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3rd degree tear 3 years ago - should I go for elective C-section this time?

(8 Posts)
dobbyclub Wed 13-Sep-17 23:03:53

Pregnant with DC2 - will have approx 3 year age gap. Had a 3C tear with DC1, repaired and not had particular trouble with it after the first few months apart from general weak pelvic floor. However with a vaginal birth there is a risk (they say about 8%) of tearing again in the same place which could be 'serious' (I assume permanent damage and/or surgery needed).

They've asked if I want a C-section, which I initially didn't really want but am seriously considering now. I have no real knowledge of C-sections - am asking friends about their experiences. I feel a bit weird that it's just planned at around 39 weeks, I feel like the baby won't be 'ready' to come out if labour hasn't started.

I don't really know how to make my decision. I am getting examined and scanned more to check the repair and baby's growth but I am tempted to ask to book in a section now and then see if I change my mind. Any advice? I am a bit worried about having a toddler and baby to look after while I'm trying to recover. Will have DH and DM around for a bit.

dobbyclub Thu 14-Sep-17 09:19:51


flojo73 Thu 14-Sep-17 09:56:46

I had a 3b tear with my 1st baby, he weighed 11lb 4... I was offered an elective CS with my next baby and I agonized over what to do. I found recovery after the delivery of ds long and really painful & I've since suffered with lasting side effects.
I eventually opted for an elective section with ds2 and it was the right decision for me. I had immediate skin to skin in theatre, after ds1 was born I had to go to theatre to have the tear repaired so I missed out on his 1st couple of hours (then he ended up on SCBU-due to respiratory distress, he was just too big!)
It's a really hard decision, as you may not tear as badly this time. Other factors such as position of the baby, whether it was an instrumental delivery, level of experience of the person delivering all play a part.
I enjoyed the delivery of ds2 and the recovery from an elective cs was so much easier for me. This is obviously just my experience though!
I wish you all the best with whatever decision you make. Enjoy the rest of your pregnancy and your new baby.

dobbyclub Thu 14-Sep-17 23:53:39

thanks flojo wow that is a big baby... that's really helpful, glad to hear it was positive!

Pallisers Fri 15-Sep-17 00:03:01

I had an elective section for my 2 subsequent births after a serious tear. In fairness, I also had a pph but I would have opted for it anyway. I felt I had dodged a bullet when it came to continence and sex and didn't want to face down the same bullet again.

The recovery from a c-section was really easy by comparison. Second section was even easier. A normal vaginal delivery would of course have been easier still but I wasn't comparing to that.

CastleFeck Tue 19-Sep-17 20:02:46

First baby 3a tear, recovered well.
Second baby 3a tear, recovered well.
Third baby 1st degree tear healed like a dream.

Difference was third baby was smaller and the Midwife firmly pressed a warm compress on my perinium as he crowned.

Tough choice, many people go for an elcs after a 3rd degree tear and are really pleased with the outcome.

Pineappleandcheeseonsticks Tue 19-Sep-17 20:12:17

I had a 3c with my first dc (he was a small baby but just came out too quickly) and was stitched up in surgery. I saw a consultant and the senior midwife who, although both said they would obviously support me if I wanted a natural birth, felt that if I did have any further tearing that it was likely I would be bowel incontinent for the rest of my life. So even though it was a smallish risk that I would tear, I felt that I could not go into labour worrying that I may come out the other side in a bad way. I was terrified of having a section, and had always feared having one, but it was ok. I was in a lot of pain afterwards, but I am still glad I made the choice I did. I wish that I had requested delayed cord clamping and that I had known about vaginal seeding.
I really think that the choice comes down to how you feel though. I knew that my fear of tearing again was likely going to be a self fulfilling prophecy if i was tense and nervous during labour! But you may feel that you can get your head round it, and prepare yourself for a great birth.

dobbyclub Tue 19-Sep-17 22:12:16

thank you all. pineapple that's how I feel. It's hard to get a sense of the real risk of natural birth, which I know is pretty much me wanting to see into a crystal ball! So I think ELCS is actually the safer option and I'll feel more prepared I think.

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