To think there are worse pains than labour?

(346 Posts)
coraltoes Thu 07-Feb-13 15:37:54

Having recently badly broken a bone WIBU to say actually, it hurt a fuckload more than giving birth? I honestly thought nothing could hurt more than labour, but lo and behold something did! (for less hours admittedly but nothing amazing to cuddle at the end). The bone had to be pulled back into place with gas and air and a local block, which made me nearly vomit.

Come and share with me your injury horrors and tell me whether they trumped your labour pains. please do not thik i am trying to undermine ladies with horrendous labours, i am sure some of you would put me to great shame :D

Tortington Thu 07-Feb-13 15:39:04

sad hope it heals soon.

try twins vaginal delivery

pinkteddy Thu 07-Feb-13 15:40:27

I vividly remember the pain of my broken arm even though it was more years ago than I care to remember! But once they strapped it up - ready to go into plaster the pain was gone unlike labour pains that just went on and on and on...

valiumredhead Thu 07-Feb-13 15:41:09

I agree about broken bones - just awful and no lovely baby at the end sad

Didn't they knock you out to move your bone? I had a short GA for 20 mins! shock

Hope you are on the mend soon thanks

Bluemonkeyspots Thu 07-Feb-13 15:41:14

Have you not seen that stupid picture doing the rounds on Facebook about labour being the same as having 27 bones broken at once (or some stupid number like they)

Not sure how the worked that one out though hmm

GloryWhole Thu 07-Feb-13 15:42:26

I had an 80+ hour labour with a back to back baby, induced 3 times, forceps, blah blah blah.
I'd gladly go through that again ten times over than have to put up with the hell of a gall stone attack.

noddyholder Thu 07-Feb-13 15:42:43

Kidney stones

StinkyWicket Thu 07-Feb-13 15:43:05

Custardo - you as well! shock grin

Dunno - I haven't broken a bone, twins delivery was vaginal but I had an epidural so was fine, DS was a natural birth and that did hurt.

However on balance it didn't make me cry with pain or nearly pass out like when I smacked my head on the underside of the bunkbeds, or when I get a migraine.

ENormaSnob Thu 07-Feb-13 15:43:22

Subjective innit.

I found peritonitis more painful, but only just.

Never had a baby, but cluster headaches aren't much fun. They aren't nicknamed 'the suicide headache' for nothing.

FirstTimeForEverything Thu 07-Feb-13 15:44:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Pandemoniaa Thu 07-Feb-13 15:44:28

I'd definitely say that the day I had acute appendicitis followed by the 24 hours after the full laparotomy they did afterwards (minus morphine because I'm allergic to it) was very much more painful than my two, straightforward vaginal deliveries. The second of which was drug and stitch free. I realise I was lucky but I'd have happily had a third labour rather than the complications of the appendicitis.

weegiemum Thu 07-Feb-13 15:46:36

Kidney stones.

I passed a kidney stone in labour.

They are vile, evil, the devils stones. Even if you do catch them, they're a crappy wee bit of gravel. Not a lovely baby!

I had them in 2 pregnancies out of 3. Owwch!

coraltoes Thu 07-Feb-13 15:46:44

holy cow we have been through the wars!

twins VB sounds tough, i'll give you that hehe

this is all making me feel much better though, sorry for lack of caps, hard to use both hands.

ENormaSnob Thu 07-Feb-13 15:47:37

Oh god yes, the recovery from laparotomy which I meant to include with the peritonitis.

weegiemum Thu 07-Feb-13 15:47:43

Hey noddyholder x- post!!

coraltoes Thu 07-Feb-13 15:48:05

Firsttimeforeverything, wtf happened to get you so many broken bones? sounds awful.

kinkyfuckery Thu 07-Feb-13 15:48:35

I've had two vaginal births.
I've also had kidney stones and gallstones (and gall bladder removal).

I'd take the labours!

Itsnotahoover Thu 07-Feb-13 15:49:04

The worst pain I've ever felt was an abscess under my wisdom tooth which burst in the middle of the night and made me vomit and pass out. Closely followed by my ear drum perforating when flying! That bloody hurt! I dare say labour was awful, but I've kind of blocked that out!!

JesusInTheCabbageVan Thu 07-Feb-13 15:49:25

My DH has been through an ordeal which would put you all to shame. While I was in labour (this would have been around four hours before the birth) he got a splinter in his hand. He actually came over to show me, while I was crouched down digging my nails into the coffee table and trying not to be sick. He then pottered off muttering "That really hurts."

Bless. hmm

MammaTJ Thu 07-Feb-13 15:50:09

YABU, I broke my ankle in three places and ended up needing surgery to pin and plate it two weks later. I still think labour hurts more. I had had a lovely labour prior to the break, then two fairly horrific ones after but they all hurt more than the broken bone.

weegiemum Thu 07-Feb-13 15:51:52

I'm glad the kidney stone sistas think it was worse than labour. No (female) believes me! But it was worse. With dd2 every bloody day for 6 months! Really nasty, evil things!

coraltoes Thu 07-Feb-13 15:52:16

Jesusinthecabbagevan, i hope he has made a full recovery poor love.

sydlexic Thu 07-Feb-13 15:52:59

I had hideous gallstone pain but nowhere near labour. We don't all feel the same though do we.

If you had given me a gun when I was in labour I would gladly have shot myself.

Tooth ache. OUCH. Would much rather give birth 18 times than have another tooth pulled out.

FirstTimeForEverything Thu 07-Feb-13 15:53:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JesusInTheCabbageVan Thu 07-Feb-13 15:54:22

coraltoes grin Well, it was a tough few hours for him, but he stayed strong and pulled through.

posted this before...

pneumonia- imagine thousands of tiny little knives stabbing you from the inside out every time you breathe, move, well do anything really

I'll quite willingly have labour over pneumonia any day

NatashaBee Thu 07-Feb-13 15:55:18

I've heard lots of people say that gall stones were worse than labour. Labour was agonizingly painful, but at least there was a clear end in sight. I have a bad back and sometimes the spasms from that are worse than I remember labour being.

FirstTimeForEverything Thu 07-Feb-13 15:55:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BelaLugosisShed Thu 07-Feb-13 15:58:35

Sinus infection and tooth abcess that shattered the tooth were both worse than 18 hour back to back labour with contactions every 5 minutes from the outset.

Quenelle Thu 07-Feb-13 15:58:56

RightSaidFreud I am with you there on cluster headaches.

And, coincidentally, I said "They aren't nicknamed 'the suicide headache' for nothing" to the GP I saw last week - after she suggested I try blowing into a paper bag to relieve the pain hmm

SinisterBuggyMonth Thu 07-Feb-13 16:00:08

After suffering a dental infection that made my whole face blow up labour was a breeze. Contractions come and go, you get a break from the pain. Toothache is constant terrible pain. For days and days.

Xiaoxiong Thu 07-Feb-13 16:01:25

Burst appendix was far, far worse. 24 hours throwing up with pain with no end in sight (was told it was gastroenteritis and I'd just have to get through it). And this was when DS was 4 weeks old so memory of childbirth was quite recent for comparative purposes.

skullcandy Thu 07-Feb-13 16:03:29

the nearest i've got to it was my run in with kidney stones/renal colic last year.

having had two kids without pain relief, it really is a toss-up over which was worse, because at least with labour you could breathe through it.. renal colic hurts when you breath, and there were no contractions either, it was just constant and even morphine didnt touch it... it just made it so i didnt give a crap about being in pain anymore.

piprabbit Thu 07-Feb-13 16:03:36

When I had pneumonia I had pockets of pus in my lungs. One of the ways they dealt with them was to send me down to ultrasound where the lovely man would scan across my back to get a picture of my lungs and then insert a long needle between my ribs, into the pus pocket and then syringe out the pus. It wasn't too bad.

Until the day that ultrasound were having a crisis and didn't have time to do the whole procedure. So the nice man scanned my back and marked with crosses in biro where they needed to put the needle. I was sent back to the ward where two new doctors (it was August so they were all shiny and new on the rotation) spent an hour ramming the needle into my back repeatedly. They weren't sure of the angle of entry and kept missing the pus, so they'd have another go. So I sat there trying to keep 100% still (like when you have an epidural) to prevent causing any extra damage, with tears running down my face as I felt the tip of the needle rasp across my ribs vomit.

The pain, coupled with the pressure of needing to be still and the fear of how much long it could possibly go on, beat labour hands down. I didn't have enough lung capacity to scream, I could only sob and fight for breath.

Sticklebug Thu 07-Feb-13 16:05:06

Tonsils out and then repeated vomiting for 2 days-pain was much worse than 2 vaginal births with no pain relief

Pandemoniaa Thu 07-Feb-13 16:05:34

Appendicitis is a real shocker, mine also turned to peritonitis and the worst of it is that you usually spend several days getting ever worse, all the while being told you have something else - in my case a UTI.

I've also broken all the bones in my ankle and had to have that reconstructed with metalwork and pins and stuff. It didn't hurt anywhere near as much as I expected, tbh although the moment that the bones went crack was one I'd rather not repeat.

I think the difference between illness, accidents and labour is that a happy outcome from labour is so much more productive, so to speak!

willoughboobs Thu 07-Feb-13 16:05:50

i was in labour for 4 full days induced 3 times failed forceps & ventouse that ended in an emergency c-section confused

not quite an injury but would definitely rather go through it all again than have toothache or earache!!

broke tibia and fibula and dislocated my foot. didn't hurt too much at first, but after the adrenaline had worn off it started to hurt. a lot. then when they reset the bone and my foot under morphine I could hear myself scream, but the I must have passed out 'cos I don't remember anything else until the pot was just about on.

it also hurt like fuck after I had surgery to pin it all back together again. was on morphine for 5 days.

I'd rather have another baby than go through that again.

Trills Thu 07-Feb-13 16:06:42


Different people experience labour (and broken bones) in different ways.

YANBU to say that for you this was worse than labour, as far as you remember.

havingastress Thu 07-Feb-13 16:08:10

3 broken arms.

1 broken ankle.

I birth - induced, forceps, back to back, episiotomy, epidural.

I wanted to DIE with the birth. NOTHING has ever been on a par with that pain worse. Nothing!!!

But I'm sure pain is all subjective/relative and different for everyone grin

And I did get a rather gorgeous baby from the birth so not going to grumble!!!

TheCountessOlenska Thu 07-Feb-13 16:09:22

I thought that the period pains I had as a teenager were worse than labour pains, as they were constant not intermittent - but the gas&air probably helped!

LadyFlumpalot Thu 07-Feb-13 16:10:12

Tooth abscess. Made me vomit with the pain.

Charleymouse Thu 07-Feb-13 16:10:39

Toothache with an abcess in my front tooth was way worse than labour, the only way to get any relief was to put my finger up my nose and squeeze the infected yuk down towards my tooth. <<shudders at memory>>

I had horific stomach cramps with sickness and diarrhoea when DD1 was due and thought it was the onset of labour it was so bad. I was bent double and in serious pain and then really dreaded labour as I thought it would be the same but worse - it was actually shed loads better.

Emergency section twin birth prety horrific. Screamed, literally screamed when the spinal went in. DH looked at me aghast and said that must really hurt for you to do that. I have never felt pain like it, although the recovery from an emergency section was pretty horrific.

I would much rather labour with no pain relief than have toothache, earache, backache, mastitis, sysciatica or an epidural.

Thanking big styleee I have never had a kidney/gall stones.

Another Gallstone sufferer here... It felt like my chest was being ripped open... Much worse than my appendicitis and labour... Cholecystitus was even worse and quite dangerous, which is why I'm having the bastard gallbladder taken out in a few weeks smile

curryeater Thu 07-Feb-13 16:14:12

I am tempted to say that I have had period pains worse than labour pains, but I think it is pyschological - the actual peak of a contraction is awful but (if you are lucky, I was) it does subside in between, and of course the main thing is that when you are having a baby you are a hero with people bringing you things and no one expecting you to multi-task in any way at all and life on hold and someone else looking after your first child and the whole world praying for you, but when you have period pains you are a snivelling shameful wreck on the floor of a toilet hiding from the people who are wondering why you haven't done that report yet and you can't come out and explain in case you vomit on them or shit yourself.

SunnyL Thu 07-Feb-13 16:14:15

Ooh I like this one. Pregnant with my first and a bit concerned about what labour feels like. But judging by the comments above I should be fine as I've had 12 kidney stones so far so if I can survive that I can survive labour???

