clinics are like.
D: That was quick. Sriram and Santosh Shetty contacted me already. Thank you.
Ivfb: Please keep in touch won’t you?!!!!!
D: Of course. I’ll keep you updated. Pls don’t hesitate to message me in case I get distracted and my heads not with it.
Ivfb: Good luck with everything my darling. Sending you love and good vibes x
D: Thanks hun
D: And so it begins..
Ivfb: Oh my goodness!!!!! This is amazing!!!! Keep me posted every step won’t you? What’s happened so far?! X
D:I’m using someone else’s hotspot. I should be getting my SIM tonight. I’ll update you then. They are so fast! All reports back in 1 day.
Ivfb: Oh my goodness this is all so fast! Do you feel looked after?
D: Yes. Think we get special treatment as we are from the UK and because I know you. Haha
Ivfb: Ha! No! Honestly, they are an amazing clinic. I was blown away with how much they focus on the wellbeing of the patient. I can’t wait to hear about each step!!
D: Step 1: Day I. Landed. We had a hospital appt with the main consultant Dr Banker. Before we saw him we completed all the forms and gave our medical history. They charged for that which I wasn’t aware of – luckily I had a few rupees. They did a sonography on me. Took bloods and a urine sample.
D: Went back the next day (Saturday) and my husband gave a semen sample and had to wait an hour for the results to come back. In that time we went through the IVF process and costs. The semen sample results came back. We discussed the blood test, urine sample and semen sample results (which were better than we expected). I’m D1 today so tomorrow I’m going back to do another ultrasound, sonography and start my stimulation injections. I’m so nervous. They said I can go to a nearby hospital for them to inject me.
Ivfb: I adore you for this update! It’s fascinating!!!! The injections aren’t as bad as you think. Pinch the skin and think about the baby you are going to have. That’s what I did. Let me know how it goes!!!!!
D:D2. I had a check up. All good. Went through the procedure again and doubled checked everything. Had my first set of injections. One on the stomach and one on the bum. The nurse did it for me. For the next 4 days I have taken the injections home and am taking what I need per day to the branch near me for the nurse to do it. Today I had to wait a long time to be seen even though I had an appt. It is a busy hospital and there is a very busy waiting room. But I must say the process is very fast and efficient. I was also met by a patient counsellor. She explained her role and gave me her number. My medical doctor has also given me her number. The staff are very helpful.
Ivfb:Oh this is great to hear!!!!!
D: 2nd day injections, I went to Kankaria branch. I didn’t know how to get to the first floor. Had to ask a local. Seems like I was their first customer at 9.10am. Much smaller hospital and quieter than the Naragpura branch. This hospital is 6 mins away from me. Much closer than the main hospital but glad I chose to do it there. Cool leaflet stands too.
Ivfb: I’m loving your updates my darling, how are you feeling?
D:I’m feeling good. No side effects or symptoms. Not sure if that’s a good thing or not. Also… I don’t know if it makes a difference as I’m in a hot country… sweating loads and drinking more water than I would be in UK.
Ivfb: Text me tomorrow. Glad you are feeling ok!!
D: Had my check up today. I have a good number of follicles but not the size it should be. They have increased the dose I take on my buttocks and have added an extra injection on the tummy. So in total I’m taking 3 now.
D:Today wasn’t too bad but the new injection stung. I take it that’s normal.
Ivfb:I do remember the injections did start to get more painful as time went on. I used to close my eyes and try and picture what motherhood would be like! I really did!! Xx
D: I’m getting to the stage where I’m getting fed up of the injections. Its getting tiring and I really don’t look forward to them. Got my check up tomorrow. I hope the follicles are a decent size. I have butterflies in my stomach
Ivfb: Ooooh this is so exciting!!!!
D: Easier to send you a pic of what I sent my hubby than write it all again. They took my bloods this morning and will get the results at 11.30am. I feel a bit annoyed… it’s not going the way I expected it. I need to do something to cheer me up.
Ivfb: Darling, sorry for the delayed response. Let me know what happens tomorrow with the results. What have you done to try and cheer yourself up?
D: I did nothing. I went home, chilled out, slept and ate. After speaking about it with hubby it took the load off my head. On my way back to hospital. Hopefully a better result today.
D: Had my last injections today. I’m having my trigger injection tonight at 10.30pm at the hospital.. Due back at hospital on 26th April for egg collection. Hormone levels are high, so to be on the safe side and reduce the chances of OHSS the doctor won’t be transferring them until my next period cycle (May). The Doctor said I have a good number of eggs. Luckily I planned my trip for ‘just in case’ and staying till 30th May.
Ivfb: This is all fantastic. It’s good that they will hold back Hun, I had severe OHSS and it is the most horrific experience you can imagine. I was in hospital for two weeks being treated. It really is bloody awful. This is all so positive!!
D: I was kinda sad when I was told… but now accept it as it’s for my benefit.
Ivfb: It’s going to be ok darling.
Ivfb: How are you angel?
D: Hey, my belly is feeling a bit weird as if I can feel things moving inside when I walk. I’m feeling bloated now probably because of the trigger injection I had last night. Today is my rest day.. I will prepare for tomorrow’s EC. I’ve got to be there for 7am.
