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Tiny people with hyper mobility and giving birth?

(16 Posts)
Swan8 Thu 05-Oct-17 10:23:42

Hi, this is my first ever post, so apologies in advance if I misuse abbreviations (do a David Cameron "lol"!) or don't get the etiquette right.

I'm pregnant with my first child. Now that I've started to get over the initial excitement of it all, it has dawned on me that I am going to have to get this little creature out of me at some point. People at work have been marvelling at how that will be possible given my size - I'm 5ft1 and a small UK size 6. I'm pretty tiny, while my husband is tall (6ft1). They have put the fear of god into me! To add to that, I'm very hypermobile and have read studies that suggest people with hypermobility syndrome are more likely to suffer serious pelvic injuries, including prolapses, when giving birth vaginally. My physio just said to me: go for an elective c-section! That is an option - I'm going private rather than NHS. And I don't have any set ideas of what birth should be, other than wanting what's best for the baby and me.

Are there any other petite, hypermobile ladies out there and how did you find the birthing experience - good and bad experiences welcomed!

MonkeyJumping Thu 05-Oct-17 10:30:00

I'm hypermobile - my eldest was a vaginal delivery, which has resulted in a uterine prolapse and severe pelvic girdle pain that's lasted 3 years.

My youngest was a Caesarian - lovely experience at the Portland, scar a little slow to heal (normal in hypermobility, so allow for a bit of extra recovery time) but overall all good.

Would strongly recommend Caesarian!

Swan8 Thu 05-Oct-17 10:37:38

Thanks Monkeyjumping - my physio is also hypermobile and her experience sounds a lot like yours (hence her recommendation to go for an ELCS). I'm sorry you had to go through that - thanks for sharing.

TiramisuQueenoftheFaeries Thu 05-Oct-17 13:54:04

I'm only just over your height and my husband's 6ft. I birthed a perfectly average sized baby and walked away with nary a scratch. Can't speak to the hypermobility aspect at all, but purely on the basis of heights you'd be a bit premature to panic - small women with tall husbands have perfectly normal vaginal births every day.

I think your best bet is to speak to a medical professional with experience in both hypermobility and midwifery/obstetrics - if hypermobility is considered a risk factor no doubt your midwife will be able to refer you.

Swan8 Thu 05-Oct-17 14:05:12

Thanks TQoftheF, and glad to hear it went well for you. Sadly a specialist straddling both fields is very hard to find but if anyone knows of anyone I would be grateful for recommendations. Generally there isn't a lot of knowledge out there about hypermobility, despite it being reasonably prevalent (in differing severities) in women. Unfortunately I have a high degree of hypermobility, so the concern is that my ligaments will be over stretching and putting pressure on my small joints to make this happen. Already in pregnancy I'm having a lot of joint problems.

TiramisuQueenoftheFaeries Thu 05-Oct-17 14:37:24

It is tough I know, and like I said I have no business giving you any opinion on the hypermobility side - but I did want to reassure you about the opinions of people from work and the gubbins they are talking about being small and having a tall husband! smile Lots of women tinier than either of us have fine vaginal births and people do talk a lot of unfounded rubbish about pregnancy and birth - it's one of those topics bystanders always have 1,000 opinions about.

If you do want a C-section, you will need to get under consultant care and get it approved anyway, and any moderately experienced obstetrician presumably must have had some patients with hypermobility (although I can understand that true specialists in both might be rare or non-existent), so I might go in there with some of the studies you have found and request your midwife refer you to a consultant for a discussion. Hopefully you can take it from there, although you might have to do some educating of the doctors & midwives if it's not something there's massive awareness of.

Positivevibe Thu 05-Oct-17 14:57:27

You could try Dr Roshni Patel. She's highly knowledgeable in vaginal delivery v ceasarean. She might have an idea.
www.britanniababies.com/
(if you're going private, I'm assuming you're in London wink)

Swan8 Thu 05-Oct-17 15:23:41

Thanks TQotF and Positivevibe!