Charleymouse Thu 07-Feb-13 16:14:21

DOH illiterate fool

zzzzz Thu 07-Feb-13 16:14:54

In order
1) Renal colic
2) 9lb10 b2b birth with mad no drugs kiwi midwife
3) Twins vaginal birth
4) Appendix

Mumindoha Thu 07-Feb-13 16:15:11

'After Pains' - some women (myself included) get them after giving birth as the uterus 'pings' back into shape. But it 'pings' more slowly and painfully after each birth. After my fourth baby - Owwww MUCH worse than labour and the pain put sent me into shock. I was going to have another but the after pains put me off

SirBoobAlot Thu 07-Feb-13 16:15:13

Suspected endo, along with PCOS, left over SPD and CFS / Fibro pains. Currently can't move my left leg without nearly screaming, and have thrown up four times in the last 24 hours in pain. Been getting gradually worse for the last two years.

Yes, would rather be in labour. At least there is a break between contractions and a baby at the end.

calandarbear Thu 07-Feb-13 16:15:48


I've had two children, first 9lb7 back to back vaginal delivery, second 9lb6 back to back vaginal delivery.

Both labours pale into insignificance when compared to the torn muscle in my shoulder that didn't mend well and means I can't lift my left arm above my head without feeling like someone is trying to slicemy arm off with a sword just removed from a blacksmiths fire

ShowOfHands Thu 07-Feb-13 16:17:17

Labour with dd was the most excruciating pain in the world. I would have happily performed my own cs.

CS recovery both times was a doddle, no pain at all.

Labour with ds was painfree (even though at 38hrs it was significantly longer than with dd).

Just goes to show really. Different labours, different pains, different experiences.

Shesparkles Thu 07-Feb-13 16:17:48

I was lucky and had relatively pal free labours, but have also had an episode of palindromic rheumatism. Now THAT was worse than labour , and when I said so to the comsultant, he did say that a lot of women described it as such. It must be right then!

I had a corneal abrasion that hurt like fuck constantly for three days and took over a week to heal properly. I said more than once I'd rather be in labour.

hydronephrosis which is where instead of going down, it goes back up. For some reason, I have in labour and I can assure you it's fairly comparable.

Although one helpful doctor joked about my hydronephrosis that I didn't need a doctor as much as a plumber hmm

yellowsnownoteatwillyou Thu 07-Feb-13 16:21:07

Am pregnant with first and was pondering how bad labour will be and if i would cope, however I managed to walk into hospital 5 hrs before my gallbladder burst, I think I will be ok, if that's supposed to be worse. grin

Alwaysasking Thu 07-Feb-13 16:22:24

Oh definitely, the most painful thing I have ever done, a million times worse than my experience of giving birth without painkillers - was scratching my eye with a chocolate bar wrapper! It was a dairy milk bar and the corrugated sharp bit at the end scratched my pupil. Honest to god I wanted to die for 3 days and was screaming in pain at times. I know it sounds ridiculous but I have given birth, had my tonsils removed aged 23, had my nose straightened surgically after breaking it and scratching my eye trumped them all.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 16:22:33

I had almost no break between contractions (both labours) The fear had just enough time to well up between each one, but nothing more than that. I struggle to think of anything that could hurt more, EXCEPT for being tortured.

SunnyL, you'll be fiiiiine! smile

Rilson Thu 07-Feb-13 16:24:51

Tooth Abscess,pissing out a kidney stone and then the pain of TMJ after my last wisdom tooth was taken under a local. She gauged it out instead of pulling.It then got infected and she tore the ligaments in my jaw with the force.

They are my most painful experiences. I gave birth 3 times and 2 of those without pain relief and I had 3 of my wisdom teeth pulled under a local,1 was cut out and stitched. Labour and those 3 teeth being removed were a walk in the park compared to the top experiences!

MumOfTheLittleMonsters Thu 07-Feb-13 16:25:05

I don't think everyones births hurt the same amount. I didn't feel anything more than a bit of an ache until 5cm, but then lots of people are screaming in pain at 2cm!

Also pain is much worse when it's not "for anything" and there's no forceeable end point of the pain like with labour. I had no pain relief during labour, and I dont think I coped too badly, but with the after contractions a day or 2 later I was crying in pain and practically begging the nurse for paracetamol.

stopgap Thu 07-Feb-13 16:25:13

Before having a baby I'd had:

Kidney stones
Three burst ovarian cysts
Horrific periods due to adenomyosis (think vomiting, diarrhea and contractions)

Giving birth, drug-free, back-to-back labour, was a walk in the park.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 16:25:36

I did not mean that to sound flippant. Sorry. I support a charity that supports victims of torture.

MumOfTheLittleMonsters Thu 07-Feb-13 16:26:13

*I mean in labour there is a foreseeable end point

sweetheart Thu 07-Feb-13 16:28:27

Dislocating my knee was much, much worse than my labours. I still feel actually physically sick even thinking about it nearly 2 years on.

curryeater Thu 07-Feb-13 16:30:12

Yes, I agree that the end point thing with labour is really important and why it is bearable, but the main point is that while you do not know when the end point is (before you are pushing), you must NOT ask yourself "when will this be over?", because then you will think "it could be 3 days!"

I have had cystitis worse than labour - but maybe I just think that everything a bit embarrassing and not resulting in cuddly babies is worse than labour. I hated the cystitis worse than labour, but of course it wasn't that bad I suppose.

NinaHeart Thu 07-Feb-13 16:30:53

Dislocated kneecap. It made me howl like an animal while the concious part of me thought "who on earth is making that shocking noise?

(Have had three children with no pain relief)

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 16:33:09


that is true. And cystitis is awful

SoWhatIfImWorkingClass Thu 07-Feb-13 16:34:10

I coped better during childbirth than when I had the most excruciating toothache last year. There really is no pain relief for toothache at all and unlike giving birth there's nothing nice at the end of it, only a nice bill.

PleasePudding Thu 07-Feb-13 16:40:03

Massive breast abscess just under the nipple vs back to back labour- both fucking horrendous.

And accidental chilli/fanny contact - pretty painful too

SoWhatIfImWorkingClass Thu 07-Feb-13 16:44:09

I think I will end up having a back to back labour this time around as he's not for budging. After hearing people's experiences of this I am quite scared!! Ah well, I'm a brave girl I'm sure I'll cope lol.

CaseyShraeger Thu 07-Feb-13 16:48:51

Kidney stones were worse than most of labour but not as bad as transition <gets remarkably specific>

Pain like standing on a plug or a piece of Lego?

Least with labour you are in pain for a reason grin

Wishihadabs Thu 07-Feb-13 16:49:15

Breaking a bone far, far worse. Horrible displaced fracture though and straight forward vaginal births.

KD0706 Thu 07-Feb-13 16:50:39

My labours with my DDs each lasted a few days. I think the tiredness was what made the pain seem worse. I wonder if that's the case for lots of women, so the actual pain isn't as bad as, say, kidney stones, but the fact you have the pain go on and on for days and you are tired etc makes it feel worse?

minouminou Thu 07-Feb-13 16:51:56

Bone surgery at the age of 14. I only got poxy paracetamol as pain relief after. I remember asking for morphine and the nurses refusing.
Worst of all, I was in a hospital miles from home and the village my mum lived in was snowed in at the time, so I was all on my own....
Sob sob...

Still, that's nothing compared to the suffering of poor CabbageVan's DH

That poor guy.

PipRabbit, though.....your account had me punching the back of the sofa once or twice.......zoiks, lady.

expatinscotland Thu 07-Feb-13 16:52:28


Have broken bones, had surgery, blah blah blah.

Labour was worse.

catladycourtney1 Thu 07-Feb-13 16:55:08

I quite like this thread smile I'm due in about three weeks and have been starting to fret about giving birth, but I've had tooth abscesses and terrible cystitis (like others have mentioned) which were awful. But I got through them, so I'm feeling more confident now that I can get through labour, especially since I get to meet my baby at the end of that!

Now, I'd appreciate it if no-one would burst my bubble... grin

drjohnsonscat Thu 07-Feb-13 16:57:39

I had a nasty bout of tonsillitis once blush

2 ELCS and a sore throat. Not sure what I am doing on this thread.

BabyRoger Thu 07-Feb-13 16:57:51

Well, it depends because some labours are easier and a lot less sore than others.

I broke my sternum in a car accident - that was very sore.

The pain was nothing compared to a 52 hour back to back labour - and that was nothing compared to the 'internal manoeuvre' then forceps - with zero pain relief. I thought they were killing me by torture.

I then had another baby the pain from that was no worse than toothache.

I don't think you can compare people's labours. My two were very different.


minouminou Thu 07-Feb-13 16:59:47

Whenever I try to describe labour to someone, I say the pain is a "working pain" - a muscle working really hard. At first, at least.
With my first labour, the dying off of the contractions was awful, as DS' arm was over his head, so my cervix was closing back over something that wasn't meant to be there.

That wasn't pleasant.

worriedmum100 Thu 07-Feb-13 17:01:08

Slipped disc and resulting surgical removal and recovery was very very painful....but labour was worse. Ds was back to back and I was one of those people in agony at 2cm. I got little comfort from the breaks inbetween contractions. Because my labour progressed sooooo slowly I just couldn't consider carrying on like that for hours and hours more so had an epidural. Didn't progress though so they hooked me up to syntocin right at the moment the epidural fell out. That was the most pain I've ever been in. Vomit inducing pain. Ick.

LynetteScavo Thu 07-Feb-13 17:04:34

3 births, one tooth abscess and a kidney infection.

Birth 1 was the most hideous of them all.

Birth three was the least painful.

Stubbing your toe can really really hurt for a bit...or is that just me? grin

NameGotLostInCyberspace Thu 07-Feb-13 17:06:38

This thread is making me wince.

4th degree tear, now that smarted abit. -Howled like a fucking lion-

Oh had a few terrible bouts of constipation. Think feeling dizzy/sick with pain wanting to crack my head on the sink to knock myself out.

NameGotLostInCyberspace Thu 07-Feb-13 17:07:04

strike out fail blush

Isildur Thu 07-Feb-13 17:12:32

Raging toothache was absolutely the worst pain of my life, and I have a very high tolerance for pain.

I've been lucky that my births were more a case of extreme discomfort, rather than outright pain.

I had the last baby without any pain relief at all, and just gas & air for the others, and that was fine.

Toothache though, that had me rocking on the floor, and chomping through towels, and popping painkillers with very little regard for safe limits. Agony.

CarlingBlackMabel Thu 07-Feb-13 17:13:55

The couple of times I have had a tooth abcess have been far worse than labour.

I felt as if I was doing something in labour, keeping moving, and breathing and everything. Not as horrible as a terrible throbbing, right in-your-face tooth abcess at all.

And when it got too bad - for me when they made me lie down for Oxytocin and therefore monitoring followed by assisted delivery - I had an epidural.

MadHairDay Thu 07-Feb-13 17:14:07

Ouch at all these. Piprabbit, I had a similar experience with an inexperienced doctor trying to draw excess fluid from my lungs with pneumonia (this was only a few weeks ago so toooo fresh in my mind) - he could not get it in the right place/at the right angle and it was excrutiating - after about half an hour the other doctor came in and did it straight away. I had nearly passed out with pain and couldn't breathe anyway. Hideous. I've had pneumonia several times, and would say the pain was sometimes worse than labour in that there was no end result, it is so unrelenting and hopeless.

Mind you, I had pleurisy in labour with dd, then ventouse delivery, and then a pph needing surgery after the birth, and that was pretty close to the worse pain I've ever experienced.

landofsoapandglory Thu 07-Feb-13 17:15:16

I had surgery to remove the pins, plates and screws that had been used to fuse my symphysis pubis. The bone had grown over the edges of the plates so it had to be chiseled away, the surgeon needed to use lots and lots of force to dig them out. He, also, manipulated my pelvis under great force to make sure it could cope with smaller plates without becoming unstable again.

They gave me Tramadol through a PDA machine, but it broke after 3 hours and they wouldn't give me anything else until the anaesthetist came to fix it, but he never came! It was absolute agony all through the fecking night!

Have done twin viginal birth au natural,
But by far the worse pain I've ever had is after a Thoracotomy I really wanted to die, then had to have another one 3 weeks later.

Theicingontop Thu 07-Feb-13 17:16:46

Tooth abscess and exposed dental nerve. For two weeks. Unending, face-throbbing, literally blinding agony.

