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To c-section or not to c-section

(5 Posts)
Genzymoo Thu 02-May-19 08:16:22

I am 7 months’ pregnant with DC2, and due to have a meeting with a consultant in the next couple of weeks to discuss some things.

My birthing experience with DC1 was less than pleasant (although I accept that it is unusual for labour to go without hitch). I was induced for reduced foetal movements, the initial induction failed so they went for pessary number 2. No one checked on me after this for some time, and in particular no one checked how dilated I was until about 9 - 12 hours later. This had been after hours of me saying that the pain was getting very bad, that I thought contractions were coming on top of one another, etc. It was only when I was ill and started demanding a c-section did they check and realise that I was at 8cm, and informed me that the epidural I had been asking for to be given as soon as the window opened was now out of reach. I should add that, in hindsight, I cannot recall whether they monitored DC1’s movements during the course of the day; I can’t recall them doing so, but I might be wrong.

So after being somewhat vocal about my displeasure, and continuing to demand a c-section, they agreed to give me an epidural and review as we went along. They also finally gave me some gas and air. The epi was given, I had a bit of a rest until I eventually got to 10cm. At this point, they said something along the lines that when I was contracting/pushing, baby was in some distress - I think her heart rate was dropping, that they were going to have to perform an episiotomy and I would have to push without break until she was born. This took about 3 minutes. The record of birth records less than optimal Apgars (still only 8 at 10 minutes), but two and a bit years later, she is perfect and appearing to develop on track.

(And this is where I would suggest, if you are eating, you stop reading and return to this post later!)

I took longer to recover from the birth. The episiotomy that I was worried about was certainly not a problem, but the haemorrhoids... I know it sounds ridiculous to be upset about how bad they were, but the doctor looking at them remarked that they looked like a bunch of grapes. For about a week, I could hardly sit, walk, lie without there being a lot of pain. They finally disappeared about 3 weeks later, but I have had subsequent visits from my little friends over the last two years, all involving a fair amount of pain. I am also left not really able to sit on a toilet for longer than about a minute and a half without everything down there starting to hurt a lot.

Going into this pregnancy, I am unfortunately overweight. I raise this because it brings with it its own complications for vaginal delivery, I know I should have made more of an effort to lose weight before becoming pregnant again...

In my previous pregnancy, I wanted to explore having a c-section with the midwife. She was clear that I would need to be referred for ‘counselling’ if this is something I wanted. I felt somewhat judged, and declined. My reasons for considering it at birth 1 was based upon a fair amount of research into the possible negative outcomes for each option, and feeling that these were in favour of c-section.

I am now torn (pardon the pun). I am still somewhat on the fence about whether to have a c-section. The pros being that the risks to DC2 are likely to be less with a c-section, I would feel like someone was properly observing what was happening, rather than me just being left to get on with it and having to start becoming difficult before anyone would check me properly and it should hopefully cut down on the ‘post-birth issues’ (which people have suggested to me are likely to be worse the second time around).

The cons are;

1. the increased risk of DC2’s susceptibility to allergies if I have a c-section (the research that links increased allergies and c-section delivery) - I am someone who suffers from asthma, eczema, hay fever and food allergies (although not born by c-section), so DC2 is already at increased risk;
2. Feeling like I am missing out on the natural birth experience;
3. Feeling a little judged.

Does anyone have any advice or recommendations? Whilst I want to discuss fully with the consultant, my fear is that any sign of weakness in a request for a c-section may be jumped on.


OP’s posts: |
octonoughtcake3 Thu 02-May-19 11:10:56

I have an EMCS with DD and complication afterwards. I am aiming for a vbac this time. Both options come with their own risks. There are more cons to c sections than you have listed but obviously vaginal birth carries risks.

It’s a very personal decision but you could aim for vaginally and say if you need an induction then you will opt for a c section instead. It’s not an all or nothing plan.

Have you done birth reflections to discuss your previous labour?

Surfskatefamily Sat 04-May-19 07:14:02

I had a long traumatic first birth. Did end in csection after baby got stuck. Aftermath was both ruined pelvic floor and csection recovery 😢 Will be opting for elective this time happily. The actual csection was not the bad bit and once you get through the first 2 weeks recovery is ok.

Bees1 Sun 05-May-19 17:20:31

Hopefully the consultant will be able to support you to make a decision but wanted to reassure you I had an elective c section with no 2 after serious trauma delivering no1 (I wasn’t given a choice to have a natural birth with no2). The elective c section was a wonderful experience in comparison and the recovery far easier.

Topseyt Sun 05-May-19 17:36:35

I had two vaginal deliveries with DD1 and DD2, the first of which was extremely complicated and traumatic and left me with significant tearing despite an episiotomy. It was months before I could sit down comfortably again. I really wished I had insisted on a caesarean.

I had an emergency c-section at 35 weeks when I had DD3. It was still by far the best experience, and I also felt it was the safest of my three deliveries despite the circumstances. I recovered far more easily and quickly than I did from DD1's traumatic arrival.

So, my personal experience would lead me to opt for the c-section.

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