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POSTERIOR POSITIONS in labour

(16 Posts)
Egypt Wed 12-May-04 14:14:59

I'm due in 5 days' time and baby has decided to become posterior. Anybody been through a birth like this? What are your experiences.

Toothache - I saw on the 'mirror' thread that your baby wasposterior. How was the labour? Basically I'm worried that it will be more painful and prolonged and may cause complications.

monkeygirl Wed 12-May-04 14:25:54

DD1 was posterior. People say it is meant to be much more painful but I have nothing to compare it to yet (until June maybe). However, my labour was 14.5 hours which I'm told is pretty good for a first timer. I did have an epidural which was fantastic but still managed to push dd out without any assistance or intervention, although she did tear me internally but don't know if that had anything to do with her position.

Good luck Egypt!

Egypt Wed 12-May-04 14:39:35

thanks monkeygirl, its good to know that normal births are just as possible as with babies facing the right way!

susanmt Wed 12-May-04 14:46:38

My dd1 was posterior, and also big (9lb12) and it did make the labour more prolonged and difficult.

The advice is usually to get down on your hands and knees, scrub the kitchen floor, lie over a birthing ball, anything to stay in that position in order to try to turn the baby. The other thing I was told (I was keen to avoid a second and third posterior baby so did things to avoid it on the other two occasions) is not to let your knees go higher than your hips - eg sitting on a low sofa or in the car. In the car, sit on a pillow. In the house, sit backwards on a hard chair like a kitchen chair, or on a ball if you have one (I loved mine). Baby could easily turn loads of times again before birth. My dd1 was anterior when I went into labour and went for a spin!

I don't want to worry you with awful stories about it as I then had 2 'normal' labours which were much much easier, but I'm not sure if it was because she was OP or because she was my first and largest.

I ended up with a ventouse as she wouldn't come and she was born face up (technically known as 'face to pubes' yuk! But someone here told me she's heard it referred to as 'stargazer' adn that sounds much nicer). I chose not to have an epidural as I knew it would make a cs more likely and I wanted to avoid that. But complications of all kinds are more common with a posterior position, including cs, instumental delivery, needing augmentation of labour. The weirdest thing was that I had no urge to push. I thought I did, I was pushing as hard as I could, but then when I had ds I found out what a **real** urge to push was! Dd1's head wasn't making proper contact with the cervix so I was slow to dilate and didn't get the pushy feeling. I had a tear - in the end they didnt have time for an episiotomy and I wanted to avoid one if I could anyway, which healed up well, but again I think her size had more to do with that than her position, she was on the 98th centile so not very likely yours will be that big!

All the best! In the end, whatever position baby is in and however you deliver, you will have a wonderful baby, and that's the important thing! I'll be thinking of you and watching the birth announcements thread!

Pidge Wed 12-May-04 15:10:33

Egypt

There was another similar thread on this recently and it was clear that people's experiences of posterior births vary hugely. Main thing is to try not to worry too much and be flexible about your birth plan, which is the advice for pretty much any pregnant woman anyway!

I would definitely try all the brilliant advice from susanmt to encourage the baby to turn - I will be doing this next time round.

To add my experiences - my dd was posterior, though I didn't find this out until near the end of my labour! I had 48 hours of contractions every 5-10 minutes, which apparently didn't count as real labour as I wasn't 3cm dilated, but it was darned painful and exhausting! Then I had 8 hours of wham bam blow your body apart contractions coming virtually every minute, and at the end of that I was still only 5cm, clearly not progressing and that's when they figured out the baby was posterior. At that point I had an epidural which was fabulous - I had no pain after that, spent 10 hours watching the contractions on a monitor, had a drip to speed up the contractions and then about an hour and a half of pushing and my dd was born with no further intervention.

Although it was long I feel really positive about my labour experience because I received such brilliant care throughout. I think the length of the labour was partly just that it was my first baby, but also I'm sure the posterior presentation didn't help once the contractions really got going as I just wasn't dilating and that can be to do with the baby's head pressing on the base of the spine rather than the cervix.