My induced 17-hour labour without pain relief was peanuts compared to it.

Though I wouldn't wish either on anyone.

LengLogs Thu 07-Feb-13 17:19:07

Ectopic Pregnancy - Ruptured fallopian tube.

I thought my stomach was about to explode and begged the doctors to put me to sleep.

Far worse than labour IMO.

Marlinspike Thu 07-Feb-13 17:22:07

Suffering with a pulled muscle at the base of my spine at the moment. When I move in a certain way the muscles go into spasm, which reminds me very much of labour.

littleomar Thu 07-Feb-13 17:22:50

Corneal ulcer - definitely worse than unmedicated labour and birth

CecyHall Thu 07-Feb-13 17:27:27

Ear infection- I cannot cope with ear infections (well I do as I'm still here).

Plus I think the hormones in labour make me look back and think it was quite fun in a twisted sort of way and I love gas and air.

Peka Thu 07-Feb-13 17:30:02

Spasm of sub scapular muscle was the worst pain ever. Much worse than labour. But diazepam is the bomb. I saved some for future emergencies.

suzyrut Thu 07-Feb-13 17:30:29

Big difference for me is the kind of pain relief you know you can get in labour,
about 10 years ago I had viral menengitis, felt like someone swinging a hammer inside my head with even the slightest movement, was throwing up constantly with the pain which didn't help with the head balancing! As they needed to keep me responsive I wasn't able to have any decent pain relief for 48 hours (paracetamol and codeine only) where as I had an epidural during both my induced labours when the pains got really bad.

Abscess in tooth was terrible.

Dh had abscess in testicle - when they offered him gas n air I thought he was going to give birth.

suzyrut Thu 07-Feb-13 17:32:30

BTW I doff my cap to you theicingontop for doing an induced labour pain relief free!

AliGrylls Thu 07-Feb-13 17:35:02

YABU - everyone feels pain differently and everyone's labour is different.

SirBoobAlot Thu 07-Feb-13 17:35:30

Stopgap, sorry to corner you, but how did you get diagnosed with adenomyosis? That sounds like what I'm going through at the moment, and having just googled it, it actually sounds more accurate than the endo diagnosis I have a ? over. My pain is horrific, and the bowel and bladder issues seem to be getting worse, and I feel like I am actually having contractions at time, just longer than the ones in labour. Have got another lapraoscopy in three weeks time.

Twinklestarstwinklestars Thu 07-Feb-13 17:36:36

I fractured my hip and it wasn't diagnosed for 2 months despite constant trips to doctors and hospital, I would rather have either of my labours again (3 hours and then 20 mins) than fracture my hip again!

FoofFighter Thu 07-Feb-13 17:37:20

Slipped disc and resulting muscle spasms/sciatica = ten times worse than either of my labours.

FoofFighter Thu 07-Feb-13 17:38:13

And actually gall stones were a bit worse than labour too.

Babyroobs Thu 07-Feb-13 17:38:48

A case of severe heamorroids after giving birth - went on for two weeks and felt like someone sticking a knife up my backside. Horrendously painful - I couldn't sit or stand properly .

Jins Thu 07-Feb-13 17:38:57

I found that an infected gall bladder, a tooth abscess and peritonitis following a burst ovarian cyst to be worse than labour because the pain is constant. Pain relief in labour worked well for me though

ChestyNut Thu 07-Feb-13 17:40:53

No babies yet but the pain of a dislocated shoulder made me want to be unconscious at times!
Made me vomit and pass out envy

TheRobberBride Thu 07-Feb-13 17:41:58

Some labours are certainly worse than others. I broke my leg in my early 20s (before kids) and that was hands down the worst pain I'd ever been in up to that point. DD1s completely unmedicated birth was a breeze compared to that. DD2s labour on the other hand was much more painful than DD1s. But, on balance, I still think breaking my leg was more painful than either of my labours.

These were my least favourite pain experiences:
The headache I got with a spinal tap.
The pain I had in one side of my head at the beginning of Bell's palsy.
Labour with the second of our babies that died in utero.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 17:47:42


Oh yes. 2nd degree tear plus pulsating piles = much worse recovery than from an EMCS

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 17:48:53


I am so sorry. That just must be appalling

Fillyjonk75 Thu 07-Feb-13 17:51:28

Yes, I think the pain of being ill or injured can be much worse.

Tooth abscess is indeed excruciating - it's so localised and concentrated too!

Also when I was 7 I got chickenpox and unfortunately a serious infection from a spot on my belly. I had terrible stabbing pains all across my abdomen, and I was really scared as well which made it worse sad

wanderingcloud Thu 07-Feb-13 17:53:51

My labour with DS was a walk in the park compared to some of my period pains I had when younger, to the extent that I couldn't believe I was in labour as it really was nothing in comparison!

Current tooth abscess has been pretty bad but top of my chart for pain + sheer misery of existence and embarrassment factor; anal fissures. On the same level as the third degree tear I had after birth, but every single time you go to the loo. I literally howled in pain every day, for 2 months. Absolutely hideous.

Wouldn't like a kidney stone though...

TheYamiOfYawn Thu 07-Feb-13 17:53:53

I've had period pains worse than DD's birth. DS was the most pain I've ever been in, but I've never really been in bad pain.

BiddyPop Thu 07-Feb-13 17:54:48

Broken tooth.
Legs waxing (other areas are worse again)
Torn ligaments in my ankle

All DEFINITELY worse than childbirth. I did childbirth on hot water (shower), tens for a while, and a few puffs of G&A at the end (and I do mean - a few puffs).

maddening Thu 07-Feb-13 17:55:58

It depends on the labour - mine was 4 days but not overly painful even though back to back and 9lb 7oz on a tens machine with paracetamol - the stitches and general pain after was the worst bit but bearable - I have a hernia though because of that so will have to add the pain of surgery to my list smile

kerala Thu 07-Feb-13 17:56:12

Oh no competitive pain reminds me of my deeply annoying FIL who was quick to tell me his kidney stones were worse than either of my labours hmm to him.

My lovely granny who had 3 DC but never been ill until she had stomach cancer in her 80s (sadly was the end for her). Coming round after her first operation she said "all that fuss and not even a baby to show for it".

AvonCallingBarksdale Thu 07-Feb-13 17:56:29

Gallstones beat labour for me hands down.

I've remembered another one! Having a D&C with only gas and air. All part of the same experience as one and three above. This is what happened:

I went for my 20 week scan, feeling nervous as our last baby had died around that time. This time I had felt the baby moving the day before, but no heartbeat on the scan or the subsequent scans done by another sonographer and the consultant.

Took the pills to get labour going. Pessary to speed things up. Worst labour pain I'd had before or since. Wished they would just kill me and be done with it. Daughter born, looked tiny but beautiful. Placenta not budging.

Several hours later, still waiting for D&C as emergency theatre busy with actual emergencies rather than my non-life threatening stuck placenta. Finally, in the middle of the night, we get a slot. Anaesthetist gives me a spinal for the D&C, but it doesn't work. They give me the choice to have the D&C with gas and air, or wait to see if the anaesthetic kicked in but maybe miss our slot.

By this point I was fed up with wandering around with an umbilical cord hanging between my legs. We had said goodbye to our daughter and I wanted to go home and grieve. So I went for the D&C, took gas and air. It was awful.

Back on the ward, I tried to get up to go to the loo, and that's the time the spinal anaesthetic started to work. As soon as I got home, I realised I had a spinal tap. Imploding, excruciating headache which became unbearable every time I moved out of a horizontal position.

After a couple of days, it started to ease. Then my milk came in. sad

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 17:59:34


I had terrible period pains when younger, and between pregnancies. As a result, I thought I'd cope with labour, but it was much worse than I expected. I'd say 10 times worse

I opted for a Mirena because I found period pains traumatic after I'd had my DCs - nor periods !! When I had the first Mirena removed after 5 years the pain of the new one being put in was excruciating. I think I have a funny uterus or something (medical term)

CMOTDibbler Thu 07-Feb-13 17:59:49

I'd have rather given birth a hundred times than ever, ever, ever go anywhere near having compartment syndrome again. I was blacking out, vomiting, and unable to construct a word other than screaming. It was sheer hell.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 17:59:51

no periods

Waking up after 10 hours of surgery to straighten and pin my entire spine was considerably more painful than either of my two labours.

The resulting constipation because of the morphine and codeine was also considerably more painful than labour grin

lljkk Thu 07-Feb-13 18:08:41

Amazons, the lot of ya'.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 18:10:30

yy lljkk

Am aghast at what some of you have had to go through

I am full of admiration for people who cope with chronic pain for years.

louschmoo Thu 07-Feb-13 18:29:37

Ooh it's interesting how sdifferent it is for people isn't it. I had dry socket after having my bottom wisdom teeth out, and I thought the pain was unimaginable. When I was pregnant with DS I kept reassuring myself that labour couldn't possibly be as bad. Then I was induced and after two doses of the gel + ARM I was desperate for an epidural. Labour was far worse - and I only got to 2cm before having an epidural before the drip blush. Now getting ready for VBAC with DC2 and hoping that it'll be easier if it's spontaneous.

Sorry, I meant post-dural puncture, not spinal tap.

Quenelle Thu 07-Feb-13 18:56:59

ThreeBee. I'm sorry sad

coraltoes Thu 07-Feb-13 18:59:56

Three bee, sorry to read your story. Can't begin to imagine the true pain of that experience.

Those discussing pain elief. I got gas and air as soon as I got into a&e, waited 6 hours in labour for it. Hardly fair!

inlawsareasses Thu 07-Feb-13 19:03:50

Gallstones! The first attack was 9 days after labour so I can compare! horrendous psin give me labour any day

BelleEtLaBaby Thu 07-Feb-13 19:12:28

I raise you pneumonia, AND multiple pulmonary blood clots AND a pleural effusion at the same time shock

Even on the full dose of morphine and tramadol, I was clinging to DH literally screaming for them to just kill me.

<awards self hero medal>

Would give birth every day compared to that smile

hippoherostandinghere Thu 07-Feb-13 19:12:42

I've had one horrendous induced forceps delivery with just gas and air. One elective section. A broken sternum, a broken foot, 2 broken noses (well the same nose just broken twice) a broken finger and been knocked out twice. I also had a tonsillectomy at 22.

The labour tops it all. 8 hours of constant contractions then a baby dragged out with forceps after an episiotomy. Couldn't walk for days hmm

BelleEtLaBaby Thu 07-Feb-13 19:14:35

ThreeBee I only read your post after I wrote mine. I'm so sorry. What a truly awful experience thanks

mercibucket Thu 07-Feb-13 19:16:24

Weird, I've had pleurisy and pneumonia and it hardly hurt really. Couldn't breathe, and yes it was painful, but not particularly so. The cracked rib was v ouchy, the strained intercostal muscles brought back memories of about 6cm in to labour, but nowhere like transition pain

I also clearly remember with the third labour a feeling of remembrance and recognition'oh yes, this is how much it. Hurt'. I think we forget almost instantly. Labour is the only literally 'toe curling pain' I've experienced

I'd still put it at 8.5 and can imagine worse pains like bad burns or a leg cut off without anaesthetic

Belle I think that having loads of horrid things one on top of the other is what makes it so awful, and your experience and mine have that in common. I didn't mean to put a downer on the thread smile it's just that three of my most physically painful experiences happened during the same 24h, and it happened to be a 24h that we had an emotionally painful experience too.

grin at some of these horrific injuries being described as a little sore or a bit ouchy. I'm surprised none of us have injured ourselves on our stiff upper lips! smile

pansyflimflam Thu 07-Feb-13 19:45:52

I have had 5 babies with a tiny bit of gas and air ad far far far worse is my recent brush with gallstones stuck in my bile duct!!!!!!!!!!!!! Gall bladder removed 10 years ago and they were left behind getting bigger and bigger until they decided they wanted to get out. Literally crawling up the bed baying like an animal. I have never ever in all my life felt like I was dying but that did it for me. I shudder now thinking about it.

ThreeBee, so sorry my love x

catgirl1976 Thu 07-Feb-13 19:49:45

Twisted bowel

Stepping on lego

blackeyedsusan Thu 07-Feb-13 19:59:51

ear ache is one thing that made me scream in pain til paaracetamol and ibupofen kicked in. i can't compare with labour as i was on gas and airr/pethidine/epidurals asap...

Highlander Thu 07-Feb-13 20:05:02

Tooth abcess. Oh dear God, I was insane withh pain.

