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choosing a c section

(33 Posts)
SammyFirstBaby Thu 21-Mar-13 23:48:53

can I choose one? I am physically sick at the thought of a vaginal birth and have panic attacks
when would they do it weeks wise?sad

katestudentmid Sat 06-Apr-13 23:11:49

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Patsy99 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:11:33

I strongly disagree with those saying that a CS is a major deal compared to a vaginal delivery. The NICE research and guidance which came out in November 2011 just doesn't back that up - there are different risks to both ways of giving birth but a C section doesn't obviously come out as a worse option.

If somebody has told me I'd be left permanently incontinent following my natural birth I wouldn't have been quite so in favour of it. Nobody asks you to sign a consent form for the risks of vaginal delivery.

Many of my friends have had very positive natural births but I think it would be fair to say experiences vary.

newbie6 Tue 26-Mar-13 22:25:19


I had an emergency c section after a failed 14hr induced labour. I recovered well from my section and felt completely awake and with it during the op and after. I was walking as soon as the drugs wore off and I think the quicker you move about the better. I can honestly say I didn't find it overly painful but totally understand that everyone is different and will heal differently but just wanted to let you know that my experience despite it being emergency and not how I wanted to give birth, it was still a positive experience. Good luck! X

Rororowmeboat Tue 26-Mar-13 21:49:18

Ps taking1 - just reread your post and if you do have anxiety or pelvic problems - you may actually be entitled to c/s on the NHS. Sorry if I was a bit harsh

Rororowmeboat Tue 26-Mar-13 21:45:27

I am a doctor and I would definitely avoid having a c/s (if given the choice). Obviously if medically needed then it is a different matter but you really need to be aware of the risks of c/s. it is a major operation with both intraoperative and post operative risks - blood clots, bleeding, infection & hospital stay. It is definitely not the 'easy option'.

In contrast your body is designed to give birth, yep it may be painful but so is recovering from major surgery. My 1st it took 7hrs and yep tested but that wasn't too bad either really - few stitches that healed relatively quickly. Up and at them straight away afterwards!

The NHS is brilliant but but I would always try and avoid as much medical intervention as possible - I have seen too many snowballing of investiagations/tests/treatments/post operative infections/complications etc.

Please consider your options very carefully before choosing a c/s. there have been 8 babies born to my group of friends in the last year, 7 of these vaginally - none with any complications or prolonged hospital stay, 2 requiring an epidural. Yep a vaginal birth isn't a walk in the park but neither is C/S.

Taking1 - women are offered choice in the NHS but the risks with having a major operation need to be weighed against the risks to the individual and often these do not add up to be the patients interest. No doctor wants to put their patient at increased risk, resulting in ill-health, prolonged hospital stay (and increased cost to the nhs) because everyone loses in that situation. I am glad you are paying privately for it but don't expect it to be a relaxed planned affair you envisage just because you have gone private and planned it. Nothing with the human body is that simple or easy to plan I'm afraid.

Kaleyq Tue 26-Mar-13 20:41:40

I was fearful of normal childbirth because of problems both my sister and mother had experienced. Both had long labours which failed to progress ending up with emergency sections and post partum haemorrhages. I expressed my concerns with my healthcare team and was told there was no familial link to their experiences and just coincidence. So, I tried hypnobirthing to help with my fears and did really want to have a normal straight forward vaginal delivery. I had 10 sessions of one to one hypnotherapy and listened to the recording of our sessions daily until I was full term. I had to be induced and guess what after 4 days of labour, and it failing to progress, baby struggling I also had an emergency section. My experience shows that if you don't have a text book birth any amount of preparation isn't going to prevent medical intervention. There are risks to both vaginal birth and section births and I really believe you have to do what's right for you. Everyone's experience is different, some are lucky enough to have births that happen as nature intended, some do not. And of course if you are likely to have a 'straight forward delivery' vaginal birth is the best way. But for some of us it doesn't work out that way so a section ends up being the safest for you and your baby. Due to my previous experience I considering a planned section but part of me still dreams of having a straight forward birth. Please, when I say straight forward I do not mean easy or pain free. I mean the physiological changes the body goes through taking place as and when they are meant to.

