I'm 39 years old and now 41 weeks + 5 days with my first baby and trying to avoid being induced...(64 Posts)
I had follicle tracking back in May last year so I know exactly when I ovulated and conceived. When my dates were calculated by the doctor she used the day of my last menstrual period, which was two weeks earlier. However, my eight-week scan confirmed the doctor's date as correct and I was given an EDD of February 15 2009. But here I am, nearly 42 weeks later and the midwife has confirmed my cervix is still not favourable, and the hospital is itching to induce. I don't want to put my baby at risk, but I want to go into labour naturally when my baby is ready. NHS figures confirm that 20 per cent of pregnant women in this country are induced. Can it really be true that one in five women are unable to go into labour? Why are they putting this pressure on me, and who is right? Them or me?
Dont know if I can be of any help to you, but my third child was 15 days late. They were understanding and allowed me to carry on but then booked me in to be induced. Whilst waiting at hospital my waters broke though but unfortunately after pushing for hours I had to have an emergency section as baby was too big to deliver naturally.
They shouldnt put pressure on to you unless for medical reasons. Good luck. Im sure your baby will come when the time is right
Hello Killerkitty. If you are at 42 weeks, I can understand why you are being advised to have an induction, but if you're concerned about the advice, you should seek a second medical opinion. For background - I was induced at 38 weeks as I had developed a slight complication which meant that my baby would have been at risk if he had stayed inside for any longer. As I was only at 38 weeks, all the gentle methods didn't work, and I had to go on a syntocin (this may be oxytocin, I always get confused) drip. A friend of mine who was induced at 41 weeks said that she went into labour as soon as the gel was applied. My advice would be to not get too hung up on the method by which your baby arrives, but to focus on it being healthy. My labour (all induction methods, epidural, ventouse, plus emergency cesearean!!) did not go 'to plan' at all, but I was THRILLED with my son and ultimately, the baby's well being is all that matters. Best of luck
Around 4% of women deliver after 42 weeks and national data includes delivery at 47 weeks. Due dates are inexact and based on data collected centuries ago.
You do not have to agree to induction. It is your birth and if they are giving you the scare stories ask if there is evidence it is happening to you at this time. ASk for the risks of induction to be explained.
Have confidence in your body, if the cervix isn't favourable then an induction might be difficult anyway. Try natural methods, lots of snogging to get the oxytocin going, talk to your baby and tell her it's time, it's safe, look into aromatherapy, acupuncture etc. It is still your decision. If your instinct tells you to wait and there is no other evidence to hurry, just wait, be monitored and wait some more!
Women are all different, we gestate our babies differently. Women's bodies do know what to do and in most cases are best left to get on with it in their own time. good luck
Induction is not fun, but I don't want to alarm you (I'm 38) but the risk of stillbirth does increase with age and delivery. Have you had sweeps?
Due dates are based on some Frenchman in the 19th century who decided that the human gestation should be 9 lunar cycles. Need I say more?
The risks do go up after 42 weeks but I believe I'm right in saying that one of them (which you probably don't want to read at this point in your pregnancy - sorry) neonatal death rises from 1 in 1000 to 2 in 1000. These figures are still very small but if it happens to you then is 100% catastrophic.
My advice would be to research the risks and make your own decision which is the right one for you. The hospital will not be a well rounded source for these facts but will be the only ones able to provide some of the ones you need (like scan info etc.)
The midwife has tried to sweep me three times now, but she just says my cervix is not favourable. I'm hoping for another sweep attempt tomorrow...
Have you had the placenta checked? I think part of the reasoning for not letting mums go too long overdue is the placentas ability to do what it needs too, lessens.
Rhubarb and custard
The hospital will start checking my placenta from tomorrow.
Funny enough I asked the midwife why eating curry was advised. She said that the heat and spices were supposed to give you the runs which irritates the uterus. Not very scientific, but hey, anything's worth a go.
Been walking a couple of miles every day.
Rhubarb & custard? I hate to ask, but why?
I swear by fresh pineapple (DD eventually arrived at 41+5)
I heard rhubarb helped. I had some on Sat and Sun and went into labour Sun night.