CombineBananaFister Thu 07-Feb-13 20:05:46

Broke my arm and it protruded through the skin - horrble to look at BUT did not hurt as much as labour IMO (10lb melon-headed Ds arrived in under 2 hrs and no meds plus forceps, truly horrific) Appendicitus came a close second and wisdom teeth problems are no walk in a park.
My dad, bless him caught his todger in his zip when he was little and passed out from the pain -this is still a funny story in his family hmm. It's so funny how people can cope with such different things

FamiliesShareGerms Thu 07-Feb-13 20:08:30


Shin splints made me pass out with pain. Labour was a walk in the park compared to that

Oh threebee I am sorry to read your post. TBH I would gladly go through my spinal surgery repeatedly rather than suffer what you went through. I cannot begin to imagine the physical and emotional pain.


JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 20:12:21


gas and air did little for me. I'm not sure it was switched on, either time. I was biting on the mouthpiece so much it had blood on it. Pethidine made me fall asleep for 3 seconds and then jerk awake in excruciating pain.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Thu 07-Feb-13 20:12:46


BrianCoxandTheTempleofDOOM Thu 07-Feb-13 20:13:05

ooo can I join in. Have never done labour, have to have c-sections (see why below)

I have had a brain aneurysm.

Pain was so bad that it wiped my memory (according to the neuro surgeon) and I have no recollection of it, or the week before and the week after.

<wonders if I win on the pain scale?>


Molehillmountain Thu 07-Feb-13 20:14:09

It's hard to generalise really. I've had painful but good labours with all three children and although it was painful I felt in control and that the outcome was going to be great and what I wanted. Breaking my ankle very badly felt scary, negative and very, very painful. I remember it as worse pain because there was nothing good about it and it marked the start of a difficult time, looking after a toddler whilst non weight bearing and pregnant.

LadyInPink Thu 07-Feb-13 20:14:15

Miscarriage pain
Tonsilitus x I can't remember it was so many times
Twisted bowel

All more bearable than the b2b birth of DD1.

Threebee sad

GirlOutNumbered Thu 07-Feb-13 20:14:52

My broken wrist and three bones in foot pale into insignificance after medication free labour bought on from induction. When they turned that drip up, I was trying to crawl off the back on the bed, it was just unbearable.

Pain from C Section cut is very bearable though I must say.

80sMum Thu 07-Feb-13 20:18:05

I'm fortunate not to have broken any bones or had anything like gall stones, so I have nothing to compare labour with. What I do remember is that in my first labour I would have been happy for someone to kill me, just to make it stop!

PuffPants Thu 07-Feb-13 20:18:20

You can't really compare pain though, surely? If something fucking hurts, it fucking hurts. You're not in transition thinking "Oh well, at least I've not broken my leg in three places".

PoppyWearer Thu 07-Feb-13 20:19:19


I'm coming on to this thread to add another vote for gallstones. Way worse than crowning in labour. At least I knew that would be over quickly!

Viviennemary Thu 07-Feb-13 20:20:33

Gallstones was awful. Worse than labour. And I had problems with a wisdom tooth once. And that was worse as well.

cwtchontoast Thu 07-Feb-13 20:21:01

I had a trapped nerve in my neck and that was pretty agonizing. Even with morphine a sudden movement would cause me to pass out with pain.
However I've not experienced labour (yet) so I may be in for a real shock.

Also, my mum says without a doubt, kidney stones were more painful than labour.

millie30 Thu 07-Feb-13 20:23:20

Dislocating my knee twice is the most painful thing I have ever gone through, followed by bowel obstruction. Both of these were much worse than my labour!

NulliusInBlurba Thu 07-Feb-13 20:25:41

It's so true that labour pain can vary enormously. I had my two with no pain relief whatsoever and never felt like I needed any. But then neither of them were particularly big or in a weird position, and I was very motivated to have an active birth - feeling I was taking control of the contractions helped control the pain, somehow.

I've had chronic pain for many, many years (endo, like several others here) and by now just have the attitude that you have to put up with it - in fact, the pain in early labour felt so normal that I only made it into the birth centre both times at 8cm dilated, because it didn't feel like it hurt enough to justify going in. It was amazing - you have the baby and then the pain goes away - what a great idea. If only my chronic pain would do the same thing.

The worst pain I have ever experienced by a long chalk was when I was 17 (well over 20 years ago), I had a huge abscess on my back which was pretty painful in itself, but was absolutely excruciating when the GP lanced it with a scalpel AND NO PAIN RELIEF. I so nearly vomited over him - pity I didn't really. It was only 2 years ago I realised how badly I had been traumatised by the experience, when I had a very minor piece of toe surgery under local anesthetic and had terrible flashbacks. The surgeon 2 years ago couldn't believe what the GP had done!

BeCool Thu 07-Feb-13 20:29:53

I ripped the cuticle on the side of my thumb. It got infected. 2 weeks of agony. MUCH worse than my 2 labours grin

ReallyTired Thu 07-Feb-13 20:34:59

The pain of labour is very variable. A lot depends on whether the mother is unlucky enough to tear. My second labour was very easy, but my first labour was very unpleasent as I tore.

I am recovering from breaking my thumb on 8th December and I am still in a lot pain. Breaking bones is worse than either of my labours. However every labour is different and I am sure that some labours are excrutiating.

RabidCarrot Thu 07-Feb-13 20:38:47

Toothache, far far worse

morethanpotatoprints Thu 07-Feb-13 20:39:18

Ok labour is real pain, I had 3 dc so I too know, but I kid you not the hairdressers was worse for me.
My hair is very curly and I'm head sore. They used to pull it through a cap thing to colour it and then brush it hard to try to straighten it.
The amount of times I could not stand the pain anymore are vivid in my mind.

Blatherskite Thu 07-Feb-13 20:43:15

Can I just confirm whether it's the gallstones or the gall bladder removal op that are the most painful?

I've had a 28 hour induced labour with a back to back baby that left me sobbing and vomiting, unable to lie down but with knees buckling every time I stood, followed by a hack and slash emergency c-section....but I've now got a 3cm gallstone and need my gallbaldder out too. The attacks have been bad but nowhere near as bad as labour for me.

Please say the op isn't awful.

FabulousFreaks Thu 07-Feb-13 20:44:28

kidney pain, all I wanted was someone to knock me out stone cold. It was unrelenting

frustratedworkingmum Thu 07-Feb-13 20:45:17

Gallstone pain beats labour hands down - having birthed two children with only gas and air, i suffered gallstones and was practically suicidal with pain even with gas and air and tramadol!!! . I notice someone upthread said that their stones weren't as bad as labour - its relative i guess as some gallstones can be asymptomatic and give mild discomfort, but an infected gall bladder apparently is second only to kidney stones, apparently. Pancreatitis is supposed to be bad too, my BIL had this and has been known to scream in pain sad

discrete Thu 07-Feb-13 20:46:42

A kidney infection was about a million times worse than labour for me. But then my labours were easy.

Oh, and having a toe-nail pulled out without anaesthetic. That hurt a fuckload too.

frustratedworkingmum Thu 07-Feb-13 20:48:06

Blather - gallbladder op is a stroll in the park - i had complications and they spilt bile acid in my body cavity (fucking owwwww!) but i was put on a morphine drip on recovery and was happy as a pig in shite smile Had that not have happened there would have been discomfort that could have been managed with paracetemol. Intereting that you have a large stone, mine were like the ones you have in the bottom of a fish tank and apparently those are more painful - not that its a competition, i hope you feel better soon. I have never looked back since my gall bladder removed, no more pain.

BartletForTeamGB Thu 07-Feb-13 20:48:48

Oh, YA definitely NBU.

Labour x 2 was manageable.

Shingles was AWFUL. Worse pain I have ever experienced in my life.

AmIthatWintry Thu 07-Feb-13 20:50:22

An abscess in my tooth. It was so painful I genuinely wanted to either rip my head off, or go to sleep (some fuckin chance) and never wake up again.

So, definitely worse than labour

frustratedworkingmum Thu 07-Feb-13 20:50:28

I think that the reason women cope so well with labour pain is because it has a positive outcome so there is less fear and anxiety surrounding it. And there is an end in site, even though it can be a long old road, theres a ickle baby at the end of it smile

frustratedworkingmum Thu 07-Feb-13 20:51:09

I have been known to wish myself dead with a UTI too

honeytea Thu 07-Feb-13 20:53:23

My periods are more painful than my labour, at least the contractions come in waves, my period pain is just 48 hours of straight pain. I guess maybe my periods would be less painful if I had gas and air.

It really really isn't helpful when people say labour is the most painful thing in the world, I was heavily pregnant when that facebook thing about broken bones was being circulated, I wanted to un-friend anyone who shared it.

I have been told that periods are less painful after yiu have given birth, I bloody hope it's true!

PoppyWearer Thu 07-Feb-13 20:54:07

Agree, gallbladder op pain is nothing compared to the gallstone attacks.

I have had a couple of bouts of colic since the op, not pleasant but not as bad as the full attacks.

loofet Thu 07-Feb-13 20:58:23

Back to back birth of 2 10lb+ babies (not at same time of course). I've had worse pain than the normal labour I had but not than a back to back one.

The only pain i've had worse than the normal labour was Quinsy. My tonsils were so swollen I could barely breathe/couldn't open my mouth. Had to have them drained with a huge needle. I thought I was going to die.

Blatherskite Thu 07-Feb-13 21:01:00

Thank you frustratedworkingmum Panic attack averted smile

nellyjelly Thu 07-Feb-13 21:04:21

No no no. Labour was excrutiating. I thought I would die and G and A did sod all.

thegreylady Thu 07-Feb-13 21:08:28

My worst pain ever was a tibial plateau fracture closely followed by the bone pain which was a side effect of chemotherapy for breast cancer.
For me childbirth was ok-I had worse period pains but I know I was lucky.

cathers Thu 07-Feb-13 21:10:18

Had two labours without any medication/ assistance.
One attack of infected gallbladder and was calling 999. Horrific pain.

seeker Thu 07-Feb-13 21:11:06

Not experienced by me there haven't been!

Probably depends on the kind of labour you have. I have a friend who had an easy labour and orgasmed with it. I'm guessing she would be able to pick many other pains that were worse than labour.

With my first I had back-back labour plus I threw up solidly for 27 hours no matter what they did. That made the pain much harder to deal with.

From seeing people die with cancer I think there are worse pains than labour.

There is a difference between a sharp quick pain and a long pain and a pain that you know is never going to stop, they aren't terribly comparable.

I had two prolapsed discs late in my second pregnancy. While in full labour the pain disappeared and the labour pain in comparison was a relief. I was hoping for a long labour but she was out in two hours. The moment she was in the midwife's arms the pain came back. I have no way of describing the level of constant pain from the prolapsed discs and due to the pregnancy I could take nothing but paracetamol and codeine.

landofsoapandglory Thu 07-Feb-13 21:35:16

Labour pain does vary so much. With DS1 I was crying for pain relief at 2cm, but by that time I had been contracting for over 24hours(although I thought I had severe IBS pains at first hmm)he was back to back, and I was knackered. They gave me 2 Paracetomol and at that point I didn't know I had another 14 hours to go!

With DS2 it was painful, but it was done and dusted in 20 minutes without so much a sniff of gas and air!

I have had chronic pain for 17 years. It wears you down because it is relentless. They try to manage it, but it is always there. Somedays I feel like there are millions of red hot pins being stuck into my legs!

Agree on it varying! My pain was worse when I retained a placenta and a doctor had to retrieve with her hand yikes that got me screamingshock

Dualta Thu 07-Feb-13 21:40:18

I've had broken bones/post operative pain (was on morphine) and all sorts but I was never completely deranged and screaming in pain as I was in labour

Sorry to hear that so many people have experienced worse pain than that.

IncognitoIsMyFavouriteWord Thu 07-Feb-13 21:46:30

not at all.

I would rather go through labour again than the pain I was in with my tumor last year.

I had two puffs on gas and air for child birth.

I was on morphine at one point with the cancer.

Considering there's about the same risk for either of them happening again I'm. quite happy smile

teacherandguideleader Thu 07-Feb-13 22:08:00

I have never been in labour however I cannot imagine ever being in as much pain as the complications I had with meningitis - fluid leaking from my spinal column and from around my brain causing the pressure around my brain to drop.

I am willing to stand corrected if I'm ever lucky enough to have a child but I really hope it's not as painful!

