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Confused about advice re: CS and low lying placenta

(8 Posts)
MurtleTheTurtle Wed 28-Nov-12 11:24:30


I've posted before but I'd appreciate any advise (and a place to rant a bit!). My placenta was low lying at 20 weeks but they said there was nothing to worry about as it was very marginal. I was rescanned at 34 weeks and it had not moved at all, plus baby was breech.

I was then rescanned at 37 weeks - baby now head down but placenta still too close to the opening of the OS for a natural delivery and the consultant advised re-scanning at 38 weeks. I am now 38 weeks - I was scanned yesterday and placenta has not moved. However, they cannot book me in for ELCS as they are fully booked! As I live a fair way from the hospital they asked if I wanted to stay in due to the risk of bleeding, but at the same time are dismissing the risk saying it's only a few mm so there is every chance of it still moving - making it hard for me to weigh up any risk.

I am now faced with going in at 39 weeks to be admitted, then they will find someone else to scan me as my sonogropher indicated that she wouldn't be happy repeating an internal scan that late on with a low lying placenta (and it was hinted that hopefully the person doing the next scan would be more 'generous' in their measurement thus clearing me for a natural delivery). If there is no movement in the placenta I have to wait until they can fit me in for EMCS - this could be at any time and I may well be on my own as we cannot plan for it (live an hour from the hospital, no family apart from DH and 2 small children).

I'm now thinking they could (should?) have booked me in for ELCS a few weeks ago and cancelled it had things changed? I'm cross with myself for not raising it sooner and I am now very anxious about what will happen.

Has anyone had any movement in the position of their placenta between 38 and 39 weeks?

Apologies for the length of my post, needed to rant a bit!

saccrofolium Thu 29-Nov-12 18:55:05

Gosh how scary! In your shoes I'd find the secretary to the medical director of obstetrics at your hospital and tell them all this and ask the medical director to look into it and call you back with a plan. And then do the same for the consultant that's leading your care. It's not good enough to be told they're fully booked and yet be as high risk as a low placenta can be.
I was in a similar position with one of mine - they said the placenta was 2.3cm away and their cut off was 2.5cm. I sought a second opinion and my consultant said ELCS was the best bet and I was booked for 38+6 but with a stern warning that ANY bleeding was a 999 job. It was all fine by the way.

NAR4 Thu 29-Nov-12 21:50:22

This sounds a ridiculous way for the hospital to carry on. Contact PALS for advice, they can normally get things sorted out. Saying they are fully booked is just not good enough. What would they do if someone needed and emergency C section then? If they really can't fit you in then surely you should be transferred to a hospital that can. The same as they would do for special needs babies. i.e. a mum from my post natal group was at risk of having her twins early but there were no special care cots available in the local hospital, so she was transferred to somewhere that did have some.

A friend of mine had her C section due to Placenta Previa, booked at 36 weeks, to be done at 38 weeks, but they are also going to scan her the day before to check if it has moved any more because it is so close to having moved far enough away from the cervix for a natural delivery.

myhandslooksoold Thu 29-Nov-12 21:59:25

Mine moved at 39 weeks. Scanned at 38 and told I'd need to stay in as risk of bleeding and baby also breech. I begged home as had a 17month old. I was allowed as I promised to be in company of another adult at all times and as I lived near to the hospital. Went back in at 39 weeks like a good girl, consultant said she'd just scan me before admitting only to discover to our astonishment that placenta had moved away from the os and baby wasn't breech anymore. Hope this helps

drcrab Thu 29-Nov-12 22:07:38

What a ridiculous situation to be put in. They need to book you in for a c section now. It probably will not move. And if it does (sure they can scan it again but...) great but they need to book you in now.

MurtleTheTurtle Fri 30-Nov-12 21:16:40

Thank you all for your responses. My placenta was 1.7cm away and apparently the guidelines recommend at least 2cm - it is so hard to judge the risk as on the one hand the consultant gave me the option of being admitted but on the other seemed to dismiss it as being just a few mm away from being safe for a normal delivery.

Great to hear of one moving this late on though! I think they are so booked up they are desperate to clear me for a normal delivery.

As it happens I think baby may have moved back to breech anyway last night, it was quite sore!

They told me they can do a cs anytime day or night but can't book any more electives as the diary is full, so I will prob have to sit in hospital waiting for a slot to go in as an emergency (he told me this) and when my husband mentioned I might be alone if it was short notice he just shrugged! No other hospital nearby unfortunately and this one is an hour away!

I really appreciate all of your comments and may well make some calls as suggested. Thank you.

saccrofolium Fri 30-Nov-12 21:24:29

I don't want to alarm you but a low placenta and unstable lie really need flagging up. I'd call your hospital tomorrow and say all this, especially the bit about being an hour away. x

MurtleTheTurtle Fri 30-Nov-12 22:33:06

Thank you, I will ring up in the morning and flag it up.

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