Tracy's Success Story 

I want to share my story to help others learn more about Asherman’s and give hope to those suspecting AS, recently diagnosed, or in the midst of treatment.

I got pregnant the first month of trying only to be diagnosed with a missed miscarriage due to fetal demise during a routine ultrasound near the end of the first trimester.  Based on the recommendation of my OB and her reassurance that there was no risk to my future fertility (I asked this question point-blank), I had a D&C to complete the miscarriage.  I should note that this procedure was done at a world class hospital and the possibility of intrauterine scarring was not included even in the fine print on the informed consent for the D&C.  My period never returned after the D&C although I was experiencing progressively worsening cyclical pain around every 30 days.  Prior to the miscarriage, my periods were extremely regular, so this cyclical pain seemed related to me.  I started to do research on the causes of secondary amenorrhea and found the Ashermans.org website.  Although my OB and her staff recommended I just be patient and stop worrying, I requested a progesterone challenge.  Even after I failed the progesterone challenge and asked about the possibility of AS, I was assured it was so rare that they had never seen a case and there was no way the D&C had caused it; it was suggested that my anxiety about the situation was to blame for my period not returning post-miscarriage.  I was put on an estrogen/progesterone challenge even though I had never had an estrogen deficiency in the past and previous hormone profiles suggested this was an unlikely cause for the secondary amenorrhea.  At this point, it had been over 16 weeks since the D&C without a period or even any spotting and the fourth cycle of cyclical pain was so bad that I couldn’t sleep at night.  I sought a second opinion from a local RE who immediately suspected AS and ordered the appropriate tests.  I was diagnosed with AS of unknown severity due to a failed HSG within a week of seeing this new doctor (test could not be completed due to scar tissue blocking the fluid medium from entering the uterine cavity).  Though upset at receiving the official diagnosis, at least I could start addressing the real problem.  

By now I had done a lot of research on AS and had sought the advice of the women of this support group who helped me push for the diagnosis and gave me recommendations for treatment.  Not wanting to take any chances, I traveled to Boston to see an A-list doctor for surgery (an AS expert who has successfully treated many women).  Fortunately, my local RE understood my concerns (she had only treated a dozen or so cases and did not have the capability to do in-office hysteroscopy) and was supportive of this decision.  I had two in-office operative hysteroscopies (meaning without general anesthesia so I could be aware of what was happening)—the first to remove what turned out to be dense, occlusive scar tissue in the lower uterine segment  (uterus considered 20% scarred, upper uterine cavity normal/unaffected) and the second to treat mild, filmy rescarring two weeks later.  My local RE performed a single follow-up probing to break up any additional mild rescarring based on the A-list doctor’s recommendation and then I was cleared to try to conceive again.   

I got pregnant three months later right around the due date for my first unsuccessful pregnancy.  My second pregnancy was  filled with anxiety.   I felt “less pregnant” based on typical symptoms than the first failed pregnancy and had daily spotting and several outright bleeding episodes during the first trimester- it was hard to believe I wasn’t miscarrying again.   My new OB (would not go back to the original practice from my first pregnancy for obvious reasons) monitored me carefully during the first trimester due to the spotting and bleeding.  I also had extra monitoring during most of the second trimester due to a potential increased risk for incompetent cervix from the uterine procedures/dilations I had recently.  Fortunately the baby was developing normally and my cervix was holding up.  I finally relaxed a bit during the third trimester and was able to enjoy the pregnancy more.  

A year to the day I was diagnosed with AS, I delivered my beautiful baby girl.  I am so grateful for the women of this group who provided support and advice throughout my AS journey, from pre-diagnosis to the birth of my post-AS baby.  I feel so lucky that even though I got AS, I was able to find quality care and my case was relatively mild and very treatable.  To anyone who suspects AS, be your own advocate.  To those still fighting AS, may you find you own happy endings soon.     

 

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