Monday, August 13, 2012


When I was diagnosed with PCOS and we decided we wanted to have a baby, my doctor wanted Juanito tested as well. Basically they wanted to know what cards we were holding in this whole fertility game. We ladies have our issues and for some there is what they lovingly refer to as “male-factor”, which could really mean a variety of things. So this test became what we called a “spunk-in-the-cup-test.” We don’t mince words around our house. A spade is a spade. So Juanito took his cup, did his thing one day while I was at work, and drove it to the lab. There was no comical room with a TV and buffet of porn. He got to use his own porn.

Anyways, when the lab results came back a nurse from my doctor called and explained that the results needed to be read by an urologist. That struck me as strange since they never mentioned this when they gave me the order. Nonetheless, they recommended one and we had an appointment which we planned to go to together.

Let me say that until that time I had never attended a medical anything with Juanito. He had been through some scary shit with me but I was never the one sitting in the chair off to the side. A spectator without control. So the doctor came in and he was dressed in blue scrubs, he was youngish, Asian and very professional. He started off by doing a physical exam. First let’s recap that we were at an UROLOGIST. Second I guess going into this appointment I wasn’t really sure what we were doing there or why we were there.  I really just focused on what the test results were. I was completely unprepared when Juanito had to drop trou and the seemingly nice doctor fondled my husband’s junk. In front of me. I was not prepared to keep a straight face and definitely not prepared to NOT fall apart into giggles. I was not prepared for the struggled between my inner 13 year old versus the adult woman who still (to this day) giggles if Juanito has on no boxers and a tee shirt because his little butt cheeks make me giggle. I know that my face had to have been lit up like a lobster. But to make matters worse, Juanito made eye contact. I remember jerking my eyes away and mentally pleading not to look at me and don’t make me look at you. I will just stare at this ceiling and you will remain to be the same person I have always known.  Not the man who was medically molested.

We both survived the exam, barely. Then we sat and had a conversation with the doctor, after he groped my husband. His first few questions were benign but then he threw a curve ball. “Have you ever been around toxic chemicals?”  Um…uh…Juanito?

No. But I mentally stumbled and couldn’t keep up with the questions and where this line of questioning was going. He had to have seen the confusion through our glazed-over stares and perhaps the drooling. So this is what I understood from the bits of speech that I could remember. Mobility, count, liquidification and morphology. Heads. Tails. 1 in 10. And a crude drawing.

Later, after talking, discussing, reading WedMD and other web sites this is what we surmised: Morphology describes the physical shape of each sperm and one in ten of Juanito’s men were perfect. The other nine either had no head or no tail.  Do you know what that means!?  Ninety percent of his spunk had no idea where they were going (no head) or they couldn’t get there if they did (no tail). Its like the blind leading the paraplegics in there!

All the other factors of the sperm; quantity, mobility, liquidification had some resolution.  Morphology meant the factory was broken (the doctor's terms).  Few solutions, big ticket price.  This now meant we had a male-factor. Indulge my emotional side.  This was shattering to  me at the time.  I didn't even know that I wanted kids until I found out that I might not be able to because I possibly had cancer.  Then to get the blow that you don't have cancer but you do have something that makes getting pregnant extremely difficult to then be hit with this??  You start to think that you can't handle it all.  This was not how it was suppose to be. 

After a bit of a mourning period, I read whatever I could get my hands on to see if there was a way to correct this. We reasoned that it didn't matter that nine out of ten didn't work because I wasn't shooting off an egg.  If I could just fire off an egg we only needed one sperm...not ten!  I found vitamins. I purchased a couple of bottles of vitamins for him to take to improve the function, shape and quantity. But he couldn’t remember to take them every morning. Mind you I was taking up to 14 pills a day and he couldn’t remember to take 2 pills. I also found some potential surgeries you can have to improve the morphology.

Around this same time, Juanito decided to see a doctor about persistent pain in, the well, um, his balls. His balls hurt. (Sorry Juanito for sharing all of this…) Come to find out he had a deep venous thrombosis (DVT). Google it to see what that is. Basically, in my laymen terms, his balls were bruised, on the inside. Now I can’t remember how we came to conclusion, if it was medically assisted or we just thought it was funny but we believe that the DVT was caused by vigorous sex. Now the surgery that might alleviate the discomfort for the DVT had a possibility of fixing the morph problem too. So surgery was scheduled, but with a different doctor.

I marked his leg not his balls.
  It was to be outpatient and I took the day off to tend to my husband’s balls. We got to the hospital and got all checked in (after a painful appointment with the administration who took a couple of thousands out of our checking account to do this procedure). The nurses got him all set up. I got to mark which side the surgery was to be performed on to avoid any mistakes. The anesthesiologist came in and checked him out. We were all ready, just waiting on the doctor. When the doctor came in it was again someone who Juanito had not seen before. He came in to the curtained off room, sat down and starting telling us how he has been reviewing the chart and feels that this surgery is not necessary.  Sorry for the inconvenience, please go home. Ok, it wasn't that abrupt but it was surprising like a slap with a frozen fish.  I was pissed and confused. We left (after getting a refund) and went for breakfast since Juanito had been fasting. It was beyond anti-climactic.  It wan void. It was as if the path that this surgery opened up for us was closed once again.  No new options.    

Ultimately, the new doctor felt that there hadn’t been enough testing of the sperm to warrant the surgery and the DVT should resolve itself over time. Subsequent spunk-in-a-cup-tests revealed that there was no male-factor just poor handling of the first test. The new doctor questioned why the first doctor (the nice Asian guy) didn’t order additional testing after getting such extreme numbers the first time. So lesson learned, question everything. Educate yourself when facing fertility so that you’re not sitting in a doctor’s office, dumbfounded, glazed look, and drooling or make sure you ask enough questions so you don’t leave the office looking that way. Our road took many turns but ultimately still lead up to this….
This is the actual test I took when I found out I was pregnant. 
Juanito was out of town and the dogs couldn't tell if it was positive or not. 

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