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Why bother with scans....then why bother with a midwife.....

(17 Posts)
kgc Mon 18-Jul-05 23:16:30

Well why??.....if we are all to judge or have our opinion about having a routine scan (re: spidermamas thread "Scans. Why do we bother?") then lets have one this..........

milward Mon 18-Jul-05 23:19:39

In some countries there are no midwives for all mothers - very high maternal mortality rates. In other countries the docs deliver the babies & the m/w do the checks in labour - high intervention rates.

kgc Mon 18-Jul-05 23:59:12

thanks for your opinion milward

Ellbell Tue 19-Jul-05 00:03:34

Well... dh insisted that he was staying at 'the head end' (that's my head!) and was having nothing whatsoever to do with 'the messy stuff'. So, I needed someone to tell me what was going on down at the 'business end'...

Ellbell Tue 19-Jul-05 00:03:35

Well... dh insisted that he was staying at 'the head end' (that's my head!) and was having nothing whatsoever to do with 'the messy stuff'. So, I needed someone to tell me what was going on down at the 'business end'...

Ellbell Tue 19-Jul-05 00:04:01

Sorry... trigger finger twitching again!

kgc Tue 19-Jul-05 00:06:28

Do not get me wrong, all...I am switzland on this...but would love to know what everyone else thinks as everyone else seems to have an opinion on having a scan/or not having a scan...then if that is the case lets justify having a midwife.....

kgc Tue 19-Jul-05 00:08:05

thanks Elbell

Socci Tue 19-Jul-05 00:09:18

Message withdrawn

kgc Tue 19-Jul-05 01:53:56

thanks Socci...

dizietsma Tue 19-Jul-05 01:59:55

You have to make a distinction between a diagnostic test and the care of a skilled healthcare professional. The two are very much a different thing.

Scans are questionable because people make decisions which could seriously affect their and their baby's health often based upon the erroneous assumption that scans are extremely reliable.

It is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that medical tests are always objectively right because impersonal machines perform them. We must remember that medical tests like scans are interpreted by human beings who are fallable.

I personally used to work in hospital laboratory where I would perform breathing tests on patients and it scared me how much faith patients and doctors would put into these tests because I knew first hand how unreliable they actually were due to the inevitability of human error.

Midwives on the other hand have quite a different role. The only similarity I can think of is that they could be considered an authority on fetal health, but I think that is not actually a valid comparison as most midwives would refer any woman they suspected had problems with her baby to a consultant for investigations- they certainly wouldn't diagnose disease themselves.

I suspect the original poster actually meant that if we question one type of medical authority then shouldn't we question them all, and frankly my answer to that is a resounding YES. Medicine is a constantly evolving science not a religion, you needn't have blind faith!

eidsvold Tue 19-Jul-05 04:22:50

what's a midwife.... started out with a fab one in the UK and as dd1 showed heart defect at 20 weeks came under consultant care from then on... had an emergency caesar so really did not see any....

no2 was born with shared care here in Australia... saw the GP for most appts and had a few at the hospital again with consultant... dd2 ended up being an elective caesar... again no midwife....

However did have medical professionals monitoring my pregnancies.

KiwiKate Tue 19-Jul-05 04:55:07

Had a dreadful midwife with ds1 (as an example, she decided to give me an epidural that I didn't need or want without even talking to me about it and even though I had said I didn't want one in my birthplan - DH had to wrestle her away!).

Now expecting no2, and have a fab mw to guide me through the process. We gel a lot more on ideology (minimum intervention, if possible). It is a real comfort to know that someone with some experience in the birthing business will be there to support and advise me when the time comes.

Can't see how you can compare having a midwife to having a scan, though. A midwife gives ongoing support and advice about the whole process and refers you on to medical advice if necessary. What would you suggest if we didn't have mws? I don't think anyone wants to go it alone (well hardly anyone). Of course, like all professions some are better than others, and because it is such a personal time, there is more room for personality issues to arise. A scan is somethign completely different. A particular test to tell you if something may or may not be wrong with your baby, and that raises a whole lot of issues on its own. I love the fact that my mw reassures me that the baby is growing well, that the heartbeat is good etc etc. Totally different thing.

Carla Tue 19-Jul-05 06:09:13

Are you saying, kgc, that you would rather leave all that stuff to you GP? Or that you would rather do without any medical intervention at all?

Papillon Tue 19-Jul-05 07:53:40

I have a midwife - she is a mine of experience and information. Like kiwikath said... very different from a scan.

A scan just provides results of a test. They are not full of wisdom and won´t visit after the baby arrives.!

kgc Wed 20-Jul-05 00:20:44

No think it should be up to the individual.....I had full G.P care with my first only midwifery care at the hospital as this was the way it was done at this practice.....but feel that we all have choices and if we want to have full midwifery, or g.p care or nothing at all then that is own personal choice.

Chandra Wed 20-Jul-05 01:14:03

Back at home, health insurance providers by the work place/union normally provide for monthly revisions done by either the gynecologist or obstetrician who often have a scanner in their own practices, and are also expected to attend the birth unless the baby arrives unexpectedly (in such case a GP in turn may do the work). Obviously, to lots of people in UK that's sounds shocking and unnecesary. Having said that most of my friends back at home were very concerned that I was being only checked by a midwife (a wonderful one I have to say) and that I was only having one scan.

Now, being fair to both styles, babies and their mothers seem to do equally fine in both countries. Though, I believe that some problems we had during the birth may have been spotted earlier with the help or more modern methods or aproaches. But as I said, I was very lucky to have a very good midwife during pregnancy, she was invaluable in many many aspects.

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