Csection or forceps

(92 Posts)
BusyBee86 Sun 03-Mar-13 20:25:02

What would you prefer to have if you had the choice? Csection or forceps and other intervention?

What was your recovery like if you have had either of these?

herethereandeverywhere Sun 03-Mar-13 23:17:22

With respect, I "trusted" the consultant (many years experience at a large London teaching hospital) and look where it got me. Be aware of the hidden agenda that many healthcare professionals have. With hindsight my consultant was known for getting babies out with Keillands and keeping CS rates down. DD was really stuck, at one point he alluded to shoulder dystocia (called a colleague for assistance because "I have a shoulder problem") Yet STILL he persisted with the brutal things.

Do your own research and trust your own views is my advice.

atrcts Sun 03-Mar-13 23:19:26

ELCS over forceps without any hesitation.

I had forceps and episiotomy which took FOREVER to heal from and so is part of the reason I am being booked for CS this time round.

I had forcepts and lost a lot of blood with ds1 and recovery was slow.

Ds3 was an emcs which was far more uncomfortable than the forcepts delivery.

Ds4 is 4 weeks and was elcs, the spinal started wearing off before he was even born and they couldn't get it back on track so I had gas and air (didn't want another general) the scar became infected and started opening up 5 days later so it has been really difficult especially as ds3 is not yet 2.

I wouldn't want a csection again

SignoraStronza Sun 03-Mar-13 23:27:45

C section all the way,although have never had vb - just emcs and elcs.

First birth was in Italy where forceps are banned anyway, second in the UK and I wussed out of vbac for fear of possibility of syntocin and forceps.

My mum had me back in the 70s by 'high forceps' before she was fully dilated. It nearly killed her. V matter of fact in her description but the idea of those things fills me with dread.

Angelico Sun 03-Mar-13 23:35:38

CS over forceps a million times over. I do not know a single person with any kind of medical know-how who would pick forceps. They can cause horrific damage to mum and baby.

trustissues75 - thanks for that. Very informative...and frightening.

Agree with herethere, a consultant who is interested in achieving cs targets may simply not be interested in the potentially longer term health problems caused by other interventions. My first consultant insisted I went through 4 days of induction procedures including synto drip with no epidural on day four and then chaotic forceps delivery under spinal when ds found to be stuck high up. Both ds and I will have the scars permanently - the forceps cut his face badly as they turned him.
There is no reason to think that a planned cs will be problematic if you are healthy. For me there are just too many risk factors with forceps.

blondieminx Sun 03-Mar-13 23:53:57

I had it on my birth plan that if forceps were indicated, then to please proceed straight to c-section.

I know several friends who've had issues with healing after forceps delivery sad

I would honestly prefer to have abdominal surgery than giant BBQ tongs up my fanjo!

TheDetective Sun 03-Mar-13 23:55:42

I have had both. Emergency c/s after failed ventouse, and then a forceps for my second birth.

I'd chose neither. I've had shit recoveries from both.

Section - wound split open when staples were removed. This explained the excruciating pain I had been in. There was a haematoma behind the wound. Slowly the scar healed, after an infection. I think it took 3-4 months to totally heal. However it is still quite thick scar tissue in places where it was open. I also get discomfort from it at times. I also had a blood transfusion after delivery.

Forceps - that was 14 weeks ago, and I am not yet recovered. Significant problems with pain in the extended episiotomy (it extends to my arse cheek ffs) I had a haematoma there too. Pelvic floor pain. Issues with continence and bladder function too. I can't yet function normally. I am due to return to work in 8 weeks, and probably won't be able to at this rate of recovery.

I think, what I would do in future is to plan for a normal delivery, and if there was any inkling of things going the assisted delivery way, I would refuse consent and have a section.

I think. I'm not sure. But I'd get whatever it was I decided. I know that much.

It's difficult to choose, because you don't know what will happen with either birth. There are so many variables. I know I won't consent to ELCS or forceps though.

I guess what you need to do is to discuss it with your midwife/obstetric team and come up with a plan

Maybe I should just adpot. hmm

shinyblackgrape Mon 04-Mar-13 00:40:36

Forceps. I had a 40 hour labour and needed forceps at the end due to maternal exhaustion and DS' head not quite being in the right position.

I was terrified of having a forceps delivery as my sister had had a bad delivery with them. Therefore I pushed like mad in theatre and they only really needed to lift DS out.

I remember thinking and feeling during the pushing stage with DS that I was going to probably tear really badly so I'm relieved I had the forceps and an episiotomy. It was stitched beautifully in 15 minutes by the obstetrician and has healed very well. My overall recovery has been excellent. In fact, out of the 8 women in my NCT class - who had a mix of deliveries - I have recovered the best and am the only one who hasn't been referred to the physio or needs a repair op.

This is only anecdotal but all of the girls in my NCT class who have had tears have said they would demand an episiotomy for subsequent DC and also refuse to allow midwives to carry out the stitching due to both the lack of pain relief and the poor quality of the stitching (according to their GPs/consultants) 2 are already booked in for repair ops.

So, if you consent to forceps you may want to discuss episiotomy v tear with your midwife/consultant. I know the prevailing current view is that a tear is "better", more natural etc but the anecdotal evidence I have heard (from my very small nct group and DSis, admittedly) is that the tears seem to be at least third degree and don't heal as well.

