Sunday, April 29, 2012

To Add a Little Excitement and Drama

I was picking up clothes from the bathroom floor (we are such neat freaks!) in order to start laundry this morning and made a not so great discovery. 
On Thursday when I started my stims I asked W to grab what we needed from the fridge (Gonal-F). We have some old pens in there as well and he brought those up along with the new box which was in an opaque bag. We talked about the old ones (3 pens) and decided it was best to throw them out since it had definitely been more than 30 days since they had been opened. I started to mix the Luveris, measured my Lupron, and took the Gonal-F pen that was on the vanity and used it. 

I continued to take all of my meds for the past 3 days without thinking anything of it. I had seen the old pens in the garbage and ignored the opaque bag on the floor since I assumed it only had needle tips in it. 

That brings us back to this morning. I was picking up the clothes and I found the opaque red bag. Don't get me wrong, it's not that our laundry pile was so large it was buried, but it had ignored it, assuming what was in there wasn't an absolute necessity to deal with immediately. I opened the bag to get the extra tips out, and what do I find? I completely unopened box of Gonal-F! I immediately called W upstairs and we realized that instead of throwing out the pen that was so full, I had accidently been using it. We did the math and figured out this pen was first opened during IVF #1 in July!! Oh Shit! 

When we were talking about throwing them away, W didn't throw them all away, only 2 of the 3. He tossed the bag with the new one aside and put the old one up on the counter. Distraction set it when I started to measure out my meds and I grabbed the old one assuming it was the new one he took out. Man, is his support in this process a mixed blessing. Last IVF I got upset because he wasn't involved enough. This time I realize his company in the room is enough and that the meds need to be all my responsibility. That way I have no one or nothing to blame if things don't go as planned. 

So I spent a bit of time this morning googling expired and opened Gonal-F and am not sure what to think. If it hadn't been opened I wouldn't be freaking out. But, it's likely not as potent as it should be, if potent at all. I emailed the NP at the clinic and am waiting to hear back. I really hope this doesn't mess things up. There's never a dull moment with IVF, huh? I guess I just assumed by the 3rd time around I would have it all figured out. Well, not so much. 

It's safe to say the first tears have been shed this cycle. Maybe that means the FSH is working after all?


  1. Oh shit! I know nothing about the meds, but I hope all is okay and this won't affect anything.

  2. Eeeek!!!!! I'm sure it's fine since it's only been three days, right? What did the nurse say? When's the first monitoring appt?

  3. I think you will be okay. Next time the check you out, they can up your doseif you are running behind from the expired meds. I know how stressful it is when all you want is to have things go perfectly, and they don't. Try not to worry too much, you are probably okay.
    They may perhaps have to stim you longer, but it will get figured out.

  4. When I stimmed back in November, I used an opened follistim pen from April. I did mini IVF (low stims) and got 11 eggs (which my clinic was thrilled about). I think you are just fine!

    I sort of think the pharmaceutical companies say the 30 day thing to trick us in to buying more meds.

    Good luck this cycle!

  5. I also used an opened follistim pen 4 months after I first broke the seal. I asked my RE's nurse and she didn't hesitate to tell me I should finish it off before moving on to the unopened pen. I don't remember which cycle this was on, but I always stimmed very well. I always ovulated on the early side and had lots of eggs.

  6. I don't think it'll be so bad. Has it been refrigerated? I think ADSchill is right if anything they'll up your dosage if if they think the efficacy of this one has been compromised.

  7. I think you'll be okay. I'm starting another round of shots and my dr said it was okay to use the open pen. It will only be 3 days of shots before we move to a new pen anyway, so he said the slight decrease in potentcy shouldn't matter too much.