First Mothers’ Day A Double Blessing
Issue Date: 14 March 2007
Helen Wilkinson had two reasons to celebrate Mothering Sunday on Sunday 18 March, after the birth of her twins William John and Elizabeth Hannah, following two years of IVF treatment at Midland Fertility Services (MFS).
Helen (40) and her husband Adam (42) of Brierley Hill, Dudley, tried to conceive as soon as they married in 2000. But in 2002 their delight at getting pregnant turned to sadness when Helen miscarried at 10 weeks.
After another year of negative pregnancy tests, hospital investigations revealed that the miscarriage had caused scar tissue in Helen’s womb that would make it difficult to conceive and even to carry a pregnancy.
“We felt devastated because we wanted a baby so much,” said Helen. “Surrogacy or adoption were even mentioned, but after surgery to remove some of the scar tissue, we wanted to try for a baby with IVF first.
“As soon as we went to MFS we felt more confident, because the nurses genuinely cared about us having a baby and becoming parents.”
After two unsuccessful cycles of IVF, Helen and Adam started their third – and they agreed their last – treatment in early 2006. “Knowing that this would be our last attempt actually took away some of the pressure,” said Helen. “And when the two embryos were transferred back into me in May, I just knew that it was going to work!”
This time, the clinical team at MFS prescribed Viagra for Helen to help thicken her womb lining and the embryologists recommended assisted hatching, a laboratory process to help the embryos hatch and implant in the womb.
Their twins William and Elizabeth were born on 8 December, six weeks early weighing 5lbs 1oz and 3lbs 10oz, respectively. They spent 20 days in the special care baby unit, but now they are thriving and Helen and Adam are loving every moment they spend as a family rather than just as a couple.
“Last year I spent Mothers’ Day in tears as we were just about to start our third treatment cycle, so this Mothering Sunday was a really special day for me – and for Adam’s mum who is now a granny for the first time. We enjoyed every minute of it.”
“For new mums who have experienced infertility, Mothers’ Day changes from one of the most difficult days of the year, to one of the happiest,” said Dr Gillian Lockwood, medical director at MFS. “Helen and Adam”s story gives hope to other women that IVF may be a way for them to celebrate Mothering Sunday in the future.”
Midland Fertility Services was established in 1987 and is licensed by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority. In 2000 MFS became the first UK IVF clinic to use inhibin B to assess ovarian reserve and in 2002 the UK’s first ‘frozen egg’ baby was born following treatment at MFS, using the baby’s mother’s own egg and giving hope to young cancer patients worried about fertility preservation. In 2004, MFS celebrated the birth of the 3,000th baby following treatment at the clinic and in June 2005, registered its 13,000th patient. In September 2005, the UK’s first twins were born from ‘frozen egg’ fertility treatment at MFS. Based in Aldridge and Wolverhampton in the West Midlands, MFS treats both private and NHS-funded patients from throughout the UK and abroad.