Stinkyminkymoo Thu 07-Feb-13 22:28:51

YANBU I broke my coccyx and this was the singularly most painful experience of my life, far more so than giving birth.

I have also broken my leg, and I got kicked in the groin by my young horse. These were also more painful than giving birth.

The best thing about giving birth is that as soon as my dd was out, the pain was over, not so in the above cases! and the bruising from the kick was just spectacular!

auntilin Thu 07-Feb-13 22:36:31

YANBU Toothache is worse for me than my back to back birth.

DizzyZebra Thu 07-Feb-13 22:37:53

Yanbu to say your broken arm hurt more than your labour.

Ywbvvvvu to say it in relation to anyone elses.

Personally I've had a few experiences worse than my labour.

curryeater Thu 07-Feb-13 22:44:53

honeytea, I have no idea whether it is because of the babies but yes, my periods are much better now and I used to go green and be sick and faint and cry. haven't had one like that since having a baby and can manage fine with a couple of paracetemol, if that. so I hope you will find them better too

IrnBruChew Thu 07-Feb-13 23:06:57

I've always thought toothache was the worst pain ever, pacing the floor at 2am in total agony but I've never screamed the way I've screamed in labour when I'm pacing the floor with toothache. So labour wins.

DrCoconut Thu 07-Feb-13 23:34:26

Had a kidney stone. The pain was horrendous. I honestly thought I was going to die and there must be something awful wrong with me at one point. My mum took me to hospital and I just passed out on the floor of A+E with the pain. They believed me but still asked if I'd tried taking paracetamol apparently.

apostropheuse Thu 07-Feb-13 23:47:36

The worst pain I've ever had was my first labour. Forceps with no pain relief. I actually didn't care if I lived or died at that point. I can still remember it all these years later.

Thankfully the others weren't nearly as bad.

That was definitely much worse than a broken bone - for me anyway.

DumSpiroSpero Thu 07-Feb-13 23:53:44

Induced back to back labour with no gap between contractions is definitely the worse pain I've experienced.

Having said that I've never had kidney stones or broken a bone so (touch wood) don't have much to compare it to.

Generally I think anything mouth/teeth related is pretty miserable. I get horrendous ulcers if I'm stressed and whilst they don't compare I can see that an abcess or something might do.

Acute Pancreatitis - had a gallstone lodged in the common bile duct and it was agony beyond belief, and just goes on and on.

Morphine did nothing, and I passed out several times because of the pain.

I dread ever having another bout of it.

brighthair Fri 08-Feb-13 03:09:17

It's weird how people cope with pain differently. Dry socket after tooth extraction didn't hurt much at all
Open displaced fracture of ankle with torn ligaments - ouch. And being driven to hospital over speed bumps with that and no pain relief hurt
Norovirus for 3 days followed immediately by flu was vile. The back cramps were so bad they offered me gas and air
But I haven't had children...

AngelNanny Fri 08-Feb-13 04:11:01

I also had the acute pancreatitis caused by gallstones and I had inflamed gallbladder.
The Gallstones and the attacks were all through pregnancy aswell as HG and then the pancreatitis was 5weeks after I have birth. Followed by my gallbladder removal whilst I was there.


Teacherandguideleader: YY to the spinal headache being grim. Mine was a complication of a spinal anaesthetic hole rather than meningitis but both result in negative pressure around the brain, essentially pulling your brain outwards in all directions. A spinal headache is described in the medical literature as being incapacitating, and they're not joking.

MerryCouthyMows Fri 08-Feb-13 07:41:09

And my tooth abscess was more painful than labours 1,3 & 4. Not more painful than labour two, but as minouminou pointed out earlier, having your cervix close over an arm as well as a head registers pretty highly on the pain scale.

So I guess for me it goes :

1) Shattered kneecap
2) Double hip dislocation
3) Single hip dislocation
4) Labour 2 where DS1 came out stargazing with his hand on his head like Rodin's 'the thinker'.
5) Tooth abscess
6) Labours 1, 3 & 4.

MerryCouthyMows Fri 08-Feb-13 07:44:44

Having an abscess on my tonsil drained with a mahoosive needle with no pain relief rated quite highly on the pain scale actually. Maybe above a tooth abscess.

Jinsei Fri 08-Feb-13 07:48:45

I broke two bones at once and concierge myself. The pain was horrendous but nothing like my induced labour with dd.

I think it must be different for everyone. My overriding memory of being in labour is of just wanting to die because I didn't feel I could cope with any more.

MerryCouthyMows Fri 08-Feb-13 07:53:26

Loofet - having quinsy drained is fucking nasty. My first one was when I was 15. The Doctor didn't explain to me what he was going to do either, he just told me to 'open wide'. I thought he was just having a look at it until I saw the needle!

WafflesandWhippedCream Fri 08-Feb-13 07:54:27

Pericarditis - inflammation of the membrane round the heart. I reckon that was worse than labour - but maybe that's because you are expecting to go into labour, and you know that although painful, it is supposed to be happening.
Rather than thinking you are having a heart attack and about to die. I'm sure feeling scared makes pain feel much worse.

MuchBrighterNow Fri 08-Feb-13 07:57:43

I've given birth 3 times with no pain relief , not even gas and air ..... I've had migraine headaches that hurt much, much more (kill me right now kinda hurt) than any of the births.!!

Pigsmummy Fri 08-Feb-13 10:33:08

Labour was worst pain ever, feeling the tear and seeing the blood spurt. Ouch ouch ouch ouch

DumSpiroSpero Fri 08-Feb-13 11:49:02

Blathers gallbladder op is fine. I honestly can't remember being in any pain at all after mine. A bit of discomfort & I slept about 16-18 hours a day for a week or so, but otherwise was no problem.

AmberLeaf Fri 08-Feb-13 11:58:06

Im on tip-toes reading some of these!

I found I coped better with labours because it was a working pain IYKWIM?

Ovarian cyst bursting was awful though, I was half expecting a baby to come out it was that painful, but sort of worse!

Infection after a wisdom tooth extraction was pretty intense.

Chicken pox as an adult was possibly the worst thing Ive ever endure though.

LynetteScavo Fri 08-Feb-13 17:06:37

This thread just shows that some labours feel like absolute hell and you'd rather die (remember thinking this is what it must have felt like for soldiers who've had their limbs blown off hmm) and some are a breeze (I didn't even need gas and air with DC3).

teacherandguideleader Fri 08-Feb-13 17:26:14

threebeeonegee - it certainly was incapacitating. I was early twenties at the time - I remember my mum having to bath me as I couldn't do it myself, and I cried in pain the whole time I was in the bath. I couldn't get to the toilet, I couldn't sit up to drink. I remember laying on my bedroom floor for 4 hours trying to get dressed. I could put a sock on, then had to wait 20 minutes before I had the energy to do anything else. My mum doesn't do sympathy but she couldn't bare watching me lay in bed crying in pain all day and all night. It was 7 days before I received treatment for it.

I still feel traumatised by the whole event. I will never forget the pain. One thing I do know is that I will never have an epidural as it carries a small risk of this happening - I don't care how painful labour is, I couldn't go through that again.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Fri 08-Feb-13 17:49:22


I remember thinking very distinctly "This must be what it's like to be disembowelled"


MerlotAndMe Fri 08-Feb-13 17:51:05

Sorry yabu. two births no pain relief. i have broken bones. childbith way worse

ithaka Fri 08-Feb-13 17:55:02

I fell off my horse and broke my leg. As I was out of mobile phone reception, I had to get back o my horse to ride home. That was pretty ouchy - but labour hurt more.

KristinaM Fri 08-Feb-13 18:04:02

I've had

Burst ovarian cyst
Tooth extraction
Dental abcess

Labour for me was much worse

DeSelby Fri 08-Feb-13 18:10:00

For me it is gallstone pain. Without a doubt.

I had an induced labour with 10lb DS1, it was very painful (I also had G&A and an epidural). Gallstone pain far exceeds my memory of it. I also broke 4 metatarsals (all at once on a different occasion ) and it was sore but not agony.Having gallbladder out next week, I cannot wait! Although I do agree with everyone who says its such a subjective experience, your labour may have been more painful than mine, and your gallstone pain less so.

icklebitchywitchy Fri 08-Feb-13 18:11:35

Gallstones. Worst pain in my life including giving birth to 9lb 1oz DS with no pain relief.

ZZZenAgain Fri 08-Feb-13 18:11:51

maybe but I haven't yet encountered them

dondon33 Fri 08-Feb-13 18:13:13

Another who thinks YANBU -
I've had VB's 3 times (all 3 were huge babies too) but the pain from them was NOTHING compared to Gallstones - then what beat that was the pain from a blocked bile duct after they removed bastard gall bladder.... OMFG! if I could have chosen - I would have quite happily given birth 3 times one after the other with no pain relief- rather than endure that. The absolute worst day that I had that pain, baby Ds learned to crawl..... to get away sharpish from my screams, bless him! smile

Oh god yeah, bad toothache is another that's worse.

Another was after I had my appendix removed - I was so pumped full of gas from the surgery, the pain was unreal and took ages to ease despite litres of peppermint tea.

I always try to remember (says she who's TTC at the mo) birth, the pain part, will be all over and done with in a few hours, it's not forever, it HAS to end.

The likes of toothache etc.. are a different kettle of fish... they can go on for bloody days at a time and you just don't know when it will stop.

Having a tattoo lasered off. Sort of like labour, it's self-inflicted so you don't get much sympathy. But bugger me, it HURTS! Luckily it's very quick but fuck me, unbelievable pain. Labour is way less painful, but then it goes on a lot longer. Hard to work out which one wins as worst overall.....

DeSelby Fri 08-Feb-13 18:30:29

dondon33 I've just googled blocked bile duct, sounds awful. I'm looking forward to my gallbladder removal slightly less! Hope you're ok now.

LifeIsBetterInFlipFlops Fri 08-Feb-13 19:40:30

I don't know...all I can say is that my 11lb baby made me feel like I was being hit by a bus time and time again during labour.

I'm horrified by the poor poster who pased a kidney stone duri g labour...

TeaandBiccies Fri 08-Feb-13 20:48:46

I didn't find contractions painful but after an emergency c section I was in sooo much pain sad. Definitely worse and lasted much longer

VenusRising Fri 08-Feb-13 20:56:49

I've had a baby
I've had kidney stones
I've had gall stones
I've had two operations

And mastitis beats them all, as you can't take anything for it.

shouldkeepquiet Fri 08-Feb-13 20:59:55

There is a medical study i've seen on this subject. Somehow they have rated pain level of common experiences.(Can't find link now).
I seem to remember gall stone were right at the top. Mother in law had them and passed out several times in mid scream and just hit the floor. I do remember the top one was the pain caused by cancer towards the end - not a nice thought!
Person worst - having toe nails removed in hospital - effectively no anasthetic - and wisdom tooth abscess in days leading upto it bursting.

Bunnyjo Fri 08-Feb-13 21:05:02

I got gallstones when pg with DS, which were awful. My worst experience was when DS was 2.5mth old and I got an acute gallstone attack, which led to a blocked bile duct and peritonitis. I spent 4 days on nil-by-mouth, IV fluids, IV antibiotics and morphine whilst I had various tests, a ultrasound, a MRCP and they stabilised me for surgery.

Honestly, I thought the pain was going to kill me and I am not being dramatic - it really was that bad. I have had 2 childbirths - one with only G&A, and a tonsillectomy. But nothing comes close to the pain I felt with the peritonitis and blocked bile duct. Even the surgery, a week later, and the recovery seemed like a walk in the park compared to that pain!

TooManyDicksOnTheDancefloor Fri 08-Feb-13 21:32:45

I've had a tooth abcess and I've had two compacted wisdom teeth pulled with local anaesthetic. I've also broken my wrist, fingers and nose. All very painful but not a patch on my very recent labour. I was lowing (as in the cattle are), fully dilated for five hours at home, then transferred to hospital in an ambulance for a c section. You definately forget how painful labour is, I did, hence the homebirth decision.

grumblinalong Sat 09-Feb-13 15:56:02

I've had broken bones, meningitis, sinusitis and 3 vaginal births but nothing was as bad as getting my 3rd degree tear repaired by a (bitch) student doctor who didn't realise that lidocaine takes 5-10 minutes to work so injected then stitched immediately. I will never get over the memory of that hook needle threading through my bits. Never. I couldn't hear anything even though I was screaming and the room turned a bluey green colour. Shudder.

LaQueen Sat 09-Feb-13 16:03:05

Hell Yeah...

