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How did you feel during/after PPH?

(18 Posts)
OnTheBayou Tue 01-Oct-19 18:16:02

I had my baby a few months ago and had a 1800ml PPH. All happened very quickly as I was being stitched up for my tear and episiotomy, I had a few different drugs injected, and a vaginal pack inserted. Even after such a big blood loss I didn't have a transfusion as my iron levels were OK.

Afterwards, although I was physically (sort of) OK, mentally I just lost it. I was drifting in and out of consciousness for hours and hours after, I wanted to talk so much but couldn't get the words out properly. It was like sleep paralysis, absolutely terrifying. I couldn't hold my baby for at least 8 hours after, I remember waking up briefly and there was a midwife holding him on my boob.

I was so scared, when I could talk I was asking them (midwives) to help me but everyone just kept telling me I was fine and needed to rest. After about 12 hours I was able to talk a bit but I still felt like I was underwater and like the dyson airblade fan was talking to me confused and woke up every 10 minutes hysterically sobbing and screaming.

Basically I don't know if this is a normal reaction or just me going a bit mad due to the blood loss/exhaustion/stress etc. Had a birth debrief and was told there should have been better care after the birth. I know I'm more likely to have another PPH next time if I have another baby so I'm so scared it will happen again. I hadn't thought about it much until now but now I can't stop thinking about it!

If it does, I'm hoping my reaction won't be the same next time. How did you feel during/after a big PPH? And did you have one with subsequent births?

OP’s posts: |
lljkk Tue 01-Oct-19 19:48:17

I had a super small pph, I think they said 750 ml. I was pretty pretty weak, but luckily they said my iron levels were still very good so I wasn't offered a transfusion. Big thing that worried them all was my blood pressure went down to 90/60. I think that was due to dehydration, low blood sugar & fatigue. I scoffed fluids & dried apricots as fast as possible.

Next baby I lost almost no blood at all.

Whymustyoubringinthebirds Tue 01-Oct-19 19:53:50

I lost a similar amount with similar circumstances, no transfusion as my iron was OK, I felt OK after birth, was tired but that was it, managed to stay awake the whole day (5am birth)
Felt fairly normal the next day but looking back a was a ghost and probably should have taken it a bit easier in the days after birth
Not had a 2nd one yet

IrishMamaMia Tue 01-Oct-19 19:54:32

I list about 1600 so not quite as extreme. Luckily didn't need a transfusion. I felt like I was dying, like the life was ebbing out of me at the height of the blood loss. Afterwards I was tired, cold, shaky. In a bit if shock I guess. I had a rest afterwards and bounced back surprisingly quickly in a physical sense but I'll always be traumatised by the birth.
I'm due again soon. Planning an ELCS this time. I know the PPH is a risk but am hoping it was linked to my other complications from last time.

mamma2016 Tue 01-Oct-19 20:01:10

I lost 2500 ml. All happened so quickly I wasn't really aware of what was happening. Afterwards I wasn't allowed to stand and had a transfusion about 12 hours later as my iron levels were low. I didn't feel too bad to begin with and sent my partner home for a few hours sleep. I felt ok to lift and feed my baby.
In the days afterwards I was exhausted and couldn't stay awake, especially when breast feeding. My partner would have to wake me and take the baby as I'd feed lying down and conk out in minutes.
We are now TTC and I'm anxious about it happening again, but hopeful it was because of a low lying placenta and that hopefully I won't get one of those again! I think it's a very scary experience and everyone's body responds in different ways.

Blossom28 Tue 01-Oct-19 20:06:44

I lost 2.5 litres, although this was from the 2nd degree tear! 😬 I remember feeling very calm about the whole thing, so I must have been slightly out of it. However, aside from tiredness and feeling out of breath I was ok. My labour up until that point had been fine though, I wasn’t that exhausted, had an epidural so wasn’t delirious from pain. Maybe your labour was harder?

Lunde Tue 01-Oct-19 20:20:39

I had a sizable PPH after DD1 (I lost 1,300ml in 15 minutes after giving birth) my uterus literally popped open when they thought it was deflated- . Baby and DH had already been taken to NICU because of breathing problems. It was a difficult situation as the staff didn't seem to understand what I was saying - and despite the traumatic delivery I was left totally alone and couldn't get staff to help. There was also a language barrier between myself and the staff.

Finally after lying alone for ages and much bell pushing a care assistant came who was an older woman who seemed to think I was just being a nuisance by "whinging" . She was very brusque and when I said I felt ill and dizzy she just rolled her eyes and said "what did you expect after having a baby". I asked to speak to my midwife as I thought that my shakiness and dizziness was not a good sign. ... but she just said they were "too busy" so I was left on my own again.

I kept ringing and to shut me up they eventually sent a student midwife who took one look and hit the emergency button. My uterus had re inflated and I had bled out a further 2000ml - so around 3,300ml in total. All of a sudden I had 2 midwives, the student, the doctor on call, the consultant on call, the anaesthetist + a few randoms. The midwives were pushing on all the drip bags to try and bring my blood pressure up - then I was off to surgery. I also had extensive internal and external tearing (eventually ended at 60+ stitches), a massive "fist" sized vaginal hematoma that needed to be drained and received 3 blood transfusions in the theatre and then 3 for the next three days. Spent the night in a post surgical HDU and didn't meet dd until the next day.

DD2 was a lot easier they were equipped with different types of meds to stop the bleeding - even though I lost 500-750mls it was a totally different experience,

mylifenow27 Tue 01-Oct-19 20:31:58

I've had two massive PPH both with transfusion the first I passed out and felt so unwell after, for days I was just really tired. With my next baby which was my 4th I asked for a c section as the first PPH was so traumatic. When I had the PPH during my section it was no were near as traumatic I didn't even realise as everyone was so calm and I felt in the right place.

