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A question about elective c-sections...

(23 Posts)
abbymeg Thu 28-Aug-08 11:19:49

Hello smile

I'm going to see a consultant on Monday to ask for an elective c-section and I'm a bit nervous about it (I'll be 24 weeks). My MW advised me to take DH and prepare for a fight!

I had an emergency section with DD 10 years ago as she was a mega-baby. I had a bad experience of labour and the whole experience left me very depressed. In order to avoid similar happening again, I have decided that an elective section will be the best option for me.

I was under the impression that if you've had a section once, that it would be pretty straight forward to get an elective for number two, but recent discussions on MN have made me start to question this.

I was curious to see what other people's experiences have been when asking for an elective following a previous c-section.

Thanks for any help.

nowirehangers Thu 28-Aug-08 11:45:51

I really hope this thread doesn't kick off in time-honoured mn fashion
I had similar worries to you with dc2. In the end it was fine, getting a section second time round was automatic if you wanted one thought I was told a vbac was fine too. I wasn't bullied or pressured in either direction, the final decision was made at 36 weeks when the section was booked but I was always told choice would be respected. This was at a quite medicalised hospital, however, others might be trickier but I hope not for your sake. Good luck!

PortAndLemon Thu 28-Aug-08 11:49:18

I had an emergency c/s with DS. I had a VBAC with DD, but I had the strong impression that had I said I wanted a repeat c-section no one would have objected.

I think most recent fights discussions have been focused on getting an elective for a first baby, not a repeat section.

abbymeg Thu 28-Aug-08 11:49:40

Thanks nowirehangers. That's reassuring to hear. I have been reluctant to post before, but it's been bothering me so I decided to go for it - I know c-sections can be very emotive on here! smile

abbymeg Thu 28-Aug-08 11:52:54

Portandlemon thanks. I did give VBAC some thought as I was disappointed not to have managed the birth last time, but given I'm already big for dates I think it's the most sensible and safe option to have an elective. DD was normal-sized at 20 weeks and she was 10lb 12oz at term. This one could be HUGE!

Oblomov Thu 28-Aug-08 12:03:24

Oh god, I was on the last thread ,and got myself into right hot water. Wont let that happen again.
I think there is no reason to suspect that you won't be able to have a normal/ dignified conversation with consultant, and talk through all your reasons.
Have you really thought them through. And considered a VBAC ? You need to show consultant that you really have thoguht this through.

Oblomov Thu 28-Aug-08 12:05:03

What hopital are you with abby ? What re-action have you had so far ? How have MW's re-acted to your ideas ?

LeonieD Thu 28-Aug-08 12:07:05

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LeonieD Thu 28-Aug-08 12:12:23

Message withdrawn

NellyTheElephant Thu 28-Aug-08 12:17:16

I had an emergency with DD1 and the whole experience was absolutely hideous. I was desperate for an elective with DD2 and like you I was concerned I might have to fight for it. As it turned out when I got to the consultant he just gave me a brief check over and then opened his computer diary to book me a date. I was v relieved (and the elective section was a great experience). I hope you get what you want.

abbymeg Thu 28-Aug-08 12:22:41

Leonie Good luck! I am 10 years older this time (and meaner smile)and ready to fight my corner if needs be, but I was shocked that MW suggested that I would need to.

Oblomov I'm a St James in Leeds. I have given it a lot of thought, and read the literature. MW said I needed to take DH with me and be ready to fight (though she said the same thing when I was 5 weeks pregnant and she sent me to a consultant over a problem - she told me to be ready to fight as I was that early I might not be taken seriously and they were lovely at the hospital!) I haven't met this consultant and I have no idea how they will receive the request.

abbymeg Thu 28-Aug-08 12:34:53

NellytheElephant thank you. That sounds really positive! I'm hoping that's what I'll encounter. smile

Leonie I hope it goes really well for you. It isn't just the size of the baby - I'm 5' 9'' and was told I'd be fine - it was the 3 day labour experience and the aftermath. Every aspect of my labour and birth and DD's first week is recorded as problematic in my notes by MW - that's why I was surprised it would even be an issue this time.

cathym Thu 28-Aug-08 12:41:06

I'm at St James as well. I am aiming for a VBAC but I get the impression that an elective c-section isn't a problem if you have had one before. Especially if you state you case and they can see you have thought it through.

aurorec Thu 28-Aug-08 12:53:28

Out of curiosity why was there a big controversy about this?

