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Second degree tear recovery - please give me hope!

(23 Posts)
WantToGoingTo Sun 06-Sep-15 15:07:24

I had dc1 7 weeks ago and sustained a bad 2nd degree tear - corkscrew internal tear radiating from inside vagina through right labia, and also perineum tear. It was a bad enough tear that I lost so much blood I required 2 blood transfusions 3 days after birth and because of this 5 days in hospital.

Recovery was bad, I couldn't so much as stand up pain-free 2 weeks after, and struggled to move between rooms in the house. Walking to the park seemed like a distant dream! I since had to have the stitches removed as they were causing so much pain (this in itself was agonising and made me feel like I was in labour again), and short stint of antibiotics as they thought it was infected.

7 weeks on, still tender and have been told I have granulation tissue inside my vagina, just inside the opening. The consultant made me a follow up appt after seeing me 2 weeks ago and said if not fully healed in 2 weeks time (aka now) it would have to be cauterised and possibly re-stitched, which could cause narrowing of the vaginal opening. GP wasn't particularly charming, she described it as 'manky' and not normal at my 6 week check.

Tried to dtd with DH 2 days ago and we couldn't. Was too painful to even get it in! Was really upset about it sad Have my follow up appointment in a week, please someone tell me it will get better and I will be able to walk without feeling like I have a tampon hanging out and will be able to have sex again like a normal person sad never did I think recovery would be this bad.

cdwales Sun 06-Sep-15 16:28:22

Hi there! I can certainly give you the reassurance you request in your final paragraph. But it may be a long road getting there and you will have to be strong to battle for what you want!
Most of us have read about poor women in Africa whose lives are ruined by fistulas sustained in childbirth. But for the minority of us who suffer similarly in the UK at least it is as if no one wants to know...

Amazingly there are plenty of medics who look surprised - then there is the 'well what did you expect?' brigade. Together they can make one suicidal. First they will tell you that it is not worth repairing whoever wielded the needle post partum left 'until you have finished your family'. Reject that for a start. I hope that my daughter's generation will know that anyone prone to stretch marks (at puberty) will be prone to tearing and internal as well as external damage during labour AND OUGHT TO BE DELIVERED VIA CAESARIAN. So insist on being repaired asap and have a CS if necessary in future.

Mine were big babies and delivered very fast - my body seemed to just give way. The first sign of disaster was the frowning over stitching me up. We were distracted by our little darling of course.

So insist on being referred to a surgeon with a good track record - typically one who repairs rich women privately on the side and hence has the experience of keeping influential patients happy... You will not be perfect but it will be acceptable and mean that your poor husband can get satisfaction. It can be like trying to come in a carrier bag for him poor lamb... One soon realises that if the current relationship breaks down it would be impossible to start another one.

And for those expecting their first - if you have significant stretchmarks demand a CS.

Oh and do go on happy pills if you need to sooner rather than later - remember that once baby has had their colostrum anything else is just a bonus.

All the best.

ImperialBlether Sun 06-Sep-15 16:36:25

cdwales, can I ask what research your opinion is based on?

m0therofdragons Sun 06-Sep-15 16:42:42

I tore similarly with dd1 - honestly my recovery took about 10 months before I properly enjoyed sex again and I had a few drinks before hand (gp suggested this) so I was less worried. Now all is fine. Next pg I had a cs and recovery was so much faster. People said I was crazy choosing cs but then I pointed out of I had 32 stitches in my lady parts and they soon shut up. Dd1 was born very quickly and didn't turn. No head out then body on next push - she arrived in one go and flopped onto the bed as the mw failed to catch her.

All I can say is that it does get better. I think we used extra lubrication initially but only a few times. Don't panic

slugseatlettuce Sun 06-Sep-15 16:48:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WantToGoingTo Sun 06-Sep-15 16:59:28

Thanks all, sounds like a case of patience and perseverance. The things they do t tell you before you have a baby! I honestly thought recovery from stitches would be akin to recovery anywhere else eg cut on finger and would take a week or so and not months! How naive I was.

Have also been thinking about subsequent births. Interesting that cdwales you suggest caesarean. Despite all this in not sure I would want to choose major surgery over a natural birth. The birth itself was actually exactly how I wanted it (bar the back to back and early urge to push part) and don't think I would have changed it. Still am aware that likely will tear in future too sad

Guess am just anxious what consultant will say at next appt as it clearly can't be left as it is and I am worried about next steps and further longer recovery period.

I can be examined and not too painful so I wonder whether it is just fear that makes me tense when we tried to dtd. Maybe lube is the answer!

slugseatlettuce Sun 06-Sep-15 17:05:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Focusfocus Sun 06-Sep-15 21:14:32

Cdwales can you cite some substantial peer reviewed empirical evidence about the stretch marks and ideal Caesereans?

I ask not just because now I am horrified after being very calm and relaxed about my approaching birth, but because many people I know, including my entire family and line of women have had stretch marks in puberty and pregnancy and birthed many babies naturally without issues.

WantToGoingTo Mon 07-Sep-15 01:10:32

Focus, to add I was stretch mark free (except a few on my legs nothing to do with pregnancy or puberty!)

