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Birth after traumatic birth - might need to change consultants at Queen Charlotte's - can anyone help?

(6 Posts)
lucy101 Tue 04-Jan-11 14:09:27

Hi everyone,

I posted here before about my traumatic birth last winter (stillborn and a dreadful induction at 33 weeks): -to-request-an-ELCS-after-a-traumatic-birth-stillb orn

and everyone was very helpful but I think I need a little more advice...

This time I would like to give birth naturally before 40 weeks or have an ELCS (would prefer VB as I have managed to get my head around this) but I just can't deal with the idea of being induced again (apart from being traumatised by the induction I already have problems with interventions and examinations which are longstanding)... and because of my age (39) I am being told that the policy is to induce at 40 weeks.

I myself fear going over that and therefore having another stillborn (albeit it would be for different reasons) but I don't think I can actually get through an induction.

I had a meeting with my consultant at QC's at 16 weeks (34 weeks now) to discuss my request for a ELCS and was refused which was very upsetting.

I am now meeting the consultant again later this week where I hope she will listen to me and make the decision to sanction an ELCS after 40 weeks but fear she won't in which case I want to get referred to another (more sympathetic) consultant there.

What I would like to know is if any one else has done this and if so which consultant might it be good to be asked to be referred to?

Any other tips for the meeting before I go in (just going though the doors reduces me to tears so I write everything down beforehand and my DH is coming too) would be very helpful.

kitstwins Tue 04-Jan-11 21:07:22

I'm very sorry to hear about your terrible experience last time. I'm actually quite surprised that following your previous stillbirth your consultant is not more considerate of your wishes i.e. an elective caesarean. It smacks of them being policy-focussed rather than considerate of individual circumstances and feelings. On those grounds alone I would advise changing your consultant to someone more sympathetic. You are totally within your rights to do this. You can even change your hospital if you do not feel your wishes are being supported, although I appreciate that this would seem a stressful procedure, which you probably don't want.

My consultant was Mr. Kumar, who actually seemed pro-caesarean and I think would be very amenable and supportive. I would also recommend Mr. Wimalasundera (bit of a mouthful!) who on the times I saw him was very kind and friendly.

Hope this helps. As for the meeting, writing things down would be very helpful. I'd also suggest calling Mr. Kumar and Mr. W's secretaries to discuss changing consultants and any advice they can give on it prior to the meeting.

lucy101 Wed 05-Jan-11 16:36:52

Thank you so much Kitstwins - I will see how I get on at the next appointment and if the consultant is still saying no then I will do what you suggest and get in touch with Mr Kumar.

I think you are right about it being policy rather than individual driven - that is exactly what it feels like which makes me feel very anxious that they are going to listen to me at all.

Have had a dreadful day worrying about it but hope I will make some progress.

serendipity16 Wed 05-Jan-11 19:09:17


I'm so sorry to hear what you've been through. Parts of your experience sound like it were written by me.
I had a stillborn at 35wks & i was induced. I had a previous birth where i was also induced but that induction was nothing like the induction for my stillborn daughter.
I now base any pain i have on on the pain i had during that induction with my daughter because to be perfectly honest it was the most horrendous pain i've ever experience (i've also had an ectopic which was painful but nothing like that).
I spent hours without pain relief & even longer before i got an epidural.

Sorry for rambling.... it just makes me angry that decent pain relief wasn't given in plenty of time. Its an awful thing to go through without the added agony of not having decent pain relief.

I've had all my babies at QC.

After that birth i was induced again with my next baby at 37wks. My consultant at the time didn't want me to go past 38wks. I was a little worried about the pain but the pain was nothing at all like the pain during my stillborn daughters induction. Unfortunately i did have to have an emergency c-section but i did get to i think 6cm dilated without any pain relief.... i didn't think it hurt that much.

My story is different in that with the following pregnancy i was told that i had to have a c-section at 34wks(2 abruptions & the stillbirth).

My consultant at the time was lovely but unfortunately he's moved to Australia.... how rude to abandon me.

I've just had my 6th baby & i was given a new consultant, Ms Dhanjal. Whilst i didn't have to argue my case for a c-section as i'd already had 3 c-section i did find her to be nice. We had agreed to have the baby at 35wks but as time went on i started to get worried & stressed. I asked her if i could have the baby at 34wks instead & she was more than happy for me to have my son at 34wks even though she couldn't do the c-section which she had wanted to do. She understood that i was scared of something going wrong & i didn't want to push my luck by going that extra week.

I think you have a perfectly good reason for ELCS. I've heard of plenty of people who've been given an ELCS due to being afraid of giving birth or other reasons.
I honestly think your consultant is being very unfair & doesn't fully understand how traumatic a stillborn induction is.

I have read both your posts, did you have your stillborn baby at QC too?
Who is your current consultant?

I'm not really being of much help.

I really hope that you get the birth that you want. Good luck with it all x

lucy101 Thu 06-Jan-11 08:24:10

Hi Serendipity and so sorry to hear that you had such a bad experience with your stillbirth induction too (the whole thing is so terrible and muddled with grief that it is hard to see straight sometimes)... although I feel slightly reassured that your other induction wasn't so painful. The little girl I lost was my first so I have no other experience and I expect that is why I am so traumatised by it (it was at QC by the way).

From reading your story it does make it clear that I am not being offered/allowed a ELCS because on paper I did 'successfully' give birth... but I know that my anxiety and extreme feelings every time I think about the upcoming birth are not being considered.

I will go in the meeting and explain that I just don't think they understand how dreadful it was for both my husband and I and will try and be very strong about not accepting an induction.

The idea of being on a ward with other women (before they take you up to the delivery suite) and my husband having to go home at night (when I could be very very distressed as I don't seem to have any control over it at the moment) is just awful... and not just for me: I am worried that it would upsetting for the other women too (for the same reason I feel I can't go to things like NCT or other pregnancy group things).

Fingers crossed I get listened to today...

serendipity16 Thu 06-Jan-11 12:29:00

Good luck with your appointment today.
I really hope that your consultant listens to you & doesn't just insist on you being induced as its not what you want.

I know everyone is different so i can only say how i could the 3 inductions i had. The 2 for my other 2 children was in no way as painful as for my daughter. They didn't mention before that induction that it would be more painful. During that labour i was begging them to do a c-section because the pain was just awful. Not that i'd want anyone else to go through that but you actually have to go through that pain to understand just how awful the pain is.
If being induced is not what you want.... please don't let them bully you into another induction, insist on a second opinion.

I think they also need to acknowledge the stress & worry you go through in the next pregnant.... is baby kicking enough, will i start bleeding etc..... that in itself if enough stress & worry with the added stress of not getting the delivery you want.

It really annoys me when doctors don't listen to the patient. You have a perfectly good reason to have an ELCS & they should be listening to your concerns.

Its not going to be a nice experience if your made to have another induction. You also need your husband there to support you through your labour/c-section.

Be strong & insist that you are listened to.
Fingers crossed that they agree to a ELCS.

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