Chief Project Manager of Reproduction

I have three sets of reproductive doctors: Dr. Kwak-Kim and her Nurse Practitioners, My Reproductive Endocrinologist – or I should just say, his nurses, since I’ve only gotten to actually speak to him once in 9 months, and my perinatologist who is on-call, ready to go when this extremely high-risk uterus of mine lands a baby. That’s right, for those following along, I’m still un-knocked up. Damn you, you smugly right pee sticks.

All three doctors offices are supposedly working together to impregnate the great medical mystery that is me. But as I’ve come to find out “working together” means they occasionally allow me to make mention of the other doctors and their recommendations without balking.

So it means I’ve taken another job. No, don’t be confused, I still have my regular 8-5 job. But this other job, well it’s more demanding with the not-so-guaranteed possibility of someday being rewarding.

I am now Chief Project Manager of Reproduction.

What exactly does Chief Project Manager of Reproduction do? It’s a medical position. But the fact that I have absolutely no medical experience is of no concern to anyone involved. Key responsibilities include communicating and interpreting lab results, medical prognoses and cycle recommendations between doctors, nurses, schedulers, insurance companies, pharmacists, lab technicians and one acupuncturist.

Side responsibilities include arguing with that guy at the specialty pharmacy who was supposed to ship IVIG medicine before the day it was needed, coordinating scheduling with a home health nurse for bi-weekly infusions, and being able to name the exact size of IV catheter, tubing and equipment needed at my home at any given time.

Despite its many duties, this role does have some major perks. One of them being sex. Lots of sex. Assuming, of course, that there’s a blinking smiley face showing on a stick I just peed on.

And, of course, there’s the valuable experience I am gaining. A year ago, I never would’ve been able to spout off recommended cytokine ratios or which type of tube blood needs to be collected in order to test them. Now, I could teach a course. And I practically do every time I go to the lab to get my blood drawn. Plus I’m getting really good at accurately describing the color and consistency of my period blood to a nurse without blushing.

Of course, for the role of Chief Project Manager of Reproduction, there is no pay. But I figure if I put in enough time here, someday there’ll be the possibility of a promotion to Chief Project Manager of Gestation. And from what I hear, after nine months, that one has a pretty sweet payout.

10 thoughts on “Chief Project Manager of Reproduction

  1. Ha! This is sooooo true! I am just about to do what you are — be both a patient of an RE and a reproductive immunologist at the same time. No perinatologist yet for me, though. But yeah, I’ve been wondering how that’s going to work. It’s already a full-time position with just one doctor, nurses and pharmacies!

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  2. You nailed it – every word is so true! We are a patient, our own advocate, more knowledgeable about reproduction then most family doctors, have pharmacies, doctors and nurses on call. It’s a lot of work to manage it all, but no-one else is going to do it so it’s a job we all have to take on. And, once we stopped trying I quickly learned that adoption requires just as much, if not more effort to manage. It’s all so crazy!
    Wishing you the best! And good on you for playing an active role in your own health and care!

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  3. Hey, I don’t know your whole story, but someone on twitter retweeted this post and I checked it out- (I’m @JenRam3 on twitter- a protected account- so need to be following for my comments to show up). Curious about your involvement with Dr. Kwak-Kim & use of IVIG. I have an autoimmune condition and have been doing fertility treatments for about a year now (waiting to find out how my 2nd IVF went). Doctors know of my condition but aren’t sure whether it affects the fertility piece and haven’t done anything about it. My mom’s actually on IVIG as she also has autoimmune condition- though obviously not for fertility reasons.
    And you’re right- it is a full-time job managing your own infertility care!

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    1. I’d highly recommend looking into Dr. Kwak-Kim if you have known autoimmune issues. If you haven’t already, look into the book “Is Your Body Baby Friendly” By Dr. Alan Beer. http://www.amazon.com/Your-Body-Baby-Friendly-Unexplained-Infertility/dp/0978507800
      Dr. Kwak-Kim studied under Dr. Beer and is one of the few doctors in the world who knows how to properly test for autoimmune conditions in relation to infertility.

      A couple of other helpful resources: first, here’s an ongoing discussion between patients of hers:
      http://www.inspire.com/groups/finding-a-resolution-for-infertility/discussion/april-edition-dr-kwak-appointments-updates/?reply_sort=desc#replies

      And this is the homepage for where she practices. To become a patient, you’ll need to click on “forms” in the footer and then click on the new patient forms for the Reproductive medicine center. They are lengthy, and her office will need them faxed along with your medical records before you can book an appointment. http://www.rfuhs.com/Reproductive-Medicine-Center.aspx
      It takes some time, but finally having answers and a plan of action makes the wait worth it.

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  4. Hi
    I agree with a lot of what you have written. It’s a lot of work to handle it all, but no anyone else is going to do it so it’s a job we all have to take on. It’s true, despite its many duties, this role does have some major perks.

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