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ECV vs C section

(23 Posts)
Nicky1306 Wed 09-Jan-13 10:34:46


Ok............Bubs is still breech im am 35 weeks on saturday. Next weds I have a midwife appointment where if the baby is still breech (please please turn!!) I will be reffered for a consultant appointment and scan to confirm position and discuss ECV vs C Section.

I'm torn.............Something about the ECV makes me very uneasy, i've heard stories of it leading to a Emergency section, cord getting wrapped round babys neck, baby flipping back to breech etc etc. Part of me thinks that if "bump" is breech then there is a reason for this and leave him/her be.

BUT having a Csection also comes with its own risks, I'm worried mainly about post operative care, the hospital I am under (watford general) does not have a very good reputation for this any way. I worry I will struggle to breastfeed after the section, DD1 Birth was a breeze and i was home the next day..........this time I am so confused!!

I'd like to hear anyones experiences of ECV or elective sections to try and help me make up my mind!


Sams4lo Wed 09-Jan-13 10:39:57

Sorry I don't have any advise on breech babies sad but I had a crash section last time and successfully breastfed him until he was 2! I found the support in hospital and dh helping helped with my success, the breastfeeding didn't make the pain any worse, just use lots of pillows and don't be worried about asking for help smile

Nicky1306 Wed 09-Jan-13 17:03:34


CrackersandCheese Wed 09-Jan-13 17:07:32

I had an ecv at 38 weeks. It was ok. They monitored the baby lots. He didn't turn and I had him naturally in the end, so there is a third option to your list.
There's a book by Berna Waites called breech birth which would help you decide.

At 35 weeks there's still time for baby to turn without help.

sundaesundae Wed 09-Jan-13 17:11:21

People often recommend a website called spinning babies, have you had a look there?

Teapot13 Wed 09-Jan-13 17:21:54

I had this same dilemma with DD, now 3. Add to that the fact that my (private) consultant told me he would have to refer me to a colleague if I wanted to do ECV because "I don't know what I think of this turning business. Sometimes a baby is breech for a reason. You never know if the cord is too short, etc." Given my own doctor's position, I didn't feel comfortable having it done. Also -- and I am not sure this is always the case -- I was told that this is done in theatre with the mother prepped for a CS. I couldn't see the point of risking an emergency CS at 35 weeks to avoid an elective at term. (I know the chances of actually needing the emergency CS are minimal, or they wouldn't do it at all, but still.)

DD turned on her own at about 38 weeks, which was quite painful.

I was a few days past my due date and went in for an induction. My doctor had always had a hard time telling her position clinically, and she turned quite a bit, so he always scanned me. She had turned AGAIN in the week of her due date, so I had a planned Caesarean in the morning.

The CS recovery was no picnic (AT ALL) but I don't think it affected BFing. BF was always important to me, and my milk came in pretty normally on day 3 after birth. DD was EBF till solid food at 6 months and she self-weaned at 22 months.

I'm not sure what you should take from my story, except that a lot of people, including doctors, share your concerns about ECV, and you just can't predict what the baby will do.

Yours still might turn anyway -- it's still early. ECV is more likely to be successful with a second baby, also.

Make sure you have baby's hips scanned for hip dysplasia -- being breech is a big risk factor for it and it's so easy to fix if caught at the right time. (DD had to wear harnesses for a few months but no invasive treatment.)

Good luck with your decision.

Nicky1306 Wed 09-Jan-13 18:18:16

Wow thanks for your reply teapot! I know they say there is plenty of time for baby to turn at this time but I really don't feel like there is ANY room left! Lol and I just have a feeling bump is nice and comfy this way and isn't going to move any time soon, he/she has been this way since 24 weeks!
I'm glad to hear you were able to exclusively BF as this is something I'd really like to do again x x

XBenedict Wed 09-Jan-13 18:19:27

I had an ECV with DD1, it was unsuccessful and very painful. If I had a breech baby again I would refuse an ECV.

XBenedict Wed 09-Jan-13 18:21:02

Breastfeeding wasn't an issue in any of my cs births smile

Nicky1306 Wed 09-Jan-13 22:01:10

Mmmm I thinking of refusing the ECV I can't put my finger on it but I just don't feel right about it x x

AmayaBuzzbee Wed 09-Jan-13 22:13:56

I had an emergency cs (baby was breech), and had no problems breastfeeding. I wasn't even aware it made any difference to bfeeding how the baby comes out! The recovery was fine, Never felt any pain at all (they'll give you lots of drugs after the op). This time I am going with an elcs for no other reason than it's what I prefer after having experience of both :-)

NanoNinja Wed 09-Jan-13 22:16:01

I had an ECV with DS1. It was painful, and ultimately unsuccessful. I found it a hard decision to make, for the reasons you mention. However, my obstetrician thought that the conditions were favourable, and I trusted her. However, there was some mixing of blood, I was kept in overnight, and had an early c section 5 days later. To be honest, although I am glad I tried, I wouldn't bother next time.

Bf took a while - I was breast feeding, pumping and formula feeding for the first two weeks. I think this was partly due to my reacting badly to the painkillers, but more due to DS being poorly and having formula early on, and to my milk being a bit slow to come in. I think if he had been my second it would have been fine. We are EBF now though.

My recovery was fine, but I had the benefit of eight days in hospital and no other children to look after.

Good luck.