Try having a c-section, then having the spinal block wear off completely, and then be fobbed off with fucking aspirin as the only pain relief for nearly 5 hours, because the nurses couldn't get a doctor to write me up for morphine.

Major abdominal surgey...followed by zero pain relief, afterwards. Anyone fancy trying that on for size? Anyone? Anyone?

My labour was easy, so most pain has been worse. My mother had 2 60 odd hour labours and assures me that her gall stones, cracking her skull, dropping a caravan on her already broken foot and hospital cutting out an infected part of her arm having had a mix up on who was giving anesthetic (so, nobody did) were all much worse. On the whole, I believe her.

Zara1984 Sat 09-Feb-13 16:09:24

OUCH LaQueen confused

For me, nothing, absolutely nothing on earth was as bad as my labour. And I've had a horrendous knee dislocation and very ouchy teeth issues.

Before they gave me the epidural, I thought to myself that this must be what dying in a car crash was like. Or being ripped open with a machete. confused

Zara1984 Sat 09-Feb-13 16:13:16

This thread proves for me definitively that labour is different for everyone. And not because (according to MIL) I have a low pain threshold. Am shock and jealous at those who said toothache was worse than labour. Toothache!! My stars...

andrea69 Sat 09-Feb-13 16:17:35

I had a UTI and the pain from that was worse than my labours.
Also had to have an ultrasound on my ovaries 8 weeks after a C-Section, she pressed so hard I nearly jumped off the trolley and punched her in the throat!
She did say it would hurt though.

aaaaagh Sat 09-Feb-13 16:33:04

The stitches afterwards were worse than actually giving birth!
I still remember the pain of having my nose cauterised when I was a child. That really hurt and it didn't work either - I was still a little bleeder afterwards.

natural drug free labour with 4th degree tear... worst pain I thought I would ever experience.

Gall stones - the actual pains were more than contractions, but less intense than the tearing.

I'd rather go through the birth again. At least I got a baby at the end of it.

willesden Sat 09-Feb-13 17:03:44

After giving birth to two babies, I had gallstones and I really though the pain would kill me. It was like I had been shot. So, I agree. Some pain is worse than labour.

pmTea Sat 09-Feb-13 17:03:54

OP that sounds horrendous shock

My worst ever experience was when I was 18 - my parents' friend was a plastic surgeon, who gave me almost free liposuction on my upper thighs (yeah well, it seemed so important at the time!)
Except that the local anaesthetic (about 20 burning, stinging injections into each thigh - bad enough) didn't work and so I felt about 75% of the actual suctioning fat procedure (they had to carry on by that time because the local anaesthetic is toxic and has to be aspirated out and can't be left in the tissues...)
I'm 41 now and can still remember the sounds of the suctioning, the searing pain in my thighs and the absolutely disgusting look of the cellulite/blood/guk as it entered the cannister near my couch.
I was in so much pain I nearly passed out.
WTF they couldn't have given me an effing epidural or something, I don't know...and I was too young and inexperienced to ask.
Never again!
Sorry about the gore.

OhWouldYouJust Sat 09-Feb-13 17:08:24


Labour was painful but nothing compared to the ruptured ovarian cyst I had last year or the kidney infection I have right now sad

Thank god for my DH as I'm not sure I would cope without him at times like this.

maxmillie Sat 09-Feb-13 17:11:02

Everyone is different I suppose and my personal pain stories go: (worse to least awful but still bloody painful)

Labour with dc2 (quick and brutal, back to back), gas and air
labour with dc1 (shoulder dystocia, gas and air)
Ear infection after perforated eardum
Worse migraine
Running marathon
labour with dc3 (gas and air)

Have only snapped ligaments and tendons, no broken bones, and don't remember that being too bad.

I am quite ok with pain, fairly hardcore. Labour is by far the worse pain I have ever experienced and I am always amazed (and jealous) of people who say it didnt hurt that much.

kiwigirl42 Sat 09-Feb-13 17:13:07

slipped disc pain is excruitiating - couldn't even roll over in bed for 6 wks

Migraines can be unbearable - not surprising that 40% of people with chronic daily migraine commit suicide ... I'm hanging on in the 60% but its very difficult some days

I found labour easy as the pain was not in my head, was no worse than period pain and was intermittent. I wasn't laughing when my perineum tore though. Ouch!

zukiecat Sat 09-Feb-13 17:20:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ChocHobNob Sat 09-Feb-13 17:24:53

Another gall stone sufferer here. I thought I was going to die ... or wished I would. It was constant hellish pain. But then I've never been in labour to compare it to. I had c sections.

MrsWinklepicker Sat 09-Feb-13 18:09:24

Once snapped my femur in two and it was over 24 hours before it got pinned back together... As I was dropping off to sleep, while it was still being held in place by a splint, my muscles spasmed and the subsequent screaming woke the whole ward and a nurse came rushing in with the biggest syringe of morphine you've ever seen to plunge into my thigh.

Personally I'd take labour any day (have had two btw) smile

I'd gladly do labour daily rather than have migraines.
Weirdly, since having DCs though, I havent had a single migraine...?

lunabay Sat 09-Feb-13 19:33:54

Well in my last birth my uterus ruptured, an epidural did not mask the pain so had spinal too, then due to crash situation was put under GA and although I have no memory of it thank god, apparently during the ceasarian I was still writhing in pain.

Woke up in so much pain, it hurt when DP tried to hold my hand!Felt like I had been run over by a bus repeatedly. Took three days of topping up painkillers before I stopped feeling like I was dying with pain.

Springdiva Sat 09-Feb-13 19:36:27

Hmm, well first birth was followed by dire constipation, and baby had colic so not much sleep for weeks.

I think I'd prefer a broken bone you are given pain killers and sleep to recover.

dondon33 Sat 09-Feb-13 19:56:27

Arghhh!! Bunnyjo I sympathise hugely with you - I'm sorry you know that HORROR.

Deselby Please try not to worry - apparently it's very very rare (So usually that means it will happen to me sad) I know many people who've had there's out with zero problems and have recovered well.
That gall bladder must come out hun or you're in for constant suffering.
I'm ok now some 12 years later but initially after I had to have another op to repair the damage and a stent placed in the bile duct to keep it open - it's since gone AWOL hmm and after a few episodes of pain it's all calmed down again - but I repeat...Living with the pain of gall stones is NOT an option.
Good luck with the op - hope you're back on your feet in no time.

firefly11 Sun 10-Feb-13 12:15:53

Food poisoning stomach cramping non stop for 7 days. That was what I had many years ago and that was worse than any labour pains I'd ever been through - and I've had 3 kids!

lisad123everybodydancenow Sun 10-Feb-13 12:18:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Montybojangles Sun 10-Feb-13 12:22:19

Gallstones, definitely worse, much worse (and no baby to cuddle after, just a urine pot with some pebble in).

LJBanana Sun 10-Feb-13 21:59:29

I poked myself in the eye today with a mascara wand and announced (dramatically) that it was worse than labour. It was brutal. I've also been attacked with a motion sensor air fresher, which was unpleasant!

Shakey1500 Sun 10-Feb-13 22:03:28

In my humble opinion, childbirth was THE most painful, followed by..

Severe constipation blush

rhondajean Sun 10-Feb-13 22:14:47


I had peritonitis and septicaemia and I'd have a dozen labours before that again.

I even thought the csection with dd2 was not bad at all.

I am a fast healer though and have small babies.

florilegia Sun 10-Feb-13 22:39:18

I had a 70+ hour back-to-back labour, and I can honestly say the afterpains were worse. I couldn't eat for days, vomited whenever I held my baby (it all got mixed up with the beginnings of pretty bad PND), and I just remember days of lying in bed, freezing cold, doubled up in pain and crying, while my mum, bless her, looked after DS downstairs. I'm honestly dreading this much more than the labour next time around.

Londonmrss Sun 10-Feb-13 22:50:17

During my 72 hour back labour I begged a doctor to kill me. I meant it.

I can imagine nothing worse that this.

For reference, a doctor once removed one of my back teeth with no anesthetic. It hurt, but it was ok.

williaminajetfighter Sun 10-Feb-13 23:13:01

I was lucky that my labour was pretty fast (4hrs), DD was small and it just took gas and air. The pain was pretty dreadful at the end but it was the kind of pain I felt I could mentally block out.

..but nothing compared to the 3 gallstone attacks (before the doctors ripped my gallbladder out, thankfully) nor the most painful experience of all, a root canal when the freezing never 'took' so the dentist was literally ripping live nerves from the centre if my tooth. Dear god. I still need Xanax whenever I have to go to the dentist, so traumatised am I.

thunksheadontable Mon 11-Feb-13 00:33:26

I have something very weird going on with a wisdom tooth right now, it is partially impacted (? right term) and since I had ds2, it has started trying to grow again and a large part of it actually chipped from the pressure earlier this week. I need to get to my dentist but my God, the pain at times has been totally unbearable. I have actually been using my labour pain coping techniques to deal with it.

Ds1 was back to back induced with a drip after waters went and was a large enough baby (nearly 9lbs) and I got the epidural at about 4-5cms at which point I felt I was in a sea of pain... ds2 was born without analgesics after 3 days of latent labour with contractions coming every five minutes and lasting a minute for 2 of those days.

I would do the labour pain again ANY day. The induction was much harder than the natural birth as it didn't have the same nice breaks in between but God I would do anything to stop this tooth pain. I can see why people used to do mad things like take pliers to their teeth or attach ropes to horses/cars whatever. It is blindingly painful at times.

Labour tops the bill for any pain experience I've had, and I would say i'm not mardy (for the record, "Mardy" means being a bit of a wingebag... until tonight, i thought mardy was a nationally recognised term, but apparently not)...Anyway my Bone Breakage experience consists of two lower leg bones, landed funny whilst trampolining. Labour hurt more.

AboutThyme Mon 11-Feb-13 00:57:09

It is very much dependent on the person and the delivery. I have only had one live childbirth and for me it was very easy, I was in labour "officially" for about 24 hours but I can honestly say that only the last hour, which included delivery, was painful. The rest was uncomfortable but not painful. Even the last hour was not awful agony.

I broke my ankle some years ago and would rather have given birth ten times than go through the pain of that broken ankle again.

Other people would say they would rather break every bone than go through their deliveries. It is all subjective.

Titchyboomboom Mon 11-Feb-13 07:12:28

I would rather do labour than a migraine!

3ismylot Mon 11-Feb-13 07:23:48

I would definately say that a tooth abcess (have had a few due as have problem teeth sad ) is much worse than labour and would give birth everyday rather than have another!
BUT I have also had 2 very easy labours ( 9lb 13oz ds1 was a 3hr labpur and my twins were a 47 minute labour!) so cant compare to some of the nightmares you ladies have had!

Me23 Mon 11-Feb-13 07:37:20

I ha a severe gall bladder attack when ds was 3 months old I've never been in so much pain before on my life (and i've been in labour twice) it was so bad I thought I was going to die, I was passing out from the pain OH was so worried he called an ambulance I had to have IV morphine in a&e.

Coconutty Mon 11-Feb-13 08:02:11

I had one of my finger nails pulled off once and would give birth every day for a month rather than have that pain again.

juule Mon 11-Feb-13 08:41:38


juule Mon 11-Feb-13 08:42:46

Gallstone pain

binger Mon 11-Feb-13 09:43:01

I've had 2 vag births, both times straight forward and easy as they go.

I once sprained my ankle very badly and was in tears with it and gallstone attacks which led to gallbladder removal. The sprain and attacks were much worse than my labour, plus I've forgotten about labour pains but not the severity of other pains.

Absoluteeightiesgirl Mon 11-Feb-13 10:03:29

Cracked ribs
Oh my sad

cory Mon 11-Feb-13 10:08:03

Pleurisy was my worst.

But you can't really compare pain. When I had my wisdom tooth pulled dh offered to come home from work to look after me, because he'd had an absolutely ghastly experience. I wasn't in much pain at all.

AmberSocks Mon 11-Feb-13 10:10:47

labour is one of those pains that is nice but hurts,like tattoos or ulcers on the end of your tongue.

especially the pushing stage,it feels like the best thing ever but hurts too.

lynniep Mon 11-Feb-13 10:17:06

'labour is one of those pains that is nice but hurts,like tattoos or ulcers on the end of your tongue.'
sweet jesus no it isnt. I thought I was dying in labour the pain was so bad. DS1 was breech and stuck and I never want to feel pain like that again.

