My feed

to access all these features

Find support and share your experiences on our Miscarriage forum.

Miscarriage/pregnancy loss

medical management vs ERPC

15 replies

tasmaniandevilchaser · 17/11/2011 17:29

At my 12 wk scan today, I found out the baby died at 10 wks. It was a shock as I've had no bleeding or any other signs.

I'm booked in for medical management tomorrow, as I didn't want an operation, but now am thinking maybe ERPC would be less painful.

I've had a natural miscarriage before at home around the same time so am aware of how messy and painful it can be, but at least this time I'll have plenty of serious pain relief.

Can anyone share their stories to help me make a decision whether to change my mind and ask for an ERPC?

OP posts:
Northey · 17/11/2011 17:44

Oh goodness, you poor thing. You sound completely stunned. I'm so sorry you are going through this.

I found out at roughly 8 weeks that my pregnancy was ectopic, and was given the choice of an operation to whisk it all out and be done with it, or medication to break it up and have it drain away like a miscarriage. I chose the operation for all sorts of sensible and stupid reasons (including the fact that I quite fancied being knocked out for a bit so I wouldn't have to think about it Blush ). But I would choose it again. It distracted me from the immediate distress, and when it was all over and I was finally home, it meant that I could grieve more straightforwardly, if that doesn't sound ridiculous. I didn't have to deal with monitorIng blood and clots and wondering what was what for days. I could just feel unhappy about the loss as and when I wanted.

I think I was helped by the fact that I had had another operation in the same area (for ovarian drilling) the previous month, so it felt like the better known quantity to me. Whereas for you, by the sounds of it, you know how a miscarriage happens and that you have coped with it before. Which is a perfectly sensible background to your original choice - you have to do the thing you feel most comfortable with.

tasmaniandevilchaser · 17/11/2011 17:50

Thanks, for sharing your story, what you say about it being a better know quantity makes a lot of sense. The thought of serious rummaging up there is not appealing, whereas pethidine is quite attractive (you can tell I had a mis-spent youth!)

I am stunned, that's good description. I'm still feeling nauseous when I'm hungry, I don't think my body is quite with the programme yet!

OP posts:
Northey · 17/11/2011 18:02

No :( I still had tender breasts for about a month afterwards, which seemed like a particularly cruel joke.

I don't know how an ERPC actually works. What do they do?

tasmaniandevilchaser · 17/11/2011 18:14

Sorry, I haven't even said sorry for your loss! I'll blame it on being stunned. I don't know the exact details of the ERPC but I imagine it involves opening up the cervix and using some instrument to get the sac out. Sorry that's prob TMI. I feel a bit shaky thinking about it.

OP posts:
GwendolineMaryLacey · 17/11/2011 18:21

Sorry this has happened :(

I also had an ERPC back in January when I had a mmc at 11 weeks. I was terrified, had never had a general anaesthetic, had never had an operation, had never spent a night in hospital other than when I had dd. But, given the choice between that and waiting at home or work with a 3yo for things to happen naturally it made a lot of sense to me to take that route.

Physically, it was very simple. I had to stay overnight because I have a high BMI but for most people it's a day case. The procedure was quick and I was back on the ward within about 90 minutes. I was exhausted for a few days afterwards and, what I can only describe as the equivalent of the baby blues hit me about 3 days afterwards but largely it was a great relief to be able to put the physical side behind me and concentrate on mental recovery.

I've tried not to think too much about what's involved in the procedure, especially as someone on here said it was the same as an abortion. I don't know if that's the case but it was not something I wanted to dwell on.

Northey · 17/11/2011 18:25

No no, I'm sorry if it was an insensitive question.

Mine was at the end of September, and I'm feeling much more normal about it now, but I remember very well how dazed I was at the time and I'm really so sorry for anyone else experiencing it.

Maybe knowing more exactly what would happen would help you decide one way or the other. I watched a salpingectomy clip on YouTube in the hospital loos and that really helped me come to terms with what I was going to allow to take place.

MissTinaTeaspoon · 17/11/2011 18:33


Sorry for your loss x

I had medical management back in February, I chose it because I wanted to avoid an anaesthetic and I wanted some level of control. here is the thread I started at the time which tells you how it went. It was the right option for me.

