Low-risk ELCS at Kingston Hospital?(14 Posts)
I'd be interested to hear any experiences of requesting an ELCS at Kingston - successful or unsuccessful!
I'm low-risk and under 35 so when I broached the subject with the midwife she brushed it off quite rapidly but I can't help feeling I should be given more choice to give birth in the way I choose. Reading other people's posts on here, where they've had no problem at all requesting one at other hospitals, it just makes me feel the system is unfair and that I should be more persistent to get the birth I want!
I've got mine on Friday at Kingston!
I had no trouble requesting mine. However I did have a traumatic first labour ending in EMCS so I told them I have no desire to recreate that and I was very firm I wanted a section, and no one has tried to dispute me.
Just let them know you've done all the research and it's something that is still important to you. I think they'll just want to know that you are sufficiently clued up and have put the appropriate amount of thought into it and weighing the risks.
The NICE guidelines state that you can request a elcs if you want one. You have to be assertive and ask for an appointment with an obstetrician to discuss. If the obstetrician does not agree to do anvelcs you ask to be referred to another. Of this hospital won't help you, go to another. Try St. Peters.
Thanks, that's good to know but I suspect it doesn't help that this is also my first baby so as far as they're concerned I've got no real reason to be asking for one.
I'll try again with the midwife but she's very much of the view that millions of women give birth normally every day so why should I be any different. I suppose she has a point!
What are your reasons for wanting one?
I haven't heard great things about the maternity care at Kingston, particularly post-natally. I'm mainly anxious about being left on an understaffed midwife-led ward or labour ward, without access to adequate pain relief when I need it and then being left to my own devices afterwards because the staff are so overstretched, when really I could do with a friendly face and support from someone who has time to give it. I don't know if this is the reality but you read horror stories...
I've heard you get better care overall if you go for an elective procedure but then I appreciate it's pretty major surgery, so by no means the 'easy' option.
It's all very confusing because it's all so unknown!
Anyway good luck with yours! I hope everything goes well for you :-)
It matters not that's its your first baby you are still entitled to enter a dialogue with an obstetrician to request one. However, now I have read your reasons I am slightly concerned. You do not get better care after an elcs on my experience of hearing hundreds of birth stories through my job. You are far more likely to be in need to more help and more pain relief and more care postnatally and that often falls short in hospital - and the recovery time is usually a lot longer....not always but on average.
Also if you have not heard great things about Kingston, go somewhere else!
I agree that you should have the choice for an ELCS if that's what you want.
However, you are wrong in thinking you'll get better care. I had amazing care following my fairly traumatic first birth. I was on a ward with other patients who had had sections. Some EMCS so ELCS and difficult births. We all received fantastic care and attention. The midwives were so friendly and kind and overwhelmingly caring. Never was I left waiting for pain relief or help for more than a few minutes. IMO most midwives are amazing, you get the odd few that aren't as good, you'll get some having a bad day and you might find you don't like some of them. However having an ELCS section won't change any of that at all.
Don't opt for an ELCS just for the reasons you've stated as it's simply not true :-)
Without in any way disputing your right to give birth as you choose, choosing a cs because you think you'll get better postnatal care is a bit of a strange (and from their perspective I suspect not very persuasive) reason to opt for surgery. An uncomplicated vb will see you out of hospital within hours. I appreciate that's not guaranteed though. For what it's worth I know many people who've had a good experience there (although I made different choices myself).
I gave birth at Kingston 3 weeks ago.
I never discussed c-sec with the midwives but I found that they were keen on encouraging me to have a home birth or water birth (neither of which I was interested in).
Izzy I ended up on the Worcester ward after giving birth but was lucky enough to be able to get a private room. I found the midwives to be really helpful. I had a very long labour and ended up being transferred to the labour ward having originally been on the MLU. I was in a lot of shock after giving birth and once transferred to the ward (& when my DP had popped home) the midwife came into my room, changed my DD and burped her for me. I complained of feeling faint and she bought in 4 slices of toast, choices of jam, tea and biscuits as well as paracetamol and haemorrhoid cream.
The health care assistant helped me shower whilst my DP looked after DD which I was very grateful for as my back was in agony at that point and I was so numb getting into the shower was hard.
I stayed over night and had 3 midwives help me with breastfeeding and lots of offers of tea/coffee. I really can't complain.
I understand your concerns about poor postpartum care. Unfortunately I think this is a widespread problem. It also very much depends on who you face. Some midwives are nice, others aren't.
Just to throw in a bit more info, I thought I'd draw your attention to the Birthplace study.
"For nulliparous women, the peri-partum transfer rate was 45% for planned home births, 36% for planned FMU births and 40% for planned AMU births"
In regular language: as a first-time mum, you have a 40% chance of having to be transferred to the maternity unit when you start labouring in a birth centre (it is an AMU at Kingston).
After a C-section, you will be on a High-dependency unit (same for women with epidurals with catheters). My own experience at C&W was that care was poor on the High-dependency unit. The main person looking after you is a nurse. Mine completely ignored the fact that I also had a newborn who needed care and attention too.
Although still not what I would have hoped for, the care on the regular maternity ward (as soon as my pack (don't ask-massive PPH) and catheter were removed I was shifted to the regular ward) was better. Midwives were in charge and looked after both my baby and myself.
If you are low risk and under 35, the question I would ask myself in relation to a planned C-section is "How many children would you ideally like?". If it's just the one then a planned C-section is probably fine. If you'd like more than one, I think you need to look at infertility rates following C-sections.
I know I'm not even close to answering your question. I just hope you perhaps look into things from a different angle and that this will help you confirm your choice of a C-section or not.
Thanks Lunastarfish, that's really encouraging. Reviews seem to be mixed and by no means are all bad, so I hope I'm one of the lucky ones.
pinguina16, thanks for the link to the study, that's interesting reading. I think firstly I have to get over my fear of a normal delivery (I'm doing a KG hypnobirthing course, which I hope will help). I suppose it all just comes down to a fear of the unknown really but I shouldn't let that be a reason to push me into some pretty major surgery. I just wish maternity units were better resourced in this country, it's such a shame.
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