I went 12 days over and had to be induced, I wished I'd had courage to hold off a couple more days as labour was traumatic for both me and baby. The other advice to get things moving is nipple twiddling (I kid you not!) and sex - both get the oxytocin flowing
Ask what the risk is if you don't get induced. Then you can make a decision based on the risk of waiting. If the placenta is healthy and baby happy then go with what you feel is right. No-one can force you to have intervention and if there's nothing wrong with you or the baby then I can't see why you would. The baby will come soon enough I'm sure.
Considering how traumatic induction is for most people, it's amazing how many women accept it. The medical establishment sure has done a good job on scaring us all witless on this higher risk of stillbirth. I quote updated NICE guidelines on induction of labour:
Although the risks of fetal compromise and stillbirth rise steeply after 42 weeks, this rise is from a low baseline. Consequently, only a comparatively small proportion of that population is at particular risk. Because there is no way to precisely identify those pregnancies, delivery currently has to be recommended to all such women. If there were better methods of predicting complications in an individual pregnancy, induction of labour could be more
precisely directed towards those at particular risk.
So if we're dealing with risk here, does anyone know what the fetal death rate is for assisted deliveries which end in emergency CS? Surely that would be a better comparison?
I sympathise with you on the dates front - I KNOW when I conceived this baby, there is no doubt (sex not a frequent occurrence, sadly...) and yet they keep changing my due date every time I have another scan.
Because of course I'm not intelligent enough to know when I had sex.
DS was induced and my gut feeling is that if conditions aren't favourable, it ain't going to work. But there are many reasons why your cervix may not be favourable - the obstetrician who delivered DS said that the placenta had started to deteriorate (he was em CS in the end at 40 + 17) and his head was at an angle, so maybe he would have been one of the stillbirth statistics if we hadn't gone for the induction.
He was also quite a lightweight, so wasn't pressing on the cervix enough or in the right way.
Not sure how much this helps, but thought I would share.
killerkitty 3 out of 4 of my pregnanies were induced . I went 14 days over with my last baby . Believe me i tried everything possible to get things started but to no avail. After going into labour naturally with my third baby (10) days overdue i must say i did find the induced births much harder to cope with. I had several sweeps then the gel pessary. Every woman reacts differently but for me the pains come on so fast and furious it can be very overwhelming. You can feel under enormous pressure to have an induction. With my 2nd baby i was only one week over i told the consulation that i didnt want induction and he so much as said it was my fault if something happened to the baby! Good luck hope all goes way p.s keep an open mind for pain relief .I had epidural for first time with number 4 wish i'd had it for all of them!
I had 7 days then the next was 10 days then the next was 15 days late, so I'm stopping there. I think exercise (walking) helps speed them up once the labour starts - I didn't lie down unless they were actually poking or prodding me. Good luck when it comes.
"Can it really be true that one in five women are unable to go into labour?"
The one in five doesn't just come from women who are unable to go into labour - they also use induction to hurry up the labour once it has actually started naturally.
For example although I went into labour naturally, they induced me once my waters had broken (before any contractions unfortunately) as I had previously tested positive for Strep B, and they didn't want my DS hanging about inside once my waters had gone, due to infection risk.
Just thought I'd answer that bit, although not much help to you now!
FWIW I agree with BonzoDoodah "Ask what the risk is if you don't get induced. Then you can make a decision based on the risk of waiting."
Also agree with pooka "Sex sex sex"
Thanks for all your messages. Am being scanned in the morning and placenta checked, so will make a more informed decision from there. Interestingly a doctor friend has recommended that I accept a pessary induction early next week but if it doesn't work then she says I should insist on an elective CS rather than go down the syntocinon drip route, especially as my cervix isn't favourable and my waters would need to be broken.
Best of luck killerkitty. Interesting advice from your doctor friend. My cervix wasn't 'favourable' when I was induced, and I ended up having an emergency cesearean after full labour, so may be worth getting a second opinion on this. I'd insist on seeing a consultant as, in my experience, they give much more balanced advice
killerkitty, let us know how you get on.
lots of walking
My cervix wasn't favourable, but I went 8 hours from pessary to delivery... just one pessary. Everyone's different. Plus because they told me the prostin pains would be so bad I had the added bonus of not knowing I was in labour until I needed to push!
