The world of medicine is like a bubble. A lot of people THINK they know what goes on there, but unless you're down in the trenches it's unlikely you do. So here is my semi-anonymous blog, here to tell you what really goes on in the life of a medical resident.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Who Knew?

The longer it's been since medical school, the more I realize how little I actually learned in medical school. Particularly in terms of practical knowledge.

Take pregnancy, for example. Getting pregnant seems to be something that should be pretty straightforward. Insert Tab A into Slot B, so to speak. But since Mr. Couz and I started contemplating kidlets of our own (aside from our fur-kids, I mean), I've learned a lot of things about procreation that make me wonder what the hell I was DOING for four years.

Things that were complete news to me:
  • It takes an AVERAGE of 8 months for a woman in her early 30's to get pregnant (in the absence of any fertility issues)
  • If your (non-hormonal) cycles are longer than 36 days, they are likely to be anovulatory
  • Pretty much all lubricants are spermicidal
  • Saliva is also spermicidal
  • Having sex daily will decrease your chances of conceiving when compared to doing it every second day or so-- apparently, doing it daily results in lesser quality sperm
I'm sure there are more, but these are the ones that come to mind immediately. But the most important message here is this-- when a type A personality and her husband decide to pull the goalie and let the fates decide from there, it is only a matter of days before she succumbs to the innate drive to read many books on the subject, starts charting her basal body temperature on fertility websites and obsessively analyzing charts and coverlines and prematurely puts down a deposit on a Bugaboo Frog.

Sigh. I can't be laid-back about anything anymore.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

welcome to the darkside, Doctor... :Þ

11:15 PM

Blogger AnesthesiaDoc said...

The net is empty... how exciting!!!!! I'm thinking fertile thoughts for you. Good luck!

11:30 PM

Blogger WriterGrrl said...

If you haven't already discovered Taking Charge of Your Fertility, that's the best book, IMO. I remember reading it and wondering how I had managed to live so many years as a woman and not know the things there.

8:28 AM

Blogger Mrs. Spaghetti Bender said...

Okay, now I am paranoid about saliva and lubricants. What is a woman to do??

8:40 AM

Blogger Patient Anonymous said...

Hmmm. Not something I'll ever need to worry about but still, interesting.

Best of luck and try not to stress about it if you can--that might be a hindrance too?!

3:16 PM

Blogger Nikki said...

It's amazing how many "accidents" there are, given all that, isn't it?

Good luck! ;)

3:39 PM

Blogger Liana said...

Good luck, Dr. Couz! I'm sending fertile vibes your way.

11:29 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

promise not to turn this blog into a mommy blog! ;)

4:53 PM

Blogger Fat Doctor said...

Husband and I are working on month #7 of trying. Last month, I actually cried when I got my period. Sigh. And I'm 38.5 years old. Sigh again. Best wishes. May the Fertile Force be with you! (And also with me...).

8:48 PM

Blogger Ottoette said...

Olive oil makes a loverly non-spermicidal lubricant. Proseed (I believe that's the name) - is a pro-fertility lubricant, but it ain't cheap.
Flat on your back with pillows under your butt for 10 minutes after the deed seems to do wonders for me.
I also highly recommend Hormonal Forecaster software from - cheap and works wonders, esp if you narrow down your own ovulatory cycle with some at home ovulation test kits. This is my 6th pregnancy in 5 years and I'm 44, so something is working! (4 miscarriages, but at least I could GET pregnant, staying that way is another set of issues).

10:26 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the woman who is 38.5, get to an RE as fast as possible. Over 35 and 6 months without getting pregnant you are, unfortunately, running out of time.

The dirty little secret of reproductive medicine is that every year after 35 lessens the chance of success - no matter the diagnosis. And if you are 40 or over, the majority of physicians will tell you to go straight to donor egg.

OB/GYNs and GPs who tell you not to worry are being irresponsible and costing many women the opportunity of having their own child. I, and too many women I know, have run into this. It is better to know sooner than later.

As to Taking Charge of Your Fertility? It should be given to every young woman at menarche so she understands her body. I'm highly educated and I didn't know 1/2 of what was in that book! I wish I had.

Dr. Couz, good luck. I hope you don't run into the issues I and many other professional women have.



4:54 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If sperm is mixed with saliva and inserted into vagina will sperm die

11:34 PM


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