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Have been told cannot try for VBAC without continual fetal monitoring - anyone else?

(20 Posts)
Hangingbellyofbabylon Sat 08-Aug-09 23:27:02

really need a vbac - dd2 is 3.5 and disabled and recovering from a section would be a nightmare with a disabled toddler to cart around.

The midwife has told me that they will not consider a vbac without continual fetal monitoring. With my last two babes every time I tried to move off the bed the trace kept getting lost so they confined me to lying on my back. Which of course resulted in crap labour and more interventions etc.

So now I feel like I have virtually no chance of getting my vbac. They also said that they don't consider anything like forceps if things are going well, they just cut straight to a section if there is any worry at all. All sounds so impossible to me. At the moment I just feel like hiding away and staying at home for as long as possible because I know it will all be crap when I get to hospital.

wheresclaire Sat 08-Aug-09 23:47:09

Yeah, I was the same, straight on my back as soon as I was in the hospital. Couldn't even roll on my side without losing her heartbeat. But I DID have a VBAC. Its worth trying, don't you think?

Wilts Sat 08-Aug-09 23:51:55

My VBAC was nearly seven years ago now shock but I was continually monitored.

I did however, end up with a ventouse delivery. I was at that point wailing on about not having another c-section grin

littleducks Sat 08-Aug-09 23:52:17

well they cant force you to have a cesarean they need you to sign the consent form dont they?

i would discuss it with mw, maybe compromise on intermitent fetal monitoring?

why do they want continous monitoring are there any other risks?

Jbck Sat 08-Aug-09 23:56:41

I had a VBAC with forceps delivery. My consultant was all for it tbh so I don't think I'd take the mw's word for it till you've spoken to someone more senior.

Be assertive and clear on why you want this and take each step as it comes. Good luck.

YesImSinister Sat 08-Aug-09 23:58:39

Refuse the continual monitoring. They can't make you have it, even if they say it is "hospital policy"

It has been proven by many studies that the only thing continual monitoring does is lead to increased numbers of csections.

Speak to AIMS if you need some help in telling your hospital that you will be attempting a VBAC without continual monitoring

FAQtothefuture Sat 08-Aug-09 23:59:26

I've had 2 VBAC's

DS2 - CMF - flat on back, horrendous birth (not helped by being induced for it)

DS3 - refused CMF (once you're in the hospital they can't FORCE you to have it - although they will nag you to death until they finally get the hint). Fab birth smile.

They checked my blood pressure and baby's heart rate (with hand held doppler thingymajig) regularly.

Hangingbellyofbabylon Sun 09-Aug-09 00:13:38

well they have told me it is hospital policy for all vbacs due to the risk of uterine rupture. However in my case there is the added complication that dd2 did have pathological ctg for 10 hours before they decided to deliver her and by the time they did she had suffered hypoxia which led to her cerebral palsy. We've just started legal action against the very same hopsital that i do have to give birth at in a few weeks. So whilst I know what happened to dd was a one off occurance part of me thinks I'd be a fool not to accept continual fetal monitoring. I'm just so confused, just want the best chance at a safe delivery for me and dd and tbh, the way the caesarian was handled last time it doesn't feel like a 'safe' option. My own midwife was fairly crap and unsupportive about it all this week, I do have a consultant appointment at 37 weeks so will ask then but half of me hopes she might have arrived by then. (am nearly 35 weeks now and at the point where it all went wrong last time).

Hangingbellyofbabylon Sun 09-Aug-09 00:15:17

forgot to say thank you, some inspiring stories here smile. Also they said they will not under any circumstances do inductions - weird again as FAq had a vbac after induction. I think my hospital may be a bit crap.

YesImSinister Sun 09-Aug-09 00:30:07

I'd agree with the no induction for VBAC apprach, as it does increase risk of uterine rupture.

Now of course the hospital want to give you continual monitoring because it is most convenient for them. But this birth is about YOU.

Monitoring is good for reassurance - but insist on it being via a doppler at regular intervals, not continuous monitoring.

FWIW, I had a home VBAC (and I had to push hard for that). When my waters broke there was meconium in them, and I was told I had to come in for a hospital birth, with continual monitoring. I had read so much, about my rights, and also the risks, that I refused. So a midwife was despatched to me to support my home birth and I had intermittent monitoring via a doppler.

I really do recommend that you speak to AIMS. They have a great book (costs less than 10 pounds if I recall) called "Am I Allowed", which is well worh buying.

It will be hard going back to the same hospital, I'm sure, so the more you arm yourself with facts on how to get the birth you want (and are entitled) to try for, then hopefully this will lessen some of the stress.

CarmenSanDiego Sun 09-Aug-09 00:34:31

One home vbac, one hospital vbac. No continuous monitoring. Actually, I feel continuous monitoring has some serious drawbacks. As well as limiting movement for the mother which can seriously impede labour, it leads to an over-reliance on monitors rather than watching the mother herself for signs of problems.

