A few random ELCS questions

(28 Posts)

I'm booked in for an ELCS in a week's time (eek!) and there are a few random and silly things I have been wondering about.

When you go in to the hospital, should DH bring the bags, or wait until I'm in recovery to get them (I'm assuming we'll need the baby stuff for when he's born straight away?)

What will I be wearing during the op, is it a hospital gown?

If so, when would I put on nightie/knickers/maternity pad? How quickly does the lochia start? I read on here about someone getting a bit rush of fluid afterwards and its freaking me out a bit!

All silly things I know, I'm staring to eat nervous so focussing on the details now!

Anything else I should know/be prepared for I'd also be grateful to hear about smile

Beamae Mon 22-Apr-13 10:52:52

We took the hospital bags in with us. They gave me a hospital gown to put on before walking down to surgery. My husband stayed with me in recovery and popped off periodically to visit our twins who were in special care, but your baby will be with you so I wouldn't imagine your partner would want to leave to get the bags. After your section, the nurses will have put a maternity pad on you as you won't be up and about for 12 hours. I don't think they put knickers on me initially. I think the pad was just tucked in place and I was lying on one of those absorbent bed pads. The lochia started immediately I think. It was certainly there when I was allowed out of bed.

Beamae Mon 22-Apr-13 10:54:15

The nurses moved the bags from the room we were in initially to the ward so they were there when I arrived.

Thanks Beamae that's interesting, I hadn't thought about the nurses putting the pad on but it makes sense as I'm guessing I won't really be able to move

So did you take an extra bag to store the clothes you wore to the hospital?

cjbk1 Mon 22-Apr-13 11:05:51

my contribution;a few differences to what i was expecting(pardon the pun) on any birthing programme the couple are always waiting in a private room before ELCS and are alone with their nerves iykwim? I was in maternity triage with a lot of other mums to be and when they did the spinal block its always in a separate room no dh but they did mine in theatre with him there and didn't get to recovery afterwards it was too busy so stayed in theatre (they obv had no emergencies) for a few hours until I was taken to post natal and not fed or washed for hours where I was well looked after wink

NumTumDeDum Mon 22-Apr-13 11:07:28

Yes you can do that. Try not to pack the kitchen sink as your dp/dh can get anything you've forgotten. DO pack enormous knickers. Your incision will have a large dressing on it and you will have big maternity pads. The pants need to come up to your waist so the waistband is not pressing into your wound. You can get some granny pants in peacocks pack of 5 for a fiver. They are horrendous looking but you won't mind that they get manky and you can bin them guilt free after the wound has healed enough to get better knickers on.

NumTumDeDum Mon 22-Apr-13 11:10:41

Also, if you're going to breastfeed get one of those v shaped cushions or a widgy so baby is not pressing on your wound. It just makes it much more comfortable. In fact you might want to consider that if you bottle feed as well as baby will still be on your lap.

Thanks numtum - wrt to the knickers, my lovely friend sent me a c-sec kit including granny knickers in a size 14. I'm usually a size 12 so I'm not sure they will be big enough for immediately after. How many sizes up did you go?

I've got a v shape pillow and a normal pillow to take with me (will leave in the car til I'm on the ward) so good to know I'm on the right lines there!

Agree with what the other posters have said. Cjb, I was in theatre having my spinal block by myself and I wanted DH there to hold my hand, but they wouldn't let him in yet! I was crying with nerves and nobody noticed. OP, if you need your OH there, make sure they know that. I think the staff forget it's a big deal to the patient.

For when you return home, I personally found having peppermint tea and arnica pillules a huge help in my recovery.

Oh and on the way home, put one of your cushions around your tummy, where your wound is, before doing up your seatbelt over the top of it.

Thanks for the insight ckbk1. I've had postnatal ward experience with my DD (though not a section that time) so have already braced myself for it again this time! I hadn't thought about where we would be waiting at all. Did you have a long wait?

Thanks little. I have peppermint tablets, do you think the tea would be better? Oh, and I bought arnica cream, I think I may have got the wrong end of the stick there. Will it be any use at all or should I get the pillules?

Beamae Mon 22-Apr-13 11:26:17

We had three hospital bags. The first was the traditional one with enough stuff for the first couple of days, outfits, nappies etc for the babies, nighties, maternity pads and toiletries for me. The second was my husband's bag with snacks, water, taxi money, magazines to read etc. The third was my long stay bag with extra of everything - this one stayed at home and my husband brought it in with him at the end of the second day. I was in for 5 days but anticipated this because of twin stuff, thinking they would be in special care etc. I packed the third bag because I knew if I asked him to bring me extra nighties or toiletries that he wouldn't have a clue and would bring me things that were wrong or didn't fit (ie I am a contro freak)! He took the clothes I wore in to the hospital home with him in his bag and was actually really good about washing stuff, drying it overnight and bringing it back in the next day when I started running out. He came in with a half empty bag every day to take stuff away in. I had my going home clothes in the third bag. We kept the baby car seats at home until we knew we were being discharged.

I understand your nerves about not knowing how the details will work! It will really differ from hospital to hospital and will depend on how good the ward staff are, but I did feel a bit abandoned and quite messy for those first 12 hours. You really are just stuck in bed. I had face wipes in my bag and gave myself a good bed bath to try to feel fresher but was only changed once in those 12 hours so was a bit covered in blood. It was a bit gross. My section was an emergency after early labour though, so I was very shell shocked. I can't understand why I didn't constantly buzz and demand changing or cleaning, but would recommend that you prep your partner to do the demanding for you, in case you are a bit out of it.

