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Fibroids & need for blood transfusion after delivery - any experience?

(25 Posts)
Grockle Fri 15-Apr-16 21:45:04

I'm 26 weeks PG and have been told by sonographers that I have 2 small fibroids (2-3cm) out of the way and no cause for concern re delivery.

However, consultant saw me this week (due to age) and decided I may haemorrhage after delivery so have to deliver in hospital because I may need a blood transfusion. This has terrified me. Google seems to think that the risk is very low but the consultant made it sound really scary.

Has anyone with fibroids had a baby? Can anyone share their stories please? confused

greenfolder Fri 15-Apr-16 21:51:53

I had 2 fibroids. It was decided that they would not present a problem during birth. I had a complicated birth and did in fact haomarrage after and ended up on the high dependency unit. It was never said that it was a result of the fibroids to be fair. The midwife afterwards said that I would have been approved for homebirth ( had 2 previous non dramatic births) and I was lucky I was "sensible". We live at least 30 mins by rd from the hospital tho so I was happy to be in hospital.

Artioo2 Fri 15-Apr-16 21:54:00

I had three fibroids for my first pregnancy which ruled me out of giving birth in a midwife led unit. Ended up having a c section (not because of fibroids) and did have a bleed afterwards, but I didn't need a transfusion in the end.

The thing to remember is that it's much, much better and safer for them to discover these potential issues before the birth so they can prepare for them. The likelihood is you won't need a transfusion, but it's great they'll be geared up if anything did happen.

monniemae Fri 15-Apr-16 21:54:23

Wow that seems a bit scaremongering. I had a large fibroid in my first pregnancy, it grew to over 10cm. It was eventually decided it had moved out of the way enough for me to deliver naturally. The midwife led centre wouldn't take me because the fibroid was over 5cm but they would have taken me with two smaller ones... The consultant I saw explained I could still have a natural, active birth, or in water etc but that they would like to insert a cannula in my hand during labour so they could administer anti-haemmoraghing drugs (or whatever you call them) after labour for a while or in an emergency. They considered this preventative approach plus a managed thurs stage would minimise risk of bleeding. In the event I had a straightforward birth, I had the drugs, all fine. Definitely ask for a follow up if you need. And ask about the iv drugs. There are variables with fibroids ie where they are, what type etc but for many or most women they aren't a problem and often aren't even known about

greenfolder Fri 15-Apr-16 21:55:05

I would add that I utterly agree that the risks were low. But you need to also accept that complications could happen and it could be you just as easily as anyone else. It was the last thing I expected really but was glad that I was in the right place.

QueenOfThorns Fri 15-Apr-16 22:00:49

Yes, I had two fibroids near the top of my uterus, one of which grew massively during pregnancy (this was only found out accidentally because I had an extra scan relatively late on). As a result, I wasn't allowed to go to the midwife-led unit, because of the risk of haemorrhage, as you said.

As far as I understood it, the risk wasn't particularly high, they were just being careful. In the event, I still got to use the birthing pool on the labour ward and I had to have the injection rather than deliver the placenta naturally, but I didn't haemorrhage and everything was OK.

I don't think you should worry about it. They're aware of the risk, so they'll be ready to take care of you if the worst should happen. I doubt it'll be in the front of your mind during the delivery anyway, it's all about finally meeting your baby, after all!

Grockle Fri 15-Apr-16 22:01:55

Thank you. I was told I can't give birth in the midwife led unit but can have a home birth.

I'm having another scan later on to assess how big they are but they've terrified me and left me feeling quite scared.

Obviously if I am at risk, I'll go to hospital, I just wasn't expecting it all to sound so dramatic. I think the doctor could perhaps have explained things a bit better.

Grockle Fri 15-Apr-16 22:03:08

If you do need a blood transfusion, what happens to the baby? What if you're in a high dependency unit? What then?

QueenOfThorns Fri 15-Apr-16 22:03:43

Oh yes, I had to have a cannula in my hand as well. It's obviously not pleasant, but reassuring in a way.

AveEldon Fri 15-Apr-16 22:07:31

No fibroids but I was more likely to have a big bleed so they wanted me to have a cannula sited in advance
I said no, they would have to wait as I didn't want to labour for 15+ hrs with a thing in my hand for no good reason apart from their convenience

SockQueen Fri 15-Apr-16 23:57:33

It's quite "convenient" for you to have IV access established when you start to lose your entire blood volume onto the floor in minutes, Ave. Ever tried to cannulate someone in hypovolaemic shock?

OP, the fibroids may not be a problem at all, especially as they are smallish and out of the way, but they might, so the consultant is being cautious. Don't panic about needing a transfusion - it doesn't necessarily mean it's a life-or-death situation, it's often done on post-natal wards and there's no reason that a transfusion on its own would require you to be separated from your baby. If the situation were more serious and you needed to go to HDU then whether your baby could stay with you would depend on your hospital, but most will try to accommodate as far as possible.

PotatosMum Sat 16-Apr-16 07:04:14

I'm 21 weeks with a 12 cm fibroid that's still growing shock

I was told the same by my consultant but it sounds like yours may have been a little more dramatic.
The dr's are just being cautious. You will be a higher risk of a bleed but that doesn't mean you will have one. If your care is anything like mine you will be monitored regularly right up to birth, you'll need to have a hospital birth and you will have a managed third stage with an injection to help you deliver the placenta.