However I'm very fortunate not to have any other intense pain other than a tooth abcess (which was really awful, but I cannot compare it to my first labour)

Never broken any bones thank God, despite being a mad horserider in my teenage years, and was very lucky to have three relatively "easy" labours. Was being smug about having high pain tolerance etc etc but now keeping my head down in case I break anything smile

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Mon 11-Feb-13 10:29:51

For me, DD (11lbs 10) crowning and creaking out if me was felt like intense, searing pain and made me scream, which was not like me at all - but then it was fleeting and immediately forgotten. And the actual labour pains were unpleasant but manageable.

The several gallbladder attacks I've had were much more distressing and hard to deal with as they lasted a good four hours and there was nothing you could do to relieve them. Breathing, writhing, relaxing, changing position - nothing works to relieve it or even make it slightly more bearable.

I've heard it described as like having a small woodland animal trying to gnaw its way out from your insides and that's a very apt description!

twilight3 Mon 11-Feb-13 11:30:21

can't really tell as my pelvis fracture during labour, so to me giving birth was the most excruciating experience ever, in fact at some point I asked the midwife if she could just let me die (even more painful than my shin being shattered under the weight of a car when I was 16). I thought someone had cut me open and was burning my guts, a bit like medieval torture.

So, no, can't imagine anything more painful. Or at least I hope that I will never get to experience anything more painful...

gallifrey Mon 11-Feb-13 11:44:46

I dislocated my elbow a few years ago, and when it was being manipulated back into place that was much worse than having a baby!
I had morphine and gas and air and I still screamed when the Dr was trying to straighten my arm out.
I had 2 babies with no pain relief at all.

luanmahi Mon 11-Feb-13 12:16:50

Labour was definitely the worst pain I have ever experienced but my mum used to get horrific period pains when she was younger which would leave her in bed for a couple of days and she maintains that her worst period pains were worse or at least as bad as labour - and she did it twice.

I think everyone has a different perspective on pain anyway so you can't really quantify it.

Lifeisontheup Mon 11-Feb-13 12:35:00

I think labour pain was easier to cope with because I knew it would end. When I had an ear infection and a trapped nerve I didn't know that it would end, just constant agonising pain.
I think it was the way I thought about the pain which changed it. There is a biological reason why the way you think can change the intensity of the pain although it obviously doesn't remove it and I wasn't able to think that way during the ear infection or the trapped nerve.

Jdub Mon 11-Feb-13 12:35:31

Shingles - felt like I was being sawn in half with a red hot saw

shrinkingnora Mon 11-Feb-13 13:35:01

Pancreatitis. Was banging head on wall to try and knock myself out while waiting for the ambulance. Genuinely would have welcomed death with open arms. I come out in a cold sweat just thinking about it.

Followed by gallstones.

Followed by labour.

shrinkingnora Mon 11-Feb-13 13:41:12

Lifeisontheu, you're so right - I do think that because I didn't know what it was and thought I was dying it was much worse.

starshaker Mon 11-Feb-13 13:43:24

Toothache is the worst pain in the world

I had a elcs last week and the spinal started to wear off before the baby was even out. Gas and air helped a little but it was worse than both my vb, even though the first was 70 odd hours and he weighed 11lb 2

kitstwins Mon 11-Feb-13 13:50:13

Hmmm. It's subjective I think. In the throes of labour I remember thinking "this is nothing like bad period pain " as is often bandied about as a close second. I've never been disembowelled with a red hot spade whilst simulataneously being repeatedly stabbed by swords, but I would guess that my labour felt a bit like that. It was off the clock. However, I've also had the incision of a caesarean section without pain relief (the epidural and spinal failed and no one believed me when I said I could still feel stuff - enough said) and that was pretty painful.

However, hands-down winner for awful pain is after aforementioned 'failed epidural' EMCS when I came round from the anaesthetic. I had no pain relief in place and was dry retching/vomiting and I honestly thought I was going to tear in half. I remember telling my husband in haze of tearing agony that if he had a gun I would pull the trigger.

I have no doubt that you can experience a worse pain than that of labour, especially if you've had a 'kind' and straightforward labour or caesarean delivery. Broken bones, kidney stones, ruptured ovarian cysts are all known to bloody hurt.

GingerbreadGretel Mon 11-Feb-13 14:04:03

Depends on the labour surely? DD's labour hurt but was comparatively a toddle compared to labour with DS which was around 30 hours of horrendous back-to-back pain followed by me hemorrhaging and seizing.

JuliaScurr Mon 11-Feb-13 14:22:32

This merely serves to confirm that epidural was a good decision

Julia if it works grin

Labour with DD lasted 60 hours, involved lots of internals, digging bits of wire about in my barley dilated cervix trying to get contact with her distressed head, pessaries and eventually an ec.

I would much rather do that again than put up with the current pain of ulcerated corneas from an allergic reaction to contact lens solution. Its been 3 days of agony and mn'ing in sunglasses!

SilverMoo Mon 11-Feb-13 15:00:35

I think it depends on the person.

I actually broke my foot while pregnant and for me it was like being tickled with a feather in comparison to labour!

I have 3 DC, with my first I was led to believe that the more pain you expect, the worse it will be and that your fear will make the pain worse.... I was shocked by how much it hurt, the pain scared me, I hadn't been expecting it.

DS2 I was more prepared as I knew what was coming, but it was still agony.

DS3 was also agony.

My labours all lasted for around 12 hours & the pain was just so intense, that said it wouldn't put me off having another one.

* Barely, not barley!

i dont think that theres worse pain but there are many different types of pain.
I coped quite well with labour in comparison to the wisdom tooth that snapped in half, exposing the nerve, getting massively infected into an abscess and emergency extraction...i felt no urge to cuddle the tooth that was dragged out of my mouth... i didnt particularly enjoy the labour pain but at least i came out of that with more than a bloody gaping hole...i got a baby toowink

CaseyShraeger Mon 11-Feb-13 15:04:04

Julia, unless you read the stories of post-epidural headache... grin

(I didn't get the headache, but attempting epidural was the worst bit of my first labour, so much so that my birth plan for the next two consisted solely of "I am not having another bloody epidural or a routine cannula")

Thewhingingdefective Mon 11-Feb-13 15:06:27

I have given birth to two sets of twins vaginally. It hurt a bit. I had a mouth ulcer last month the size of a twenty pence piece. That hurt more.

SilverMoo Mon 11-Feb-13 15:06:47

I've had 2 abscesses in my teeth, 4 impacted wisdom teeth, a slipped disc, broken wrist & a broken foot and they were nothing compared to labour, the pain I felt was just off the scale!

atthewelles Mon 11-Feb-13 15:15:07

A tooth abscess and a Uterine Fibroid Embolisation complete with really bad reaction to morphine which went on for days were pretty miserable. It depends on your labour and what other kind of illnesses you've experienced really.

frostfrond Mon 11-Feb-13 15:40:28

Getting an abcess on my leg lanced was agony.Have to say though student doctor trying to break my waters with ds1 was awful.Did not feel a thing when a midwife did it with ds2

rainand Mon 11-Feb-13 16:13:44

The worst pain I have felt is from an anal fissure, but I haven't been through labour yet ...

Didn't have a natural birth but I am another gall stones suffer. The attacks were so much worse that having my c section & the recovery. I would choose being sliced in half and two babies pulled out of me than one single gall stone attack. I had my gall bladder removed when my twins were 6 weeks old. During pregnancy, the pain killers they gave me made no difference and the pain was horrific. I was sick during the pain and on morphine drips 4 weeks after having my babies.

Gall stones are pure evil!

bean612 Mon 11-Feb-13 17:46:36

Stage 2 labour with no more than 30 seconds between contractions for 2.5 hours of pushing, no pain relief. If someone had said chopping off my arm would stop the pain I'd gladly have consented. I've never felt anything like it. Lucky I don't want DC3 because I NEVER want to go through that again.

I think the pain from my Endometriosis was worse because it was so relentless. It would last for the whole of my period and then I'd get ovulation pain 2 weeks later and two weeks after that period pain again and so on.

2 good labours - one waterbirth, one speedy second arrival (half hour in hospital before DS was born)
However for me it was still the most painful experience I've had, apart from perhaps moments at the dentist, but they've thankfully been very fleeting.
Generally I think I've been pretty fortunate all round so far - long may it continue !

MERLYPUSS Mon 11-Feb-13 19:02:13

I've never been in labour. I would've wanted to but it was too risky with my medical condition and pre-eclampsia put paid to that.
But I did have a cerebal abcess where the abcess grows on your brain, causing it to swell, pushing it against the inside of your skull. I was in too much pain to breath, blink or moan let alone make any complaint of pain by way of noise. They couldn't knock me out as they did not diagnose it for 3 days and needed me awake to watch for symptoms. Two operations later (one under local !) I have been left with chronic epilepsy. But I am here to tell the tale.

amazingmumof6 Mon 11-Feb-13 19:12:08

toe curling after pains.

throat infection so bad I was in agony just swallowing my own saliva - after 4 days I thought I was dying.

BaconAndAvocado Mon 11-Feb-13 20:00:43

Not sure if its been mentioned yet but the old Farmer Giles comes a close second to labour, usually occurring not long after labour in my experience smile

MERLYPUSS Mon 11-Feb-13 20:21:18

I've also had horrific trapped gas after EMCS for twins and consipation where I really wanted to fart but thought I would split in half. Ouch
Also had lumbar puncture headaches - nothing as bad as the abcess. Loads of tooth abcesses and ear abceses as I have an imune problem. Had pluerosy x 2 and pnuemonia as a reult of a mega epileptic seizure where I inhaled my own puke. Physio for that smarted. Inter costal muscle torn whne I fell off a horse. Jumped out of bed as the alarm was late and I momentarily forgot about the muscle and passed out.
I managed to slip my disc xmas before last and that was waerily painful. Contant pins and needles when laying down with shooting pain up the arse if I move.
Cerebal abcess wins. i asked OH to kill me and I was serious. 'Just put any old shit into my introveinous' I think I requested.

GregBishopsBottomBitch Mon 11-Feb-13 20:31:32

I suffer from painful ovulation, and my word its more painful than labour and i go thru it every 4 weeks, cystitis feels like your peeing razor blades, when i had a severe bout of IBS, the cramps had me nearly crying.

gordyslovesheep Mon 11-Feb-13 20:37:08

Burst appendix - 100 times worse and I was pregnant at the time!

GregBishopsBottomBitch Mon 11-Feb-13 20:41:55

Gordy Fecking ouch!!!!!

flubba Mon 11-Feb-13 21:34:13

I'm lucky in that I've never broken any bones nor had gall stones, but giving birth to my 12lbs+ DS naturally with a bit of G&A fucking hurt. A lot. grin

gordyslovesheep Mon 11-Feb-13 22:16:58

The worst bit was I was abroad at the time - and they wouldn;t give me anything much for pain relief

I had a spinal for the surgery, not key hole (too risky to baby), staples in the wound that was washed out twice a day and paracetamol for pain

it was pure pure hell!

then as she grew the scar tissue stretched and moved - which was grim

mumzy Mon 11-Feb-13 23:34:56

For me labour pain is the worst pain I have ever experienced had ds1 abroad where pain relief in labour is seldom used. At one point during transition I think if someone offered to shoot me I would have gladly taken them up on it. Had ds2 and dd here must admit it was much better with access to gas and air!

iclaudius Tue 12-Feb-13 00:21:19

labour far far worse than anything...far far...

i do want to die each time regardless of outcome

ilovecolinfirth Tue 12-Feb-13 05:44:15

A sudden drop in blood pressure AFTER I had given birth gave me the worst headache ever. My husband could feel and see my veins pulsating out of my forehead, and I was convinced that I was dying!

Harrysmummysarah1 Tue 12-Feb-13 06:03:32

Kidney stones defiantly tops labour for me anyway as I was lucky enough that all my births were straightforward . If their had been complications I might think differently.
Also have had appendicitis which is up their to

matana Tue 12-Feb-13 08:55:42

Trapped nerve in my back reduced me to tears.

The only time i cried during labour was out of frustration and tiredness when i'd been in labour for 24 hours (latent phase) and wasn't yet having contractions regularly enough to go to hospital. It was the not knowing how much longer i would have to go without sleep, rather than pain - i was knackered.

