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Any reason I shouldn't have a sweep?

(7 Posts)
McRoo Tue 30-Apr-13 17:50:43

I'm 38+6 today and just had an appointment with my midwife. Baby is 3/5 engaged, I'm pretty certain I lost some of my plug this morning. I have another midwife appointment next week and she has said I can have a sweep if i want as I will be 39+6.

I mentioned this to my friends and said how I would definitely have the sweep as I didn't see the point in delaying things particularly as this bun will only be 1 day off being baked. One of my friends (who didn't need any sort of induction btw! Hers just turned up bang on time!!) has questioned why I would have a sweep if me and baby are fine.

It didn't cross my mind for a minute not to have one as I didn't think they were harmful (apart from uncomfortable / excruciating depending on who you talk to). Am I missing something?

Probably also worth mentioning that I am very nervous about going overdue as 2 years ago my sister in law had a stillborn (due to placental abruption) when she was 40+5. The baby had been fine but died in the last 3 hours of labour. Naturally, things I read about the quality of the placenta degrading the longer you go really resonate with me.

I know a sweep doesn't guarantee labour but is there reason I'm missing / unaware of why I shouldn't?

worsestershiresauce Tue 30-Apr-13 17:56:37

Personal choice really, although my midwife was of the opinion they don't work, and from what I've read on here I conclude they don't make a lot of difference. It didn't work for me and felt like some hideous form of assault, so I'd not have one again.

Flisspaps Tue 30-Apr-13 18:05:41

They only work if you're going to go into labour anyway, and there's a small risk of infection (as there is with any VE)

atrcts Thu 02-May-13 22:52:45

I wouldn't hold much store by a sweep - I had x3 separate sweeps with my first pregnancy because i was slightly dilated (about 2cm I think) and they all caused bleeding and period pain type cramps but I still had to be induced at 10 days overdue in the end, so it made no difference.

I guess they must hope it can make a difference in a proportion of cases or they wouldn't offer it! But my experience was that it was all a bit pointless.

StarlightMcKenzie Thu 02-May-13 23:02:53

If I had that kind of potential history, I would probably chose an uninterfered as possible birth personally.

I would worry that a sweep might start labour before the baby was ready or well positions resulting in a prolonged labour which is more dangerous, and also risk infection, premature rupture of membranes (which the baby needs to turn into the right position).

weeblueberry Thu 02-May-13 23:03:15

I asked the midwife about a sweep this week (am 39+2) and she said a sweep only works if your body is ready to give birth anyway. If you're still more than a week or so off all is does is aggravate your cervix and cause discomfort.

LadyMedea Fri 03-May-13 07:38:50

I always peddle this statistic so apologies. Takes 8 women having a sweep for one of them to have their labour brought forward. Not very effective, and very invasive.

The placental degradation thing is also a bit of a myth. Some can be knackered early, some are healthy and good at 42 weeks.

Key thing if you go overdue is to be monitored, keep check of movements, and consider induction at 40+10 if things aren't moving (unless you have other indications of course)

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