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post forceps - could it be better next time?

(27 Posts)
thirtysomething Tue 01-Jul-03 21:45:37

I have had two births - 1 ds which was easy up to second stage then just managed to avoid forceps after 2 and a hlaf hours' pushing after one final push (loads of stitches though!) then horrific second birth - dd's back against mine, prolonged second stage and final forceps and huge episiotomy - felt completely traumatised for two years after and still occasional throbbing pain which feels like bruising. Have now finally begun to consider a third pregnancy but am terrified of having to go through the same trauma - is there any way of making sure you can have a c-section? At the moment it's seriously putting me off although deep down I'd like another child....

monkey Wed 02-Jul-03 11:12:39

I'm no expert, but I thought you could just request a section, and especially given your circumstances, i would've thought you could have had one.

I can really sympathise. I had 2 very different, but not v. enjoyable birth experiences. 1st was emergency section, which itself wasn't too bad, but long & painful recovery (partly poor post natal care, partly bad luck i think). 2nd had huge episiotomy & also 3rd degree tear, lots of stiches etc. My pain & trauma lasted 1 year, not 2 like yours & it was a nightmare. I am now pg with number 3 & seriously worried about the delivery. Also considering elective, because can't contemplate a whole year of pain. it's just too much.

Maybe you could make an appt with your gp, or even midwives(?) & discuss with them how to make the next time a better time. I know everyone's different, but for me, I decided to get on with the pg - the worry itself is enough to put you off & you'd probabaly regret not having another if you feel this way. It's a question of ho w best to get it out. My doc is making an appt for with with a midwife & obstetrician about a month before the delivery, to decide how we're going to go about it. Maybe you could in this way work out why you had 2 difficult births & what to do about it.

Maybe you'll get better advice here, but good luck

fio2 Wed 02-Jul-03 11:48:52

Ihad an emergency section first time for similar reasons to your second birth but the forceps couldnt get her out. When pregnant with my second child I saw the consultant who said I had to have a vaginal birth, I really couldnt face it and asked for a refferal to a female consultant. We talked it over a great length, and although she thought my pelvis may have been too small for a VB anyway, we decided on an elective section. It was wrote on my notes it was for psychological reasons. Im sure if you have an understanding consultant like mine you will be able to make an informed choice.

Also some health care cover will cover the cost of a c-section.

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 11:52:58

I'd definitely check out the elective c-section BEFORE you take the plunge. My first birth was just like your second and my mw referred me to a consultant to discuss my next one (pg at the moment) as she thought it was traumatic. Consultant refused to even consider an elective cs and thought my birth was fine medically as neither of us were in danger at any time (it was just mindblowingly painful and traumatic but hey, that wasn't in my notes). He made 2 'useful' suggestions: first, to have an epidural really early on (even though i'd told him it didn't stop the backpain last time and made every thing worse) and, secondly,to eat salads from now on so that I wouldn't have such a big baby.

Your health authority may be different

I'm actually doing all I can to ensure i'll be OK and am even considering hypnotherapy to make me calm and stop any feelings of rising panic.

I hope you do feel able to try again if you really feel the urge for a third. The trauma is hard to overcome - but worth it if you can. Good luck.

mears Wed 02-Jul-03 12:07:46

Thirtysomething - in your circumstances I do not think that any reasonable consultant would refuse your request for a C/S. To ease your concern I would make an appointment with the consultant you would book with prior to becoming pregnant again to discuss the whole issue. Your GP would set up that referral for you.

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 14:09:29

Mears. Just out of curiosity - what's your definition of a reasonable consultant? Would you class the one I spoke to as reasonable? I thought it was like talking to a brick wall.

fio2 Wed 02-Jul-03 14:11:50

nobby if you're not happy with what your consultant has told you ask to be refered for a second opion.

Enid Wed 02-Jul-03 14:12:03

thirtysomething, I had a hideous birth with high forceps and was very traumatised afterwards. I considered a c-section but was very glad I didnt as dd2 was born quickly and normally with a tiny tear. x E

Enid Wed 02-Jul-03 14:12:34

Meant I considered a c-section with number two.

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 14:41:53

Fio2. I didn't hear what I wanted to but didn't necessarily think he was wrong just because of that. That's why i'm interested in whether he WAS being reasonable - or not. I don't actually want a section - just the reassurance that if all goes like last time then i'll get one.

fio2 Wed 02-Jul-03 14:46:18

sorry I must have misread what you wrote-hope I didnt offend you.

