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Has anyone ever had an infection after having a waterbirth?

(18 Posts)
sunita123 Wed 17-May-06 12:20:38

Waterbirths sound really good. I'm thinking of having one. BUT -
Has anyone ever had infection passed onto them after having a waterbirth? I mean - after the pool has been contaminated with blood, meconium, amnio fluid and anything else you can think of, germs must be in their element. I know the pool is cleaned afterwards but, I've heard that hospital baths should be avoided because some can be rather icky and are not cleaned as regularly as they should.
Are birthing pools in the same league or are they different and why?

MissChief Wed 17-May-06 12:23:08

i used one at home and it had a brand new liner which was disposed of after use. maybe hospitla ones have this too but not sure? can you arrange to attend a watrbiurt workshop at the hops or ask yr mw? I'm sure even if there's no liner they would be very well cleaned/sterlised etc as compared to everyday baths.
HTH - heartily recommend them btw!

SoupDragon Wed 17-May-06 12:27:41

I would imagine the pools are cleaned more often than the baths.

SHHHH Wed 17-May-06 15:13:24

speak to your maternity unit about how the pools are cleaned etc. I would expect that they have to be cleaned to a certain standard.

I had a waterbirth and didn't get any infection although I actually birthed on the bed. Yeah bits did float around but the mw were very quick in cleaning up etc. I don't remember thinking it was disgusting..dh never commented either..

Go for it, I would recommend it 100%..!!!!

sarahlou1uk Fri 19-May-06 22:14:27

I'm sorry to say that yes, I had a water birth and had an infection. I gave birth on a Sunday, came home Tuesday, had hot and cold shivers on Thursday and passed a HUGE blood clot; phoned NHS direct (never again useless); went to hospital emergency dept at 3am and finally readmitted to maternity dept at 9am on Thursday. Examination after examination (not easy when you've had a tear and it's really painful) given antibiotics and kept in for the night with really high temperature. Discharged on Friday afternoon after I insisted that I didn't want to stay over the weeked. Sent home with temperature strips and antibiotics and a telephone number to call the dept if I got worse. Don't know if it was from the pool or just something I caught elsewhere. On the Wednesday after I had given birth, I was out shopping so I don't know if I went out too early. Don't let it put you off though - I am planning to have another water birth for my second child (currently 28 weeks pregnant).

sunita123 Tue 23-May-06 13:36:28


bubblepop Tue 23-May-06 15:29:48

i asked my mw about this before the birth, she was a bit vague and said " well, the hospital cleaners do it"
went on to have my water birth in hospital with no problems what so ever. baby was born in the water and got out to deliver the afterbirth. i think the benefits of having a water birth outweigh the "what ifs". go for it!

MissChief Tue 23-May-06 15:31:04

1st birth - not inwater, got infection
2nd birth - in water and didn't get infection
so there you go, shouldn't be any connection!

SoupDragon Tue 23-May-06 15:38:15

Quite frankly, you're more likely to pick up an infection from elsewhere in the hospital. The pool certainly won't be any dirtier than the hospital toilets etc etc that you'll be expected to use.

sarahlou1uk Wed 24-May-06 10:29:31

If you were really concerned, you could always take in your own disinfectant wipes and give it a quick swirl around before they fill it! When I went in to have ds I took some and wiped down the toilet and bath before I got in. Paranoid? - no. My mum is a cleaner in our local hospital and even she despairs of the lack of care some cleaners show. She thinks it's something to do with them being 'not originally from this country.' Sometimes she says, they don't even speak our language. Cheaper option for hospitals.

sarahlou1uk Wed 24-May-06 10:30:18

By the way, that's not meant in any form of racist comment! (before I get lots of hate messages)

threebob Wed 24-May-06 10:36:21

My water birth pool had an enormous piece of plastic over it which I saw be taken out of the wrapping. It was thrown away afterwards. Probably cleaner than a bed.

mears Fri 26-May-06 00:10:47

Birthing pools are cleaned thoroughly after use using chlorine releasing agent. Kills all known viruses/ bacteria. Some pools have disposable liners - ours does not.

Women get infections delivering on dry land so if you delivered in the pool and got an infection, it would be difficult to say the pool caused it.

I actually enjoy cleaning the pool - real satisfaction leaving pool room gleaming.

plummymummy Sun 28-May-06 11:52:44

sarah I don't think you're racist if it's any consolation. It's not that they clean less well deliberately - the language barrier means that the domestic dept in the hospital can't convey to them what they should use (and why they should use it) eg disinfectant etc. I think that's what you meant?

SueW Sun 28-May-06 12:03:42

mears, that's shocking that you have to clean the pool. Do midwives do all domestic duties e.g cleaning floors in birth rooms as well as cleaning the pool?

I heard of one hospital where the cleaners refused to clean up any boldily fluids as that wasn't in their contract for maternity so wouldn't mop floors in delivery suite. Elsehwere in the hospital though contracts had been negotiated differently and cleaners there WOULD clean anything.

mears Sun 28-May-06 18:22:18

We clean delivery rooms, pool room and theatres. Doemstics wash the floor but not the beds etc.

Nursing auxilliaries clean too but midwives usually clean too.

gigglinggoblin Sun 28-May-06 18:30:16

i had a water birth and it was amazing, def recommend it. our whole delivery and maternity ward was gleaming all 3 times i was there.

plummymummy Mon 29-May-06 15:44:21

And in Psychiatry cleaners don't clean any bodily fluids/matter at all. Nurses do it all.

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