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AIBU the hospital should have known the cord was wrapped around DS

(49 Posts)
LubiLooLoo Sun 31-Jul-16 13:36:21

This is not an angry thread. But during labour I was left for 5 hours in stage 2 on the horrendously painful cytosine, told I wasn't pushing hard enough, was refused pain relief because it would slow delivery, and held down on a bed...

I'm sure everyone there was utterly professional. But the baby's heart rate was dropping during contractions, and no matter how much I said I was pushing, I was told it wasn't hard enough. The midwife said if I could breath or make noise I wasn't pushing hard enough.

Eventually had a happy (if shaken) baby boy delivered via forceps, which was when they realised he was tangled and the cord was around his neck twice...

But shouldn't they have had some idea that there was a problem that wasn't just my ability to push? I coped with labour really well up to the point they introduced synthetic hormones. Anyone else know anything or had experiences similar?

Imnotaslimjim Sun 31-Jul-16 13:42:18

I'm so sorry that you went through this and I'm glad your DS has come through it unscathed. It must have been very scary for you. You're right, they shouldn't have let you push for so long before they intervened. AFAIK, they don't let you go beyond an hour usually before helping the baby be delivered.

LubiLooLoo Sun 31-Jul-16 13:50:55

I'm over it. My baby is over three months now and everything is fine. smile

Was just reflecting on it last night, and I'm not 100% sure it should have been handled the way it was...

I was 8cm dilated when I went into hospital. I was in the hospital for over 9 hours... I was told I was progressing quite quickly... Something doesn't add up to me.

Just fishing for opinions. smile

davos Sun 31-Jul-16 13:52:37

My Ds cord was round his neck, twice as well. It didn't interfere with me delivering though. In fact I only pushed for 6 minutes.

My sils delivery was similar to yours and her Dd didn't have the cord wrapped round her neck.

It sounds like and awful delivery and sounds like you weren't listened to, I am not sure how they would have known the cord was the issue.

flowers for you

Flossiesmummy Sun 31-Jul-16 13:55:26

My firstborn had the cord wrapped twice round her neck too. It made no difference to my ability to push her out or her wellbeing as she was born. She had a decent apgar (8 I think).

FATEdestiny Sun 31-Jul-16 13:58:25

That must have been scary. There are different levels of 'baby in distress' (baby's heart rate dropping).

I've had 4 babies and in 3 of those deliveries baby became distressed and heart rate dropped with contraction.

In DC4s case I was in surgery for Cat1 EMCS within 10 mins of the heart rate being monitored and baby delivered with 20 minutes.

In the case of DC1 I was told heart rate was dropping and that delivery would be assisted if baby not delivered quickly. Left to push for about 30 mins then ventouse delivery.

DC3 again I was told hear rate was dropping just as I started pushing. But MW said my pushing was good and no need for assisted delivery but delivery must be very soon. Baby born naturally within a few pushes.

Negligent to be left for 5 hours with baby in distress - baby could have died. It is normal for baby's heart to quicken/slow with contractions, just as your own heart rate will have done. This is not to do with cord round the neck. Or at least it wasn't with my children when their heart rates dropped.

I have no direct experience of cord round the neck, but my understanding is that often no one knows this is the case until the baby is delivered. I cannot imagine they could feel the cord round the neck before delivery, so how would they know?

LubiLooLoo Sun 31-Jul-16 13:58:43

davos that's amazing well done you!

6 mins! Push power! gringrin

DS Had a monitor put on his head to monitor his heart rate, which was dropping too much during me pushing as it was strangling him.

Maybe there's a thing about length of the cord or how much is wrapped up where which allows the baby so far down that old birth canal...?

PacificDogwod Sun 31-Jul-16 13:58:55

I'm glad all's well, but sorry to hear you are still wondering about your frightening experience.

I'd ask for a debrief to help you understand what happened and how/why whatever decisions were made.
Baby's heart rate can dip for many reasons, cord round the neck is one of them, and the priority is to get them out. There will have been a reason why they persevered with asking you to push rather than anything else.

Speak to the team who looked after you. Your consultant or the Head of Midwifery will be able to help.

AppleAndBlackberry Sun 31-Jul-16 14:02:35

They wouldn't know about the cord necessarily but they shouldn't have left you that long. I had almost the exact same thing happen, but I was given a ventouse delivery after an hour of pushing. I don't think it's best practice to let you keep pushing for 5 hours and certainly not if baby is distressed.

davos Sun 31-Jul-16 14:02:48

davos that's amazing well done you!

6 mins! Push power!

Nothing to do with me. All down to Ds I think. He tried to come when I was only 8cam and had to be manually dilated. He decided he was coming and no one was stopping him grin

davos Sun 31-Jul-16 14:04:22

DS Had a monitor put on his head to monitor his heart rate, which was dropping too much during me pushing as it was strangling him.

perhaps it was. But they had no way to know that was the cause at that point.

