Nurse talks D&C after 1st U/S. BUT - 2nd U/S...Heartbeat

Have you had a misdiagosed miscarriage? Please share your stories here.

Nurse talks D&C after 1st U/S. BUT - 2nd U/S...Heartbeat

Postby HappyHusband » Thu Sep 04, 2008 1:21 pm

Although our story has already resolved itself, I want to echo the many stories that I've read here in the past week. In a nutshell, we were basically told that we were experiencing a blighted ovum, which has since been proven incorrect. I'm not very good with all the acronyms everyone uses here, so please bear with my lack of proper terminology.

Difficulting getting pregnant...
We had been trying for nearly two years to get pregnant. We have gone through much of the typical stuff. Homeopathic approach to improving sperm counts (male factor in our case ~2-3 Million post-wash count). Several cycles of IUI w/ no drugs. Clomid for a few additional IUI cycles. Then we finally "graduated" to IVF. On the first IVF cycle, not enough eggs were produced so they reverted that cycle to an IUI. The nurses recommended one IUI 12 hours after hCG trigger.
I did some research and did not feel comfortable with that approach. Most doctors that I had read, recommend one at 36 hours or so. So we demanded a second IUI 24 hours later (so we did two, one at 12 hours one at 36 hours...7/29 and 7/30). We were taking low doses of hCG every few days after the IUI. I wasn't sure why we were to do this, but apparently it was to increase progesterone which aids in the early pregnancy. We took these until 8/6.

Finally! A positive home test!
About 16 days later (8/15), we took a home pregnancy test (First Response?) and found a faint pink line!! This is the first time in two years we finally got a positive! However we were confused by the faintness of the line, and weren't sure what it meant. We were also aware that the hCG shots we were taking could cause a false positive. So we were cautiously optomistic about the results. We were lucky be able to get in for some bloodwork that same day. At about 2PM we were called w/ the results, a count of about 113. We were officially pregnant!

Initial tests, all good so far...
We were told that we would do another blood test the following week (8/22). That was done and the results were 1034. This too was positive indication that things were going well. We were told to schedule an ultrasound for 8/28. The idea of getting to finally see something visually was so exciting. We could barely sleep for days before, excited to see our little black and white poppy seed.

And the walls come crashing down...
We went in, giddy as school children, to the fertility clinic for our first ultrasound (8/28). We didn't even consider that anything could go wrong at this phase. We had never heard of a blighted ovum, and were having no problems with the pregnancy so far (no bleeding or cramping). However, her pregnancy symptoms were very mild, if any. She didn't have too much tenderness, nausea, etc. She said there was some very light pregnancy-type-symptoms but wasn't sure if it was in her head.

Dating by LMP we would have been 6w2d for this first ultrasound (LMP 7/15, U/S on 8/28). However, since we did some fertility shots and IUIs, etc. We weren't sure what the real gestational age would have been at that point. Well, the ultrasound tech worked VERY fast and couldn't see anything abdominally. My wife had just emptied her bladder. They did the transvaginal ultrasound and the tech's mood/tone changed pretty quickly. You could tell in her voice that something was awry. She simply stated, here is the gestational sac but there is nothing in it. We had no idea what that meant. Was that good, bad, normal, abnormal? What was going on? She also stated that the ovaries were enlarged (again, no idea what this means). The sac measured 5 weeks. However, dating by LMP we should have been 6w2d. She did point out that the gestational sac was located in the uterus (a good thing), but that we would need to go to Plan B. Plan B was more hCG bloodwork. She also said we would need to talk to a nurse.

This is where things went from confusing to bad. The nurse almost immediately moved into talking about a D&C, and that the pregnancy was not viable. She said that at this point we should see something. However, she also initially thought we performed our IUI on 7/22 (we did it on 7/29). She left us there, feeling pretty empty and as if the whole thing was over. She didn't give us any positive information or hope that things might be ok. She said, again, the doctor will probably recommend a D&C, but that we will do another hCG test to see what is happening. We did that the same day and the results came back 5147. But again, the nurse stated "these counts are good, but the doctor thinks we should see something by now". At this point, we were sent home completely freaking out. We started doing the Google thing to figure out what was going on. For every story that gave us hope, there was another story to make us think it was doomed. We truly drove ourselves insane for the last week. But this website was the most helpful in keeping us feeling positive.

