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ELCS fight with hospital

(5 Posts)
digsydel Sat 09-Jul-16 00:34:20

Looking for some experience and advice please.

DD1 was born by EMCS due to foetal distress and failure to progress.
I'm now 30 weeks with #2 and have been discussing an ELCS since early on due to the trouble I had last time and my unwillingness to take the chance of that happening again with this baby. I've seen a midwife, and midwife consultant and then today and obstetrics consultant and have hit resistance from the start.
I have been given a very reluctant go ahead from the consultant but am having trouble getting clarity on what would happen if I went in to early labour before the scheduled ELCS date (I book that at 36 weeks but likely to be at the 39 week mark).

The midwife consultant was the first to tell me that if I went earlier than 39 weeks that they would leave me to go naturally and not do the ELCS (the notes they gave me to read actually contradict this and say if you go after 37 but before scheduled date they do an EMCS). I was concerned about this as it seemed unusual and contrary to me apparently having a choice so i put a post on a local face book group asking for experience at the hospital. What came back scared the crap out of me - rude doctors, refusal to schedule ELCS before 42 weeks, people going in for their ELCS and being made to wait to see if they would go naturally etc etc. A ray of sunshine in this though was particular Doctor who everyone said was very understanding and would respect your wishes etc etc so with a head full of hope I booked my consultant appointment with him.

Well I saw him today and both my husband and I walked out and said if he is the nice guy, wtf is the other one like!?!? He was patronising from the start, was trying to push me into agreeing a VBAC even though he said himself "you've clearly done your research" (which I have) and spouted a lot of bull frankly - apparently obstetrics isn't a science, it's an art form; that he could absolutely guarantee me that a VBAC would go perfectly and a couple others. What really annoyed me though was when he started saying just because my labour was "miserable" last time - I just interrupted to say it wasn't miserable it was downright risky and dangerous. Calling it miserable made me feel lazy and petulant and like I just wanted an ELCS because I didn't have fun last time.

Anyway, like I say, he's reluctantly agreed an ELCS at 39 weeks but wouldn't give me a clear answer on what would happen if I went early - instead he avoided it or gave sketchy and often contradictory answers. The general gist that both my husband and I walked out with though was that if I go in early they would delay me under the guise of assessing me, until I was too far gone to do a C-Section unless there was cause for an emergency one again. Essentially removing my right to a choice from me and forcing me to VBAC against my wishes.

Everything I've read elsewhere makes this behaviour sound unusual. As mentioned previously the notes they gave me say that an EMCS would be performed if I went early, and posts on here, on FB and conversations with friends all seem to imply that an EMCS would be the norm.

Does anyone have any suggestions on what to do? I have no confidence that they will respect my wishes if I go early and I'm considering changing hospitals but I'm already 30+ weeks and don't want to go through that faff to find another hospital operates the same policy. What is the norm and what are my rights in this instance?

Thanks for reading and TIA for any opinions and experiences!

Batboobs Sat 09-Jul-16 10:56:57

There have been several of these threads recently and I have posted on pretty much all of them grin

Anyway, I'm also concerned about going into labour before my scheduled, and what will happen if I do.

Well I have determined that there is simply nothing you can do if they are dismissive and leave you to wait. I was told by my consultant and midwife that if I went in as soon as I am in established labour, they would ask if I preferred to labour naturally or if I still wanted to have a c-section.

But from reading accounts on here, and from my own experience (4th pregnancy) it's pretty much pot luck. Firstly you need to get there in enough time, hope there aren't many emergencies in front of you, and of course insist to a midwife/consultant that you do not want to give birth vaginally and hope that they listen. As every pregnancy/birth is different, and there is strictly not a strong medical need for you to have a c-section, they will and have (it seems like), probably deem you to be low risk, and so you will go to the back of the queue if and when the need arises.

From all the accounts I have read some people have had an EMCS within 30 mins of arrival and others have waited for half a day.

My only suggestion is to go to the hospital at the first twinge, and insist forcefully that you are not willing to have a vaginal birth!

Mummyme87 Sat 09-Jul-16 12:12:17

This is very very unusual and I'm sorry to hear of your experience so far. Normally if you were contracting you would be assessed. If not in active labour, no concerns and over 37/40 you would have an EMCS when is safe to do so On a priority based time frame. There may be other women who require theatre for fetal distress, instrumental births, maternal well being etc. They are unlikely to want to do it in the middle of the night unless you were in active labour. There would also be a discussion with you about vaginal birth to ensure you want to go ahead with your CS (women often change their mind) particularly if you have come in very far into labour.

You should not be persuaded to have a vaginal birth against your wishes.

Roomba Sat 09-Jul-16 14:33:01

So sorry, OP - this is awful and I can't believe they are treating you this way.

I'd heard many similar stories so went in all prepared for a battle for a CS with DC2, but encountered quite the opposite. The consultant just said ' I think that's a perfectly reasonable request' and booked me in. He said if I went into labour, to go in asap and they would do the CS as soon as they could, no problem.

If I were you I would already be making an official complaint about the way you have been treated, as no one should be pressured like this. I would make it clear that their responses are now causing severe anxiety and impacting on your mental health. I would hope that this would greatly encourage them to take into account your wishes if you do go into labour early?

It's shocking how women are patronised, their treatment delayed or refused just for the sake of hospital statistics. Women in labour are vulnerable and should not feel as though they have no control over what is going to happen to them. You can bet that men would not be treated this way in a comparable situation!

Oblomov16 Sat 09-Jul-16 14:40:17

I suggest an email for clarification..... Then at least you have it in writing. Whatever happens on the day, make sure you are very firm "no, I want this".

I heard one woman shout, but calmly... "Would you like to take a minute to reconsider, because if you're not careful you're going to get sued for every penny, for negligence"!!

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