One more test

Well, here I thought we had exhausted the testing but it turns out there is one more – the DQ-Alpha test.  According to http://www.rialab.com/miscarriages_prevented.php,

“DQ Alpha genotyping refers to a specific kind of HLA (tissue) typing done at the DNA level. The Class II HLA, found on the surface of white blood cells (WBC), include HLA-DR and HLA-DQ. B-cell is a type of WBC that manufactures antibodies. Each tissue type is made up of an “A” or alpha part and a “B” or beta part. Researchers have discovered that mothers who are HLA-DQ alpha (DQA1) and/or DQ beta (DQB1) compatible with their fetuses tend to have a high rate of miscarriage before eight weeks of pregnancy.

Others studies have shown that mother’s who are DQ alpha compatible with their fetuses can develop an exacerbation of autoimmune processes, such as rheumatoid arthritis and antiphospholipid antibody syndrome, during the early portions of their pregnancy. Once the association is discovered, more aggressive treatments can be tailored to a patient’s situation to prevent the autoimmune process from causing another miscarriage.”

Dr. Corley says that its possible that we would be positive for DQ-Alpha, which could cause a temporary surge in NK cells when I’m pregnant, but not enough to remain in my system when I’m not pregnant. He says typically he wouldn’t test for this with a negative NK result, but my history makes him wonder. So….we are testing for this now. Results take 3-6 weeks.  There is more information about this test in a previous post.

I’m relieved that there still might be a testable cause for my miscarriages, so we are not trying to get pregnant this cycle while we wait for these results back. If it turns out that my husband and I do match then the treatment is longer term Intralipid therapy through the 20th week of pregnancy.

If this comes back negative then the only thing left is doing IVF with or without PGD (http://www.ivf-infertility.com/ivf/pgd.php) or CGH (comparative genomic hybridization.) I am very very ambivalent about doing IVF period, however my doctor is starting to make a pretty compelling argument for trying it.  However I know that we will try a few more times on our own before thinking about pursuing either IVF or adoption.

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