CareerGirl01 Tue 26-Mar-13 17:19:08

looloo has pointed out one of the risks of CS which I am worried about. Birth is a painful and risky business whatever happens. If you have a vaginal birth you may tear if you have a CS you get all the risks associated with a major operation. Good luck with whatever you choose OP x

lucybrad Tue 26-Mar-13 12:36:49

I have had two CS. Not had experience of vaginal birth, but although my CS have been fine - in fact easy compared to some awful experiences, I still think the easiest way looks like epidural and vag birth. Those mums on one born every minute with an epidural just looks like the pushing is the hard part. If I could go back I think I would try that first.

notdueforages Tue 26-Mar-13 09:17:46


Lots of people saying you have to fight for an elective CS or go private but that hasn't been my experience. I just said I wanted one, had to see a consultant and that was that, I am having one. Perhaps it depends on the trust but the NICe guidelines are useful reading

rainrainandmorerain Tue 26-Mar-13 09:01:44

I had a planned cs on the nhs for my 1st dc for fear of childbirth, and will be having a second planned cs shortly.

I had to have several meetings with MWs, consultants and a mental health specialist before it was agreed. They were all helpful and sympathetic btw - but (as with much nhs care) this seems to vary from place to place, and there have been posts here from women who have been treated a lot worse and had a fight on their hands.

I think it is best to assume that you cannot have one just for asking - and that if you are genuinely very fearful, they will want to be convinced you are scared to the point of phobia before taking it seriously and going down the cs route. I would also make it a priority to go 'beyond' mw care asap. MWs cannot in any case agree a cs for you, most are very anti-cs and it's not their job to offer a psychiatric evaluation.

btw, it is always worth doing your research about risks etc as far as you can with cs. Asking on boards like this is fairly pointless - you find women who have had horrific vbs and women who have had awful cs's. Emergency CS's represent the majority of cs's carried out in the UK, and this tends to be reflected in discussion. My planned cs was calm, relaxed, well managed and as long as you keep on pain meds afterwards, pain need not be an issue. I was home after 2 nights in hospital (have been told I can come out after one night this time if all is well) - recovered very well, bf-ed my ds successfully and after I had my stitches out 5 days post op, felt really good. Friends having 1st babies vaginally around the same time had a variety of experiences - but nearly all of them needed a longer stay in hospital than I did and had ongoing problems afterwards (epsiotomy infection, restitches, readmission to hospital). A couple are still having physio/counselling 2 years on, which I find a bit shocking.

But that's just my experience. I think you are best off asking specifically for advice from women who have asked for or had cs for fear of childbirth (some will have had cs, some may have had counselling/vb). Otherwise all you'll get is general responses about cs, and these threads tend to fill up with people who have not had a phobia about birth, but had emcs's when they desperately wanted vbs. Unsurprisingly, they are very anti cs! and tend to assume their experience is the 'one experience' of cs, iyswim.

looloo13 Tue 26-Mar-13 08:37:56

hi it was elective due to me losing a daughter at 22 weeks and having to go through labour which was horrific.

MoodyDidIt Mon 25-Mar-13 10:47:09

hi OP

i was like this with my first dc, and after being referred to an obstetric consultant and also a psychiatrist they believed my fear was bad enough to be offered a cs. i had another one with dc2 but as had already had a cs they offered me one without any bother

so you CAN have one, but you will have to really push for it and do your research on cs's and let them know you are serious

btw am pg with dc3 now, am older, wiser, and less scared, so am now considering a vbac! but i know only too well the terrible fear so please feel free to PM me if you want to chat more x

TakingTheStairs Mon 25-Mar-13 10:34:52

Sorry - just saw that you've looked into your consultants too

TakingTheStairs Mon 25-Mar-13 10:34:17

I looked at the Lansdell suite too. I really liked it. Have you got them to send you out information? They will send you a pack with a breakdown of their prices and who their consultants are etc. You might find it really useful.
I'm with Cigna which is part of Bupa but you can't get it as an individual unfortunately. There needs to be a certain number of people signed up to it to be able to have it.

tak1ngchances Mon 25-Mar-13 10:22:44

Thanks TakingTheStairs. Which health scheme are you with? I am BUPA platinum cover but it doesn't cover maternity unless there is a condition that requires medical intervention.

