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So frightened I'm becoming ill

(45 Posts)
dessirie Thu 31-Oct-13 17:30:54

I went to my 31 week midwife appointment - she is lovely but the appt wasn't! She told me straight away to prepare myself for induction, because a new policy has recently been brought out where anyone 40 or over has to be induced by 37 weeks. I turned 40 26 days ago! We have just done induction at ante-natal classes and it fills me with terror. I have a phobia of internals and tense right up (which of course makes it hurt more), and what they do to you sounds awful. Fingers up there swirling around to separate membranes, and when both the ante-natal tutor and midwife say it's "uncomfortable" you know that means it blimmin hurts! Medical people always use that word when something's going to really hurt. Then the instrument they insert to break your waters sounds horrific. Then finally the drip. Since I found out this afternoon I cannot stop crying. I now have a terrible headache and feel really sick. And I have been told and read in plenty of places that labour started artificially is much more painful that natural labour. I have just ordered a birthing ball and hypnobirthing cd - both of which will probably be a waste of money because if I am in terrible pain I will need an epidural (which I wanted to try and avoid because of assisted delivery and internal tears). So basically this news has completely ruined any plans I had for labour and all I can see now is fear, stress and pain ahead. I am sure baby won't arrive on his own before 37 weeks because they aren't supposed to be that early. I know it is to avoid the higher risk of having a still born child (being older) but I am only JUST 40 and fit and healthy with a very active baby boy on board. I hate the thought that I can't even object, she said they will give me an appt at the hospital at 36 weeks to book the induction - no discussion. I am beside myself with worry. And I am betting they won't give me any pain relief before they do an internal. To top it all I also found out I have a high protein level in my urine (she's worried it's my kidneys) and my iron level has dramatically dropped - which is why I have felt constantly exhausted and weak. I'm on iron supplements. So today has been a truly terrible day. Sorry if I sound like a real wimp, I was going to try to be brave and keep things as natural as possible - but how can I now! I feel like crying as I'm typing this.

mineofuselessinformation Thu 31-Oct-13 17:34:26

No-one can do something to you that you don't want them to. Remember that!

flipflump Thu 31-Oct-13 17:36:05

Please don't worry or get upset, it's not all bad. Look at it as a minor hurdle you must go through to meet your precious baby. I was induced and although it's not what I would have hoped for my labour was still a very positive experience. Don't worry about internals etc, they're not that uncomfortable, squeezing a baby out is a tad nippier. Focus on holding your baby in your arms and you'll get through anything!

schmee Thu 31-Oct-13 17:37:15

This doesn't sound right at all. They do planned c sections now at 39 plus weeks, trying to keep as near to possible to the due date. What justification is there for delivering you at 37 weeks?

heidihole Thu 31-Oct-13 17:38:05

You don't have to be induced. They may be presenting it as a "given" but it's NOT they can only encourage it/offer it.

The final choice is yours so just say no

Ruralninja Thu 31-Oct-13 17:41:18

They may wish to persuade you in the strongest terms, but ultimately it is very much your decision. You need to listen to what they are telling you though, as changes of policy are going to be evidence-based. In particular, if you have protein in your urine then age 40 or age 25, then you do have some decisions to make. Can you do some reading and research so you feel more in charge of the information before discussing it, and your valid concerns, with the healthcare professionals? Also, I suggest you write a list of what is of high importance to you, e.g. pain relief before internals and make lots of copies to put in your notes and to refer to if you find yourself panicking during discussions. Remember, your plan is to have a healthy baby, how you get there is always, always going to be subject to changes and alterations along the way - try not to reject all changes as a failure and you might be surprised what can be achieved if try to you work with the new information.

birdybear Thu 31-Oct-13 17:42:57

you can say no to anything! you don't have to have internals, just say no . say no to an induction if you don't want one. they cannot do anything to your body without your consent! if you don't want pain though, i would suggest an epidural! you are a bit backwards about that! no pain, then epidural. want natural labour, expect plenty of pain!

RedToothBrush Thu 31-Oct-13 17:43:37

If she is lovely, why is she telling you lies? Why is she deliberately misleading you? Why is she being completely unprofessional?

