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   Thursday, December 02, 2004  

The return of Hope

Now that I've completed all of the work for my graduate classes this week (next week...now that's another story!) I can finally post.

Tuesday morning I saw a perinatologist. She examined my case and all of the testing that has been done to this point. I fully expected her to look at it, say "hmmm...we can try tests x, y and z, but other than that there's just nothing we can do...move along please." I expected that because that seems to be the norm for people who get pregnant easily but continually miscarry. At least to this point, none of the tests have given me a reason. There is nothing wrong with me. But the perinatologist pointed out to me that there is nothing wrong with me in the series of diagnoses they currently test for. This does not mean that there is nothing wrong! In fact, 5 years ago, some of what they now test for was unknown! People with those diagnoses were told that there was nothing wrong with them--because we just didn't know.

At that moment that one of those giant cartoon lightbulbs began beaming over my head. Science just hasn't figured me out...yet. It's a lovely thought. But then I thought, "Hey, wait...there's something wrong with you, we just don't know what and we might not know for another 5 or 10 years or more. Great. I'm fucked again!"

The perinatologist then told me about the most exciting thing I've heard of in the last 12 months since my whole cycle of pregnancy and miscarriage began (yes, I became pregnant for the first time between Thanksgiving and Christmas last year...a fucking year and no baby!). There is a doctor in Westchester County, NY (so very near me!) named Dr. Salafia. She is a reproductive pathologist. Basically, she looks at the slides made of the tissue that is removed in a D&C. This is mostly placental tissue, and it is her opinion that the placenta will hold the answers. She examines these slides and is able to find problems that we don't test for. Because even though miscarriages may appear to be quite different (blighted ovum, later, earlier, with continued bleeding, sudden and without warning, missed miscarriage, etc.) they could ALL be caused by the same thing! She postulates that the placenta, the most important part of the pregnancy, is the foundation. If this foundation is flawed or abnormal in any way, nothing that is built on it can stand; at some point, it's got to collapse. This makes sense to me. It's so -- logical! This woman is able to find genetic links people! And even though we don't know what gene it is to give it a nice tidy little package of a name to call it by, they're developing treatments!

Ok, so I know I've probably just confused the fuck out of people, but she has a website! You can look it up for your own damn self! And she'll examine the slides of anyone who sends them in -- no referrals needed -- and doesn't charge much: max of $350 ($275 if you do have a referral) for ANY NUMBER of slides from ANY NUMBER of miscarriages! Please, check her out. Consider doing it even if you think it won't help you; because in the end, she's the one doing the research that could help all of us.

Dr. Salafia's site

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A Little Pregnant
Barren Mare
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Here Be Hippogriffs
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Never Ever Late
One Pink Line
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So Close
Uncommon Misconception
The Unproductive Reproductive
Wasted Birth Control

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