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If you were induced, were you not allowed to have a waterbirth?

(23 Posts)
Miaou Wed 22-Jun-05 21:53:38

Just something the mw mentioned to me the other day.

I'm hoping to have this baby in my local midwife-led unit, but they only handle very straightforward births, which doesn't include inductions! Therefore if I need an induction I will have a 2+ hour trek up the road to Inverness. Although they have a birthing pool there I get the impression I won't be allowed to use it if I'm induced, as I will need continuous monitoring.

But would I need to be monitored continuously? Is there a good reason for it? And if so, does that mean I would have to sit on a bed all the time? I could cope with the idea of missing out on my waterbirth, but I'd be really peed off if I couldn't even move around.

What were your experiences of induction/waterbirth/moving around during labour (or not)?

mears Wed 22-Jun-05 22:01:56

If you want a waterbirth then do not agree to induction prior to 42 weeks. The usual waterbirth criteria is for normal pregnancies 37-42 weeks.

I have looked after a friend of mine who was induced and had a waterbirth. Luckily for her labour started after she was given prostin - 2 doses in fact. If the heart tracing (CTG) of the baby is fine after prostin, there is no need for coninuous monitoring. However, if labour does not start after prostin then the waters need to be broken as part of the induction process. You could still use the pool. If a drip needs to be started then you should be continuously monitored. That means no pool but you could still be mobile and use a birthing ball or stand at the side of the bed.

here is the guideline on induction of labour

Miaou Wed 22-Jun-05 22:11:46

Mears you're a star. I will have a read of your link now!

As all my m/w appointments are at the local hospital, and given the distance to Raigmore, the chances are I won't get to see/speak to anyone from there unless/until I go for an induction - could it be possible that they simply have a "policy" of not allowing inductees to go into the pool, or of not using prostin gel? It's just that the mw seemed fairly sure that using the pool would simply not be an option, which is what confused me slightly.

Also, this is my third baby - dd1 was early, dd2 was late and arrived four days before induction (after a sweep) - would any of this have any likely bearing on timing of this baby?

TIA - off to read your link now

pupuce Wed 22-Jun-05 22:19:42

If this is your 3rd, why do you think you wuld need to be induced... and in a 3rd time mum an induction might just mean an ARM which means there is no reason to refuse water !

Seems to me that at best a sweep might get you going.... not sure you are not worrying "for nothing" IYKWIM

Miaou Wed 22-Jun-05 22:26:22

pupuce that is exactly what dh has just said to me!!!!

I know what I'm like though - I'm quite happy to accept situations if I feel fully informed about them, I just tend to worry when not in full possession of the facts. If you/mears had said "no chance of a waterbirth" I would have been fine about it, just so long as I knew! I should have questioned the mw about it more on Tuesday, just didn't think to at the time.

I've got too much time on my hands to think about things atm, that's my problem!!

thanks for the advice tho

mrsdarcy Wed 22-Jun-05 23:10:06

Miaou - I know that some hospitals have a blanket policy of not letting you use a birthing pool if you have been induced. That was certainly the case when I had DS1 at UCH 5 years ago. I was gutted about it as I had even bought my sieve!! Good luck.
Mears - thank you for the link on induction. I am going to be induced in 3 weeks, when I will be 38+2 weeks, and it was very useful to see the guidelines.

Nemo1977 Wed 22-Jun-05 23:19:07

hi
i was induced and had to be monitored every hour for half n hour. I was not allowed waterbirth etc and was allowed to go for walk but told to be back at certain times. I think the monitoring is because with induction labour happens quite quickly so can cause traumas to baby. Once i was in labour i was not taken off heart monitor which im glad about as ds heart rate kept dropping. I didnt like not moving once in labour although the labour from first contraction to birth only took 90mins.