She told me straight away to prepare myself for induction, because a new policy has recently been brought out where anyone 40 or over has to be induced by 37 weeks.

Find out what your rights are and what the facts are. You do NOT have to do anything. They can have a policy where they recommend if you are over 40 you are induced, but you do NOT have to follow that advice.

You have a fundmental RIGHT to make an informed decision. If your midwife has not properly informed you about the pros and cons of induction AND LET YOU MAKE THE DECISION YOURSELF which may be to refuse an induction, then that is NOT consent as you have made the decision under her undue pressure to have to have an induction. Legally this is completely unacceptable. She has to inform you of your options and what the risks are, not tell you what to do.

Given what you have said, I actually think you should be making a complaint, rather than worrying yourself silly, because your midwife has a) not properly informed you meaning that you aren't in a position to legally consent b) you are in a right state and don't think you can discuss this with anyone because of the way she has approached this.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Thu 31-Oct-13 17:44:06

Your midwife is talking UTTER SHIT and you should complain about her in the strongest terms and request a new MW.

Of course you don't have to have a forced induction at 37 weeks. It may be at this time that there is new information or developments that mean the Obs may suggest it but it is not mandatory.

It makes me so angry on your behalf. angry

gamerchick Thu 31-Oct-13 17:46:27

They can't force you to do anything you know... It really is your choice.

I had an induction but didn't need an epidural and quite enjoyed the labour.. stop reading if it's making you feel panicky.

I got loads of grief from the hospital about the anti d injections.. I stood my ground and got my way.

Nobody can force you into an induction early if you don't want it.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Thu 31-Oct-13 17:47:10

Also ask them for the data that has led to this new policy - what are the risks (serious, and otherwise) among over 40 mums of going full term in actual & % terms? I know that we older mums have a slightly higher risk of placenta problems but that would suggest additional scans in the final weeks - not mandatory induction - which brings its own risks.

oscarwilde Thu 31-Oct-13 17:48:04

Induced at 37 weeks? Wtf? Are you in the UK?
Are you positive it wasn't that they'll make an appointment for induction (at 40+10) at your 37 wk apt. ?

LadyMedea Thu 31-Oct-13 17:52:29

Unless you have another risk factor I'm pretty sure your MW is just plain wrong.

I'm trying to find the right guidelines but I'm pretty sure it's standard to offer induction to over 40s at 40 weeks due to the increased of stillbirth for women of that age group. I can't imagine they would want to do it before 39 weeks as although babies are considered term at 37 weeks outcomes continue improving up to 39 weeks. And remember they only offer you induction. It's a choice for you to make.

Looks like there was a recent RCOG study indicating offering induction during the 39th week

My 41 year old friend had her planned c section at 39 weeks just recently.

Phineyj Thu 31-Oct-13 18:01:22

I found this booklet really useful to consider all the pros and cons. I decided I definitely didn't want one and stuck to my ground. I am an older mum too (40 2 months before DD arrived). I ended up with an EMCS as the final stage of labour failed to progress, but I was happy that my wishes were respected throughout.

One thing to consider (when you feel calmer) is that different countries have different guidelines - and one reason is that different countries have different medical cultures and (frankly) face different cost pressures. If they do not have your informed consent, they cannot do anything you don't agree to - make sure your partner is well-informed too.

Also, try to take someone with you to appointments - it's hard to ask the right questions when you are being poked and prodded and hearing scary things.

I hope you feel better soon.

worsestershiresauce Thu 31-Oct-13 18:01:52

Just refuse it. No one can force medical intervention on you if you are healthy and your pregnancy is normal.

I had a normal delivery aged 40.

MrsCakesPremonition Thu 31-Oct-13 18:04:53

They aren't going to induce you at 37 weeks for the simple reason that it doesn't work especially well trying to evict babies before they are ready.

I think you need to speak to the Supervisor of Midwives at your hospital (the person responsible for professional standards among all the MWs in an area) and ask them to clarify.