MISDIAGNOSIS. And, we're back in business!!!
Since the hCG count had a decent increase, we were asked to come back for an ultrasound on 9/4. That was this morning. We went in, waited in the lobby for what seemed like a good solid month, and entered the ominiously dimly-lit ultrasound room. We had the same tech this time. She started w/ the abdominal (again, empty bladder) and stated "I don't see anything, let's try the vaginal". At this point my vision started going buggy and my hearing seemed like I was underwater. She inserted the condom wrapped greasy metal pole, and started digging around again. I saw the black sac pop back up on the screen, and had no idea what I was looking at. Apparently she said "there's the heartbeat". I didn't hear this. I was in another world. But my wife let out this great sigh (the most beautiful sound I've ever heard) and she reached for my hand. I still didn't know what was going on, but I knew things were ok from my wife's reaction.

I stammered out something that probably sounded like ridiculous gibberish, but basically I asked "so everything is ok?". The tech was really excited and said everything was really good and that we were measuring 6w1d. The heartbeat was there! We really were VIABLY pregnant. We were told that we would be released from the care of the fertility clinic back to our own doctor (OBGYN).

Conclusion, and thanks to all!
This was the best day of my life, and we're back on track to being excited again about our first pregnancy.

I want to thank this website and all the great people here. For the last week we really found some comfort in reading other stories of misdiagnosis. I am posting this story here so that other couples in the same situation can feel some hope.

Lessons Learned
Be VERY cautious about early ultrasounds (and bloodwork even).
I should also note, that the facility we went too is generally considered one of the best in the country.
Nurses and doctor's are not infalliable.
Educate yourself, but don't drive yourself crazy reading things on the internet.
Everyone's situation is different.
In our case, I feel that implantation maybe took longer than is typical, so the true gestational development happened a week later than would be calculated via LMP.

Finally, a plug for God...
Also, on a final note. We were both raised to be religious by our families, but we hadn't been too good about practicing our faith since we've been married (7 years). Through this process we turned to God and really started praying for this to work. Call it coincidence, or call it a miracle...but our prayers have been answered. Have faith, prayer worked in our case!

7/15 Start of LMP
7/15 - 7/28 [IVF preparation, eventually abandoned/switched to IUI w/ hCG trigger, due to low egg count]
7/28 hCG trigger shot
(Ovulation supposed to occur within 36 hours)
7/29 IUI#1
7/30 IUI#2
7/30 BD
7/31 BD
8/13 Period officially late
8/15 Positive HPT (very faint line)
8/15 First hCG test @ 103
8/21 Second hCG test @ 1134
8/28 Ultrasound, showing 5wk gestational sac, no yolk sac or anything else
8/28 hCG test after ultrasound @5147
(Nurse mentions D&C, paints very bleak picture)
8/28 through 9/4, long week of TONS of stress
9/4 Ultrasound, showing 6w1d sac, yolk, fetus and heartbeat!!!
Last edited by HappyHusband on Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby CINC » Thu Sep 04, 2008 5:33 pm

Congratulations!!! Thank you so much for sharing your story in such an intelligent and concise manner. I know many women will be very hopeful after reading this. I pray you guys will have a very uneventful 9 months and a happy healthy baby!
~I can do all things through Him that strengthens me.~
Mom to Elijah Samuel 1/3/03 & Isaac Kallel 9/23/06
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Postby Kay » Fri Sep 05, 2008 1:53 pm

Your post brought tears to my eyes. Congratulations to you both! Shame on that nurse for scaring you so early. So many women look one to two weeks behind and are perfectly fine. That is not a 'symptom' of miscarriage in our book :)

Please, keep us updated.
To read my own Misdiagnosed Miscarriage stories:
my blighted ovum scare
Told I was miscarrying at 12 weeks

Blogging on Misdiagnosed Miscarriages
If you are being diagnosed with a blighted ovum after IVF, please take a look at this article I put together: Misdiagnosed Miscarriage After IVF
and why I just believe a blighted ovum should NOT be diagnosed before nine weeks at the earliest and the UK's new guidelines support this

This post is for informational purposes only. This information is not intended to replace information given by your physician but rather intended to supplement that information.
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Postby pam111 » Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:02 pm

Congratulations. I got teary reading that. It also makes me so sad to think of how many women take their doctors advice and get a D&C or take the pills before knowing the truth. This almost happened to me. I'm very happy for you guys
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