Nemo1977 Wed 22-Jun-05 23:20:23

not trauma sorry meant stress..lol I was induced at 42wks exactly with the prostin which didnt work so next day was given syntocin

mears Thu 23-Jun-05 06:34:55

Can I just remind you that women cannot be stopped from having a birth that they want. There is no such thing as not 'being allowed'. You certainly will be given that impression but if you are making an informed choice that is up to you. In my unit you are 'not allowed' to use the midwofery unit if you are induced. The protocol says it is for women in spontaneous labour. However, if you are making an informed choice then you can insist on not having monitoring etc. My friend insisted she wanted a waterbirth. She knew sge did not need continuous monitoring. However she did know it would change should she need a drip. Her baby would need monitored so she would not use the pool.
Women have their own choices to make. Obstetricians and midwives cannot 'make' thenm do anything.

kid Thu 23-Jun-05 06:59:25

I was all booked to a have a waterbirth with DD (6 years ago now) but had to be induced at 39.3 as waters had broke more than 24hours before. I was continuosly monitored, wasn't even allowed off the bed. I didn't think to ask as it was my first baby and basically did as I was told!

piglit Thu 23-Jun-05 09:32:20

I was induced at 41 + 6 and after 2 doses of gel over 36 hours, some pethidine and artificial rupture of my membranes I spent 8 hours in the birthing pool in a vain attempt to have a water birth (it wasn't in my birthing plan but I thought - hey why not?). It all went pear shaped after that but that had nothing to do with the time in the birthing pool - I'm just crap at giving birth. Good luck and I hope you get the birth you want.

mrsdarcy Thu 23-Jun-05 19:36:33

Mears, your post has made me realise that I am being a complete drip! I'm expecting my 3rd baby and would love to have a waterbirth or at least have a fairly natural delivery, but have assumed that I can't as (1) I will be induced at 38 weeks (2) have GBS so will have a venflon in my hand and (3) there is something wrong with the baby, so all in all I am expecting quite a medical, interventionist experience. I'm usually quite assertive but because this pregnancy has been so stressful and I have received such excellent and compassionate care, I am now being very passive about the delivery options. My other labours were pretty straightforward so it does seem a shame to miss out on a good experience when any medical concerns are likely to be neo-natal rather than obstetric. I'm going to start thinking more constructively about the delivery

SofiaAmes Fri 24-Jun-05 01:04:07

mears, I know that in your unit things are a little different. However, I think that you are giving false hope and that many women in reality do not have a choice because of the poor staffing rates and abysmal hospital facilities.
For example:
I wanted to use a birthing pool for both of my labors. In the first hospital, they only had one pool and there was someone in it already. I decided to use a bathtub instead, but the taps were broken on the bathtub. Luckily my dh is a builder and managed to fix them enough to get some water out of them.
In the second hospital, there was actually a birthing pool available to me in my room, but the hot water in the hospital wasn't working properly and by the time it was filled up, I had already given birth. I was told that this was not uncommon.
During my first labor, I asked for an epidural. They said sure, but there weren't any anaesthetists available to give me one. It was 5 hours (I had been in labor for 35 hours at this point) before they managed to get me one.
I don't want to scare monger, but I think that women giving birth in england need to be prepared for not being able to get what they want (for whatever reason) as that seems to be relatively common nowadays and figure out instead how to be prepared for not having the labor/birth that they had planned so that they aren't disappointed.

RedZuleika Fri 24-Jun-05 14:16:49

Isn't this an argument for home births? I know it might not be for everyone - and you wouldn't be able to have an epidural - but at least you'd know the plumbing works...

leahbump Fri 24-Jun-05 14:30:07

I am also hoping for a water birth. Hopefully at home too!! However I know that means going into labour between 37-42 weeks.

Having had an awful first birth there is no way I want to be induced in such a way as would require continuous monitoring as they would not let me stand at the side of the bed or even kneel on the bed leaning forward (that was least painful position for me as ds was back to back) needless to say my labour was long and very painful (might have been better with a bit of gravity to help cervix and I think I might not have needed that epidural) and I ended up too tired to push- forceps delivered ds!