CoconutRing Thu 31-Oct-13 18:09:13

RedToothBrush has it spot on. Excellent advice.

claudedebussy Thu 31-Oct-13 18:09:32

sounds like utter crap.

you can refuse an induction you know. difficult, yes. i put one off for a few days. unless they have a good medical reason (other than age) i would tell them no.

you can also refuse a sweep. i refused, although i was given one anyway hmm

i've had 2 inductions and 1 normal.

you do have more say in this than you think. they have to have your permission.

onedogandababy Thu 31-Oct-13 18:10:28

Whereabouts are you op? I was 40 about 6 weeks ago but haven't been told anything about a mandatory induction at 37 weeks.
You could ask for a scan to check baby, fluid levels, blood flow to & from placenta and for them to assess your risk from that.
Have a cry, have a sit down and an early night. Ask to speak to head of midwives tomorrow and see what is said then.

chocolatemartini Thu 31-Oct-13 18:13:05

If it were me in your situation I would absolutely point blank refuse induction until I was over 42 weeks. These blanket policies may have good research behind them but they aren't right for everyone. I refused IV antibiotics and induction and my instincts were right, I didn't need either. Induction is not without risks to both mother and baby, I should think in this case the balance of risk is statistically pretty closely balanced and if you were to get hold of the data you could easily argue the case for waiting. But better to just remember that you don't need to argue anything, it is your right to labour how and when your body decides it's right.

chocolatemartini Thu 31-Oct-13 18:22:56

Oh for what it's worth, although you may just put me down as a mad lentil weaver if I tell you this, I refused the flu jab and the whooping cough jab, the vit K for the baby, IV antibiotics, sweeps, induction, ALL internals, including at the 6 week check, no one stuck their hand up me at any point during pregnancy or labour or afterwards (my lovely mw 'offered' but I told her to fuck off), and none of the things that I was given dire warnings about happened. I had a beautiful calm home birth in a pool, with no drugs, very little pain and a big healthy vibrant baby. I get angry when women who trust medical protocols are frightened into interventions and feel they don't have a choice.

Addictedtomaltesers Thu 31-Oct-13 18:25:34

That just sounds ludicrous. No wonder you're feeling frightened sad

I echo what others have said regarding choice but I also wanted to offer some reassurance in case induction ends up being in the best interests of you and your baby.

1. I am 36 weeks with dc4 and every single time I've had low iron in the later trimesters so don't worry about that. Iron tablets will sort that out and depending on what doseage you're on, IME it takes about 2-3 weeks to feel a lot better and less tired.

2. I've also been induced twice and had my waters broken 2 times as well. As long as I'm normal compared to others I can 100% say that the water breaking part is painless.

If your labour can start before you need the drip then you should also be able to have a relatively natural labour so all is not lost.

Best wishes, what a shame for you. Feel sad on your behalf as well.

chocolatemartini Thu 31-Oct-13 18:26:30

AND, if anyone gives you an internal without your permission, that is assault. Wishing you all the best for the birth.

Snuppeline Thu 31-Oct-13 18:31:13

Agree with what the other posters have said - your body, your choice. But to add to what others have said, I wanted to avoid induction with my two labours. First time I was overdue and booked in for induction, I used acupuncture. I went into labour 48 hours after first of four treatments. This last labour (11 weeks ago) I started acupuncture in week 37 bordering 38 and gave birth in week 39, after three treatments. I'm not very 'woo' but it worked for me. First labour I had one very strong contraction during treatment and went into labour a few hours after that (early morning). So that's why I used acupuncture again with what I consider successful result second time too.

If presented with options you are unsure of ask the health professional about pros and cons, whether there are any alternatives and what would happen if you did nothing at all. Good luck!

FannyFifer Thu 31-Oct-13 18:39:43

Are you sure you picked her up correctly, sounds like you may have heard the word induction and panicked.
No one can force you to be induced.

Protein in your urine can be a symptom of Pre-eclampsia though, how was your blood pressure and what was advice regarding that?

For what it's worth. I was induced on both pregnancies due to pre-eclampsia, first at 36 weeks, second at 40. It was totally fine, waters were broken then I went into labour, no problems.

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