I had an emergency cs when I gave birth in the States, I'm going to try for a VBAC this time round- I was late and induced the 1st time, which increases the chances of C section- I was given all the info by an approving MW (she was in favour of VBACs) but she also said it was totally my decision and they would go along with what I wanted.

TBH even now I see the advantages of an elective cs grin. My main objection is the painful recovery, and having to deal with a toddler and stairs (!) this time round.

kitstwins Thu 28-Aug-08 13:05:33

I think if you'v had a c section before due to difficulties in labour then they are far more likely to consider a c section the second time around. They may suggest that you try for a vbac but a lot does depend on why you had a section the first time around and from what you've written about your first birth it looks as if you could successfully argue that similar would/could happen with this labour.

I'd write down your thoughts beforehand and also have a little read up on VBAC beforehand just so you can honestly say that you've looked through this option. I think you stand a very good chance of getting the delivery that you feel would be best for you in the circumstances.

Good luck.

nowirehangers Thu 28-Aug-08 14:46:12

A big teaching hospital like St James's you shouldn't have any problem. I was at a similar hospital and didn't have to fight my corner at all, the consultant asked me what I wanted, I said cs, they said fine. Was all prepared to burst into tears but it wasn't necessary. I think you'll be fine. Good luck again.

PortAndLemon Thu 28-Aug-08 22:06:20

aurorec -- there have been a couple of posters recently who have wanted to have c-sections for a first baby because of a fear / phobia of vaginal birth. The reaction against tended to be either of the "there are bigger risks to c/s, you know, you clearly haven't thought this through" or of the "why should the NHS pay for your c-section for no good medical reason when there are people dying because the NHS won't fund their lifesaving treatments" varieties. And some posters were a bit intemperate in their reactions, and some of it got a bit personal.

I hope that's a fair summary.

mrslurkalot Thu 28-Aug-08 22:36:04

Hi abbeymeg,


I had an emergency section with DS 3.5 years ago.

When I got pregnant with DD I was sure I wanted another section, basically so that I wouldn't have to go through the same thing again.

At my booking appointment my midwife was very dismissive and said that the consultant would make the decision and to be prepared for a fight (sound familiar?). Fast forward 11 weeks of me worrying and this was my conversation:

Consultant : So, we had a CS last time are we going for a vaginal birth this time?

Me : No.

Consultant : OK, I'll get my diary.

I did go prepared for a fight though, I had the NICE guidelines with me, I had really thought out my reasons for wanting my section birth and I knew all the risks etc. As it happened I need not have bothered, OR worried.

Good Luck, I am sure you will have no problem. Your body, your choice, end of.

FiveGoMadInDorset Thu 28-Aug-08 22:41:54

I am 10 weeks post elective c section, when I went in at 20 weeks they were pushing me to have a vbac which I didn't want, you have to stick to your guns, smile sweetly, nod when they say something and just sya thank you very much but I still want a section.

EightiesChick Thu 28-Aug-08 23:21:58

I am a first timer and will be having a C section for good medical reasons based on surgical history and other problems I have had. I went in prepared for a fight, as I'd been led to believe the NHS tries to put you off wherever possible, but my surgeon (from previous ops) had written to my obstetrician saying it was necessary and that resolved it all. So one idea would be: can you get your GP or other medical professional on side and ask them to write to your consultant? If your GP has details of your depression from last time round they could be persuaded to argue your corner. Hopefully it won't be necessary, but in my experience if there is a disagreement, doctors take much more notice of other doctors' opinions than they do of mere patients.

PortAndLemon Fri 29-Aug-08 07:21:31

I really really really don't think that there will be any problem getting a repeat c-section. It soundsas though your midwife just likes to over-dramatise things a bit.

abbymeg Fri 29-Aug-08 09:17:22

Thanks everyone!

MrsLurkalot your situation was sounding very familiar indeed! I'm hoping that is what I encounter. I've done a lot of reading and I've chewed DH's ear off so he's fully briefed too. Hopefully, all will go well.

FiveGoMadInDorset your experience is more typical of what I've read about recently. I will be smiling very, very sweetly! grin

Again, thank you to everyone who has posted. It's been very reassuring.

abbymeg Mon 01-Sep-08 17:32:01

Well, I went in prepared and the Dr I saw had already read what I'd written in my notes about DDs birth. When I asked for an elective and told her I had weighed my options, she was fine. She took me through the risks of both, and then booked me in. DS arrives 15th December!

Thanks again to all of you, and best wishes smile.

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