Monday, 17 June 2013

Nurse Appointment at Glasgow Nuffield

As I said yesterday, on Wednesday we took a trip into Glasgow for our appointment with the nurse at Glasgow Nuffield. When I found out the date for my exam at the beginning of the year I took off the day of the exam itself as well as the day before, just on the off chance that I wouldn't be able to sit it on the island and so I could stop the night before in Glasgow to save the stress of travelling there on the actual day. That way, if I didn't need to go to Glasgow I could use the day before as some last minute exam revision.

Then we needed to book our next appointment for the IVF stuff and that seemed like a good day to go. So much for last minute revision! The hospital was very helpful and scheduled both our joint appointment and Mr Click's test for the same day because they knew how far we had to travel (much better than when we went to the GRI and we were told that we couldn't go for our joint appointment until Mr Click had gone for his).

We decided to give it a go by public transport this time, rather than taking the car as we'd been off the island by car the week before for my eye appointment. As this appointment was unlikely to involve people sticking stuff in my eyes it seemed like the cheaper option.

Map from Google Maps
It was an early start (5:30am for the third day in a row!) and we arrived at Wemyss Bay with enough time for me to visit the secondhand bookshop before our train (I picked up a copy of To Kill a Mockingbird and The Book Thief). We had planned to take a later train but after a bit of last minute consideration we realised that the earlier one would give us more time to grab lunch in Glasgow before we headed out to Hyndland train station.

We'd looked up online and it told us it was about a fifteen minute walk from there to the hospital but we came out the wrong entrance and couldn't figure out where we were going, so called a taxi instead. At £5 each way it still works out cheaper than taking the car so we'll definitely try going by public transport whenever we're able to in the future. As we'd caught the earlier boat we got to the Nuffield at twelve; Mr Click's appointment was at 1pm so that gave us plenty of time to nip to the loo, have a drink and relax in the waiting room.

Obviously I didn't go into the room with him for his test, but he gave the hospital a big thumbs up. Considering at one of the hospitals he had to produce a sample for they didn't have a room so he had to do it in the toilets, the room the Nuffield has set aside is a big improvement! He said that the nurse was really helpful and reassuring.

We were reunited in the waiting room and then had our joint appointment at 2pm. From the letter I'd been sent I was expecting this to be a fairly quick appointment. We'd been told to bring our passports and passport photos (for our records) and that we would be given our consent forms to take away and look out before our next appointment. I figured we'd go in, hand stuff over, maybe answer a few questions and then be given some paperwork to take away.

I couldn't have been more wrong! Our nurse, J, was lovely. She was so friendly and welcoming and it didn't really feel the way that most medical appointments feel. We sat chatting about ourselves and where we came from before we got down to business which gave the whole thing a sort of relaxed feeling.

She had some information about what my drug protocol will involve based on the results of my AMH test. As mine was over 24 I've got a different regime to someone who might have had a lower level (and so would need greater stimulation). J went through all the stages of that treatment explaining what would happen, when I would need to visit and what would happen at the various appointments.

She also had all of our notes and so saw the letter from our GP which said that our local health centre could do some of the blood tests for us. Due to embryo storage (and obviously for the health and safety of the medical staff) we have to be tested for things like HIV and hepatitis so she said we could speak to our health centre to get those done, provided we could produce the lab copies of the results. I like that even though it's private treatment and we're paying for it, I don't feel like they're trying to make us spend extra money; they could so easily have said that we had to have them do the tests, even though we were prepared to have them done there if need be.

Because of the egg donation programme we have to have a few extra genetic tests which we'll get done at the Nuffield and while J was out getting some more information about those for us the embryologist came by to give us Mr Click's results. I wish I could remember her name, she was just as lovely as all of the other staff members we met, but it just went in one ear and out the other. Next time we go I will make more of an effort to remember who it is I'm speaking to so I can mention them properly.

I couldn't believe that they could have results from Mr Click's test so soon, it had only been about an hour since he'd produced it! She recommended that we might want to consider ICSI as opposed to IVF due to good content but low volume. Basically that differs from IVF in that rather than just putting the sperm and eggs into a petri dish to have a party, an individual sperm is selected and injected directly into the egg. She explained that this could increase the risk of genetic abnormalities by about 0.5% due to sperm being used which might not otherwise have succeeded in fertilising an egg, but it did also offer a slightly increased chance of fertilisation.

She said that it was entirely our choice and that we could make the final decision on the actual day if we wanted; some people have qualms about it for ethical reasons. Or that we could do half IVF and half ICSI if we wanted. Mr Click and I discussed it and we're happy to go ahead with the ICSI, at least that way we'll know that X number of eggs will have been introduced to a little swimmer, whereas IVF alone would be leaving things more to chance.

We went over lots of other things with J as well, and she explained that we should be able to get our next three appointments all on the same day. That'll be for my extra screening, the counsellor and then to go over all the consent forms. We have a massive stack to look over so that we can think of any questions before we go next, rather than being completely overwhelmed by questions when we're actually supposed to be there signing them. They all seem fairly straight-forward; things like what we would want doing with potential unused embryoes, whether we would consent to using them for research and things like that.

All in all we were in there for two hours! But it didn't really feel like that long, though J was very thorough and at no time did I feel like we were being rushed. Now that I've got all the paperwork it feels like this is something we can actually do and that's a very exciting thought indeed.

Now we've just got to get the blood tests done and get out next batch of appointments booked.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Let me know what you think. :-)