That said they shouldn't have left you that long anyway.

LubiLooLoo Sun 31-Jul-16 14:05:23

Interesting to know!

I'm pretty proud of you ladies! It's scary how often there are problems and how wonderful medicine is now...

I just feel like I'm a pretty strong and fit lady, there's a bit of me that loved the challenge of labour, and I was never in any doubt I didn't have the strength to push... But maybe I didn't?

The doctor nicknames DS monkey because he was so wrapped up: "he got tangled while swinging on the vines." grin

Might ask for a debrief, then again may just leave it wink

Stevefromstevenage Sun 31-Jul-16 14:05:52

You need to speak to the hospital. Babies having a cord around their neck is extremely common and is dealt with in all types of delivery. You need reassurance about the delivery you've had because it is obviously still on your mind. A hospital debrief will work through this with you. In answer to your question though it is very common that a cord being wrapped around a babies neck is not picked up prior to labour as it is difficult to determine.

LubiLooLoo Sun 31-Jul-16 14:07:17


Thanks for your advice! I'm from nearby you! smile

AGruffaloCrumble Sun 31-Jul-16 14:10:23

My DD2 was an undiagnosed face presentation until crowning. The monitors they try to clip onto the back of their heads had gouged into her face, a few cm from her eyes. I have always wondered if that was "wrong" for them to not catch it. Does anyone know how you go about asking for a debrief? Glad your DS is well OP, sorry to derail.

Cakescakescakes Sun 31-Jul-16 14:13:05

My ds1 had cord round his neck which wasn't apparent until he was born (distress during contractions etc but quick natural birth in the end). It's one of the reasons I refused an ECV (??) for ds2 who was breech as if baby has cord entanglement and they attempt to turn him/her it can cause placental abruption as cord can be not long enough to make the turn. This can have serious consequences (including death) for the baby. No way was I risking it!!

Frazzled2207 Sun 31-Jul-16 14:17:17

Wow. Pleased your baby was ok.
I also had a complicated birth like you and asked for a birth "debrief" with the chief midwife at the hospital, basically she went through my notes and explained what happened and reassured me re my next birth (I was pregnant again at the time).
Whilst I very much doubt the hospital would admit fault it would probably be helpful to talk through what happened and ask questions etc. Reassured me a lot and I had a much easier birth with dc2.

edisonsjeans Sun 31-Jul-16 14:18:03

My Dss cord was around his neck, I was in labour for 17 hours but once he was in distress, they had him out by c section in about 4 minutes. Literally cut him out there and then.

LubiLooLoo have you considered having a birth debrief? From my research (I want one when I'm ready) they talk you through the birth and I think tell you why such and such decision was decided. Although your past it and you had a good result with a healthy baby it may help you if you want future kids before becoming pregnant and it possibly being an issue then?

Just seen frazzled suggested this too

AGruffaloCrumble I believe you contact the head midwife (or medical record department) at the hospital you gave birth in. I have seen that it's worth saying that you just want to make sense of the birth as if they think your trying to get them for compo reasons they may not be so helpful

ExtraHotLatteToGo Sun 31-Jul-16 14:34:18

My heart stopped reading your title. I'm glad he was ok 💐

You should definitely request a debrief otherwise you'll always wonder, it's worth finding out so you can put it behind you

Tfoot75 Sun 31-Jul-16 14:35:26

Both of mine had the cord around their necks, only once though. Didn't cause any issue and as a pp said I think it is extremely common and not automatically a cause for concern. Baby doesn't breathe until it is born so it is not possible to be strangled, the risk is that the cord is so tight that it inhibits the blood and therefore oxygen flowing through it. So your baby's distress may or may not have been caused by this, but is more likely just because of a long pushing phase by the sound of it?

As for the pushing hard enough, ime it is so overwhelming that it wouldn't be possible to breathe except between pushes, or purposefully make or stop yourself from making noises as it's just so automatic and overwhelming that any sort of free will goes out the window! I don't think it's a case of you not trying hard enough or whatever but if it wasn't like that for you then perhaps the pushing wasn't effective for some other reason, eg baby's position or some other factor in your body. Childbirth is a natural process with a tonne of hormones controlling it, for whatever reason some women have straightforward births and some don't, but it's nothing to do with the effort you put in!

FruitCider Sun 31-Jul-16 14:35:46

Cords around the neck are not usually dangerous (unless they are cut before birth!) and do not usually delay birth.

Not sure if knowing that will give you some answers or not? X

LoreleiGilmoreIsMyBFF Sun 31-Jul-16 14:37:45

My son's heart rate dropped suddenly after a very long labour and I ended up having an emergency C-section. I remember my (now) ex making a comment about 'what a shame I didn't have a natural birth' . This comment really bloody hurt, even though it wasn't my fault! My son is now four and I still seethe at that remark, it's extremely crap to feel you didn't have the 'perfect birth' in the eyes of others.

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