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Any experience of Derriford Hospital in Plymouth OR homebirth in this area?

(19 Posts)
RevoltingPeasant Mon 13-Feb-12 20:48:50

Pretty much what it says on the tin - just looking for experiences.

Are they intervention-happy, stressed out, decent? ttc and just wondering!

Allegrogirl Mon 13-Feb-12 21:52:02

Had both mine at Derriford. DD1 in 2007 and DD2 in 2010. Labour ward was pretty good. I ended up being induced on drip both times, first time due to waters breaking 4 days earlier and second failed attempt at HB due to mec stained waters. Was offered epidural straight away both times, declined second time. Couldn't feel a thing having DD1 and had lots of tearing. Second time MW was very supportive in helping me move around despite the monitors.

Ward was stupidly busy first time and lacking in BF support. Much better second time despite going from 2 to 1 ward. Second time was August BH and it was quiet though. BF support much improved both on ward and in the community.

There's no MW led unit and it's rather clinical but I haven't heard any awful horror stories. The MWs are rushed off their feet on postnatal and I struggled when in with DD1, but they were pleasant enough.

My MW suggested HB for DD2 but she personally didn't recommend for first timers. HB rates quite low high but those I know who did it were very happy with their care.

Do you live n Plymouth? I think it's a great place for children. Small enough to bump into people you know but plenty to do.

RevoltingPeasant Tue 14-Feb-12 09:00:05

Hey, thanks for that smile Yes live in the 'burbs around Plymouth (out by Staddiscombe) and so would be under Derriford's care.

Am not pg but am already worrying planning ahead and really would like a HB.

Glad to know about no horror stories! With the induction drip, did you feel like you could have declined if you wanted? And were they okay about you refusing epidural the 2nd time?

I am less worried about postnatal stuff because I just feel like somehow, I will cope - but am a bit worried about being pressured into interventions.

Allegrogirl Tue 14-Feb-12 12:46:14

With the induction drip I felt that it was the best decision at the time. First time waters broke and I went to Derriford where they gave me the choice to be induced or wait a maximum of 96 hours then come in again. They gave me an info sheet with stats on how likely I was to go into labour within certain timepoints post rupture of membranes. After 96 hours the stats were against me and there were concerns for infection risk. I was 40+6 and fed up and uncomfortable. Had one pessary that didn't work, not dilating at all at that stage. Baby out within 7 hours of drip going in.

Second time all geared up for HB. Waters broke with meconium in at 41+1. No contractions and my community MW who was on duty that night advised me to get baby out as asap. Hospital MW was very supportive of me not having an epidural, although I'm sure she thought I was mad. Baby out within 5 hours.

Both times I had a hard and long second stage with no urge to push. In both cases the midwives worked hard and were really helpful in avoiding intervention for my big headed babies. I was really disappointed in not having a HB but in both cases I had a really good outcome and the labour ward MWs were great.

I can't really think of any mums I know who feel an intervention was forced on them unnecessarily against their wishes (maybe they didn't know!). Everyone I know got the pain relief they requested, but plenty did it on G&A only without intervention.

Would be nice if we had a snuggly and relaxed MW led unit with bean bags etc but it was OK, Really.

Definately go for a HB if that's what you would like but try not to worry too much if it doesn't work out for whatever reason. There was a Plymouth HB group I went to a couple of times. It may be worth googling them if you want more info on that route. I went to the Nomony centre near Cattedown but I think they met in other places too, not sure about Plymstock.

Bit of an essay but I hope it helps.

Haribos Tue 14-Feb-12 13:09:27

From my own experience (4 children) I would say that Derriford is not great.
For that reason I have wanted to have a homebirth each time.
The midwifes have always made me feel like I was being stupid and unreasonable for asking for one.
Last time I was told that would have to have an ambulance on standby outside my house throughout my whole labour - which meant they would be missing out on other emergencies and I would I be happy to do that?! Just one example of the things they said! I am happy for you to pm me with any questions if I can help as I don't want to write everything on here.
Good luck with ttc and hopefully you will have a healthy, happy baby born in the not too distant future!

belindarose Tue 14-Feb-12 13:19:48

I'm booked in at Derriford - out of area for me but I didn't want to use my local hospital. Interesting to read responses here. Thanks.

Allegrogirl Tue 14-Feb-12 13:24:06

Haribos my MW suggested HB at my booking in appointment and was really supportive all the way through my pregnancy. Really sorry to hear you've had bad experiences with all of your pregnancies.

RevoltingPeasant Tue 14-Feb-12 13:58:39

Hey you lot, thanks so much. It is really reassuring/ interesting to hear - though - Haribos - will PM you asap!! Thanks for that.

