I could work on preparing for Passover right now… or I could procrastinate with a little blog post writing. Gosh that was an easy decision.
The main news so far on the antibodies is that no news is… no news. The blood was drawn last Monday and my doctor thought it would take one to two days to come back. So three days later I called to check in. Supposing she’d misremembered how long it would take, she thought that by the beginning of this week we’d know more. So today I called again to check in. Still nothing. She called the lab to find out what was up and though she doesn’t understand what the delay is, they said we’d know more by Monday at the latest, hopefully sooner.
In the meantime, we got the other blood results back from the first trimester screening that checks for Trisomy 13, 18, and 21, Down’s Syndrome, and apparently a host of other genetic markers. The good news is that all of the Trisomy’s, Down’s and the nuchal translucency tests (done by ultrasound last week too) came back normal. And the news that resulted in yet another trip to Beth Israel Hospital today to meet with a genetic counselor is that the test showed less DNA than expected on the 22Q gene. Not an entire gene missing, but something called a micro deletion – just less of it than they’d expect to see. This could mean heart defects, cleft lip, learning issues… it honestly does seem like a miracle for a baby to be born that is completely healthy, and nearly impossible to go through pregnancy without one or more real scares along the way.
And herein lies the downside to having access to excellent medical care in 2017: these particular results have a 98% chance of being a false positive. Jamie and I experienced this with our own pregnancies, too. You live in a place like Boston with some of the best hospitals anywhere, so they pick up on all kinds of things, run through the worst-case scenarios, get your mind spinning, and everything is still likely to turn out fine… none of which you ever would have known about had you lived a generation or two earlier.
Since it doesn’t hurt to do so, we’ll be moving the big 18-week ultrasound earlier to 16 weeks which will tell us more about whether they’re seeing any sign of concern, and we’ll take it from there. In theory we could do an amniocentesis to know for sure – BUT – we’ve since learned that doing so could raise the risk of aggravating the antibody issue, and so far it seems it may not be a good idea for me to get one despite it being recommended originally. Hooray for that! So, we’ll wait and see.
One more final update for now: as part of this first trimester screen they can tell the sex of the baby. My doctor asked David and Vivianne if they’d like to know. They hesitated, being convinced already that it was a boy. When we had the embryo transfer they asked the clinic to transfer the best quality embryo, but asked that all things being equal, they try the female one (the best three they were working with were two boys and a girl). Knowing that two of the embryos did not thaw properly, they were certain it was a boy.
So my doctor asked again if they’d like her to confirm, so they said “sure – why not.”
And whaddaya know? After getting the call from my doctor with the results, here’s the picture I sent over to them:
You just never know how things are going to turn out.