Tuesday, November 6, 2007

The Infertility Stuff, Part 2

The fantastic Creighton Model practitioner fit us into her schedule for a special introductory session, since we couldn't make it to her next few scheduled group introductory sessions. We had to chart a complete cycle before we could start the next step of hormone testing. (Usually, it's two cycles, but since we had been charting using the Sympto-Thermal Method, the doctor figured we'd be quick to catch on.)

As a sidenote, we both love the Creighton Model. It's so systematic--in comparison to the Sympto-Thermal Method, we found the instructions for observations to be so clear and specific! (Of course, CCLI has been updating their Sympto-Thermal materials, too, and I'm really interested to see the changes.) It was tough for me to give up taking my temperature (in terms of trusting the method, not having to get up every morning to take my temperature--our schedules aren't that regular, and having to wake up at the same time every day was a pain), but once I saw how well it worked, I was sold.

So, we got going on the Creighton Model, and then my doctor started in on the NaPro Technology protocols. (Ha! "Protocols" just reminded me of 24. No sattelite coverage needed.) The first step involved having blood drawn every other day for about three weeks, then freezing the samples and shipping them to the Pope Paul VI Institute for hormone testing. It was so nice to have someone taking the whole thing seriously! And I love the NaPro Technology approach. NaPro Technology is an approach (created by the same doctor who created the Creighton Model) to reproductive health that takes a disease-based approach to infertility.

Well, of course, I thought, when I first heard of NaPro Technology (in an article in the National Catholic Register). What other approach would you take? People are designed to be fertile. If they're not, then there must be something wrong. Wouldn't the first step be to find out what the problem is?

We knew that my local doctor would be able to learn a lot from the series of hormone tests, but if medical treatment of any problems revealed through the hormone testing didn't do the trick, the next step would be to have surgery--through the Pope Paul VI Institute. Though that sounded great (hmm . . . a surgeon whose whole career has been devoted to this area of work, who has written a textbook about his methods, who created an approach to treating infertility that has far higher success rates than other approaches. . . um, OK, sign me up!), the distance and the worries about insurance coverage made us think that we should find out what our local options were.

So, we decided to check out the reproductive endocrinology department of our HMO. And then we found out what a different approach to infertility might look like . . .

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