Undiagnosed endometriosis and Beta-3 integrin protein testing

Just when I think I’ve hit the bottom of the rabbit hole, I find that there is a whole other cavern to explore.   I was recently put in touch with another woman, Traci, who has had a very similar experience to me: a chemical pregnancy, live birth, and she has gone on to have 7 other miscarriages, all chemical pregnancies except one, which she lost around 10 weeks due to trisomy 11 (a genetic disorder.)  I have also met another woman, Melissa, who has the EXACT same history that I do (our children are even a week apart in age.)  I have asked them both to share their stories as well and will post a separate page for each of them.

Its a relief to know that while whatever is going on with me is rare, there are a few other women with the same issues and on the same path to trying to find answers.  Most doctors don’t seem quite know how to help us, but we have been comparing notes and filling in holes for each other.

Traci pointed me in the direction of endo issues.  I strongly suspect that at least one of my losses was due to my lining being too thin from the IUD (3rd cycle after IUD removal and after 2 miscarriages it measured 3mm on cycle day 21.  A healthy lining is typically 10-15mm) and as my lining has been checked in the months after, it remains on the thin side (typically 8mm.)  There is a test called the Beta-3 integrin protein test.

From their website, Etegritytest.com, “The E-tegrity Test is used to determine how receptive the lining of the uterus is to the implantation of the fertilized egg. The test checks for the presence of the Beta-3 integrin, a glue-like protein necessary for implantation to take place. If you are missing the Beta-3 integrin, the fertilized egg may not attach properly to the uterine wall. As a result, your chances of a successful pregnancy are decreased.”

Hmmmmm, sounds interesting, no??  Of course its more expensive lab testing and we’ve already flushed nearly $2000 down the toilet for these other tests which ultimately didn’t provide any answers (though thanks to my dad, my insurance company IS reimbursing us for at least part of almost all the tests….yes, my dad is awesome.)  But whats another $500, right??

The other possible issue that could be going on is undiagnosed endometriosis.  Apparently you can have endometriosis even if you don’t have a lot of the traditional symptoms, and this can cause implantation failure.

Here are some of the possible symptoms of endometriosis:

http://community.thenest.com/cs/ks/forums/thread/38089147.aspx?MsdVisit=1

Here are a few links that I found interesting as far as undiagnosed endo in relation to recurrent early miscarriage:

http://thoughts-prayers-reflections.blogspot.com/2007/07/thoughts-on-progesterone-and.html

As I read through the symptoms of endo the only thing that really jumps out at me is that I do have VERY painful ovulation pains for almost a week leading up to and through ovulation.  Unfortunately that is the only thing that seems like a match.  The way to diagnose this is a surgery called laparoscopy in which they make a small incision in your abdomen and insert a camera and look for endometrial tissue.  However, they don’t always even find it by doing that and if I do have this then its a very minor case of it.  The treatment is taking lupron.

I have a call into my RE to ask about getting the Beta-3 test run and see what he thinks about the endo theory.  I’ll keep you all posted.

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Undiagnosed endometriosis and Beta-3 integrin protein testing

  1. heather says:

    I’m speechless. Your blog is so informative not to mention so deeply moving to read. I am currently going through a 3rd m/c and have had 4 prior chemical pregnancies from Oct. 11 to Oct 12. I just learned thanks to your site, Oct. 15 happens to be National miscarriage & infant loss Day. Ironic, that I happen to be going through this currently, I feel so deflated, but have a wonderful husband and dear friend to help me through the hard last days.

    I wanted to personally thank you for walking me through your journey…you have answered so many questions upon finding your blog. One, in particular – endometriosis. I, too have short periods 1-3 days. with brown spotting beforehand. Commonly, my periods are just one day. I have mentioned this my doctor is she said this normal. However, I plan to further investigate. I should say, I am 41- my husband 45, so this could be a major factor for m/c and c/p’s, but I’m eager to learn more of why I’ve had so many problems – especially w/implantation early on. I’ve watched the pregnancy test go very faint at 7 to 8 dpo and then stop at 10 or 11. With this current miscarriage I was so hesitantly optimistic. 13 dpo -11 HCG 15, 39 HCG, 18 dpo 102, 20 dpo 192 HCG, Then 22 dpo, 126 HCG : (,

    I have two beautiful children, 8 year old boy and 10 girl. I did have a m/c at 10 weeks before my first, was born – then went on to have 2 normal pregnancies. At age 39, we decided to try for #3. It has been a emotional time this last year. However, I feel confident that since my age it may be just too late, so I’m prepared to move on within the next few months.

    I was fascinated by your comment that you have had two IUD’s. I, too have had two removed 2 years ago. This is a major concern of mine. I would like to start investigating more the possibility of endo.

    Thank so much~ I hope your current levels keep rising and doubling, and hope you see a strong heart beat very soon! Your tests look very good. I wish you all the best.

    Your website is wonderful, what beautiful boys.

    • rowanthefrog says:

      Heather,

      I’m sorry to hear what you are going through. The whole thing is such a nightmare. I’m glad you are finding some useful information on my blog. When I first started researching I was astounded at how little information was out there and how hard it was to find, so I created this blog as a way to keep track of whatever information I could find.

      re: IUD, short periods, etc – I truly think my IUD caused at least 1 if not more of my m/c. It thins your lining out and who knows how long the effects last? The brown spotting/1 day period is very familiar to me and is a pretty clear sign of a thin lining to me. If you don’t have much of a lining, what can a zygote stick to?

      re: your second comment – 7.7mm is definitely on the thin side. Its easy to start taking Estradiol, vaginally, from day 9-13 to thicken it up. It worked like a charm for me leading into my pregnancy with my second child.

      This time around I waited several months after pulling the IUD and the past few months my periods have been what I would call “normal” periods: lasting 5-7 days, definite heavier flow. This indicated to me that I had a good thick lining.

      Are you under an RE’s care? It sounds like you may be since they are checking your lining. Keep asking questions and asking for what you want. If they are dismissing you, consider seeing another RE. Dr. Bruce Lessey in Greenville, SC is also an expert regarding endo and its relation to recurrent miscarriages. You may consider contacting him and seeing what he can do for you remotely.

      Best of luck and keep me posted!

      A

  2. heather says:

    Hi again…
    I just called my nurse to check my levels at my last month ultrasound.
    My endo lining was at 7.7 mm. on CD 9.
    Hmm? again, your site was very helpful. I don’t know if the levels rise by the time one ovulates on CD 14, but if you do I’d love to hear your comments, if you have time.

    Thank you !

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s