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Consultant appt - what do they ask you? To discuss next birth after c-section

(8 Posts)
pregnantpeppa Mon 28-Sep-09 19:48:11

Can anyone tell me what happens at the first consultant appointment?

I saw my MW for a booking in appt at 9 weeks & she referred me to the consultant because of my previous c-section - my appt with him will be at 13 weeks.

I assume he will discuss whether I can have a VBAC or not but what will he ask and is it really necessary to have so early? I really want to bury my head in the sand about this next birth for a while - completely broke down about the last birth when MW asked me - she's meant to be referring another MW to talk through my "issues" about it so I'm not really keen on having the consultant appt before I know I have a chance of talking to him without floods of tears!!

What I really want is to have a home birth in a darkened room, preferably in water, using a snorkel so I can keep my head underwater and block everything out (I was BEGGING my DH to go to the shop to buy me a snorkel in my first labour grin) but I suspect the hospital will have issues with this, as potentially do I having read scary scar rupture stories. Wibble. I don't really want to give birth at all.

What questions should I be asking and what will I be asked? Any advice/experiences welcomed.

madwomanintheattic Mon 28-Sep-09 19:54:41

they will discuss the reason you needed the cs. i had a cs and then vbac 1 and 2, as there was (theoretically) no clinical necessity for further cs. in my experience you will not be offerred a cs unless there is a good (clinical) reason it will be necessary. no consultation was particularly in depth for me, they just said 'no clinical reason for cs' and left it at that. i'm not sure i was even asked my opinion lol. (in fact, with no 3 i asked if they would consider a cs and i was told no.)

(incidentally, after birth no 3, vbac 2, i now have a 'cs only' tag. go figure.)

chase your follow up with the mw. you need the opportunity to get rid of as much baggage as you can grin
good luck!

pregnantpeppa Mon 28-Sep-09 22:31:54

thanks madwoman - it would be good to have a consultant opinion on my last birth as I still don't understand why I ended up with a section, but I hope I can get through it OK. I think consultant will be keen on me having a VBAC but I imagine not so keen on a home birth!
Congrats on your 2 VBACs but sorry to hear you now have a c-section only tag - won't ask why if you don't want to say but this giving birth business is SCARY now I know what can go wrong. The first time round I was in blissful ignorance!

iloveshoesandbags Mon 28-Sep-09 22:39:15

I had an emergency section with first after 30 hours of not getting anywhere, being sick every half an hour, no sleep and then the baby's heartbeat started dropping. Not an enjoyable experience and left me anxious when I fell with my second 7 years later.. (and one mc in between)
Consultant left decision up to me and although nervous was intending going with VBAC, however at 34wks pg the baby was very big (approx. 7.5lbs then) and as the problems were baby weight related first time around opted for a cs on the second. She weighed 9lb 10oz so I was pleased that I had.
It was planned for 5 days before due date and by co-incidence my waters broke and I had contractions before I went down to the theatre.
All depends on how you feel about labour but it is your decision to make, and you don't need to make it just yet either. See how you feel, take advice by all means but make your mind up on how you feel nearer the time.
Good luck.

PacificDogwood Mon 28-Sep-09 22:39:44

I was given a choice by my consultant whether I preferred a VBAC or elCS. He discussed risks and benefits of both options with me and then left me to make the final decision grin which was great!

Reading you post I think it is vital before the decision is make on how you'd like to deliver this time (hate to tell you, to not deliver at all is NOT an option wink) that you are satisfied that you understand what happened at you previous delivery and why. And obviously whether there are any medical reasons why you should have further CS.

Scar rupture is scary, but v rare, and it is what they are looking out for. I suppose as you said childbirth is scary, whichever way you do it - but it usually goes ok, doesn't it? My VBAC was the most amazing experience I have ever had smile, but equally my CS was not horrible and I know was utterly utterly necessary.

Hope you have a productive meeting with your consultant. Good luck!

blondieminx Tue 29-Sep-09 11:47:52

Peppa just to say good luck with your appointment and to recommend a book called Your Birth Rights by Pat Thomas (I borrowed it from my local library) - it explains all your options and will hopefully make you feel more equipped to challenge any comments from the consultant you're not happy with. You'll only have that baby once, so make sure your consultant and midwife team is clear on the type of birth you want. Then you can put your snorkel on... wink

MyNameIsInigoMontoya Tue 29-Sep-09 13:49:08

My first consultant appointment was a complete waste of time and I was quite pissed off about it, nearly posted on here about it to find out whether that was normal or not!

We had to wait over an hour, but I was looking forward to finding out more about my options so not too bothered. But then the consultant came in, asked me whether I had any thoughts about it, said that the main factor was how many more children you thought you might want - then gave me a leaflet to read and told me to book another appointment for 36 weeks! Any other (very limited) information we got from him was due to me asking questions while getting "go away" vibes from him... and he didn't say ANYTHING about my personal case or chances of successful VBAC etc, only about "averages" etc.

Made me quite mad as if that was all he was going to do, why not just get the MW to give me the leaflet? And now I am still none the wiser really as to my options, and won't find out any more until 36 weeks. Think I will discuss it with MW next time I see her (unfortunately also not for another 2 months..)

For your case though I agree with PacificDogwood to try and get to the bottom of your previous experience and your feelings about that before talking to the consultant if you can. But if he is seeing you this early it might just be a very short appointment like mine anyway.

pregnantpeppa Tue 29-Sep-09 23:58:26

Thanks very much for the replies, I have decided that what I would like to discuss is
a) why he thinks a section was necessary last time and how that affects my chances of natural birth this time
b) what his opinion is of homebirth and if he doesn't like the sound of it, the reasons why
and I will let him know my expectations of what we will discuss at the outset of the appointment

And then I will go away and think, and read some books (thanks v much for the recommendation blondieminx) & do some research and not panic at this appointment because I've got lots of time to calmly make up my mind and consider my options.

That's the plan anyway, possibly I might just be a snivelling wreck making incoherent requests for diving gear

I hope I have PacificDogwood's consultant rather than MyNameIsInigoMontoya's!

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