Doublebubblebubble Mon 07-Sep-15 02:30:46

I had a 2nd degree tear with my DD and, well, I'm not being funny but could they have maybe got it wrong and you have a 3rd or 4th - certainly sounds worse than mine to me. Mine was just a straight tear almost through the perineum - pretty deep too and they refused to stitch me up but just not as bad as yours... flowers i think i avoided sex after dd until everything was fully healed (a good 8-12 weeks) and i had my mirena implanted. Funnily tearing put me off having anymore children for a while... I haven't learned anything though lol I would also recommend a glass of something (or two) beforehand and invest in lube!!! Lube is going to be the answer for a while now xx

Focusfocus Mon 07-Sep-15 03:49:48


You will not be perfect but it will be acceptable and mean that your poor husband can get satisfaction. It can be like trying to come in a carrier bag for him poor lamb... One soon realises that if the current relationship breaks down it would be impossible to start another one.

WHAT THE F* is this?!

And for those expecting their first - if you have significant stretchmarks demand a CS.

Again WTF?

remember that once baby has had their colostrum anything else is just a bonus.


HippyChickMama Mon 07-Sep-15 04:01:49

I had a 3rd degree tear with dd 2 years ago, it does get better honestly. Have you been referred to a specialist physio op? I was seen by a women's physio I think 12 weeks after delivery, she was great, she checked my pelvic floor and assessed my scar tissue. You probably can't be seen until your tear is healed but it's worth asking about.

Arkkorox Mon 07-Sep-15 04:03:26

cdwales what the actual fuck?!

WantToGoingTo Mon 07-Sep-15 04:33:04

Double although it's bad it is a second degree as the tear does not penetrate the anal sphincter muscle (definition of 3rd degree).

Hippy that's a good idea thanks I will ask the consultant at my next appt.

Nottalotta Mon 07-Sep-15 05:02:12

cdwales what focus said ^^^^^.

OP - I can't advise on your recovery, I am 6 weeks post c section. It sounds like you have had MUCH more pain and general unpleasantness than i have, so please don't rule out a future c section on that basis. I had 2 days of pain, and a week of discomfort before feeling pretty normal. Was still taking things easy to be on the safevside.

What i really wanted to say though was I'm amazed at you dtd so soon after birth at all let alone with the tearing you sustained! We have so far managed one non piv session. (need to sort contraception......)

pinkmanbitch Mon 07-Sep-15 23:34:35

cdwales was that post trying to be funny or...what the fuck?

MrsJ12 Tue 08-Sep-15 07:45:58

Things do get easier. I suffered a 4th degree tear and while still left with some health issues because of it the pain did finally go after around 6months

I've just had my 2nd child and ended up having a c section as having talked to the doctors the potential risk to my health long term from further damage was just too high. It did take me a long time to accept this but have to say the c section in comparison was a breeze and recovery a lot quicker and a lot less painful. Accept c sections are major surgery and everyone recovers different but I was back to normal within a month

Oh and just for clarity I haven't had any stretch marks - tears can be caused by a whole heap of factors

WantToGoingTo Tue 28-Feb-17 21:00:08

Know this is an old post but thought I should update on what happened to give others hope at least!

So the granulation tissue issue got worse and they couldn't cauterise with silver nitrate. Struggled to walk far and hold my baby for longer than 20 mins at a time. It was a dark time.

At 3m postpartum I had an operation under GA to remove the scar tissue and restitch. Was agonising the 24hrs after but fine after that! Sex was painful to start with, but possible. I think sex felt normal about 9/10 months after. And now am thinking about baby #2!

I had 6 months of physio after my op as they realised I had a rectocele (anal prolapse). Was recommended cs in future but don't think I will.

So anyone out there that is struggling, I can vouch that it does get better. And if anyone offers you an op to fix it take it with both hands as it changed my life.

Rockandrollwithit Wed 01-Mar-17 06:07:06

Your experience sounds very similar to mine - I also had internal tearing that required blood transfusions. I was really ill.

Give yourself time, 7 weeks is really early. We didn't even attempt sex until much later! After a year things were all back to normal for me.

WantToGoingTo Wed 01-Mar-17 09:29:40

Thanks rock but see my update above smile (I was op in 2015!)

misscph1973 Wed 01-Mar-17 09:49:13

It's very early to be having sex, even if you didn't have problems. I think it was 8 months for us.

Your GP sounds horrible!

SpookyPotato Thu 02-Mar-17 10:46:55

So glad it worked out for you OP and nice to see an update to an old thread! It's just a shame you were left in agony so long, it sounds really distressing. I will just say though that I've had two sections and felt fine after about 4 days each time. Having them took away the risk and unpredictability of tearing for me.

WantToGoingTo Thu 02-Mar-17 11:07:53

Thanks spooky. Now we are ttc #2 I think I will have to give some proper thought to birth plan. First time round I didn't write a thing and was alll whatever happens happens. But I think it needs to be known to the mw what happened previously so can prevent happening again. There was suggestion of getting out of pool to deliver but I am not sure I would be able to move at that point! Think will need lots of discussion when it comes to it. I am reluctant to have a cs as the actual birth but was exactly what I wanted and I loved pulling him out of the water. I don't think I would want someone else to hand my baby to me. But need to consider all the risks. May be I can have vaginal birth but different measures taken to prevent tearing e.g. Position etc

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