In terms of a section, only one of the girls in my group had one. Her recovery has been very slow. However, I know someone who had an elective section and had a great recovery. There seems to be a big difference between an emergency and elective section in terms of recovery

I'm actually amazed to be writing this post as pre 13 week DS, I was terrified of a forceps delivery and would have chosen a section but in very glad I had the delivery I did. The other benefit is that - according to the obstetrician and midwives - any subsequent DC should come shooting out!

shinyblackgrape Mon 04-Mar-13 00:48:01

Ps - my understanding is that keillands forceps aren't used anymore. I put in my birth plan that I would not consent to their use and DH was absolutely assured by the midwives and the obstetrician that they wouldn't be used as they aren't in use anymore. Instead, you're given a section.

Don't want to worry you re my previous comment about subsequent babies whooshing out. I do not have a fanjo like a bucket! In fact, tmi alert DH has said he can't really feel,any difference and I'm sure he's not just being kind!

shinyblackgrape Mon 04-Mar-13 00:54:55

Sorry, final, final point. My DH was fully briefed on the fact that I was very worried about a forceps delivery. I was absolutely off my face with exhaustion and gas and air but Dh had a good chat with the obstetrician and was assured that really DS just needed a lift out and that was why they were advocating forceps over a section.

shinyblackgrape Mon 04-Mar-13 01:01:46

Also, DH was told that the consultant was only permitted three pulls and it was then a section.

Keillands (or high forceps) are used to rotate significantly and are obviously placed much higher up the birth canal. Both of these issues are therefore likely to cause more damage to mum and baby. The obstetrician explained to DH that as their use wasn't permitted (maybe just at our trust?) and there was the three pulls rule, the risks of damage were significantly reduced (not removed).

Interestingly, the obstetrician had been in a similar situation to me in labour and chosen a forceps delivery over a section. I was very surprised when DH told me that as I thought all obstetricians chose elective sections!

KatieMiddleton Mon 04-Mar-13 01:42:25

I had no kielland's on my notes last time. They still use them in some hospitals although they are banned in many.

I take an open mind to forceps vs CS because the medical need can be different and one will be better than the other in some scenarios.

Keillands were used in 2011 in the Kent hospital where my DC was born.

NoTimeForS Mon 04-Mar-13 08:36:47

Ask me in a few weeks. Had forecep delivery with DD. DH said I looked like I had been attacked by a shark and DD's face was awfully mangled (but healed soon). I have to say I recovered well. No lasting problems, no real pain afterwards.

I had an EMCS last night at quarter past midnight, haven't sat up yet...

TiredyCustards Mon 04-Mar-13 08:44:06

Cs is great, I've had 2 emcs but forceps just sound barbaric.

Recovery is fine with a toddler. Just make sure you have round the clock help from friends and relatives for the first few weeks, then avoid lifting them until you're 6 weeks post partum.

TiredyCustards Mon 04-Mar-13 08:56:27

Also - if you book in for an elcs you can always change your mind. If they have you down for a vb it may be difficult to get a cs re-granted.

ChocolateCoins Mon 04-Mar-13 09:13:28

I had a keilands forceps delivery and I was absolutely fine. They cut me and I was near enough recovered after about 3 weeks. I wouldn't hesitate to have the same birth again. Although can't comment on c section as I haven't had one.

PetiteRaleuse Mon 04-Mar-13 09:26:58

OP DD1 was 19 months when DD2 arrived by elcs. I asked and got lots of help at the beginning - DH took a couple of weeks off work for one thing, then my mum came for a few days. It was fine. By six months pregnant I started picking DD1 up less and less so she got used to the idea. It's tiring but the first week or two are the worst.

trustissues75 Mon 04-Mar-13 09:28:17

Peppa - sorry, did I upset you? Not my intention. I have done a lot of research on Kiellands forceps vs going straight for a C-section and the research I've read appears to point to much higher risks of long term issues to the mother and/or baby. From what I'm understanding they're used less and less because of these risks but then there's also the pressure now to reduce CS rates and when there's pressure on hospitals to produce desired numbers then maybe they're not putting patient wefare first?

PetiteRaleuse Mon 04-Mar-13 09:28:44

Congrats notime. i'm sure you're feeling like you've been hit by a truck right now but once you're walking later today you'll start ferling better.

trustissues75 - no no, not upset at all! smile I just found the information you gave interesting, but also frightening that these forceps are still being used in hospitals, given the associated risks. Although, i'm aware that most medical procedures come with risks, if there's an alternative to keillands then surely these should be used instead.
And for what it's worth, compared to some of the stories on here, then i was very lucky with my forceps delivery!

notime - Congratulations. I hope your recovery is speedy.

StrawberriesTasteLikeLipsDo Mon 04-Mar-13 09:40:36

I had both with DS2. ELCS but they still used forceps!! Wasnt impressed at all. Had a staph infection that time and scar took longer to settle, overall not a nice experience. EMCS with DS1 was lovely though and scar healed brilliantly!

NoTimeForS Mon 04-Mar-13 09:56:35

Thank you! I am just waiting (impatiently) now to go meet baby who is in NICU.

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