NanoNinja Wed 09-Jan-13 22:19:02

I think that milk production is triggered by removal of placenta, so method of exit should not have an effect on success or otherwise of breast feeding. Although I guess if there are other factors (such as slightly immature baby?), that could make a difference. That's conjecture though!

Shattereddreams Wed 09-Jan-13 22:26:21

I too refused ECV.
I knew 4 mothers who it had failed for and all said it was hugely more painful than they had been led to believe.

I asked my consultant what his PERSONAL stats were not the over quoted hospital statistics. His were lowly and I refused.

I knew baby wasn't moving, he hadn't moved at all and it was my 2 nd pregnancy so I could compare. I just knew he was stuck.

He was footling so highest risk for vaginal so I knew I had to go with a section.

It was booked for 39wk as standard but again, knowing my own body, I knew I would go into,labour before then, which I did.

My elective became emergency but was fine. It wasn't a panic type thing, still pretty calm. Just at midnight, not midday,

I breastfed to 10 months, easily. Never expected not to 2nd time around although section did worry me.

I got an infection, ended up back In hosp on IV antibiotics but even though that was hard, I would still take the section over my vaginal!

StiLLYoungMoM Thu 10-Jan-13 04:35:33

Hi. Im Looking to hear from moms who are 40+, more than 5 chiLdren, & have large age gaps from oLdest to youngest child-20+ years. ALso if U, & i know this is rare, have had a fetus attached outside the uterus, or had a hysterectomy then gave birth. TY

miniandfloss Thu 10-Jan-13 07:37:37

I went through this before Xmas. I wasn't keen on the ecv but turned out I couldn't have one anyway as the baby was already engaged bum first and I was already in early stages of labour. Ended up with an elcs that was fine and am now sat here breastfeecing my 6 week old ds. Breast feeding was tricky to start but just keep asking for support, good luck and remember the baby may still turn.

ItsMyLastOne Thu 10-Jan-13 07:51:31

still young does this have anything to do with the op?! hmm

anyway, my dc2 was moving between transverse and breech oblique. I tried the spinning babies stuff and hoped she' d move as she seemed to like changing position but it didn't work.

I had a scan at 36 weeks. now this is a part I find confusing, because the sonographer checked the position of the cord very carefully to see whether it was in a suitable position for them to turn her. when you have your scan, ask about the position and length of the cord.

I had a conversation with the consultant immediately after the scan. he explained that because of dd' s position and the cord's length and position, it should work well. I was also very worried about the risks of ecv but was terrified of a cs, and worried about a breech vaginal delivery too. there was also the concern in my case that I could go into Labour while she was transverse and her cord could get trapped. so I decided to go for the ecv.

I had it done at 37 weeks. it wasn't done in theatre as a pp had been told. it was in a ward on the delivery suite where women are waiting for an induction or elcs. I was scanned again and baby monitored for about an hour. then I had a consultant watch while a more junior doctor of some sort did it. I know this isn't usual, but it took 30 seconds max! I'd had a lot of pain for weeks from her head pressing on my insides and it did hurt having someone press that area so hard, but it wasn't the ecv that was painful, just the fact I was already in pain iyswim. then they scanned again and monitored the baby for a couple of hours.

she still kept moving position, but from then stayed head . she came naturally at 41+4. she's now 4 weeks and all seems fine so far. she does have to have a scan tomorrow for her hips. this is the case for any baby who was breech past 36 weeks iirc, regardless of type of delivery.

in terms of bf, I had dd 1 normally and naturally and never managed to bf her. my sister had an emcs with her dd and fed her no problem. she's still bfing 2.4 years later!

RikersBeard Thu 10-Jan-13 07:55:35

I had an ecv which was successful and I would do it again. It was just done in antenatal clinic and the only prepping was a muscle relaxant and some paracetamol. It hurt a bit but nowhere near as bad as labour. It was more of a yuk feeling.

Definitely find out the stats of your consultant. Mine was over 70% successful, the other guy was about 30% and I wouldve refused him. You are scanned throughout so they know exactly where the cord is and whether it's long enough . And if labour is triggered which is a small risk, you're in the right place.

Took about 45 mins then monitoring for a couple of hrs. I'd take that over major abdominal surgery any day!

Flisspaps Thu 10-Jan-13 08:08:04

StillYoung I think you stand more chance of getting responses if you start your own thread.

Droflove Thu 10-Jan-13 08:14:15

Would you consider delivering him breech? That is what I would want. The research that led to all breech babies being automatic CS was disproved a few years ago and except for a few situations (feet first, one leg down, etc) there is strong school of thought that there is no reason not to birth breech, like our mothers would have. My choice would still be natural delivery and I would be very against ecv. That is what I decided after researching it a lot months ago. I'm now 37 +5 and head down so hopefully it won't be a decision I have to make.

Droflove Thu 10-Jan-13 08:14:30

Would you consider delivering him breech? That is what I would want. The research that led to all breech babies being automatic CS was disproved a few years ago and except for a few situations (feet first, one leg down, etc) there is strong school of thought that there is no reason not to birth breech, like our mothers would have. My choice would still be natural delivery and I would be very against ecv. That is what I decided after researching it a lot months ago. I'm now 37 +5 and head down so hopefully it won't be a decision I have to make.

Nicky1306 Thu 10-Jan-13 13:23:44

Hmmmm not mad keen on the idea of a breech birth tbh sad x

Lotsofqueries Sun 26-Mar-17 10:32:04

Did you go for the ecv?

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