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Miscarriage/pregnancy loss

pain relief question

3 replies

elliejjtiny · 30/08/2012 16:01

7 years ago I had my first miscarriage. Spotting at 11+6, scan at 12+0 showed empty 6 week sized sac. Drs said I need to be rescanned in 2 weeks in case of dates mix up. They said I might miscarry in the meantime but not to worry it will be like a heavy period [hollow laugh emoticon]. Come home with phone number of gynae ward just in case.

Next day I wake up with cramps, take paracetamol, put night time pad in my knickers and go back to bed. One hour later I wake up with blood everywhere, rush to bathroom leaving trail of blood behind me. Sit on loo with blood gushing out, then stand in bath with shower running over my bits to try and control the agony. Pain is worse than labours of DS1 and DS3 but don't know that at the time as this is a year before ds1's birth. Not as bad as DS2's birth but he was back to back. Push out blood clot the size of my fist. DH rings gynae ward who say call an ambulance. Don't want ambulance people to see me naked so put on clothes and two pads. Leak through everything in 15 minutes. Ambulance man tries to get canula in and fails. I say please can I have some drugs for the pain. Ambulance man says no because they need the canula for that. We go to hospital. My blood pressure, heartrate is low and sats are 85% dh tells me later. They give me oxygen in ambulance but take it off when we get to A and E.

A and e nurse tries to get canula in and fails. I say again please can I have something for pain and they say no because no canula and also I've already had paracetamol. The nurse asks a student to try getting the canula in. I say no. Nurse says I can have pain relief when it's done so I let him try. Canula goes in and they take blood for anaemia, rhesus status etc. I ask for pain relief and get prescription strength co-codamol (30/500) which helps a bit but not a lot. I ask for something stronger but get told no. An hour later the blood results say I'm not anaemic so they send me home. 2 days later I'm on the gynae ward on a drip because of hypovolemic shock and dehydration because of the blood loss but that's another story.

This week DH wanted to take me to a and e because he thought I had an ectopic pregnancy. He thought he knew better than the GP thanks to google. I managed to make him realise that I didn't have any of the symptoms but it made me realise that I'm still freaked out over what happened and not getting any pain relief. The community midwife managed to convince me that nobody would be witholding pain relief when I had my babies and I only needed gas and air in the end anyway. She didn't know why they wouldn't let me have pain relief apart from the co-codamol. DH thinks it's because I had slow heartrate/low blood pressure so they didn't want to give me anything that would make me more out of it. But I don't think it's that because with gas and air they could just take it off me if it caused a problem. I'm wondering if they thought I was being a bit pathetic and wasn't really in that much pain. I've had another miscarriage since and opted for a DandC which was a lot less physically traumatic thank goodness.

Does anyone know why this happened? I've had counselling and gone over my notes with a midwife but it hasn't helped. DS2 and DS3 have hypermobility so at some point they will probably end up in a and e with a dislocation and I'm worried I'll just be a crying mess if I have to go there again. Sorry for long post.

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ConeyIslandBaby · 31/08/2012 09:07

Hi Ellie. My first miscarriage experience was also pretty extreme. At A&E nobody took my pain seriously until I'd passed out on the floor. I was about 6 weeks and hadn't yet had a scan, so I think then they panicked that my pregnancy might be ectopic and gave me pethidine. However with subsequent miscarriages that have been confirmed at a scan, I've just been sent home with a prescription for co-codamol. Each one has been agony and at the height of the pain the tablets didn't really touch the sides. I've also had an ERPC and found it substantially less traumatic than natural mc.

The fact that they only gave you co-codamol sounds normal to me. It sounds like they made you wait too long, had trouble getting your canula in, and were worried about overdosing you after your paracetamol. It doesn't detract from the fact your experience was traumatic though, you'd lost a lot of blood and shouldn't have been sent home. I was kept in overnight with my first mc.

Are you still having counselling? Maybe you are having post traumatic stress? I know I have flashbacks sometimes to collapsing on the A&E floor, as I know my partner does too. He tried so hard to get people to see how much pain I was in and he still feels angry about it today. However the intensity has eased after 4 years. Doesn't make me want to rush back to A&E though.

Dunno if this helps at all. Its tough, hope you are OK.

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elliejjtiny · 31/08/2012 19:07

Thanks ConeyIslandBaby. No, the counselling was just 6 sessions about 5 years ago. Mostly I'm fine and then something will trigger the memory and I panic. It used to be a lot worse, now I can go to the rest of the hospital no problem, it's just a and e that I'm scared of. Sounds like the co-codamol is the thing to give with a miscarriage. If I'd already had DC's I could have said it's like being in labour but as I could just say that it hurt a lot maybe they just didn't realise it was that bad. Although I've since talked to other people who seem to have had similar pain to me (although they were given morphine) so that level of pain can't be that unusual.

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jens42 · 01/09/2012 01:15

I had a similar story and had to fight for pain relief too. I don't understand why. I did feel they just thought I was overreacting or being hysterical. or both! if you break your leg they don't say here have a paracetamol. I ended up in a bad way and finally did get decent pain relief, but it was a long time coming and I get flashbacks too. I think if you end up in hospital with your ds you will be so focussed on them you will be able to cope being there.

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