But then i had no complications and really enjoyed my labour on the whole. Weird or what?

jennymac Tue 12-Feb-13 09:28:33

I've been very lucky in life going by this thread. Have had 2 babies and thought labour pains pretty horrendous at the time (but quickly forgotten and obviously over as soon as baby is born). Never broken anything, had stitches (apart from down there!), had bad toothache, gall/kidney stones or anything that required a hospital visit!

An in bed recovering from a hemiplegic migraine, would rather give birth to a herd of baby elephants than have the vice that was attached to my head squeezing it yesterday. So I completely agree that giving birth really isn't that painful. Mind you I get cross at pregnant women acting like they have some sort of debilitating illness so sympathy isn't a huge attribute of mine.

Ooooh and a burst ovarian cyst hurt like buggery, makes you pass out with pain. It's like someone stabbing you with a red hot poker then twisting your insides into a bit mess that then throbs

AmberLeaf Tue 12-Feb-13 10:52:55

VenusRising Yes Mastitis. I had forgotten about that. That was an utterly miserable pain, after suffering from that I am aghast that any woman would have optional breast surgery. I usually lay on my side to sleep and when I had mastitis I could only lie flat on my back as even the slightest touch on my breast [even a thin sheet] was agony.

I had appendicitis when I was 12, I had it removed, what I went through after the op was worse than the appendicitis pain. The first time I tried to go to the loo was hideous, the walk to the loos took forever, then trying to sit on the loo had me screaming so much it made my Mum cry. Awful. I was also constipated and had a UTI. That was in all worse than labour for sure.

Migraine is so bad sometimes that I actually want to gouge my eye out or chop off my head.

In my last pregnancy I twisted my ankle several times, I would be walking and it would pop out to the right [right foot] that was so painful I nearly passed out. Twice I had to phone my DP to come and get me in the car while I waited on the pavement down the road! my GP said that ligaments soften in pregnancy so it happens more easily.

lulabelle Tue 12-Feb-13 11:50:36

I've gone through 3 childbirths, one with no pain relief at all (not through choice) and I would swap all three births for the pain of this tooth abcess in a heartbeat! In so much pain and waiting for my dentist appointment sad

theressomethingaboutmarie Tue 12-Feb-13 12:53:06

I suffered from breast thrush when DS was three weeks old and ended up going to A&E at 1am in agony. They were asking me to rate the pain and I told them that a drug free labour was preferable. Excruciating. They asked me about the red marks all over my breast - they were from me clawing at myself to try to reduce the pain. Unutterably horrendous.

SilverMoo Tue 12-Feb-13 13:24:11

Am I the only person who has had agonising labours on here?! Had various broken bones, 2 dental abscesses, mastitis with every DC (I have 3) and a slipped disc and they were nothing compared to labour, it was just unbelievable pain, I wonder why it hurt more than other peoples seem to have? confused

Twattybollocks Tue 12-Feb-13 13:59:20

2 weeks ago I was induced with the drip for my 3rd dc. The epidural didn't work at all, it was 4 hours of the most horrendous pain I have ever endured. For anyone who has had worse pain than labour all I can say is you poor bastards, you have my deepest sympathy!
I've walked on a broken ankle for a week after being told it was only sprained, had torn knee ligaments, and nothing even comes close to how much those contractions hurt, the ring of fire at the end barely registered on my pain-ometer, in fact it was a bloody relief as I knew it was nearly over!

My worst migraines would be top of my pain list, definitely worse than 10lb baby 4th degree tear for dd1 (but only 5 hours and pethidine)

Xiaoxiong Tue 12-Feb-13 15:05:43

SilverMoo don't get me wrong, I found labour awful. I was weeping and vomiting with the pain as the induction progressed (no epidural for 12 hours) and pleading with DH to make it stop and/or to kill me.

It's just that a burst appendix three weeks later was even worse.

Latara Tue 12-Feb-13 15:10:18

Pain is all relative to the individual's perception... personally i wince at some of the operations & leg ulcers i've seen at work in a hospital; also i've seen tumours growing out of the breast or bowel & breaking through the skin - horrific stuff.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 12-Feb-13 15:22:32

Brilliant thread - not sure why other people's pain is so fascinating, but it does make me think we are a fairly tough crowd.

Birth 1 - felt like pain that would never end. Could not stop puking after the epidural failed because it hurt so much

Birth 2 - very intense but over so quickly, it seems less bad in my memory

Tooth abscess - really awful

Crushed fingernail & end of finger - puke inducingly painful

Tonsillectomy as an adult & post-op haemorrage - really awful

Broken arms, collar bone, feet & toes - very painful but not as bad as childbirth

Outright winner - slipped disc. Could not remain conscious. Kept passing out from the pain. Had to be hospitalised & morphined until it went back in a bit. Every movement, even breathing, was agony.

EugenesAxe Tue 12-Feb-13 18:21:33

No I agree... I very badly broke my arm at the wrist and in the words of the surgeon sustained a lot of 'invasive trauma' to my wrist tendons... it was very painful. I nearly fainted with the pain and I went white with shock. When I got to A&E they knocked me out with morphine.

Then the next day I could barely move my arm or fingers because the bones kept grinding together... that was when the surgeon phoned and said I needed to have an operation to pin them. I was very grateful! But pin-ends inside your cast aren't a barrell of laughs either.

DOn't get me wrong - labour does really hurt (made me vomit), but it's just not the same kind of pain. I think back to that break and feel woozy; I don't think that of labour.

persimmon Tue 12-Feb-13 19:29:13

A heavy, old, solid wood door once shut completely on my hand, crushing my poor fingers to fuck. This was almost 20 years ago and i still have faint marks across my fingers.
That hurt a damn sight more than labour.

redrubyshoes Tue 12-Feb-13 21:09:59

Compound fracture of the elbow. Had the arm snapped straight to take an x-ray.

I passed out with the pain of a local anastaetic (sp?) which didn't work and then a needle going in to aspirate the blood sack that had formed.

The sack of blood was drained without LA and then the broken joint was snapped straight to take ANOTHER x-ray. I passed out again and a nurse pulled me up by the broken joint and shouted at me for passing out and put me in a chair alone which I promptly fell off.


That really bloody hurt.

Labour was a five hour doddle and 20 years later my elbow still aches when it is rainy and cold. My fanny doesn't. grin

Wafflenose Tue 12-Feb-13 22:38:08

I thought nothing could top labour pain, which was horrendous (24 hour first with gas and air; 10 hour second one with no pain relief, even though I was screaming for the gas) - until I broke my elbow when my youngest was 8 months old, so labour still fairly fresh in my mind.

I slipped and put my hand out, and my whole bodyweight fell on my straight arm. Elbow smashed to pieces. I have a very high pain threshold, but was screaming the place down. It was Saturday, and the fractures were so complicated that they had to wait for the expert to come in and fix it on the Monday. I was in hospital for 4 days, and still crying in pain when I went home, partly because it wasn't plastered after the op and I had to start moving it right away to try to save my career. It still hurts. Fortunately, nobody tried to pick me up by it - ouch, redrubyshoes.

Would rather go through labour ten times over than do that again.

redrubyshoes Tue 12-Feb-13 23:02:12


Did you have to start physio the next day? They wouldn't plaster a broken joint and it was cracked straight again the next day and for six weeks after.

Three times a week for three months! That was twenty years ago and I still have a knob of bone sticking out at a weird angle and I am still pissed off with that nurse that dragged me up on a (very obvious) compound fracture.

I fainted with the bloody pain and not for effect!

Wafflenose Tue 12-Feb-13 23:16:35

Yes, I had to start physio the day after the op. They originally said plaster for 6-8 weeks, but the surgeon overruled that and said I had to move it immediately. He also explained why I'd never fully straighten it again, but I am very determined, and managed it after two months. I can't put any weight on it though. They screwed two pieces back on, and removed another two. I have a 3.5" scar (and honestly didn't care how bad it looked, just wanted it fixed) and yes mine is lumpy too!

SeymoreInOz Wed 13-Feb-13 00:03:50

Not sure if this has been mentioned up thread but the weird thing about labour compared to other types of pain is that you can't really remember it.

DS was born 10 weeks ago with gas and air. I can remember that the transition was the worst part and begging for a general anaesthetic, but I can't really remember what it felt like or how bad it was. If I got pregnant, I wouldn't be worried about going through it again.

I can vividly remember the pain of a tooth abscess 10 years ago though.

redrubyshoes Wed 13-Feb-13 00:04:31


I can't do press ups and my elbow does a very noisy 'crack' when I try. Twenty bloody years since I broke it!

damppatchnot Wed 13-Feb-13 00:17:51

I've had three children but by FAR the worst pain was when I shattered the two bones in my wrist while falling when pregnant with dd1

I had pins inserted through surgery whilst awake with a block on my arm then it quickly wore off and no morphine but only 2 paracetamol and I was head banging the walls with the pain

gaelicsheep Wed 13-Feb-13 00:24:02

SeymoreInOz - conversely I remember labour pains vividly from both times and would never EVER put myself through it again.

Having said that, there are two pains that I consider worse than MOST (definitely not all) of labour. Firstly breastfeeding. Secondly, putting my neck into spasm.

However I tend to think that we somehow deal with whatever pain is thrown at us, and it usually feels like the worst it could be at the time. Obviously I'm not talking about a papercut lol. I think it's hard to compare from memory after the event.

RyanGoslingsMissus Wed 13-Feb-13 05:39:03

Kidney stones.

Would rather go through 62 hour labour, Synto drip without epidural and 2 crash sections than have the kidney stones again.

TheSmallPrint Wed 13-Feb-13 07:15:27

I broke my foot and it was painful but not that same intense deep down relentless pain. The only pain that was worse was an ear infection which eventually burst my ear drum. I would have happily chopped my head off after lying awake all night with that pain. Never again will I dismiss my DCs ear complaints as something minor!!!

ButtonBoo Wed 13-Feb-13 07:41:46

Yep - gall stones. Absolute, unbelievable pain. Proper white-out pain. Trumped my labour and delivery!

CeceliaStrange Wed 13-Feb-13 08:13:20

Labours are so different, my first was long and painful, so tired and thought it was an awful birth.

I remember thinking in my second is was like giving birth for the first time, out of your head pain and losing it a bit. It was an urgent straight to drip induction and I wasn't ready in my head as I 36 weeks. 3pm at work, 5pm drip started. Then way too strong continuous contractions suddenly from nothing and going 4cm to birth in under half hour. But that wasn't even the was stopping the pph there and then with manual clot removal and no pain relief. That was a three person pinning me down job. That was the kind ofpain that leaves you shaking in shock after.

I've had a few broken bones (clumsy!) but 53 hours of spurious but relentless and then active labour with DS, ending up with a drug free birth in flipping stirrups plus episiotomy was pretty flipping sore and a lot worse than any broken bones, migraines, tonsillitis, bad sprains I can think of.

Of course I'm preparing to go through it all again in 25 weeks time so not sure if that makes me a crazy masochist hmm

Blimey that sounds really awful Cecelia sad You poor thing x

Alamaya Fri 15-Feb-13 20:42:52

my gallbladder pain hurt far much more than both my labours.

Although my tattoo hurt more than both my labours.

I loved my labours lol

Snowkey Fri 15-Feb-13 20:50:02

Have broken my arms 3 times, chipped thumbs broken fingers but when I went into labour dh asked me how I knew it was for real and I said because if I wasn't in labour I was dying and I meant it - it was beyond hideous pain. My midwife didn't feel labour pains, my mum's cousin had 10 kids and was a midwife too and never felt labour pains - I think it's impossible and a bit pointless to compare pain between 2 people.

pmTea Sat 16-Feb-13 20:52:40

LaQueen - yes I sadly also know what that feels like...aspirin my arse

digerd Sat 16-Feb-13 21:14:29

My labour was also back to back, but decades ago so didn't know and also no epidural. I too looked around for a hammer to hit myself over the head with to put me out as they wouldn't do it. Also saw the window and thought if I throw myself out of it that will knock me out.
I felt as if I was on the torure rack having my bum pulled apart for 3 days, and couldn't understand why I didn't pass out. Pethidine injections and gas and air didn't even touch the edge of the pain. But once I felt the urge to push all pain disappeared and she shot out face up towards me. Didn't even feel the pain of the tear, as nothing compared with the pain of the 1st stage.
Had lots of tooth root abcesses but pain killers got rid of that pain.

digerd Sat 16-Feb-13 21:15:37

oops 'torture wrack'

Vunsure Sat 16-Feb-13 23:30:30

Just had acute tonsillitis and loved labour in comparison!!

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