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 15:41:12

Fio2. No not at all - i'm just confused about everything that's all

SoupDragon Wed 02-Jul-03 17:12:49

Thirtysomething, I had your 2nd labour first Big "star gazer" baby, probably a good few hours pushing (it's hazy!) ventouse, episiotomy, 3rd degree tear, 2 hours of repair work in theatre... 2 years later I had DS2 with 18 mins of pushing and "just" episiotomy to preserve the previous tear (started to go again). C-section scared me more than another VB.

I had hypnotherapy before DS2s birth as I had absolutely no positive memories of DS1s and was, quite frankly, terrified This helped me relax, mad me reasonably confident that I *could* do this and DS2 was 2 weeks early which I'd had included in my hypnotherapy sessions.

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 17:30:19

soupdragon. How great to hear that hypnotherapy worked. how did you find a good practitioner? is there a recognised body? I'm frankly terrified about my next labour and it's really infringing on my pregnancy and i think hypnotherapy sounds just right.

SoupDragon Wed 02-Jul-03 18:59:35

Nobby, I found mine through a friend-of-a-friend type thing. She is a member of our local NCT branch and did her 1st antenatal classes with a friend. I'm not sure if there's a professional body.

The hypnotherapy certainly relaxed me, whether through "true" hypnosis or simply sitting still for 40 minutes concentrating on her voice I can't say. I did get the relaxation bit and the bit about DS2 arriving 2 weeks early but didn't get the pain free labour that was also included in my sessions and is supposed to be possible!

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 19:05:37

Thanks. I'd really like this one to arrive 2 weeks early but pain free labour? Blimey!

mears Wed 02-Jul-03 19:05:38

I think a reasonable consultant is one who will spend the time to listen and be guided by your wishes. It is one who can present all the facts and make you feel confident in any decision you make together IYKWIM.

SoupDragon Wed 02-Jul-03 19:10:14

The 2 weeks early (and therefore 2lbs lighter) was my main wish. Mainly because my very unreasonable consultant had scrawled "Refuses early induction. Short labour than c-section" across my notes completely against my wishes!

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 19:19:05

Mears. Aaaah. This one said 'do you feel reassured?' and I said 'no, not really' and then discovered he'd written 'discussed options and reassured nervous patient' on my notes!

doesn't really fit your definition

fio2 Wed 02-Jul-03 19:25:51

nobby ask your consultant for facts and figures for the same thing happening again in relation to your previous birth, you most probably have though havent you. What did he say when you said if there was a choice between high forceps and c-section would you be able to choose beforehand?Are you allowed to write in birth plan what you want and have it obeyed?

Sorry if this makes no sense

nobby Wed 02-Jul-03 19:47:40

fio2 I'm seeing him again in a few weeks' time so I think i need to go in better prepared and take in a list of questions. I didn't ask really specific questions such as the ones you suggested. He threw me actually, the midwife had been really supportive and said that he would be too. I definitely need to be more objective and less emotional about this.

fio2 Wed 02-Jul-03 21:29:41

you are allowed to be emotional noddy all those hormones rushing around your body. Write things down before you go because its easy to forget once youre in there and their rushing around trying to get to the next patient.

Linnet Wed 02-Jul-03 22:01:35

Thirtysomething, my dd was delivered by forceps because she was an op baby. I wasn't aware of her position until after the birth since no-one told me. I was left quite traumatised by the whole thing but not as badly as you, you have my sympathies.
My dh and I are now trying for baby #2 but before we started trying I went along and spoke to my Dr. I asked about having a section as I really didn't want to have to go through it all again. She told me that since I had delivered vaginally the first time, even though there was intervention, I would more than likely be refused a section as I don't have a good enough reason to qualify for one, this was not the answer I was hoping for. I was hoping for a maybe and she basically said there was no chance.
Once I am actually pregnant though I'm going to bring up the subject again with the midwife. Ideally I'd like a natural birth but I'm willing to try labour for a few hours and if things seem to be going in the same direction I'd want a section, but whether or not that will really happen I don't know.
Talk to your DR and see if you can talk to a midwife and/or a consultant and find out as much info as you can before you are pregnant. and you never know your third one could just be the calm natural birth that you've always wanted. Good Luck

thirtysomething Wed 02-Jul-03 22:22:21

thanks for all the tips - my doctor is very old-fashioned and I know he would just refuse to refer me to a consultant before getting pregnant (or even after) just to discuss an elective section - I'm sure my trauma won't be recorded on my notes from last time as medically it probably went ok from their point of view - and unlike some of you my baby wasn't very big (6lbs 14) and she was also 2 weeks early!
But a friend told me today that she heard a news report about being able to pay for an elective section on the NHS soon - anyone else heard this?

mears Wed 02-Jul-03 23:59:33

You certainly do not need to pay for C/S in the NHS with a history such as yours. You have a right to see the consultant. If your GP won't refer you then phone the consultant's secretary direct.

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