I would hope that (as mears suggests) a subsequent pregnancy could be induced by pessary or arm and that will not mean continuous monitoring (unless there is cause for concern with bubs heartbeat) and will mean that a waterbirth is possible (in hossie).

My midwife is writing my birthplan with me at our next antenatal apt- this is great as she knows policy at the hospital and for homebirth better than I do- hopefully she will let me know how far I can argue my case succesfully.

Miaou- maybe you can do this with your midwife- hopefully then you will feel less stressed and know what is possible.

motherinferior Fri 24-Jun-05 14:56:12

Sofia, I agree completely.

I found it incredibly difficult to be assertive at all during my second pregnancy, I have to say; I just felt blindsided, continually, by the medical establishment.

mears Fri 24-Jun-05 21:24:14

I agree with what you are saying SofiaAmes - we can have those problems too i.e. someone else in pool or anaesthetist in theatre unable to give epidural. What I was trying to say is that women do not have to be 'allowed' to choose a certain way of birth. They are enitiled to make their own choices which the midwife must support even if she does not agree. You cannot legislate for the choice not being available. You cannot, as a midwife or doctor, tell a woman what she must do and not many women realise that.

SofiaAmes Sat 25-Jun-05 14:16:08

I know that you realize the limitations of the system, mears. But I have met so many women who went through their pregnancy think they that they did hav a choice, only to find out that that choice was limited not by the midwifes and consultants, but by the lack of them, or lack of facilities. And they were completely unprepared for that. I went into hospital read to insist to the midwife/consultant that I didn't want drugs and continuous monitoring. I didn't realize that there wasn't going to be a midwife there to argue with (I went 12 hours completely unattended) and that what I really needed was a spanner and some bleach.

It amazes me what women in this country put up with in terms of labor and medical care in general (preventative care, after care, child medical care). They should be complaining long and hard to the government about the third rate treatment that they are getting. Why is even an ounce of money or effort getting funnelled into anything (like roads and olympics) when children and mothers are dying because there are adequate facilities and staff? That's the kind of stuff that's supposed to happen in 3rd world countries, not the UK.

mrsdarcy Sat 25-Jun-05 15:33:23

Just to mention the other side of the coin, I have seen a great deal of my obstetrician and midwife over the last year and can't praise them highly enough. Quite a few people on here have posted in a similar vein that when things get tough the NHS can really be fantastic. I know this isn't universal and there are also women who have posted here about the most heartbreaking results of inadequate funding and staffing, but it's only fair to give credit where it's due.

NomDePlume Sat 25-Jun-05 16:09:10

No waterbirths for induced labours at my local hospital. In fact, only the most straight-forward labours and deliveries are allowed to have pool access.

JiminyCricket Sun 26-Jun-05 16:51:04

I was told I couldn't use the birthing pool because of ARM - didn't even have the induction and that was their only reason 'oh , now you've had your waters broken this isn't technically a 'normal' delivery so you can't use the pool'. Have checked out the hospital I might be in this time (though hoping for home) and they said they would have let me.

jessicasmummy Sun 26-Jun-05 16:53:48

I wasnt allowed - spent the whole induction on monitors after they ruptured my membranes. Broek my waters at 10am and Jess didnt appear until 2.49am.... needless to say I was NOT impressed!

Littlemermaid Sun 26-Jun-05 22:49:49

I was induced at 37 weeks due to complications wih baby's heart rate and cord. I was monitored throughout labour both inside and out if you see what I mean and had been for 48 hours previously! Also attached to a drip. My experience was similar to many people here. There was no choice, I was unable to have water birth or use birthing ball, had nothing to eat and only ice chips to drink and couldn't even get up and move around. I needed 2 midwives to remove all the eqipment just so I could go to the loo (accompanied !) I was totally unprepared for any this and had expected a fairly natural birth - Although my priority was obviously my DS and I would have done anything to get him out it was all a bit of a shock, I was knackered it was bloody painful and I'm not sure I coped all that well

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