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walking/mobile epidural - anyone have any experience with this?

(18 Posts)
Mimsy2000 Tue 10-Jun-08 10:43:35

hi there
i'm 20 weeks with my second and am thinking about the birth. i didn't have an epidural with my first [not my choice!] and was wondering what the walking epidurals are like. any experiences?

also, just a general question to those of you who have had an epidural, do you feel the urge to push still or is it numbed?

thanks in advance

Bucharest Tue 10-Jun-08 10:45:49

I had a walking epidural and cannot speak highly enough! Didn't feel a thing, could walk about, as I felt like it, all pain disappeared in a flash.....I didn't have the urge to push- no, but the docs told me too and then I just got on with it! Within half an hour of my child being born I was up and walking round as if nothing had happened.

Mimsy2000 Tue 10-Jun-08 10:48:32

thanks bucharest

(i think i might have put this post in the wrong area, prob belongs in childbirth. sorry)

Umlellala Tue 10-Jun-08 10:52:03

I had mobile epidural. Was fab. Felt all the contractions but no pain. Was a v long labour (19.5 hours established - no idea if caused by epi or not) but as no pain, it was pretty chilled and cool.

Dd was eventually born by ventouse and I had to have full epidural as they would have done cesearean if she didn't make an appearance (full epidural not so nice, couldn't feel where to push, was odd feeling). Baby was fine 10,10, 10 on Agpar , I was fine (although PITA not being able to move from full epidural).

Am due to give birth again in 6 weeks and will DEF be asking for a mobile epi again.

star6 Tue 10-Jun-08 11:10:39

what's the difference basically between mobile and full epidural?

Minkus Tue 10-Jun-08 11:15:43

My hospital offer mobile epidurals. But my Midwife has said that although the ones they offer (this is in Hereford) are classed as "mobile" because they allow you some movement, this is restricted to getting up and going to the loo/changing position on the bed and so not fully moving about.

Not sure if this is what all mobile epidurals are like so worth checking just so you don't feel short changed if you are hoping to be able to walk around as normal (like I was!)

Umlellala Tue 10-Jun-08 11:17:32

I was lying down and wired and monitored for my 'mobile' epidural (fine by me, am v lazy wink)

Gemzooks Wed 11-Jun-08 07:04:42

I had 'mobile'epidural, basically it's just a low dose one, I believe it's the standard one they use. I had lengthy emails, requests etc to make sure I got it, with the head anaesthetist at the hospital (in Belgium)..

So came the day, I had it, BUT was still monitored etc by horrible junior doctor, disobeyed her and got on to hands and knees etc.

It was definitely a bonus as I had a very long 36 hour labour, and it took a lot of the pain away, BUT NOT ALL! I have to say that a low dose one does not take all the contractions pain away and I still had pain, but the plus side is that I could push fine. However, had no pain at all on actually crowning/pushing the baby out, which was great.

Make sure if you want it that you ask for it in advance, you make it clear you want to move around (walking is not really realistic as you are hooked up to a UV and the epi itself and you get paranoid about pulling it out), and get into different positions etc. Also make sure how long the epi tube is. Mine was only about 1 meter, so not long enough to get very far from the wall, so they scupper you with that..

I found it a very good choice as legs weren't numb, you can push OK although pain is by no means all gone, it was very painful, but I'm sure not as bad as natural, but it is very unlikely you will actually be able to walk with it, and believe me I really tried!

best of luck!

spottedandstriped Wed 11-Jun-08 07:34:06

I think getting the dosage right is crucial - I had a mobile epidural and tried to walk and collapsed on the floor. I then realised that I had lost the ability to go to the loo and so had to be catheterised (and was therefore confined to bed!)

Mimsy2000 Wed 11-Jun-08 15:51:00

gemzooks, thanks for the info. i will start harrassing my mw straight away!