Jezzabell Tue 14-Feb-12 17:42:21

I'm planning a HB in Plymouth for my first, due in 3 weeks. I've never wanted to go into hospital as feel the medicalised approach is totally wrong. My MW has been very supportive. The HB group in Plymouth runs on the second Thursday of the month at the Woolwell Centre. They have a facebook page. We have been 3 times throughout my pregnancy and have found it very useful and informative (much more so than the terrible NHS antenatal class we went to that just informed us about pain relief and intervention). The HB group has a number of birth pools that you can borrow for free (plus other things like balls). It has been great to go along and listen to other's HB stories and ask all sorts of questions. I'd recommend a visit.

I don't really know that much about giving birth at Derriford, but everyone I know who has given birth there has ended up with some king of intervention.

If you're in Plymouth and pregnant, i'd recommend the prenatal yoga class I have been attending since 12 weeks - and also the Lazy Daisy Birthing classes (check out their Facebook page).

Hopefully my HB will go to plan and i won't have to go anywhere near Derriford, however, if I have to then I'll just get on with it and make sure baby and me are safe and well.

Good luck x

RevoltingPeasant Tue 14-Feb-12 17:46:44

Oooh Jezza good luck!

No am not pg yet, just ridiculously into the forward planning. Had some bad experiences at D'ford (not maternity) and am just shopping around, as it were.

I will check out that group - you are not the first to recommend it - when the time comes.

If you don't mind, would it be okay if I pm'd you in about 4-5 weeks to ask how the HB went and if the MWs were okay? But if you had rather be private about it, that's cool too smile

oooggs Tue 14-Feb-12 17:49:46

No problems with Derriford at all. Had 4 children there including a set of twins. Maybe I don't know any different wink

RevoltingPeasant Tue 14-Feb-12 18:00:51

That is good to know, thanks! Well, as a first-time mum, I won't know any different either!!

Jezzabell Tue 14-Feb-12 18:08:06

Feel free to PM me Peasant. Hopefully it will all go to plan - well as much as a birth can - hopefully I'll get to stay at home. Really looking forward to it and sure I'll be happy to tell anyone and everyone about it if it's all ok! (Which I'm sure it will be smile )

Haribos Thu 16-Feb-12 20:28:56

I will pm you back Peasant just want to have a think about a few more things that might help you out and half term has been crazy! Sorry!
I thought I would add I didn't have babies anywhere else, only at Derriford so I can't really compare it to anywhere else.
I guess the normal hospital v home birth pro's and con's apply re. Derriford.
And I have heard that opinion on home birth varies a lot from midwife to widwife.
I think an issue they won't mention is a factor but I think really is, is the cost to the NHS for 1 or 2 midwives to be at home for your labour and then the midwives covering the shifts for them at the hospital too.

piratecat Thu 16-Feb-12 20:33:15

sorry, had an awful time there, 10 yrs ago tho.

over run, rude, and my delivery midwife i made a formal complaint about.
i would never give birth there again.

but mine was a horror story, and doubtless they happen everywhere.

RevoltingPeasant Fri 17-Feb-12 08:47:23

Hi Haribos no probs - I don't have half term yet as no DC! - so all to look forward to wink

pirate I'm so sorry about that. Probably they do happen everywhere but it still makes you tense up a bit, eh. Any tips based on your experience there?

MaidenDevon Sat 18-Feb-12 23:46:09

Had DD there in 2010. Started off as planned HB then transferred to Derriford by ambulance after 18 hours due to 'failure to progress' - all very calm, no blues and twos. Had Synocotin (sp?) drip, pethedine, gas and air then an epidural. Delivery was made by forceps 7 hours later due to DD becoming distressed, so all in all about as much intervention as I could have had barring having a CS, and nothing like my planned home water birth using my hypnobirthing techniques, but it was fine smile. My midwife was lovely, the doctor who yanked DD out was lovely and I could have kissed the anaesthetist who did the epidural.

Plymouth Home Birth group ladies are fab and even got DH onside for it (he was very anti to start with).

toodles60 Wed 16-Jan-13 14:39:09

i gave birth at Derriford and found the midwives there arrogant, unsympathetic and downright rude. Left me very distressed and would never give birth there again. One midwife actually slapped my hand.

thingamajig Wed 16-Jan-13 14:53:00

I have had a HB (for my first) and then my twins in Derriford. Midwife was highly supportive of my HB, it was on Christmas day and my own MW happened to be on call. We had to go in to NICU because dd wasn't breathing well. This was great and Transitional Care Ward was good (this is where the mothers stay when babies are in NICU short term), I had my own room and was in a week.
I would happily have had another HB, but conceded to a hospital birth due to twins. I never made it as far as the delivery ward with the twins, they popped out in the reception/triage area, but all good service, then we all went to NICU/TCW for two weeks.
I have heard that the delivery ward is very busy and the mws not so good, but I have never been there.
Overall, I never wanted any intervention and I didn't get it, but that is as much to do with simple quick births as the hospital, I think. Practically, do you have any/much choice, living in Plymouth?

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