StylishMummy Tue 01-Oct-19 20:49:09

I lost 1100ml with DD1 during EMCS. Didn't know at the time but I was absolutely out of it for a couple of days afterwards, I refused transfusion for iron levels as I had DD in NICU and I had to stay still for 4 hours for the transfusion

Tippety Tue 01-Oct-19 20:55:26

I lost around the same amount as you, and my aftercare regarding the PPH was amazing (the only bit that was, sadly). I couldn't hold my baby for about an hour, but considering the amount of post birth stuff that needed to be done it was as quickly as they could I think. I didn't have a transfusion but I had lots of fluids and although I didn't leave the bed for 24 hours it wasn't too bad. I agree with them that your care should have been better.

Tippety Tue 01-Oct-19 20:57:27

If it makes a difference though I was in emergency surgery and there were already a lot of medical professionals about, so all of the equipement and expertise was on hand. I haven't had my debrief yet but be interesting what they say.

orangeicecream Tue 01-Oct-19 21:00:19

It's been 13 years so I can't remember the amount I lost.... But it was a lot and I had 2 or 3 transfusions over 24 hours. Felt like I was coming back to life over that 24 hours. I didn't have any loss with next child.

OnTheBayou Tue 01-Oct-19 21:16:33

sounds like I had a slightly weirder reaction than most then...maybe the situation (long-ish labour, 2 hours pushing, forceps) contributed. @Lunde that sounds absolutely awful. I felt like no one was taking me seriously too and I found out afterwards that it was one of the busiest days of the year. I was on high dependency (I think?) so was being checked constantly with people in and out of the room doing my blood pressure and temperature non-stop but no one actually asked me if I was OK or helped my husband with the baby.

Like you @Tippety I was lucky in the sense that I had a skilled consultant right there stitching me up as it happened so I think they got it under control really quickly.

I wish in retrospect that I'd asked for a transfusion as I was borderline for one and I think I'd have felt lots better. Midwives and doctors kept coming in over the next 24 hours talking to me about breastfeeding and removing the vaginal pack etc and I had to stop them to say 'I don't understand anything you're saying' because their words just didn't make any sense to me. I was absolutely out of it

OP’s posts: |
Tippety Tue 01-Oct-19 21:18:37

On reflection when I was home, I did find it really weird that all they gave me was some iron tablets you can buy over the blimming counter.

Seashell80 Tue 01-Oct-19 22:38:27

I lost about 1300 (I think!) but from episiotomy, they really struggled to stitch the cut as the skin kept tearing.I didn't realise how much of an effect it had had until I attempted to get up and go to the loo and ended up passing out, after that was very hazy although I do remember being flat out pumped full of fluids and uncontrollably shaking☹️
Did end up having a transfusion a day later as iron stayed low, felt better almost immediately although on iron tablets for a while and the wound itself took months to heal.
The aftermath was by far and away the worst bit.The birth itself, although it involved forceps and a bit of a rush due to dd heart rate dropping was dealt with calmly and I don't have any negative associations with that part.
Unfortunately I have started recently to suffer with some health anxiety partly I think due to some unresolved issues with this. Have spent 3.5 yrs telling myself it was fine when actually it was really grim. I was unable to establish bf as I produced almost no milk-I reckon body decided it had enough! and feel I missed out a bit on that post birth bonding 😥

commanderdalgliesh Wed 02-Oct-19 01:28:36

I had one - I remember feeling ok but on reflection I must have been pretty out of it. I didn't sleep at all the night after and ended up jsut sitting in the chair watching the baby sleep. Had a transfusion the next day and felt immediately more alert. The whole experience was so horrible I still struggle to talk about it.

thefirsttimer Wed 02-Oct-19 02:04:36

I lost 1400ml and also didn't get a transfusion because my iron levels were okay. I had the full works manual extraction of a doctor reaching inside pulling out clot after clot whilst pushing down hard on my stomach - horrific. Afterwards I felt exactly how you described OP, but the worst didn't come until day 3, possibly a combination of hormone levels dropping and the fact my DC was in NICU until then so that kept me going. Day 3 hit me like a tonne of bricks and I felt really spaced out like I wasn't fully in the room. Just pure exhaustion and I honestly felt scared I was dying - like I had absolutely no energy at all to even breathe. Luckily I had a private room on the maternity ward so DH was staying with us and insisted I slept all night while he tended to DC. I woke up after a 6 hour stint of sleep and felt miles better for it. Full recovery still took me weeks though, I was breathless walking up the stairs and for further than 50m for a good 8 weeks PP.

Nat6999 Wed 02-Oct-19 02:54:13

I had a big pph in theatre during emcs, I felt almost as if my body was shutting down, my face went numb, my eyesight went funny & it felt like my head was in a bubble, like everyone was talking round me but I couldn't take part in the conversation. I was put in HDU, had ds at 6.20pm & by 10.00 after they had sent my mum & husband home my organs started to shut down, I had HELLP syndrome, I was really thirsty but for the first 24 hours I was only allowed a teaspoon of water an hour to drink, I was drifting in & out of consciousness, was terrified & begged them to send for my mum & husband, but they refused, they kept on pumping me full of drugs & in between a nurse was trying to clamp ds on to feed, without asking me if I was BF or FF, they didn't give me any blood until morning & then gave it me without asking permission, I was too drugged up to consent. I didnt remember but my mum later told me that they had to get a cleaner in theatre to mop the blood up off the floor before they could move me out of theatre. I had to have 3 units of blood & was put on iron tablets for 6 months afterwards. It took me a good year before I was totally well again.

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