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worried about my health... (long, sorry!)

(5 Posts)
pookamoo Sun 20-Jul-08 07:23:08

I am 23 weeks pg, and I can't remember the last time I had a full night's sleep. I usually wake up about 4am having gone to bed around 10.

The problem is my back, which is really uncomfortable. There is a bit of history there as I had an injury to my coccyx a few years ago. Although it sometimes flared up, until I was about 15 weeks pg it hadn't really affected me. I had been told by a consultant in 2003/2004 that if and when I became pregnant in the future I should make sure my doctor and midwife were aware of this as it could cause problems. At that time there was nothing further short of "taking a chisel to it" hmm that they could do. Through time, it got much better, but now it is giving me agony, and this must be caused by the pg.

So, my GP is well aware of the condition, and as soon as I saw the MW for the first time, I told her. She wrote a letter to a gynae consultant, asking whether the consultant thought she should see me (I had been told that it's possible that the problem with my back might affect delivery) and the consultant sent back the MW's letter with "fine" written on it. That's all. So she didn't feel that she needed to see me.

Over the weeks, my back has got progressively worse. It is at the stage now where it is uncomfortable to sit, to stand, to lie down? you get the idea! I have got quite a big bump, although I am quite small usually (5 foot 2, about 8 and a half stones) so I am certain all this extra back pain is caused by the pg. It doesn't help that the relaxin is making my ligaments all soft, so my pelvis clunks when I turn over in bed, making it even worse!!

So the MW referred me to a physio. She was great, gave me exercises, some of which she eventually told me to stop, and she also manipulated my lower back (owww!). However, she now feels that what she is doing is being counter productive, given that I would spend the day in pain after seeing her, and that it wasn't making much difference. She said she is a bit limited as to what she can do as I am pg but has given me an open appointment to go back after LO is born.

Saw the midwife this week and told her what had happened, that I was sleeping really badly, and had a really bad back. I mentioned the physio and she asked me why I was having physio hmm SHE referred me!! Anyway, she suggested cranio sacral osteopathy, but this is £35 an hour, and requires a huge leap of faith. I'm not sure I believe in it enough to pay for it. (I don't want to get into a debate on alternative therapy here, though!).

I told her I am getting between 4 and 6 hours sleep per night. I have quite a high pressure job and can feel that my anxiety levels are rising. I have suffered from anxiety and depression in the past. She said "what are you anxious about, the birth? Becoming a mother?" but it's more than that, it's really the current state of everything! My work is beginning to suffer, poor DH is getting just as little sleep as I am because he wakes up and is worried about me. TBH I am not really worried about the birth - that's going to happen anyway and is out of my control completely, and I am honestly not really thinking about it yet (due Nov).

In my notes she wrote "Pookamoo has backache, but other than that, everything is fine".

I am worried mainly about my back, how it might affect the delivery, the fact that nobody seems concerned about something I was TOLD by a consultant to raise with them, my lack of sleep, and my work, as I still have a while to go at work, and really can"t afford in my job to have such terrible concentration and to get so grumpy come 3 o'clock!!

I'm not really happy, and I can feel myself getting stressed out over the whole thing.
I feel like nobody is listening to me... what should I do?
See my doctor separately and raise my concerns?
Anybody got any suggestions?

EffiePerine Sun 20-Jul-08 07:32:16

You sound exhausted, no wonder

First,I'd go to your GP and see if you can be signed off work for a few days (I think you're early enough for this no to affect your mat leave but check). Also ask for another referral re: your back. Does your hospital do specific back care classes for pg women? Is there a physio who is experienced in dealing with pg women?

IME mws are overworked and prob not the best people to follow up specific probs in pregnancy - it's easy to fall through the net if you are outside the norm! So I'd bypass her for the time being.

Also check with you GP re: the consultant. If you are 23 weeks there is time to sort out any potential issues with the delivery and things might improve before then.

star6 Sun 20-Jul-08 09:12:53

Is there a way you could afford to see a private GP? Even just once or twice... I found a great one in my area and the care I get from him is SO different - like he actually takes the time to pay attention to my situation and CARES about it enough to make sure everything is ok - doesn't just hand me antibiotics (when i wasn't pg) or tell me "that's what happens in pg"! Where are you located?

Marathon Sun 20-Jul-08 09:41:57

I suffered with awful back pain during pregnancy no 3. At the end of the day I was crawling up the stairs as I wasn't able to walk up them. I was refered to physio at a similiar stage to you. I was given an enormous tubi-grip to wear all the time. It was the most fantastic thing ever. Didn't happen straight away but one day suddenly realised I could walk without limping etc. Wore it right to the end. Might be something you could try.

Anglepoise Sun 20-Jul-08 10:24:30

I read partway through and was going to suggest an osteopath! I have had problems with my hip/thigh on and off for the past decade or so. I had physio on it in 2003 and that helped while I was having the physio but not once it had stopped, but it was very on and off pain and I could go months without experiencing it so didn't worry too much.

I thought being PG might help (because it felt like the ligaments were very tight, so I thought that relaxin might be good for it) but instead found that I was suddenly in pain pretty much 24/7 from around 20 weeks onwards.

I asked whether anyone on here had had osteopathy when PG and got some rave reviews - tbh I only picked osteopathy because we have a very good clinic near my house with alternative-y type things, and it was a toss-up between that and physio again. I honestly felt like the osteo did more to help in one session than the physio did in several months. It has taken around 6-7 sessions to sort out (and I may keep going) so would have been expensive if I hadn't had private insurance through work, but he does seem surprised that it's taken that long so perhaps most people don't need so many sessions. I'm now 32 weeks and pretty much pain-free - it's amazing!

Nb this wasn't cranial osteopathy (though am considering that for LO when s/he arrives) but involves lots of stretching, massage and manipulation of my legs and hips. If you're in SW London then I'd be happy to give you a recommendation

Hope that that is helpful - you do sound shattered and I hope you find a solution. Could you get signed off work for a couple of days to rest?

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