You are right that I need to not listen to what people say. It's amazing how you become public property when pregnant and people say all sorts of things. Most of them aren't good either! The work colleagues have been the worst. And this being my first, and being an anxious control freak a cautious sort of person, I am finding it hard not to worry about it.

I will also speak to a consultant (and you're right I'm in London - thanks!) about all this. Just wanted to get a sense first of whether I'm right to worry and also see if anyone else had some useful info or tips, as I think I will need to go in there armed with info as I don't think it is a run of the mill sort of question and problem!

TitsalinaBumSqoosh Thu 05-Oct-17 15:43:51

I have sever hypermobility elthers danios, I too am tiny, I had very quick vaginal births with no lasting complications, no tears, prolapsed, damage or injury.

Swan8 Thu 05-Oct-17 16:56:24

Thanks TitsalinaBumSquash - that's really reassuring to hear.

NC4now Thu 05-Oct-17 17:01:39

Another EDSer here (though bigger than you at 5ft7). My main issue was my joints.
My second baby was 9lb 8oz. Nice easy delivery, no stitches, prolapse or anything like that.
First was back to back and a bit trickier, but again no major complications, just a bit of a nasty tear.
Protect your joints as much as you can. Get a good supportive place to sit, watch your posture, swim etc. But don't worry too much about the birth.

scaredofthecity Thu 05-Oct-17 17:09:23

I'm hypermobile, I had a very quick birth and a small 2nd degree tear, but I healed quickly and have no lasting effects.
I'm pregnant again and am planning another vb.
My advice is be as kind to yourself as you can whilst pregnant, I found pregnancy much harder than the birth! Don't ignore any pains you get as they'll probably only get worse. This time around I've found a serola belt amazing for my hip instabilities.

Swan8 Thu 05-Oct-17 20:13:19

Thanks scaredofthecity - will look into the belt. And your message has made me guiltily realise I should go and get my nagging knee and back pain looked at and see whether there is anything I can do now, before I get heavier and they get worse...!

smellsofelderberries Fri 06-Oct-17 04:30:31

Look at some research of Prof Dietz, he is a specialist in pelvic floor trauma sustained during childbirth. I am not as small as you but have mild hyper mobility and my daughter had a massive head at birth. My pelvic floor was torn off my pelvic bones- it's an injury which occurs in around 30% of women. I am lucky in that I only have one mild prolapse which seems to be stable at this point, but I do have to wear a pessary now and it's really affected my life negatively. I can't run, struggle to walk a lot of the time without discomfort and feeling like my whole pelvis is unstable. I am at very high risk of significant prolapse because of this injury and have to spend about 45 minutes total daily doing physio exercises to hopefully strengthen what's left.
And the kicker is, this sort of injury at the moment is irreparable. If I donned of with significant prolapse in the future, there is an 80% change that a surgical repair would fail because the musculature support is gone.
I tell you all this because I feel women need to know the true risks of vaginal childbirth. You might be fine. But I had a straight forward, easy, 12 hour labour with a drug-free water birth. Calm and painful, but easy, and ended up with life-changing injuries. Of course sections aren't without risk either, but at least it's a planned, managed risk. You have no idea what will happen when you're in labour.

Bornfreebutinbiscuits Fri 06-Oct-17 10:14:47

Op any chance to spare ones self from labour I would jump at it and go for the section. Its a wonderful way to have a baby it really is!

Swan8 Fri 06-Oct-17 10:56:38

@smellsofelderberries - I'm so so sorry you are going through that - it sounds truly awful. Running and exercise are great passions of mine - I'm not sure I'd be able to cope if they were taken away, let alone everything else you've been put through. Serious physical injuries naturally have such an effect on mental health too. I'm going to look at Prof Dietz's research - thank you. And thanks so much for sharing your experience.

@Bornfreebutinbiscuits - it is just the recovery afterwards that scares me! And then you read all this stuff about microbes (although it doesn't sound like the science is clear on that one yet, and I know lots of c-section babies - including my husband - who are ridiculously healthy, fit and fine!).

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