"Cheer up. Remember what the Monty Python boys say."
"Always look on the bright side of life?"
"No, 'Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.'"

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Running Some Numbers...

I have noticed a trend lately. More and more women are coming back from RE appointments heartbroken because they found the cause of their infertility, PCOS. It makes me wonder why it is not the first thing that doctors check. It seems to me, it is becoming more prevalent, so I went on the infertility search.

Infertility is felt by 12.5% percent of the entire population (of child bearing age). Of that 12.5% of IF cases, 20-25% are caused by mild to severe PCOS but only 5-15% of those cases have actually been diagnosed.

Now, a large majority of women with PCOS will ovulate when on Clomid, upward of 75%. Unfortunately, only 40% of those women will achieve pregnancy. The odds do go up significantly, 90%, with injectable gonadotropins, but the risk of multiples increases significantly.

The good news is, 80-90% of all women with PCOS will get pregnant eventually. But that means, 10-20% won’t and that sucks. It helps to believe that I am in that 80-90%, but honestly, I don’t really know that.

Let me break it down into some numbers. In a group of 10,000 women, 1250 of them will have infertility issues and 250 of them will have PCOS. That number is kind of high but let me break it down even more. Of the 250 women with PCOS, 188 will ovulate on Clomid but only 75 of those women will actually get pregnant. If that group of 250 used injections, 225 would ovulate but only 60%, or 135 will get pregnant. This means that of 250 women with PCOS, 25-50 women will never get pregnant.

With these odds, trying to conceive can feel like moving a mountain. I hope in the long run, I am one of the 225 that will have the joy of pregnancy. Yet, if I do not achieve that goal, I will adopt. I know in my heart that no matter what happens, I will be a mommy some day. And when that day happens, I will tell all though statistics where then can go because my dream will have come true.

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