You haven't mentioned baby's weight, but do try to find out (have a scan). It is quite likely that your baby has continued to put on weight over the last 2 weeks and if he is quite large, you might do well to consider a c-section.
I went into hospital on DD's due date which was a tuesday, to be induced, the reason the hospital advised this was due to my age, 40 at the time. I went along and was given gel to start with, then as nothing much happened I was given a pessary, this didn't do much at all so was given another the following day, no movement again, started to get a bit fed up (and bloody sore from the internals!) and then on the Thursday morning a lovely consultant came along and advised one more go on the pessary route and then if still nothing happened we'd go for a c section. This was only because they normally have three goes at the pessary and then advise a c section. I started to dialate and they broke my waters, put me on the drip to hurry her along and five hours later DD arrived BUT the lovely consultant questioned why on earth I was being induced as there were no complications at all with baby or me and hadn't been all through my pregnancy, we were both fit and healthy and it was blinkin hard work and not particularly nice to have all this going on when really DD was just not ready. He basically said it was totally unnecessary to have done all this probing just because of my age. I wish I'd seen him earlier! I was advised to have an epidural which I accepted gratefully as I had a bit of a tough time, chatting to my super midwife she told me a lot of what I was going through was down to the induction.
My experience only and everyones different and has a story to tell but I'll definately know next time!
killerkitty - I'd second going with an elcs if the lesser interventions don't work. I had pessaries at 40+6 (no amniotic fluid, low movement). Nothing much happened, then they broke my waters (not that there were any!) and I immediately felt like I'd been hit by a bus. Contractions kicked in straight away and literally took my breath away.
I got going on gas and air and vaguely gained some control but I called for an epidural anyway. It all took too long, fetal distress kicked in and I ended up with an emcs under ga.
I should have insisted on a longer period of monitoring and not allowed them to break my waters or I should have gone straight to elcs after the pessaries. You get caught up in the excitement of getting on with it though. I don't think I'd ever allow my waters to be broken again.
Good luck, personally I'm not that bothered about how my next baby gets here. I'd prefer to be awake and will prob go for an elcs to ensure some measure of calm.
How I wish I'd known about MN before going in for the induction!
Oh yes, I didn't have a favourable cervix either. I remarked to my partner on the way to hospital for the induction that it would all end in a CS, I just didn't expect it to be an em under ga one!
I didn't have a favourable cervix on the Wednesday. Hence the fact that my precipitous 2-3 hour labour on the Friday was a bit of a surprise!
Midwives unable to sweep, so distant and closed was the cervix. They tried to have a (painful) jiggle. But no chance.
Had scan and CTG and all is well with the baby. They reckon it's eight and a half pounds, there's plenty of blood going through the placenta and lots of amniotic fluid. So although the midwives offered me an induction for this Monday I decided to see the consultant and have a chat. He agreed with me that as all was well it would be worth waiting a bit longer to see if I could go into labour naturally. Have booked it for next Wednesday when I will be term + 17 days - probably long enough for any woman to stand being heavily pregnant!
Midwife also tried a sweep - and still not able to. I must have a very stubborn cervix. Have now booked another one for Monday.
I'm told that if I do go in for induction on Wednesday, then they will start me on pessaries. Then if nothing happens they'll break my waters and put me on the drip, and give me an epidural if I wish (which I'm sure I will by then). Basically they say they won't let me leave the hospital until I have my baby. Is this the case? I thought you could have the pessaries and if they didn't work then you could have a rethink about your options and possibly even go home... Does anyone know?
Try to avoid going down that drip > breaking waters > epidural route if you possibly can. I did it and it wasn't pretty - birth was horrid and so was the long recovery.
Have sex. Lots of. Semen on cervix is very effective.
killerkitty I had a favourable cervix during my sweep (one week overdue) but still DD wouldn't put in appearance. In induction first pessary started it all off and it was painful. It took 2 midwives 3 goes to break waters by which time very painful. i think I'd hold off the breaking of waters. I remember them saying they'd give pessary if nothing happened they give another 2 pessary attempts (with a space of 3-4 hours inbetween attemps) then if nothing happened they'd leave you alone for 6-8 hours before further drip intervention. SO glad pessary worked first time.
