The Pain of Not Being Mum
Issue date: March 2017
One thing more painful than the severe endometriosis that Emma Riley suffered was that she wasn’t a mummy.
Endometriosis is a condition in which endometrial cells, which normally line the uterus, implant outside of the uterus on the ovaries, bowel and other internal organs causing bleeding, pain and reduced fertility
Emma (38) and Kevin (37)from Stoke on Trent had tried for a family for over four years before the pain Emma suffered each month became too much.
Emma, an administrator was admitted to hospital with a suspected ectopic pregnancy. A mass in Emma’s uterus was found that had to be investigated further.
“I was scared it could be cancerous, “ said Emma.
After a night in hospital an oncologist gave Emma the news that the mass was not cancerous but was severe endometriosis. She was told that her right ovary and Fallopian tube was so damaged they may have to be removed.
After her operation later that year, Emma’s right ovary was saved but her uterus, Fallopian tubes, ovaries and bowel had all been adhered together. Despite removing much of the endometriotic tissue, it would inevitably return in time. Emma was given a hormone suppressant to give her body a rest from her monthly cycles before trying again to conceive.
The positive pregnancy test eluded the couple and they soon reached a point where they needed to seek further help and approached IVI Midland Fertility for expert advice.
“We knew it was only a matter of time before the endometriosis returned and time was ticking to try fertility treatment,” said Emma.
During fertility investigations at the Tamworth based clinic, it was found that Emma’s left ovary was completely stuck behind her uterus and inaccessible for an egg collection. Yet, after one cycle of NHS funded IVF treatment an egg collection resulted in 12 eggs!
Only one embryo survived the fertilisation process and the single embryo was transferred to Emma. The couples’ anxious two week wait began.
“We did the pregnancy test at 4:30am as we couldn’t wait any longer,” said Kevin.
The test showed the magical positive line!
“We couldn’t believe what we were seeing after seven long years of trying!” said Emma.
Hagan Saul Riley arrived safely in 2015 making Emma and Kevin proud parents.
“We can’t thank IVI Midland Fertility enough for making us a family and I want to let women out there suffering with this crippling condition that pregnancy is just around the corner with the right help and support,” said Emma.
“Endometriosis manifests itself in a variety of ways so diagnosis can be difficult and often delayed,” said Gillian Lockwood, medical director at IVI Midland Fertility.
“Early recognition of the symptoms is vital so women can get a referral for fertility treatment if necessary. There is good evidence that pregnancy following IVF can ‘cure’ endometriosis so that the woman can conceive naturally again in the future.”