FAQtothefuture Sun 09-Aug-09 00:37:53

well DS2's birth was a farce from start to finish so lets not eve go there with the induction grin

Most noteworthy thing - I was suffering from vaginismus at the time (involuntary tightening of the vagina muscles )- having had sex the once for the unplanned pg was a big enough miracle - we only managed it that one night and it was to be nearly 3yrs until we managed it again!). I had specifically told them about this - and it was written in HUGE letters (by my MW as well) that I had this and internals were to be kept to a minimum. I was so out of it with pain (all pain relief bar one pethidine shot early on failed) that I hardl had the presence of mind to refuse internals. And when I did the pain was horrendous - I distinctly remember being told to

"stop screaming it's only an internal, shouldn't hurt more than the contractions" - well it farking well did.

<<<<<<<botch job from start to finish - thankfully same hospital redeemed themselves with DS3's birth and were fantastic>>>>>>>>

Deemented Sun 09-Aug-09 07:43:17

I had a vbac and it was awful - they decided they couldn't get a good nough trace on DD so they broke my waters and attached a probe to her head, which meant that i literally couldn't move at all. She was back to back, and i have lower back problems and the pain was just excruciating.

This time though, i intend to have a home water birth, and do things my way. I se the consultant about it on Weds, and i'm fully expecting to have to fight for it.

shootfromthehip Sun 09-Aug-09 07:53:22

I had a VBAC with continual monitoring. I too was stuck on a bed unable to move about.

That said, I was very lucky and had a 3 hr labour including a 20 min second stage. It was depressing not being able to move about but a hellofa lot better than the 4 1/2 days worth of misery and then an EMCS that I'd had the previous time.

I think you should see the monitoring as positive (whilst uncomortable) as it can give you some peace of mind re fetal distress etc (not that everyone feels that way).

Good luck with everything. A VBAC did indeed make our home life much easier than another section would have.

ohmeohmy Sun 09-Aug-09 08:01:56

Similar to you DS! had SN, DH was ill and I couldn't have been incapacitated after section. I had VBAC but negotiated intermittent monitoring until waters broke then they wanted monitor on. I didn't lie down though, laboured standing by the bed till the very end.

Monitor was a hassle though, dumb first midwife couldn't get it on and kept losing the beat or getting mine and faffing about.

Thing I found annoying was the venflon they insisted on incase I needed to go to theatre, couldn't get a vein after several goes, ended up with it in crook of arm and it kept half falling out and bleeding everywhere. wish I had refused that too.

The risk of uterine rupture is very small but is increased by induction so they should not offer that. Sounds like they are trying to scare you into agreeing to do what they want, not difficult given your history. For their lawyers a c-section would be ideal... but not for you. Be strong, trust your instincts and make sure your birth companion knows what you want and is prepared to advocate for you.

l39 Sun 09-Aug-09 08:23:59

I hope you get the birth you want, Hangingbelly. I saw my consultant briefly at 12 weeks (I'm 30 weeks now). She wants continuous monitoring for a VBAC too but I was more surprised that some people these days get away without it at all! My first 2 labours were spontaneous, after uncomplicated pregnancies, one baby each, yet I still had continuous monitoring and I hated that tight belt which seemed to add to my pain. None of the midwives ever said it was possible to do without it though. (Those births were in 1992 and 1995.) My husband loved being able to see my contractions on the machine. hmm
With my twins there were 2 belts and I was induced but that time I was in a lot less pain, though once again confined to one position on the bed.

gingertoo Sun 09-Aug-09 08:24:54

For my first VBAC they insisted that I would need continual monitoring so I went into hospital fully expecting that to be the case.

For the first (very painful) hour I went along with it and stayed on my back on the bed being monitered. At this point I got off the bed to nip to the loo and found that the contractions were loads easier to cope with when I was standing / sitting.

I mentioned this to the wonderful midwife when I got back to the bed and he agreed that I could get up and move around and that he would check me and baby every 15 mins.

Being up and around really got things moving and ds was born soon after

OP - I was very, very lucky that I got a midwife who responded to me and my labour. As Yesimsinister said 'it is most convenient for them' if you are strapped to a bed being monitored by a machine but this is about you. Do talk to them and see if you can negotiate intermittant monitoring.

Good luck

sarah293 Sun 09-Aug-09 08:38:13

Message withdrawn

franke Sun 09-Aug-09 08:41:29

I've had 2 vbacs (in Germany) without cfm. Both outcomes fine. Gave birth to dc3 on my knees but upright.

Whilst I think it is important to know your rights, I think it is more important to really inform yourself about the issues around your birth and associated risks. Read the research and be prepared to discuss your individual case on the basis of that research rather than taking the "you can't make me" approach. IME all hospital protocols are open to negotiation if you can enter the discussion in a conciliatory but informed manner. Good luck smile

ILikeToMoveItMoveIt Sun 09-Aug-09 08:43:25

If I were you I would find out how useful cfm is when it comes to diagnosing uterine rupture.

I had a home vbac so no cfm, the plan was just regular doppler, blood pressure and heart rate checks, as well as being asked if I had any scar pain (the mw only arrived with 15 mins to spare so no checks were ever made!)

I was under the impression that one of the first signs of rupture is a rise in the mothers HR and BP, and sometimes scar pain.

CFM is an easy way for the staff to leave all the work to a machine imo.

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