IVF #1: Stalled By The Cyst Monster


I went to my baseline appointment bright and early this morning. I was feeling pretty pumped. My ovaries, however, were not.

Right at the beginning of the ultrasound the doctor said, “You have a cyst on your left ovary.” On the screen it looked like a gigantic monster cyst. She said it was about two inches. Ok, maybe not jumbo-sized, but that still seems kind of big to me. There was no evidence of any cysts at my ultra-sound two weeks ago. She said that cysts are normal, but this one was just had “really bad timing.” You can say that again.

In addition to the cyst issue, I only had a few follicles total. I had 20 two weeks ago. I don’t understand where they went and why they decided to peace out. I get that the cyst might have effected the follicles in one ovary, but even the cyst-less ovary only had three or so. I asked her if that was the birth control’s fault, like maybe it over suppressed my reproductive system, but I didn’t get a clear answer on that.

She said we had three options:

1. Make sure the cyst is not making estrogen. If it’s not, we could go ahead with the cycle as planned.

2. Stay on birth control pill for another couple of weeks and then reassess.

3. Stop birth control, wait another full cycle and then start again. She said there’s a possibility that she’d change my protocol and start the next round with no birth control pills.

She told me that she would least likely want to go with option 1 because I had so few follicles. She said, “Maybe this just isn’t the best cycle to start.” My heart dropped a little when I heard those words.

My bloodwork came back this afternoon and showed that the cyst wasn’t making estrogen. So I have that going for me. The plan now is to stay on birth control ’til Monday, repeat the ultrasound and then meet with the doctor afterwards to discuss what to do going forward. I’m glad we’re meeting with her again because I have a bunch of questions. But if the birth control is over-surpressing me, which it seems like it is, then things aren’t going to look any better on Monday, right? And if we have to take off another cycle, I’d really rather get started on it than delay the inevitable.

My doctor kept saying that we need to focus on the end game and not on the short term. I completely agree with her, but I was so excited to start. I know another month and change isn’t a huge deal in the long run, but I’m not getting any younger. I feel like all of this waiting is starting to pile up.

Curve balls, man. They get you every time. I was positive that this first IVF would go smoothly. I didn’t have a feeling either way on if i would get pregnant or not, but I felt strongly that the process itself would be pretty straight forward. Har-har-har, the joke was on me.

To put it mildly, I am really bummed.

Has anyone out there in the blogiverse had a cyst stop treatment, or had a lower follicle count at their baseline than they expected?. If so, please share your stories!

24 thoughts on “IVF #1: Stalled By The Cyst Monster

      1. I’m just hoping for now that I don’t have any cyst monsters of my own lurking down there! My ovaries have still been throbbing since even pre retrieval (not painful to fold over on myself, but just…annoying). Is yours causing you any pain? As for the follicle thing, I don’t have any specific scientific backup, but in my baseline the doc counted 13, then a few days prior to retrieval he counted 18. I always feel like they’re bound to miss count because of the shape of everything. I hope we both get on this ivf #1 train with a great # of perfect (and mature) eggs to work with!!

      2. Now that I think back on it, I have been feeling crampy the last two weeks, but I assumed it was just a side effect from the birth control pill. I don’t have any experience in this yet, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable for your ovaries to still be achey after all the stimulation they’ve gone through. I bet that’s it an not a cyst! Fingers crossed!

  1. OH man that totally sucks. I know how bummed i would be if they had canned my cycle. Interestingly we don’t do baseline ultrasounds…I don’t have my first scan until day 8… I am so so so sorry to hear that this one hasn’t worked out for you. I know how excited you were. Hugs 🙂

  2. So sorry, it’s annoying to experience yet another delay! Hang in there and focus on the long-term, you want to make sure your body is in the best possible position to make your cycle successful. Don’t want to lose your investment because of a cyst. Hoping that a week or two more and you’ll be good to go!

    1. Thank you! I know you are right. I just need to keep telling myself end game, end game, end game! I am bummed that we are no longer cycle buddies anymore, wah, but I’ll be cheering you on from the sidelines. Did you start your stims yet?

      1. Aw, no. I start next week. I had my baseline US and am ready, but the clinic may have be trying to delay it a bit so they have a more manageable schedule.

  3. I’m sharing your boat!! Monster cyst on right ovary. Doc said it should go away in the next couple weeks on its own. I must say, I’m really relieved to be benched for this next cycle. I could use a little renewal time. 🙂

  4. Oh I wish I had advice. I know what it is like to have a delay put on things and the ivf pros do not seem to understand how we feel….it is about getting the best results yes but like you I feel like time is running out and I do not want to waste any of it. I would say my ivf nurse was very much for never looking past the next stage because thing can go wrong at any step a long the way. It is good advice but it is really hard not to think ahead. I hope the monster disappears quickly and you can proceed.

    1. I think your nurse has the right idea. The good news is that you will be starting IVF soon (or maybe you’ll get pregnant naturally?), so at least one of us will be on the way! I know you know how I feel, though. A forced wait is not fun!

      1. I so hope that things happen naturally this time or next cycle but at least I should start the ivf if not. I hope you are doing ok and holding up, not checked your blog yet.

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