I suggested fairly recently that Husby might like to write a post for my blog, in part because I wanted him to feel
important included in something I’ve been spending a lot of time doing, but also because (with regard to infertility) it’s quite hard to find a man’s perspective, even in a place as diverse as The Internet. Sweetly, he agreed to indulge me, and set about writing. I love the result and hope you do, too.
Hypogonadotropic hypogonadism – It’s a bit of a mouthful and basically means ‘buggered endocrine system’. The endocrine system is kind of important, though problems are not immediately fatal when compared to something going wrong with say the brain heart or lungs, thankfully.
Aside from all the side effects and resulting conditions *insert sympathy here* it means I have infertility. Grammatically that should be ‘I am infertile.’ To say that it sucks is a bit of an understatement. It’s also weird, not in the sense that it’s abnormal (which it is; ‘fertile’ being the default state of the healthy human race), but in that it has usually and traditionally been seen as a *hushed tone*‘wimmenz problem’, even though men are usually the contributing partner (parthenogenesis aside). Traditionally lack of male heirs was blamed on the woman by the ignorant, not realizing that it’s the male gamete that determines the gender! And of course we blokes are notorious for never going to the doctor ever, unless it’s serious.
The whole ‘it’s mostly a woman thing’ is also funny as the drugs I’m on seemed to be marketed with women in mind. Thankfully I don’t worry about who it’s marketed for, I’m just grateful that I can have it. In addition I need to take another drug which generally only gets NHS* funding for women. Thankfully the lovely pharmacist Phil thought that I’d have to go on 6 months ago it and began sorting it out then so I could have it now. I would shudder to think what would happen if i) he wasn’t that smart or ii) the NHS didn’t care because I was a bloke.
Notice the nice pastel colours.
Colours aside, even the name ‘Pregynl’ does not seem manly. I don’t know what a manly drug should be called: Rambomycin, Steelixitine, Angryvir, Arnold-Schwartzicyclin ?
I would pick Rambomycin, administered by Rambo with a syringe fired from a bow
So I roll up to the hospital to learn that the pharmacist was off ill. Cue lots of bleeping, phoning and planning. Turns out the new medicine is easier to take than the one I’m currently on so I don’t actually need anyone to show me how to take it (in spite of them originally arranging extensive gaps in their schedules (now altered by illness) to show me what to do). Cue more waiting to get needles and syringes from another department. Bizarrely the pharmacy can give out expensive potent drugs, but not the method to take them.
So long story short, I’m on 6 shots a week on top of a minimum four daily shots of insulin (which by now is ‘normal’ so doesn’t count) so that in 3 months’ time my condition mightbe better enough to have sproglets (and by ‘better’, I mean my body will be co-operating by producing sperm, thus rendering sproglets a possibility). In 6 months we might have about a 50% chance of natural conception. So not lots. But better than nothing. And what’s a few dozen more injections in a lifetime?
….short of making me look like pinhead!
I’m glad I’m doing everything I can but it’s as slow process, and I think Wifey is coming round to that realization now. My experience of medicine is that specialists tend to know their field, doctors tend to want you to get better and that the human endocrine system is generally slow moving. With that in mind it’s a case of waiting yet again and dealing with the whole illness side while the infertility side hopefully sorts itself out quietly in the background.
*for the non-limeys NHS = obamacare/medicare but better in every way
Husby’s Ten Things of Thankfulness
1) NHS, Pharmacist Phil, Nurses & the super Dr Brown
2) Wifey for being supportive
3) Pepsi Max & Chocolate. Pepsi Max tastes like real Pepsi but with no sugar. Bonus: it contains caffeine. Chocolate needs no explanation.
4) D&D with friends yesterday. Almost a total party kill but they pulled through. Just!
5) House M.D. – Hugh Lauries’ mad antics as a genius doctor keeps me sane.
6) The recent nice weather. Ok today is a blip, but it’s hopefully going to pick up later in the week.
7) The Range – for having little polystyrene balls so I can make some planets for a miniature spaceship wargame.
8) My harmonica, I’m really bad at it but it’s fun and cathartic to blow funny noises with it.
9) My PC. She has been with me for many many years a lá Ship of Theseus
10) Flowers that mother-in-law brought yesterday. They are really nice and cheering.