D: Dr Banker came to see me. Collected 19 eggs. He won’t know the quality until a few days. I have to go back on the 2nd day of my period.
Ivfb: 19!!! Wow!!!!!!!!! So how long will it be until transfer?
D:I should be getting my period in a week or so.
Ivfb: You doing ok today? X
D: Hey.. I’m good. I feel like it’s my day off and am free to do what I want (until my period starts). I’m feeling much better than yesterday.
Ivfb: What did you do with your day off?!!
D: Went to 3 tourist places… all involved food and drink. Yesterday went to cinema and to another tourist eating place – open market.
Ivfb: So where are you at then Hun. Remind me, you are waiting for your period aren’t you? X
D: Hey, I started my period on 1st May. On day 2 I went for a check up, I’ve been told to take injections for 3 days. Sunday I have a review with the doctor. I just want the transfer date to be sooner than later but I think It’ll happen day 16 -18.. depending on my body
Ivfb: Oh my goodness it’s torture! Where are you staying?
D: 25mins from the main hospital and 6 mins from the smaller branch
D: After waiting 1hr 45mins I got seen. Good news… no more injections. I’ve been told to take estradiol tablets, 2 a day. I have 10 days of not going to hospital, so I’m going to my home town kutch. Next appt is on 14th. Been told that transfer day will be 20th. The date I’ve been waiting for.
Ivfb: Oh my goodness!!!!! It’s getting closer!!!!!!
D: Did you put 1 or 2 embryos in?
Ivfb: 2!!! I have twin daughters.
D: I have x1 double frozen and x1 single frozen.. I have gone for a double but at the same time my husband is really concerned about my health with twins. (X2 double frozen *) Total was 5 embryos frozen
D: Update from doctors yesterday is that my uterus lining is a good thickness for pregnancy, my blood test results are fine and now preparing for the transfer which is on Monday. Did you have to put a capsule down below?
Ivfb: Ooooh exciting!!!!! Yes, I had to use pessaries.I’m so so so so excited for you!!!!!!!!!!!
D: They told me I have to insert it with my hand. Deep as I can … lucky I bought plenty of pantiliners!?
Ivfb: Oh Hun! Honestly it’s not as bad as it sounds!! X
D:Hey. I’ve had a mad weekend leading up to the transfer day. Friday I was vomiting and had diarrhoea, Saturday I had a temperature and was shivering so went to a private doctor , Sunday was a bit better. Still weak. This morning I’m forcing myself to get up as its Transfer Day. When I got to the hospital they checked my temperature and blood pressure, luckily all was normal. I had the go ahead…
Fast forward… transfer now complete and waiting for the doctor to see me again.
Ivfb: You poor darling!!!! As far from a calm state of mind as you could be! But now it’s time to breathe, and settle, and let that lovely little embryo snuggle in and make itself at home!! Text every day won’t you?
D: I’m still at the hospital 3.5 hours after my transfer… paying for my 3 month meds – just in case its positive.
Ivfb: It will be positive!!!!
D: My quote for ICSI, One fresh cycle was £2000. I had to do FET so went over by £800. Still not too bad compared to UK right?
Ivfb: That’s so cheap!
Ivfb: How are you?!!!!!
D: Hey I’m ok. Blood test came back positive!!!!!!! But they want to do a test again to make sure HCG levels are increasing. Also my doctor told me to have a sonography but the NHS won’t cover it. So need to look for somewhere that will do it and wont charge me a lot. Btw. How many days after the transfer can I do a home pregnancy test?
Ivfb: Oh wow!!!!!! OMG fingers crossed!!!! You are meant to wait 14 days. What day are you on?
D: 20th day
Ivfb: Oh blimey! Have you tested?
Ivfb: Oh wow you are so strong! You are allowed to.. they haven’t said don’t have they?
D: No.I might do a test tonight.
Ivfb: It’s scary, but you are 20 days in. So to be clear, they tested, you are positive but they wanted to test again. Sending you so much love and good vibes!!!!
D: Wednesday 12th. Thank you.
ivfb: Oh wow!!!!!! That’s a positive! Oh my god!!!!! Darling!!! This is amazing!!! Oh my god will you text me everyday until you get the thumbs up from the doc!
D: Going to London tomorrow for 1 night. Wednesday blood test, Friday I’m hoping to do my ultrasound
Ivfb: How do you feel??? Xxx
D: I don’t have any proper emotions yet …. I want to react but it depends on the results of the ultrasound.. If it’s not good news then I will have to go back to India in September
Ivfb:What news darling? Xx
D: I’m just feeling sick. I’m sick of feeling like this. Can’t wait to celebrate after my nausea goes.
Ivfb: Oh my goodness!!!! You are pregnant!!
Hey!!!!! I had a scan today. 1 sac, 1 heartbeat, 1 healthy fetus. Baby’s size shows that I’m 8 weeks. I’m so happy that my treatment worked!!!!!
Thank you so much to D for allowing us to share this wonderful journey with you. If you need a holding hand during your treatment, just ask. We are here for you.
Why not join us @ivfbabble on Instagram Q&A tomorrow when we have the fantastic Dr Manish Banker from the wonderful Nova IVI Fertility answering your questions.