Do sweeps actually work?

(18 Posts)
Swanlike Thu 31-Jan-13 18:56:03

Hi just curious as I'm just about to go over my DD today and will be offered one next week if nothing happens. Is there any proper evidence for them having any effect? It just seems from reading on here that they can cause a lot of pain and discomfort but not do anything to move things on?

my 2 sweeps with dd didnt work and I was induced a few days later

SweepTheHalls Thu 31-Jan-13 19:25:45

Worked for me!

My 3 with DS didn't work, I went 2 weeks over with him and was a matter of hours away from induction before he showed up.

However, I had one this afternoon, and I feel like something might happen soon. Though that might just be because its my 3rd baby in under 4 years and my cervix can't hold out any more!

LurcioLovesFrankie Thu 31-Jan-13 19:32:42

My consultant (who knew I was a research scientist by profession) put it like this: "quite a lot of healthcare professionals think they work, but as you can imagine, it's not exactly the sort of thing you could do a double-blind study on".

Good luck. The midwife found my cervix was just too firmly shut to even attempt one.

mothermirth Thu 31-Jan-13 19:32:54

Worked for me: had a sweep one afternoon (desperate for it to work as I was 11 days overdue and wanted a home birth). I felt the effects almost immediately - the start of discomfort and cramps.

DS was born at 6.30am the next day. In the nick of time before they forced me to go into hospital. Good luck whatever you decide. smile

myrubberduck Thu 31-Jan-13 21:32:16

sweep and a shag did for me! was in labour within hours...

AlohaMama Fri 01-Feb-13 00:14:43

I had one. Hadn't realised it would hurt so much, it wasn't awful I just wasn't prepared. Started contractions within a few hours. I was 38wks.

SweetTeaVodka Fri 01-Feb-13 04:03:25

I had one first thing in the morning, was 1cm dilated, DD was born at 10:25 that same night after a lightning fast labour (3cm dilated when I went in, 7cm 20 minutes later, 10cm not longer after then 30mons of pushing)!

So, it certainly seemed to work for me. Though I'd been having strong BH for weeks, the intensity really rocked up after the sweep.

SweetTeaVodka Fri 01-Feb-13 04:12:35

Oh, forgot to say that I didn't find it too uncomfortable (definitely not more so than the first attempt at a sweep a few days before where the midwife couldn't reach my cervix and had to "walk it forward" to try and do the sweep).

I think the level of success may well depend on how ripe your cervix is to begin with. The midwife who did mine was confident it would work and surprised how ripe my cervix was. She said the labour ward would be seeing me that night and she wasn't wrong!

Good luck for your sweep, hoping it works for you. I found the last few weeks of waiting for baby to arrive to be the hardest part of pregnancy.

(One thing you may want to consider: take a pic of your bump before you no longer have the opportunity, if you are so inclined. I hadn't got round to it before the opportunity was missed)

gruber Fri 01-Feb-13 05:04:21

No. If your body (and cervix) isn't ready for labour then nothing you or midwife do will persuade it otherwise. I went to 40+12 without sweeps having any effect. Had to be induced.

I think that if your body is on the verge of labour or what the midwife called "favourable" then a sweep will kick things into action, unfortunately if not (like me!) then nothing short of a pessary & drip will make you go into labour.

Mosman Fri 01-Feb-13 05:12:32

Or waiting of course until the baby is ready.

Zara1984 Fri 01-Feb-13 05:15:28

Not for me! Gave me period type cramps and it made me lose my mucus plug but nowt else! Still got induced 3 days later...

rach6122 Fri 01-Feb-13 10:22:15

worked for me, went into labour within 12 hours, sweep didnt hurt at all, i was overdue by 8 days and had no signs of labour at all before this

Looks like the one I had yesterday has worked- been having contractions all morning. Wish me luck!

atrcts Fri 01-Feb-13 14:23:18

My cervix was ripe and dilated to 2-3cm for weeks, during which time I had 2 sweeps. Neither did anything other than cause a mild ache and bleed.

Ended up induced at 10 days late I'm afraid blush

But everyone is so different, and my midwife couldn't believe that everything appeared so ready but in this case clearly wasn't.

woody2313 Fri 01-Feb-13 20:27:50

I've had 3 this week but nothing has happened... in for induction tomorrow...

lollypopsicle Fri 01-Feb-13 21:36:02

worked for me.

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