Michelle M's Success Story

In September 2005, I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl after conceiving naturally and easily. I had a completely normal pregnancy with no complications. My daughter's birth was deemed "precipitous" as I delivered her less than 2 hours after my water broke and contractions started. The placenta, I thought, delivered easily only 15 minutes after birth and there seemed to be no problems. For several weeks after birth, I was passing large blood clots and was told to go to the hospital each time. I didn't know what any of this meant. I also had trouble breastfeeding exclusively due to low milk supply and was taking a drug called domperidone to increase my milk supply. It was finally determined that I had a small piece of retained placenta that was causing the blood clots so I took a drug to try to pass it naturally. When that didn't work (and I tried two doses), and I was still having large blood clots, I opted for a D&C. I was hoping that having the last piece of placenta removed would increase my milk supply. So I had the D&C at 5 weeks postpartum, recovered quickly and didn't think about it again. My period did not return, but in my eyes I was still breastfeeding and a side effect of the domperidone is menstrual changes, so I didn't expect my period to return until I had finished both.

I stopped breastfeeding and the domperidone in October 2006 when we decided to try for a second child. When my period did not return after 3 months, I contacted my family doctor to see what was wrong. When the nurse asked why I wanted an appointment, I told her because my period hadn't returned. Her response was "Lucky you!!". I said, "Not if you are trying to get pregnant." So my family doctor did a full fertility blood work-up; the results of which came back all within normal ranges. Then she thought that I might have a tumour in my pituitary gland that was affecting my period, so I was sent for an MRI to see if there was a tumour. Thank goodness there wasn't. So then I requested to be referred to a fertility specialist. I met my reproductive endocrinologist (RE) in April 2007 and after the routine blood-work and internal exam proved normal, I was scheduled for a saline infused sonogram (SIS) to look for blockages in either my fallopian tubes or uterus. The RE could not even insert the extremely small catheter through my cervix to get to my uterus. After a lot of extremely painful pulling, tugging and tearing, he got it in saying "I think I fixed your problem". When he tried to put the saline solution into my uterus, it did not go anywhere. My uterus was completely blocked and he diagnosed me on the spot with Asherman's Syndrome; he actually said to me "I'm sorry" to indicate the severity of the problem. I was extremely upset after he described what Asherman's was and he told me to go and do some research on the internet. When I got home, I found this website and this wonderful support forum. I felt empowered with the knowledge that I gained from the site and felt hope with the success stories that I read. I dreamed that I would be able to add my own story to this site.

I had my first hysteroscopic surgery in August 2007 and in the follow-up with my RE, he told me that I had had severe AS and I was approximately 90-95% scarred before surgery with very little normal endometrium left. He could not see the openings to my fallopian tubes and prepared me for the worst: permanent infertility and the best: rounds of IVF to conceive. He had removed most of the scarring but needed to do a second surgery to remove the rest (approximately 10% scarring leftover) and to make my uterus a more normal shape to be able to hold a pregnancy. I had a foley catheter in for 4 days and took 40 days of estrogen followed by 10 days of progesterone and had a healthy period! I had my second SIS in September 2007 after 6 weeks of cervical dilations post-surgery to break up any reforming scar tissue. The SIS showed that there was no new scarring and that both my tubes were open and clear. My second surgery was in November 2007 with the foley catheter in for 4 days again and 4 weeks of cervical dilations and estrogen/progesterone again. The third SIS was in December 2007 and again showed everything was clear. I was told that I could go ahead and try to conceive.

I was so lucky to conceive immediately in January 2008. My RE said he couldn't believe how quickly we conceive, then he corrected himself and said "Actually I am surprised that you were able to get pregnant at all". It goes to show you that doctors don't know everything and that miracles can happen!! I had a relatively uneventful pregnancy. I was followed by a high risk clinic due to anticipated problems with my placenta; my OB did not feel comfortable with my care once it was determined that I had placenta previa. My placenta did move up out of the way of my cervix by 34 weeks but my baby was breech possibly due to the scarring and an abnormally shaped uterus. I was scheduled for a c-section at 38 weeks but at 37 weeks my water broke and I had a c-section that day. There were problems with the placenta, it took a great deal of time for the 3 perinatologists (initially only two but then the head of the department was called in to assist) to remove it and stop the bleeding. They eventually put in a balloon in my uterus to stop the bleeding. My baby was extremely healthy and alert. The balloon came out after 2 days and I can only hope that the placement of this balloon acted like the foley catheter did during my AS surgeries: to prevent the walls of my uterus from scarring together. My perinatologist told me several things: first of all my placenta had been very adherent and if I got pregnant again I shouldn't have any problem with placental abruption (that was supposed to be a joke); and secondly my AS would more than likely return due to the curettage they had to perform to get the placenta out and stop the bleeding. I don't plan on having more children, so if AS returns I am prepared emotionally for it. I know what I will be facing and can do it with a clear head, without the issues surrounding a desire to have another child. As of now, 3 weeks postpartum, I have not had the same problems I had after the birth of my first child. I feel so blessed that I now have my family, complete and healthy and loved. Without this site and the support forum, I am not sure that I would have been able to get to this point in my life.

I hope that this story helps other women keep their hopes and dreams alive and eventually realize them as well.

International Ashermans Association

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