I am not going on the NHS, no way. I have looked into consultants & costs and so far I like the look of the Lansdell Suite at St Thomas' in London. I am expecting to pay up to £15k

TakingTheStairs Mon 25-Mar-13 09:00:18

tak1ngchances I feel exactly the way you do and I will be opting for an ELCS. My work health insurance thankfully covers private maternity care so I don't anticipate it being a problem for me but you can request an ELCS through the NHS. Be prepared for a bit of a battle but it can be done. And I know it's easier said than done, but do try to relax until you are actually pregnant. There's nothing you can do yet so getting yourself worked up won't help.
And if you have the funds, you can go private for about 9-10K. Not the Portland! but a private wing & consultant in an NHS hospital.

tak1ngchances Sun 24-Mar-13 17:26:12

looloo was it an emergency or elective section?

looloo13 Sun 24-Mar-13 15:36:51

A c-section almost killed me, these are not something that is easy. I ended up with 9.5 inch blood clott, spent over a month in intensive care , needed physio for 18 months just to be able to walk unaided again and had blood poisoning due to the operation, I missed out on the first 3 months of being a mum to my daughter, I have to wear support stockings every day for the rest of my life. Please think about the down side of what many people think is the easy option.

tak1ngchances Fri 22-Mar-13 16:21:49

I agree it's lovely to be relaxed during the event bogwop, I am talking about the after-effects.

Totally agree, best of luck to the OP. Sammy i hope you reach a decision that is right for you and congratulations on your pregnancy.

My personal wish for this country is that women were given choices and information, rather than having to beg for things such as epidurals and C-sections. It is a pitiful state of affairs.

bogwoppitinatree Fri 22-Mar-13 12:37:52

Taking Chances - why would being calm and relaxed during a forceps/ventuose delivery not be a help? The more you tense and your muscles with it, the slower things are going to progress and more stressed your baby is going to get whatever the situation.
One of the biggest things hypnobirthing aims to teach is to stay in a state of relaxation whatever turn a birthing may take. Anyway, good luck to the OP whatever she decides. smile

Christelle2207 Fri 22-Mar-13 11:20:05

As far as I understand it we are all entitled to speak to a consultant about the possibility of having an ELCS whether there is a medical need or not. My MW certainly hasn't volunteered this information though and it's up the consultant whether you get one or not.
OP I would speak to a mw in the first instance -given your fears you will be a good candidate for one and may well get one but I don't think you should assume you will just be offered it.

LemonPeculiarJones Fri 22-Mar-13 11:20:04

Ah tea - poor you, birth is such a worry every which way you look at it! Good that you can get an epidural in Germany though.

I will say that during the three days I was in the birth experience, parts of it were manageable, you do go with it, and I was so impressed with myself for coping so well (I'd listened to natal hypnotherapy CDs and used visualisation exercises). It was just the last bit and the recovery which made it traumatic for me.

But yes the end result is always so worth it! smile

Teaandflapjacks Fri 22-Mar-13 10:57:19

p.s. I kind of think though - make it upfront as easy as you can - try to relax as best you can, all the women who have had natural births did say you body does 'take over' to some degree, and what goes in, must come out... however you achieve it.... the end result will be totally worth it smile

Teaandflapjacks Fri 22-Mar-13 10:48:26

Lemon - you are quite right hon - I have no doubt it will be horrific - just in germany it is a flat no (private or otherwise) for an elective c section unless medically necessary - so I am psyching myself up and looking at the pros of a v birth. But no gas and air? ahhhh!! at least they do have epidurals etc. God the whole thing is horrific. At the open evenings, they have lovely snaps of calm looking women bouncing on birthing balls, with partner mopping brow and everyone looks so happy.... I had a friend who's midwife said, with no pain relief 'I am just going to make a bit more room here', and snipped away.. When they stitched her up - they did her her a shot of something, but she had 4 more stitches to go, and the pain relief had run out, they told her to grin and bear it - shock cries into tea and cornflakes at thought, and crosses legs

LemonPeculiarJones Fri 22-Mar-13 09:38:27

OP I'm considering a C section too (am pg with DC2). My first birth experience was difficult and I'm weighing up the pros and cons.

Teaandflapjacks has some good advice, but I think she's describing an 'ideal' natural birth - I had a v birth first time round, and I was bed-bound for a bit afterwards, and I did need a catheter and for nurses to change pads, I was in pain for several days.

Not saying that you would have this experience! Every birth is different. But for me and most of my NCT group, the births weren't straight-forward and there was intervention and recovery time afterwards.

Not trying to scare you, my lovely - I am still considering trying for a v birth again. And I know plenty of women who had much better experiences, too.

If you tell your midwife/GP and insist on a cs, you'll probably be referred to a mental healthcare professional to talk it through. If you insist, and really express your fears, then you will get an elective cs.

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