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Help! Urgently need to boost iron levels or will loose homebirth

(28 Posts)
parsleymad Thu 28-May-09 17:47:04

I'm 39 weeks pregnant and midwife just phoned to say that my iron is at Hb is at 9.2. She spoke to my consultant and they aren't willing to let me have a home birth with my iron at that level, which I understand because of risk of PPH. But I'm devastated. I had an awful experience with my first labour in the local hospital which is why I'm going for a homebirth this time and while I may be able to get my iron up in a week,this baby may not hang on til then. I'm going to get the midwife to take my bloods again on mon/tues so I need all your top tips for getting my iron up superfast. I'm already on spatone and have increased it to 2/day and they are putting me on double iron (yuk!).

Picante Thu 28-May-09 17:49:40

At the end of the day, no-one can force you to go into hospital. What's PPH?

MaryHuff Thu 28-May-09 17:51:06

They can't stop you having a homebirth. Just stick to your guns. Tell them to have blood on standby at the hospital just in case, but you WILL be giving birth at home

ILikeToMoveItMoveIt Thu 28-May-09 17:52:37

You can have an injection to boost iron, but I don't know anything about it - sorry.

Take your spatone with oj (it aids absorption) but not with tea (it inhibits absorption)

Good luck xx

marmitemonster Thu 28-May-09 17:53:55

Message withdrawn

Unicornvomit Thu 28-May-09 17:54:24

i think you are just on the cusp of what the NICE guidelines say is ok for a homebirth. speak to thge supervisor of midwives re your wishes

why are you under a consultant? usually for homebirth you would be booked for midwifery led care

marmitemonster Thu 28-May-09 17:56:21

Message withdrawn

Stretch Thu 28-May-09 17:59:40

Hope this helps

from homebirth.org

Stretch Thu 28-May-09 18:02:45

Sorry, click on the bit about "You can't have a homebirth if..."

Didn't realise it linked straight to a cute baby!! grin

FWIW, I had a low hb level withh DD2, but the MW (super and very good!) said I would bve fine. With DS I had a blood test at 36 weeks, then refused further blood tests!

parsleymad Thu 28-May-09 18:16:27

Thanks everyone.

Picante - PPH is post-partum haemorrhage
Univom - I live in N/ireland so our care structure is different. Everyone in my area sees the consultant 2/3 times as well as regular midwife appointments.

The crazy thing is that, as in my last pregnancy, my one craving is parsley (hence the name), big massive bunches of the stuff, like 3 family sized packets in 24hours. I've also been taking my spatone with OJ and I don't drink any caffeine. This baby is just sucking me dry!

parsleymad Thu 28-May-09 18:16:36

Thanks everyone.

Picante - PPH is post-partum haemorrhage
Univom - I live in N/ireland so our care structure is different. Everyone in my area sees the consultant 2/3 times as well as regular midwife appointments.

The crazy thing is that, as in my last pregnancy, my one craving is parsley (hence the name), big massive bunches of the stuff, like 3 family sized packets in 24hours. I've also been taking my spatone with OJ and I don't drink any caffeine. This baby is just sucking me dry!

Wonderwitch Thu 28-May-09 18:23:52

Foods you can eat that I know of are:

Spinach
Kiwi fruit
pulses
Lean red meat, such as pork, beef or lamb
Eggs
Dark poultry
Sardines
Cashew nuts
Wholemeal bread
Iron-fortified cereals
Lentils
Chick peas
Baked beans
Leafy green vegetables
Dried fruit
Baked potatoes
Sunflower seeds

apparently Tea and coffee can make it harder for our bodies to absorb iron, so cutting down on these drinks at meal times could help to improve iron levels in the body, Try to have some food or drink containing vitamin C, such as fruit or vegetables or a glass of fruit juice, with any iron-rich meals to help your body absorb iron.

Not sure if this will work quickly enough for you, but thought it would be useful.

onehitwonder Thu 28-May-09 18:29:23

Parsleymad, I went onto 2 x Spatone after my 28 week blood test gave me a score of 10.2 Despite taking it with OJ, they tested me again at 34 weeks and it had dropped to 10.1 so GP recommended to up to 3 sachets per day. So that might be an option for you. Good luck, hope you manage to get it sorted and get your homebirth.

parsleymad Thu 28-May-09 18:57:09

3 sounds like a plan onehitwonder!

belgo Thu 28-May-09 19:01:51

parsleymad - hope you get your hb back up. I've had two homebirths, but I would agree with your consultant, I wouldn't risk a homebirth with an hb of 9.2.

With ds's birth, my hb was 13.5 at the end of the pregnancy. I bled after the birth and my hb dropped to 8. From 13.5 to 8 in one swoop. It was very scary and I totally agree you need a higher hb before you can have a homebirth.

LeonieSoSleepy Thu 28-May-09 19:04:49

Message withdrawn

craftynclothy Thu 28-May-09 19:05:05

From what I've read low iron levels don't increase the risk of a PPH, just means the effects of a pph will be worse (cos your body is less able to cope with the blood loss iyswim). If they're telling you it puts you at risk of a pph I'd ask them to show you the evidence for that.

juuule Thu 28-May-09 19:05:05

Drink very strong nettle tea.
I did this and it upped my iron level.
Made it in a teapot in the morning with loose nettle tea and drank it throughout the day.
Also get enough vit c to help absorb the iron.

MadamAnt Thu 28-May-09 19:08:10

Agree with all the food / natural supplements, but have you asked for proper iron tabs? Like Ferrous Gluconate? I'm on 300mg x 2 a day, and that is obviously going to be waaaay more effective than any amount of iron-rich foods.

parsleymad Thu 28-May-09 20:45:14

MadamAnt, did you ask for the gluconate specially? I'm picking up my prescription tomorrow but I am fairly sure it is for ferrous sulphate which I hear can be harder to tolerate. How have you found the gluconate for side effects?

MadamAnt Thu 28-May-09 20:49:27

Gluconate seems to have no side effects on me. Sulphate gave me a bit of a stomach ache, but it IS meant to be more easily absorbed. I'd tolerate the mild tummy ache though in the interests of a speedy iron increase

MustHaveaVeryShortMemory Thu 28-May-09 22:42:33

Although green veg/dried fruit etc have high iron levels they are still no where near as high as animal products. Meat - the darker the better eg steak is better than chicken, but the dark meat on chicken is better than the white meat and also eggs.

Too much calcium can also inhibit absorption (are you taking any supplements?) As can fizzy drinks.

fruitshootsandheaves Thu 28-May-09 22:46:05

I had low iron (I still had a homebirth). I drank Mackeson and lime everyday. Guiness works too but I didnt like that, I had to add lime cordial as I didnt like it on its own. This may be frowned upon now however.

VinoEsmeralda Thu 28-May-09 22:49:17

My MW recommended guiness too (and it worked) Pint a day...

MrsHappy Thu 28-May-09 22:51:31

Floradix is fantastic and really worth a go.

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