I got a call from my nurse yesterday, with my blood test results. All negative, except anti-cardiolipin antibodies, which was positive. I don’t know how positive yet, which matters a bit, but, positive.
I have a call with my doctor to discuss what this means on Thursday. Of course I looked it all up yesterday anyway.
Anti-cardiolipin antibodies (aCl) are a diagnostic for antiphospholipid syndrome, an auto-immune clotting disorder. It technically takes two positive tests over a three month span for diagnosis, though if you are exhibiting symptoms, one test is considered indicative. Symptoms being clots (deep vein thrombosis, stroke) or recurrent miscarriage. Oh hi.
The good news is that, though there have been only small-scale studies to date, the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, placental abruption, pre-eclampsia, and a long laundry list of other pregnancy complications this syndrome causes seem to be strongly mitigated by a regimen of baby aspirin and prednisone. One study of eleven women showed an initial pregnancy success of 15.6% (5 live births and 32 fetal losses), but after aspirin+prednisone, 100% live births (12 pregnancies).
That laundry list is pretty scary though, and I need to talk to my doctor about what the heightened risk of stroke or aneurysm means for me. If pregnant, I would be considered high risk for the entirety of the pregnancy, which sounds like not much fun (one site said “do not even THINK about a home birth, lovely as the idea might be, this is not for you”*). And I’m torn. On one hand, I’m glad there may be a way to prevent further losses, if this is indeed a factor in ours. On the other, I am pretty devastated that something as simple as an aspirin might have saved the pregnancies that went before, that it took us til now to get this information.
So I am a CF carrier, have PCOS, and an auto-immune clotting disorder. It feels like things keep stacking up against me. We are now looking for a high-quality-egg in a haystack that my body won’t attack. Layers and layers of infertility, and maybe we can circumvent them all, with IVF and with drugs, but it hurts to have them stack like this. It concerns the evolutionist in me, who quietly wonders if I should possibly bow out of this genetic rat race.
Lab book update – 11 dpo and my temperature is still high! My longest non-medicated LP was 12 days, so I am quite pleased with this, despite all the rest of it.
* not that I wanted a home birth, I’ll take proximity to medical intervention, thank you very much, but still, it’s not comfortable to have options discarded quite so strongly right at the outset.