Good luck ... really looking forward to seeing your birth announcement on here!

spots Wed 12-May-04 16:32:39

Egypt I'm spatterfesting a bit here as I already said something about posterior position stuff on the 'home thread'... but mine is posterior too, tho' not 100% posterior... at first they told me posterior then decided it was more 3/4 posterior... anyway blah blah, point was that all midwives have reassured me that most babies will turn during labour and it seems like the exact position of the baby and the size of you have an effect on 'when' during labour (rather crucial detail I reckon). So how tall are you? and is your baby totally back to back?

Egypt Wed 12-May-04 18:33:20

just spotted all your lovely messages, thank you. had a bit of a sleep! i'm not totally sure *how* posterior the baby is actually. it wasnt until after saturday that it turned as it was anterior (on the left) LOA is that? at the hospital on saturday. acutally i felt it move, and it was really really uncomfortable. it turned as i was lying on my left side oddly enough and i felt the head grinding in my pelvis - ugh, and the limbs all stuck out at the front. now i *think* that its bum is actually towards the left side of my back rather thatn completely back to back, as i still feel limbs kicking towards the right of my stomach, none on the left.

here's a good website with advice for turning spots -
posterior positions

am trying my best!!! off to watch hollyoaks on my hands and knees

eddm Wed 12-May-04 18:46:29

Egypt, no direct experience of this, but one of my best friends had OP baby recently and didn't even realise it was supposed to be more difficult. And this is her second baby, so she did know what labour pains are like.
Hope it works out for you.

helenhull Wed 12-May-04 19:56:34

hi egypt , i posted the same message and got lots of positive replys.I'm due on sunday my baby still in the same position and i have been on all 4s regularly but she is obveiously very comfy were she is. I wish you lots of luck x

Egypt Wed 12-May-04 20:22:54

you too helen xx

Linnet Wed 12-May-04 22:05:45

Slightly different as my first baby started off in the correct position but turned during labour to the posterior position and got stuck. I think by the time she turned I'd had my epidural so I wasn't able to get onto all 4's. I didn't actually find out she was back to back until the midwife told me after I'd delivered! I know now that they knew she had turned during labour but they didn't tell me, still not sure exactly why probably because there was nothing I could have done by that point having had the epidural.

anyway sorry to ramble but a friend of mine had a posterior labour and birth with her 2nd baby and she didn't know and also wasn't told until afterwards, and baby was born a stargazer, which I agree is a much nicer term. Her labour only lasted 28 minutes so it wasn't that bad for her.

You still have plenty of time for the baby to turn, keep watching tv on all 4's and the baby will probably turn in labour to the right position so you won't need to worry.

Toothache Thu 13-May-04 08:23:19

Egypt - Yes my ds was posterior and I don't think he turned until I was pushing. My labour was most definitely a 'backache' labour. In fact, I don't remember getting pains anywhere other than in my back. He's my only child (for now!!) so I can't compare the pain levels, but I managed with one Diamorphine shot and gas and air. It really helped to stay up on my knees leaning over the headboard throughout the whole first stage which lasted only 3 or 4 hours from 4cm-10cm. So in terms of any labour I think I was quite quick.

THe pushing did take a bit longer until he turned. I was pushing for a good 1.5 hrs, then his head just BURST out.

Get on yer hands and knees and see if that turns the baby, if the baby doesn't turn, it probably will during labour and it in my case it wasn't a bad experience.

Egypt Thu 13-May-04 11:09:33

oh good, some good experiences then. i feel better now, thank you. miriam stoppard's book scared me a bit, especially as this type of birth was in the 'special delieveries' chapter!

getting on the floor now

Egypt Thu 13-May-04 11:28:41

helen, seen your other thread - how are you now? still in same position? good luck with it all.

helenhull Thu 13-May-04 19:17:26

Hiya Egypt, Still same old story for me, baby is laying on the left with her feet on the right so only half po i think .she feels like an L shape kinda weird to explain but i can definately feel her limbs frontways. I'm just too heavy to do anymore all 4's ,its too dificult.I'm just hoping she turns round on her own . Take care X

Clayhead Thu 13-May-04 19:22:25

Egypt, Miriam Stoppard scared me to bits too and I read her *after* dd was born (posterior)!

My experience was very positive though (on other thread, won't bore you again).

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