Good luck and best wishes x

Northey · 17/11/2011 18:38

Ah. I see GML has just put the opposite point of view re knowing/not knowing exactly what they will do!

tasmaniandevilchaser · 17/11/2011 18:44

yes, I'm kind of person who wants to know what they're going do to me, but I can totally understand that's not for everyone. Sorry if that was TMI, I didn't mean to offend anyone.

Thanks for posting the link mtt, I'll have a look.

OP posts:
40notTrendy · 17/11/2011 18:45

So sorry to hear about your loss Sad
I chose an ERPC. The first one didn't work, and I wasn't told for a week. It was an awful couple of days as I had started to come to terms with things and the thought of the baby still being with me sent me nearly loopy. However, I would still choose an ERPC, as I'm the sort of person who needs things dealing with in a measured way. I knew I couldn't carry on waiting for things to happen and the physical reminders at home. A clean break I guess I'm saying. I was in and out in a day. Felt knackered and queasy, but after a night's sleep the physical side effects had gone, it was the emotional stuff that took longer. Sad
Hope you are ok. x

GwendolineMaryLacey · 17/11/2011 19:12

No, it's interesting (for want of a better word) how we all handle it differently. I can see that it would help some people to know.

Either way, I'm sorry for your loss, and for everyone else's and I hope you manage to find the best way of dealing with it for you x

Northey · 18/11/2011 06:22

How are you feeling this morning, tasmaniandevilchaser? Have you come to a decision you are comfortable with? Good luck today at the hospital. I hope it all goes smoothly for you.

tasmaniandevilchaser · 19/11/2011 11:56

hi Northey, thanks for asking, that's so sweet of you. I went to hospital yesterday and had the medical management. In the end what you said about it being a known quantity and feeling like I had some control and that I didn't want it all to 'be done to me' helped me make that decision. The medical management was definitely the right decision for me, I'm relieved I didn't have the surgery as my worries about medical management didn't come to pass.

It wasn't in the slightest bit painful for me, I think I was lucky. 3 hours after the pessary, the majority came out. The pain was so mild, I've had worse period pains, it didn't occur to me to even ask for pain relief at that time. It was a shock to see the baby, but overall I'm happy that I did, it helped to think of her/him as one of my children that I won't get to know but I won't ever forget and will always love. I've got a scan photo now, which is a comfort, though on the day of the scan I really didn't want one, I changed my mind once the miscarriage started. I suppose once the baby was gone, I needed some reminder she/he existed.

DH had the very good idea of taking laptops and DVDs so we just watched them all day, we were in a side room and it was nice and quiet and private. I had some pain killers after lunch and felt the equivalent of mild period pains. The worst bit was all the rummaging at the end to get the last bits out, but the doctor and nurses were so kind, it wasn't too bad. I went home that evening, had a stiff drink and slept like a log.

I feel heartbroken now, can't stop thinking about our baby, how my body let it down (the doctor said it's likely to have been hormonal at that stage as the baby formed ok, but most likely it will all be fine next time). I can see it's a process and I will start to feel better eventually. I just need to 'sit with it' for now and take it very very easy. Work have been great and are telling me to take 2 weeks off, which I think is realistic. DH is also very kind, he is gutted, I've never seen him cry like that.

This has ended up being very long! I hope it might be helpful to others trying to decide on what to do. Thank you Northey for being there, it's been a comfort.

OP posts:
Northey · 19/11/2011 16:47

I'm so glad that the medical management worked so well for you. If we have to go through these things at all, smooth and relatively painless and with supportive people sounds about as good as it can be.

Do you think it would be worth having a chat to your GP about why it might have happened? It's something I wish I had done straight away. I also feel like I and my body let the baby down :( I know dispassionately that it's not a reasonable perspective to take on something that was essentially just rotten bad luck, but I still feel to blame.

No need for thanks, by the way! People here were so kind when it happened to me and it helped me too.

tasmaniandevilchaser · 20/11/2011 21:29

Hi, I think having a chat with the GP sounds like a good idea, I'll call them this week. I don't feel confident it will 'be alright' next time, my periods have been more and more irregular, my luteal phase is short and I've only got pregnant the last 2 times by having acupuncture.

I have been sitting around all w/e with DH eating ice-cream and watching DVDs, DD is with my parents. It has been very relaxing and I'm feeling stronger now. Thanks everyone.

OP posts:
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.