Some of you have read my story, or followed my journey with my last surrogacy, but here’s a quick re-cap:
In Aug of 2014 I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl for my IPs and it was such a meaningful and magical experience that I knew right away that I wanted to do it again. I hadn’t even fully healed before I was already dreaming about the possibility of a new family I could help create. Part of the surrogacy process as many of you know, includes a form of birth control that can prevent your own pregnancy while preparing the body for an IVF transfer. I wanted to be sure that I didn’t have any more children of my own, and thought it would be easier to have my tubes tied than to take a birth control pill every day.
I met with my OBGYN and she told me about the Essure procedure. Essure is a “non surgical” procedure that involves the insertion of nickel coils into the Fallopian tubes, where your body then creates scar tissue around the coils, sealing your tubes and thus preventing further pregnancy of your own. I was told by my Dr. that this procedure will NOT prevent me from being a surrogate again and that the risks were minimal and symptoms were minimal. I was excited! I could avoid surgery and still be able to help families.
On November 17th the Essure coils were placed, and I talked the entire time with the staff about my plans to do surrogacy again. At that time I was waiting to be matched with a new couple and very excited about the prospect of continuing in my life’s calling. On May 3rd of this year I went in for my follow up appointment with Radiology to perform an Xray that would confirm that the coils were in the proper place and that my tubes were closed. They were closed. I asked my Dr if it was normal to be bleeding still. I had been bleeding since November when the procedure was done. She informed me that it was normal and to not be concerned.
I was matched a few weeks later with an amazing Gay couple! They were perfect. We got along fabulously and even had them over to my house to meet my kids, and have coffee and home made pecan pie that one of my IFs brought for me! It was beautiful. It felt like the match was honestly organized by a higher power and that I was simply being reunited with family.
Suddenly, my world was flipped upside down
Then on a Monday morning I received a crushing call from my Agency… The clinic in San Francisco that housed my IFs embryos would not accept me as a suitable surrogate because I had these Essure coils in. I fell to the floor crying. I was heart broken. I cried for my IFs, for my previous IPs who had talked about the possibility of a sibling journey in the future, and I cried for me.
I began to do more research on Essure. I discovered that the reason I could not be considered a suitable and safe surrogate was because part of the Essure coils remains sticking in the uterus! This creates a problem when a baby and water bag are so close, and would mean the pregnancy would be extremely high risk. I understood. Of course it would be dangerous! This is terrible! I found a group of women on Facebook in a group called “Essure Problems.” Finding them was like stepping into a world of “Yes..I have that too! I’m having those symptoms as well! I’m not crazy!”
Since having Essure placed in my body, I have become swollen in my abdominal area, I have constant cramping and pain that never goes away. I have been bleeding since November and yet it’s “normal.” I’m constantly exhausted, and my back is always in pain. Every woman I have talked to with Essure has experienced these symptoms as well as coils that break and travel the body, puncturing organs, the colon, resulting in hundreds upon hundreds of women needing hysterectomies and other surgeries to remove metal coils that have embedded themselves in either the uterus of even hip joints!
Thanks to loving friends I am able to pay out of pocket for a surgery in a private clinic (my insurance won’t cover the removal surgery..only a hysterectomy and even then it’s a maybe.) that will remove the coils and tie my tubes traditionally, leaving my uterus clear and healthy to carry a baby again! My Dr. is in Los Angeles, and says I could even become pregnant a month after the surgery, though I think I will wait longer than that to be sure I am healed. I fly to LA on April 13th for the removal of this awful devise. I am praying that the Dr. can remove it with no damage to me, and that the coils are where they are supposed to be.
If you plan on being a Surrogate…don’t get Essure!!Corinne
I need to be honest in this moment. I am terrified. I am terrified that even with this procedure I won’t be able to be a surrogate again. if that proves true, I will be heart broken for a very long time. Helping others to become families is a huge part of who I am. I don’t want to be done. I want to continue in this journey. Please, if you are a praying person, send up a prayer for me that this surgery will go well and that no complications will arise that would result in the removal of my uterus. I would feel so crushed.
I will update everyone when my surgery is over… Please.. If you want to be a surrogate, or continue in surrogacy DO NOT GET ESSURE as a birth control method.