I'm watching this thread with interest as am old as the hills at 41 and due number 4 in August. The last 3 babies were pretty much 2 weeks overdue, but the obs has told me dire tales of what happens to babies of ancient mothers, and am wondering about induction.
clure, you said: "I remember them saying they'd give pessary if nothing happened they give another 2 pessary attempts (with a space of 3-4 hours in between attempts) then if nothing happened they'd leave you alone for 6-8 hours before further drip intervention."
I wish I'd understood these options when I went in. I went from an unfavourable cervix to them breaking my waters in about 6-8 hours after one pessary alone. Now, clearly I had progressed so if we'd just slept on things for the night, maybe it would have all started happening on its own. OTOH, the fetal distress DS ended up in could have started earlier in a more gentle labour anyway and been catastrophic. Such are the decisions we're faced with in these situations.
OK, so drip>breaking waters>epidural route is to be avoided, but how do you do that if you're already in hospital being induced with pessaries? I'm a fairly tough cookie, but even I'm not sure that I can say: Thank you for trying with these pessaries, they clearly didn't work, now I'm off home to avoid you lot breaking my waters and hooking me up to a drip? What are my rights at this point?
Duchesse - I was lucky to get sensible doctor when I visted the hospital today, but I'm told there is one consultant in particular whose attitude is that any woman over 35 should be induced at 38 weeks! Clearly a woman-hater with a very small willie.
I guess you ask to wait and ask about other options instead of breaking waters etc.
I wouldn't say all these options have to avoided at all costs, they should have just had an epidural lined up for as soon as I wanted after they broke my waters or we should have monitored and waited. Hindsight is a wonderful thing!
Overall, I just wanted my baby here safe and well. I was never that bothered about how he got here, despite having planned a home waterbirth. It's just if I'd known what was going to happen I'd have had an epidural before they broke my waters or gone straight to CS once we decided he would be better off out than in. I may never have progressed in labour and he may never have coped with it well (cord was wrapped tight around his ankle twice and no fluid to dislodge it) so a CS may have been on the cards anyway.
kitty - you don't have to accept any intervention at all - you must give consent to any procedure so just say you want to wait a bit - go for a walk - have some fresh air etc. It is imtimidating being in hospital with all the specialists telling you to go on - get on with it. Always ask what the risk is of waiting - that's the line to use all the time. If the baby or you are at risk then do whateveryou need. Otherwise you always have time to think.
Make sure you've primed hubby/partner to ask you - "are you sure? Shall we have a think about this?" then you have a person you trust giving you a bit of space. Make sure they are doing the right thing for you and not just 'getting you going' as you're taking up a bed.
I'd planned the natural waterbirth and everything but had baby transverse at 38 weeks. They wanted to CS me but I refused and stayed in hospital for 10 days then came out with baby head down. Super! When my contractions started a week later I was happy and excited - but nothing happened. I did stick it out and kept asking why or what are the alternatives all the way ... I didn't get stroppy just wanted to be informed. The hospital was wonderful. I ended up having a C-S after 6 days of contractions (completely MY choice) with minimal intervention. My baby was brow presenting so would never have come out naturally - but I did feel at the end that the CS was necessary and I'd not been pushed for anything I didn't want.
So it can be done. Good luck and lets hope all starts naturally soon anyway.
Thanks, guys, some really good advice here. Obviously I'm hoping it will all happen naturally by then, but I shall keep in mind that I can gain time between each step in the process by asking to wait. I'm pretty sure my local maternity unit gives plenty of time for the pessaries to work, but I also worry that if they don't, then nature is clearly saying it's just not your time yet.
get a move on Killer kitty! Are you having pineappple for tea?
GET BACK ON THAT BIRTHING BALL!
killerkitty - the best of luck to you. I tried EVERYTHING - lots of sex, 3 sweeps, raspberry leaf tea caspules, laxatives, stiff G&T in a hot bath, nipple twiddling (set of spectacular braxton hicks, but no more than that!). If they're not ready, they're not ready.