Beamae Mon 22-Apr-13 11:29:47

Yes, yes to arnica. I would check with your consultant if its okay to start taking the pills ahead of your section. I wouldn't do cream because the cut will be open for a couple of days. I think the stitches came out on day 6 for me. I wore a maternity pad inside my knickers over the wound which felt more secure.

NumTumDeDum Mon 22-Apr-13 11:34:23

I am a 12 normally so I bought size 14 and that was fine. I definitely second the advice to have some wipes so you can have a little wash if necessary. It depends on your hospital really as to your experience. Both my c sections were emergency, I really should have elected the second time but the midwife was so encouraging about vbac. I had a dreadful time of it in London but in Portsmouth the experience was far better and the staff were amazing.

I was advised last year when I had mine by some lovely MNers to get the arnica pillules and the peppermint tea. I firmly believe it helped my recovery. I had an EMCS with DS1 so I was beyond sore, shocked and upset and if I knew half the stuff then that I know now.....

I had ELCS with DD. Pad was put in place straight after delivery, and loss checked periodically in recovery. DD stayed with DH til I felt able to take her (about an hour post delivery I think)

I had 2 bags - one for immediately after that DH brought in with us, and one for everything else

Definitely get the peppermint tea (my hospital had it on offer with tea and coffee) as you get a lot of post-op wind. I got shoulder tip pain, took 6 weeks to pass sad

Thanks for all the advice, I feel slightly more prepared now. I've only got 2 bags, one with baby stuff and a small wheely case with my stuff but its all organised with the bits I'll need straight away on top so hopefully should be ok for DH to manage.

I am worried about the wind though. I suffer from IBS normally and so its a recurring problem. Hope this doesn't mean I'm going to get it extra bad!

WeAreNinjaNotGeisha Mon 22-Apr-13 12:09:03

Re. the granny knickers, go much larger than your normal size. I'm a 10 and on MNers recommendation bought a 5-pack of black cotton knicks from Primark in size 16! They were fabulously comfortable - even with wearing thick maternity pads nothing pulled across or pressed into my section wound. Not the sexiest of pants, but I ended up wearing these for the first several weeks of recovery and still do at night even 10 weeks later!

lurcherlover Mon 22-Apr-13 12:14:25

I had an elcs 11 days ago and it was a fantastic experience. We started out on the ante-natal ward, where I got gowned up (and they make you wear very fetching anti-dvt stockings the whole time you're in the hosp too). When they were ready for us I walked down to theatre where they put the spinal in, whilst DH was gowned up in scrubs. The spinal does hurt a bit, but not for long. Then they set you up with drips in your hands, monitors on you etc and put a catheter in - the mw gave me the choice of having it done in private on the ward before going to theatre, or in the theatre with other people around, but under the anaesthetic. I opted to have it done in theatre - they obviously lift your gown right up to do the surgery and they clean you up down below after it's finished so I figured everyone was going to see everything anyway! Then the screen goes up and they brought DH in. It was about ten mins then until dd was born. Some people say they feel pushing and pulling sensations, but I didn't. After the baby's out you can have skin-to-skin if you want, but I didn't as the meds were making me shake (common side effect). It took another 40 mins or so to be stitched up, then they put us in our own room back on the ante-natal ward where we stayed for most of the day. The mws were brilliant and checked us constantly. They'd put a pad between my legs and monitored the blood loss. It was lovely - I had lots of skin-to-skin and got breastfeeding going. When I could feel my legs they moved us to the post-natal ward - the mw helped me wash and change into a nightie first. Then I took it very easy for a couple of days before coming home. They were very good at giving me painkillers and actually the recovery has been very straightforward - I feel so much better now than when I had DS naturally. The worst bit is that for a week afterwards you have to give yourself heparin injections to guard against dvt - I got DH to do them though! You will be fine - good luck!

lurcherlover Mon 22-Apr-13 12:15:51

Oh, I forgot - the constipation can be really bad, and the wind. I'm taking fybogel religiously which is helping.

NumTumDeDum Mon 22-Apr-13 12:40:03

Oh crikey, sorry! I forgot about the injections and anti DVT socks! Yes DP did mine as well. I ate dried apricots and dates with every meal to help with the constipation - I was severely lacking in iron but I found the iron tablets so constipating that in the end I scrapped them (toss up between tiredness and constipation - if you have haemorroids you'll understand why I scrapped the iron tablets - ouchy).[Sorry if that's a bit tmi but you did ask. grin

MERLYPUSS Mon 22-Apr-13 12:40:28

I never had to have injections........? But trapped wind and contipation was rough.

Oh god, I forgot about the injections too. I didn't have them after the EMCS with DS1, but had to after the ELCS last year with DS2. The thought of injecting yourself is worse than the actual thing IYKWIM.

cjbk1 Mon 22-Apr-13 15:53:58

little yes we had a long anxious wait but if course it was worth it x
Ps; I bought size 14 tesco full briefs they are lovely wink

Omg injections, I've not heard of this before? I have my pre-op on Thursday so I'll ask about it then. Really hope I don't have to do this!

Hope we haven't scared you, but injections seem to be commonplace now. My DH offered to do them, but I preferred to do it myself. Not pleasant, but better than DvT is how my MW put it.

cjbk1 Wed 24-Apr-13 13:03:28

yes I think the injections are (commonplace) but I wasn't going to risk dh hurting me so I did them myself wink

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