TimiG Thu 12-May-11 16:44:46

Hi all, I`m 39+4 weeks pregnant with my first baby, and only just started thinking about labour and painkillers.. I have rented a TENS machine, that`s all I really want to have in labour, as no fan of needles in my spine, and don`t want to have gas-and-air. But now I`m thinking more and more often about this so called mobile epidural.. I see the opinions vary.. I would like to be able walking up and down during labour, and certainly being able to go to the loo by myself, that`s why I`m thinking to have the TENS, combined with mobile epidural. Please send me your opinions on this, much appreciated! x

ceedub Tue 31-May-11 15:19:29

Hi, I had a mobile epidural after about 8 hours of drip-induced labour. It was fabulous! Could still feel the contractions though the pain was much 'duller'. In the end, I wasn't very mobile as I relaxed so much that I dilated fully within about 20 minutes and my daughter made an unexpectedly swift appearance. Best things about it: could still feel the contractions so knew when to push; if my daughter hadn't come out so quickly, I would have had a more active birth (standing, supported by midwives); and best of all - I could stand up and walk 20 minutes after giving birth. Only warning - make sure everyone in the delivery suite knows you've had a lower dose epidural as stupid registrar was going to give me an episiotomy without any anaesthetic - eeek! Fortunately, midwives, my husband and I managed to stop her. I'm due to have my second in about 8 weeks and will definitely be putting request for a mobile epidural in my birth plan in big block letters.

I'd also say that I found the TENS machine really helpful - felt like a massage of my lower back. I had a cold so couldn't manage gas and air and while I'm definitely no fan of needles, was a big fan of the mobile epidural by the time the anaesthetist arrived. My husband said it's the only time I've ever looked remotely pleased at the prospect of a needle.

Good luck

PrincessJenga Tue 31-May-11 18:49:02

I've never heard of a mobile epidural before. Do you still have to have a catheter if you have one? I am properly phobic of catheters so have rules out an epidural, but if there's a pain free option without a catheter then sign me up!!

ceedub Sun 05-Jun-11 21:24:40

No catheter in my case - though post-birth a stroppy midwife wanted to put one in. I refused - wasn't in the mood for more fiddling about at that stage!

umf Sun 05-Jun-11 21:46:50

I had a mobile epidural for DS1 birth, which was long and difficult (baby in back to back position). Brilliant. Could still move around, labour in different positions, feel enough of contractions to know when to push. Highly recommended - no idea why more hospitals don't offer them.

I did end up with a catheter because urinary nerves were numbed for about 24 hours afterwards and I couldn't wee. But that wasn't anything to do with the epidural.

For DS2 had straighforward labour, no need of pain relief. Didn't even think to ask for gas and air. Labour can be that bearable. Hope yours is.

oinkyoink Sun 05-Jun-11 21:47:03

I had a mobile epidural and would highly recommend it. The dose wasn't high at all so I could still feel when to push. The mw kept asking me if I wanted a top up but I really didn't need it and she was amazed. I then got up 30 mins after the birth to shower, felt a little wobbly but that was more to do with the exertion of labour. I am due in 10 weeks again and will go for it again. No catheter was mentioned at any stage either!

kri5ty Mon 06-Jun-11 08:00:22

i have never heard of this, thanks for the post!! Im only 12+5 so i have plenty of time to ask mw!

I hope my hospital will do it

Daisy222 Mon 06-Jun-11 08:35:17

Pretty much every woman who has an epidural for labour these days effectively has a mobile epidural. The only difference between a mobile epidural and not is the dose that is used to top the epidural up.
When the epidural is initially sited your are required to stay on the bed for the first 15 -30 minutes or so to ensure that the epidural has not gone into the wrong place (intrathecal) which can make your legs profoundly weak within a couple of minutes and both you and your baby will need to be monitored closely.

If the epidural is working fine then usually it is ok to be up and about after that. However, epidurals (and the women they are in) are very variable. Some women need several doses in order to get as comfortable as they want to be. The more doses you have, the heavier your legs are going to become.

As you lose your sensation to pain you can also lose your sensation to need to pass urine. Many women are asked to have a catheter to make sure the bladder is not blowing up like a balloon and you can't feel it (hinders labour and ultimately can cause kidney problems).

Hope this clears up some confusion.

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