I got booked in for an induction at 13 days over, had a pessary in the morning and waters broken at 8pm. I'm at Bonzo saying 'you don't have to accept any intervention at all' 'cos that wasn't my experience at all. I was contracting after having my waters broken but the contractions weren't regular. I was TOLD I'd be put on the drip. I protested, the head MW was called, and then TOLD I'd be put on a drip again and pretty much forced into it. I was forced to stay on my back on the bed due to the monitoring, despite me feeling that I was in totally the wrong position, as was DD, and I could feel her head was jammed in my pelvis (had SPD so this pain was far worse than contractions). Anyway, it all ended in foetal distress and an emcs at 4am, and not much wonder. I definitely felt my wishes were routinely ignored because I know the Labour ward was chokka. It felt like there was a time limit for my labour. Grrr.
Kitty I hope that whatever happens, being informed is empowering for you. Once you make your mind up, don't let them mess you around!
don't let that last story put the lo off coming out though. Every birth is different.
That baby wants to come out and greet the springtime and be born in march.
come on little baby, here killerkitty's kitty
Sorry, didn't mean to send negative vibes . Didn't even realise I needed a rant! Come on the wee one!
There have been some very negative induction experiences reported on this thread. So just to give you another perspective, I was induced at 42 weeks. Like you I had a strong desire to go into labour naturally, but decided to follow the hospitals advice and proceed with induction at this stage.
I had pessary, waters broken, drip. But was allowed some time in between each stage to see if anything happened.
I had a vaginal birth 11 hours after they started the drip. I had some g&a, but managed without an epidural which was important to me. Having the drip was inhibiting and a distraction, but I was able to move around and try different positions. I had a second degree tear, but it probably wasn't any worse than if I'd gone into labour on my own.
Good luck and I really hope your labour starts naturally. Sometimes sheer will and desire isn't enough, and if you are induced it doesn't have to be the end of the world.
"I'm not sure that I can say: Thank you for trying with these pessaries, they clearly didn't work, now I'm off home to avoid you lot breaking my waters and hooking me up to a drip?"
One thing I learned from DD's birth is that you can do whatever the hell you want, as long as your baby is not in danger and you are not in danger.
Tell them beforehand that if pessary doesn's work, you are out of there. They can't make you open your legs to break your waters if you don't let them. If pessaries don't work, get up and leave. Or say you are ready for your c-section now.
Michel Odent is not very keen on induction I wonder if he has published anything on the internet?
He is the David Attenborough of Obstetrics.
He thinks you should have daily scans to check placenta and just wait for spontaneous labour.
If the scans show a placenta problem he thinks you should be given a c-section.
It makes a lot of sense to me.
kk - have only read op and a couple of your latest posts, so hope I'm not repeating stuff.
I was induced nearly 5 months ago, with my second dc. I was 40+5 when I went in, but my induction was due to gestational diabetes.
The hospital wouldn't let me leave their grounds once the induction had begun, and I think that this is pretty standard procedure. I don't expect that they could hold you against your will, but it would be a brave lady who tried to escape!
I went in on a Monday afternoon, and spent Mon/Tues/Wedns having pessaries that didn't work. I then had to wait until Thurs night to have my waters broken, as delivery was full. Breaking my waters was difficult, as I was only 2cm dilated and posterior, but it could be done. As a first timer, if the pessaries don't work at all for you, then breaking your waters won't actually be possible (because your cervix won't be open enough for them to get in).
I had my waters broken on Thurs night, but still didn't go into labour, so after 4 hours I asked to go back up to the ward for the night, rather than have the drip right away. This was seemingly an unusual request, but after checking with the registrar (who agreed, but wasn't described as 'happy about it'!) they agreed. So you can ask for a bit of a delay here if you want (once they break your waters you only have 24 hours rather than the 72 that you tend to get if they break naturally, because the risk of infection is increased by the method).
I had some contractions overnight, but really not enough, so the next morning I finally agreed to the drip. Drip started 9:25am (when I was 2-3cm), 4cm at examination at 11:25, and ds was born at 12:35!
If the pessaries don't work and they can't break your waters then they may offer the drip in the hope that the contractions dilate you quick enough, but if they don't then it will lead to an em cs.
If you don't want the drip at this point then the alternative is an elective cs.
hobnob at your treatment. That was terrible and really worth complaining about.
Ilovepudding - lovely story and good to get some positive stories too!
K-Kitty GOOD LUCK!
