Thursday, August 11, 2011

And you thought you knew all the acronyms you needed....

From all my months of trying to get pregnant, I have gained an entirely new vocabulary. You see, there is a whole wealth of words to understand once you start reading books, blogs, message boards, and websites about trying to get pregnant. I liken it to learning HTML or the insider language of any profession. Over time, you become fluent. This is especially true when you are emailing and chatting with friends who are also infertile. Don't believe me?

For reference, here is a mini glossary of terms in no particular order because I am too lazy to alphabetize it:
TTC - trying to conceive
TTCAL - trying to conceive after a loss
PCOS - Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome
IR - insulin resistant (most PCOS women are, I am not)
Clomid - baseline (completely ineffective) oral medication to induce ovulation
CD - cycle day (usually followed by a number)
BD - baby dance = sexy times
IUI - intrauterine insemination (The boy gives the sample, they wash it up and prepare it, then place it in my cervix. Fun times.)
IVF - in vitro fertilization
ER - egg retrieval
ET - embryo transfer
HPT - home pregnancy test
OPK - ovulation predictor kit
IC - in-cup test (as opposed to pee on a stick)
POAS - see above :)
WTO - waiting to ovulate (the constant state I am in since I never ovulate on my own anymore)
TWW - two week wait (the horrible period of time between ovulation and when you find out if you are pregnant or not. Longest 2 weeks ever.)
BFP - big fat positive (refers to pregnancy test)
BFN - big fat negative
FRER - First Response Early Response (most sensitive HPTs and very popular)
CBE - Clearblue Easy (similar)
Wondfo - very inexpensive, bulk OPKs and HPTs that you buy on Amazon
US - ultrasound, vaginal or external
BW - blood work
Follicles - when eggs mature, approaching ovulation, they come from these. They swell up before releasing an egg. You want 1-2 mature follicles for an IUI cycle. Too many and they cancel the cycle or convert to IVF to prevent octomoms.
Stims - injectable medication that stimulates your ovaries into producing mature follicles (Gonal-F is an example, follistim is another)
Trigger - no, not a gun. :) This is an injection that induces the release of an egg after stimulating ovulation for several days.

Above all, my favorite new term came from a friend who is pregnant from IVF, when discussing my most frequent procedure: vaginal ultrasounds. While chatting with her, I mentioned I had to go in to get my millionth ultrasound today. She lovingly refers to them as "dildocam." Classic.

It is amazing what I have gotten used to since we starting trying to get pregnant. Not only have I developed an entirely new vocabulary, but also a new appreciation for waiting rooms with current magazines.

Sometimes, I can barely remember the days when I would only be in an OBGyn's office once per year for a pap smear and a breast exam. In and out. No problem. Now, I see the inside of my RE's office no less than 3 times per month. Now that I have started injectable meds and an IUI cycle, I am in every 3 days.

Here is what the itinerary looks like for this cycle:
CD3 - dildocam, start daily Gonal-F injections
CD7 - dildocam and b/w - continue daily injections
CD7-? continue with daily injections, and every 3 days I get the dildocam and b/w.
When the follies mature-  I complete my trigger shot.
24 hours post trigger - IUI. So romantic.
If I get a BFP = Yay!
BFN = Start all over again

To some, it might seem strange to be in your doctor's office several times per month. During those visits, I get poked, prodded, and AHEM inserted. But, somehow it has become second nature. I'm sure one of these days, the shots will become that way too. Until then, I will continue to marvel at the red biohazard sharps container sitting on my coffee table.


  1. We refer to the F in BFN/BFP as "fucking." BIG FUCKING NEGATIVE. Love you, baby.

  2. Also, my RE had a very slim dildocam. When I got my 12-week u/s, they had an abdominal one, and then had to bring in the GIRTHIEST dildocam you ever did see. It was like a Coke can. My eyes bugged out a lot, even more so when the lady tried to insert it in ... the wrong hole.

  3. LOL Kev and SKB!

    I guess the dildocam used on me must be the slimmer version because I would flip out if I saw one that large!


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