Baseline antral follicle count scan and ‘pregnancy’ shock

Categories Jessop's (Sheffield)

So this weekend we drove up to Sheffield for my AFC scan. We decided to miss ‘Frantic Friday’, when all the kids had finished school and people were heading off on their Summer holidays, and jumped in the car Saturday morning. The alarm went off at 4am, and we got on the road at 4:45am. This sounds crazy early, but the drop-in at Jessops is only between 8am-9:30am and it’s 175 miles, so we didn’t want to be late.

We got the Jessops at 7:45am (amazing run up – I highly recommend early Saturday morning driving!) and there was already a queue of almost 20 people waiting outside. I asked the girl in front of me whether this was normal and she said yes – sometimes it went round the block! Yikes.

Before the scan we had to pay for the treatment. Ouch. £3,750 we’re never going to see again. ‘It’s worth it though,’ said the lady who took the payment. ‘If it works.’

Then in for the scan. I’d pretty much expected it to be an external scan, as it was day two of my period. But oh no! D*ldo scan…

Turns out I have 18 follicles, nine on each ovary – apparently this is on the high end of good. Amazing news, and a good predictor for IVF success :-).

The nurse then asked me how heavy my period had been, and I told her I’d had the worst period pains ever this morning with quite a heavy bleed. She asked me when I’d last had an HSG and whether it’d shown anything up. And you know when you start to have a creeping feeling something’s not right?

She then asked me a question I wasn’t expecting: ‘Could you be pregnant?’

It was such a bizarre moment. I mean, what do you say? ‘It’s quite unlikely, given that I’m here!’ I said.

She pointed to the scan monitor and showed me a little dark area in my ovaries. ‘That’s either a blood clot, or it could be you’re pregnant,’ she said. ‘I’m afraid we’ll have to run a pregnancy test.’

Well, I laughed a little and said there probably wouldn’t be any point, but then a little tiny voice in my head said to me: but what if you’re one of those people who has a ‘miracle’ pregnancy! You know the ones – we’ve all heard of them. ‘Oh, so-and-so were told they could never have kids, and she fell pregnant on their make-or-break holiday,’ or ‘So-and-so were on their last round of IVF, and then she got pregnant the month before with twins!’ Those stories.

So while I’m having a fantasy about actually being pregnant for the first time in my life, the nurse checks out my follicles. I can’t actually remember 100% what she said – something like eight or nine on each ovary – and I asked her whether that was good. It didn’t sound it… but she said it was good. Actually on the high end of normal. So that was a relief.

I then went to get my blood tests for hormones and pregnancy test. I hate blood tests, but I was a tiny bit excited by the latter.

This was at 9am, and we had to ring for the results between 2pm-3pm.

What a wait! Of course I told myself the likelihood of being pregnant was truly remote. But what’s a girl to do…

At 2pm, we were sitting in my mom’s garden having a chat in the sunshine when I decided to ring the results hotline. Engaged – standard. I tried again. Engaged. And this went on for an hour. I then called up another number and told them I couldn’t get through, but I was just told to keep trying.

Eventually, at about 3:15pm, we got through. It was the same nurse who’d done my scan, as it happens. And I waited with baited breath… am I, or aren’t I?

‘So we ran the pregnancy test…’ she said, leaving a pregnant pause.

‘Yessssssssssssssssssssss?’ I said.

‘And I can tell you that you are definitely not pregnant. Definitely. Not. Pregnant.’


‘But we would like to have you in for another scan, to check you out and make sure there’s nothing that needs further investigation. Can you come in Monday?’

Oh. F*ck.

‘But I’m at work in Windsor on Monday,’ I said. ‘I haven’t got any work stuff. I might have to come in next weekend instead… but I have plans… .’

‘That’s fine,’ she said. She was ever so nice. ‘Just have a think and give us a call back. I’ll pencil you in for Monday, but just let us know. We could always start you on your next cycle.’


Well, I didn’t expect this to happen. Not pregnant. Definitely not pregnant. And potentially not able to start IVF this cycle. What a downer… such is the rollercoaster that IVF is.

If you want to know what happened next, click here.

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