Oh yes, forgot to say no epidural and only the tiniest tear that didn't need stitching.
Oh, and 4 pessaries (must be at least 6 hours between them) is max that my hospital will give, except that they did actually give 5 to a first timer who was in at the same time as me, so these can easily run over a number of days if they aren't working to start with.
killerkitty I have been induced once and I will admit that it's not an experience I would like to repeat.. with my 2 subsequent labours i managed to jiggle things along with pineapple and sideways walking etc...
This time round I intend on going to see my osteopath. My osteopath is also a homeopath and does accupuncture too. His induction success rate is currently at over 80% which I think is actually better than my local hospital and he doesn't go anywhere near your fanjo or pump you with drugs...
Just wanted to remind you that you can look elswhere for assistance and that the consultant still isn't the final say in this - if you think you are being pushed around by the consultant with the tinky winky ask for a second opinion.
I am hoping you have already gone into spontaneous laour and that why u are not on here!! Good luck!!
Sorry to disappoint you all but kittyjunior is still firmly indoors. However, I have started having some rather good Braxton Hicks up my back and I'm now going out for a good long walk. Will be bouncing on birthing ball later (and DH if he's really lucky).
Thank you for all your stories and advice. I'm going for my CTG tomorrow morning and hopefully the midwife will also be able to do a sweep. If my cervix is still unfavourable, then as NICE guidelines don't recommend inducing with a Bishops score of less than 8, I would be within my rights to move the March 4 induction date to perhaps the end of the week when I will be 40+19.
I think I will also have another chat with the easy-going consultant I saw last Friday and explain that if and when I come in to be induced, I will refuse the drip if the pessaries don't work. Which means he will either have to let me carry on being monitored or organise a CS. Obviously this is all dependent on the results of the monitoring and if there's any problem at all, will be whipping it out immediately.
I feel much better and stronger about dealing with it now that I've had so much feedback. I can't thank you all enough.
ps Not had reflexology as I've already spent a fortune on acupuncture. Drank some foul Chinese herbs last night and today, so perhaps that's helping too.
killerkitty you sound like you have a very good and sensible plan of action. Wishing you all the best x
Not sure if someone has already mentioned this as I didn't read the whole thread, but when I was overdue with my 2dd I went into the hospital to have my blood pressure monitored and baby's heart rate checked every day when I went past 11 days over. They can also do an ultrasound to check blood flow to the placenta which is one of the risks (i.e. lack of blood flow to the placenta). They may not want to do it but it is worth suggesting it if they are pressuring you and you want to show willing but also want to stick to your guns about avoiding induction.
All the very best!
You're quiet Killerkitty .. is this good news???
After all my worries over induction I went into labour naturally at 11pm on Wednesday 4 March. After 15 hours of contractions that were only 3 minutes apart I started bleeding heavily, my BP dropped like a stone and the baby's heart rate went sky high. Blood in my waters prompted a discussion about whether the baby would cope with the next however many hours of labour as I was being a bit slow, which left me the option of either syntocinon or a c.section. I took the cs option and at 16.29 on Thursday 5th March my beautiful daughter Jesse was airlifted to the strains of Al Green's I'm Tired of Being Alone - and the gasps of amazement that she was 10 pounds 4 ounces.
Ladies, how grateful was I to that surgeon?
Thank you for all your help and advice. Now I can be found on breastfeeding threads trying to work out how to feed my MONSTER baby...
Oh and I should add that Jesse got 10 on all her apgar scores, she looked pink and healthy and screamed lustily. My placenta - which was huge apparently - was a bit gritty but otherwise OK. The midwives all came to hug and squidge her because it's rare they see such a big chunky baby. Is this because so many babies aren't cooked properly?
Anyway, all's well that ends well.
Hi Killerkity congratulations!!! Thanks for coming back and updating us (I've been checking in every few days).
Glad things started naturally for you and that everything worked out in the end. You can never say you didn't try now can you. Great outcome. Imagine pushing 10 lb 4 oz! Makes my eyes water thinking. Laughing that they predicted a week before that she'd be 8 lb something! Ha. But your daughter sounds lovely and healthy and happy. Wonderful. Hope you're well too! Good luck with the breastfeeding - it is very rewarding if you can stick with it. Happy days and great news!
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