I have a high pain threshold but I do not like the scratch.
Endometrial scratching has been shown in several randomised studies to improve the implantation rate. Scientists believe that there may be two reasons for the increased implantation rates:
- Increase of endometrial white blood cells. It appears that endometrial injury increases the production of white blood cells which secrete growth factors which in turn control embryo implantation.
- Gene switching within the endometrium. Scientists speculate that sometimes embryos fail to implant due to genetic switching related to endometrial receptivity. Genes responsible for implantation of embryos are not switched on during the time when embryos are supposed to implant. Endometrial scratching may increase switching on of genes thought to be responsible for preparation of endometrium (lining) for implantation.
The procedure is carried out in the luteal phase of the cycle (i.e. after ovulation) before your transfer, usually around day 21 of the cycle.
I’ve got pregnant with it and without it but what’s another £350 in my massive fertility bill and if it helps then great.
Apparently I have a slightly tilted uterus. This wasn’t actually noticed in my first two IVF cycles. My mum thinks it’s impacted on my ability to conceive as does my husband (lazy sperm can’t get over the tilt he thinks). All I know is it is a bugger to get the scratch implement in position and has resulted in me lying on the couch with a clamp being pulled down pretty hard to try to tilt my uterus into the right position. This hurts a lot. More than the actual scratch. The last time I had it the consultant had to abandon the procedure midway and sent me off to drink even more water as this helps tilt my uterus.
I had warned my new consultant about it – he was already on it having had difficulty in my hysteroscopy. I had to drink a lot of water – to the point where I thought I was going to pee myself. And then he scanned me and said more! When the nurse scanned me to get the instrument in position I swear a tiny bit of pee came out as she pressed so hard on my bladder. Anyway I didn’t care if I peed on the consultant as he also pulled the clamp down to tilt my uterus. It hurt. But he did it much more quickly than my last consultant and I hardly felt the actual scratch. I did however go all white and queasy for a few minutes again. I think it’s something to do with them grabbing the uterus. Unpleasant sensation!
I’m not trying to put anyone off the scratch. The actual scratch was very quick and relatively painless. I’m just glad it’s over. Hopefully no more uterus tilting for a while.