Assuming the fibroids are out of the way and you're not one of the tiny percentage who have a bleed there's no reason that you can't have a perfectly normal delivery and if the worse happened you're right there in the hospital where they can look after you and your baby smile

greenfolder Sat 16-Apr-16 09:10:27

When I was in high dependency I had baby with me and one to one midwife around the clock. This was NHS. Baby was tucked into bed with me at points. Had blood transfusion. I had had sudden surges of very high blood pressure during labour so I think there was stroke risk. All very dramatic indeed but we were both fine in the end. Luckily for me and dh it was number 3 so we coped. I really don't want to scare you at all. In all probability you will have a normal delivery and birth. But I was so happy in hindsight that I did hospital and consultant led care.

Grockle Sun 17-Apr-16 06:20:52

Thank you, that's so helpful. I just don't want my baby whisked away. I don't care about needing a blood transfusion, I had just desperately hoped for a nice straightforward birth and really wanted to avoid hospital (I had DS in hospital and although it wasn't complicated, I think I found it much more traumatic than if realised - he was constantly taken away).

I think that because no one mentioned any facts or statistics to me means that I don't have any idea what the risks are so don't know how to process what they said. If I knew the risk was 50% or even 10% rather than 1% then I'd have something to go on.

I'm really grateful for your stories.

Mrsmorton Sun 17-Apr-16 06:26:37

I said no, they would have to wait as I didn't want to labour for 15+ hrs with a thing in my hand for no good reason apart from their convenience

confused just wow. World class health care "for their convenience". I guess preventing a potentially life threatening haemorrhage probably is convenient for a hospital. Why let trivia like that get in your way, a painless cannula for 15 hours is such a trial isn't it.

Whatthefreakinwhatnow Sun 17-Apr-16 06:37:12

Hi OP; no fibroids bit did have a huge haemorrhage after DD1 and just wanted to reassure you that DD1 remained with me the whole time in the HDU, at no point was she taken from me. A MW would pass her to me for cuddles etc wheb I couldn't get out of bed and the transfusion was fine, in fact I was glad of it as by the 4th bag I felt much more human than I did and looked a lot less grey! Had visitors too, so wasn't just on my own.

I really hope the delivery goes well and you don't have any complications, but just wanted to offer some reassurance that if it does, don't worry your baby with be with you smile

Grockle Sun 17-Apr-16 07:32:13

Those of you who've Had Transfusions, how long did you stay in hospital. I guess it varies from person to person and depending on circumstances but I have no idea what sort of time frame I'd be looking at.

Thank you ever so much for all your stories. You've all been really reassuring. I wish they'd given me some info when they mentioned it rather than letting me leave shell-shocked and and confused.

In glad you have positive stories despite things being more complex than they might otherwise have been.

Whatthefreakinwhatnow Sun 17-Apr-16 08:30:39

I had my transfusion on the Thursday night and came home on the Saturday afternoon so not long at all. I did feel a bit crappy for a few weeks after whilst my iron levels fully recovered so couldn't go for the long walks with the pram I'd planned straight away, but it didn't take long smile

TeaPleaseLouise Sun 17-Apr-16 08:46:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Paddingtonthebear Sun 17-Apr-16 08:54:07

I had a small fibroid in pregnancy. Difficult delivery caused a big tear requiring surgery, haemorrhage, very low iron so required two blood transfusions. I did only spend one night in hospital but probably should have been kept in a few night really.

Artioo2 Sun 17-Apr-16 09:12:03

When I had my bleed, there were loads of medical people round the bed, so they gave DS to DP who just sat with him in the next room, but it wasn't for long.

Grockle Tue 19-Apr-16 14:55:32

Thank you. So long as they don't take the baby away while they deal with whatever may happen with me.

Whatthefreakinwhatnow Tue 19-Apr-16 15:12:58

Not in my experience, no. Even when I was really poorly she stayed with me smile

Fingers crossed it'll all go smoothly OP, and you'll not have any problems

Grockle Tue 19-Apr-16 19:22:10

Yes, fingers crossed. Thank you ever so much.

KnitsBakesAndReads Fri 22-Apr-16 10:01:41

I had a transfusion while in theatre due to PPH and my partner and baby were able to stay with me the whole time. I think there was a time when the doctors were almost going to ask them to leave but I had said before that it was really important to me to have my partner and baby with me so they allowed that. If having your baby with you at all times is important to you then do make sure the doctors and midwives are aware that this is what you want.

I stayed in hospital for four nights, though part of that time was due to other issues so I think I might have been allowed home earlier if the PPH and transfusion had been the only reason I was there.

Also, just to respond to the comment about not wanting a cannula during labour for the doctor's "convenience"... When I was in theatre it took them quite a while to get a second cannula inserted to give me the transfusion. I think this is relatively common when trying to insert a cannula when someone is bleeding quite heavily. It was fine in the end but a bit scary at the time. If they suggest putting a cannula in before delivery I would definitely not object - it might be a bit inconvenient but it's definitely better than them struggling to get a cannula in to give you urgent treatment if you do have a significant bleed.

Hope it all goes smoothly for you.

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