Originally Posted by *MamaJen*
Jenn, you are one of my very favorite posters on MDC and I love what you write, but I have to point out that Dr. She Who Shall Not Be Named's website is not an acceptable or trustworthy source of information. She's overtly anti-homebirth in her agenda and I don't trust her analysis. That particular study may not have been good science, but I would need to see another analysis, other than one by Dr. You Know Who.
Thanks for the compliment.
It's definitely returned.
I don't know much about her but I did do a fast Google scholar run before posting that link and she is right - the data was very
soft in spots, with very poor assumptions. If people are quoting the UNREVISED study then that needs to be corrected, IMO, and I thought that was a good summary of the flaws in the study.
Regardless, other studies in other countries still bring in the result that cesarian delivery does have more risks than vaginal which just makes sense if you think about it - surgery is a big deal no matter what kind of surgery it is for what reasons. It's just that the risk spread is not necessarily that wide apart. Let's look at the good data and studies - you don't have to find the one big discredited scary one to make your point.
Originally Posted by *MamaJen*
And as far as the other topic goes...I want MDC to be a welcoming place for all women who are willing to think intelligently about birth. That includes women who have lost a baby and no longer believe homebirth is their best option, as well as women who believe hospitals pose a danger to most laboring women, and other viewpoints in between. I reserve the right to respectfully express disagreement with any of those viewpoints.
The point is that we're having a thoughtful, largely evidence based discussion about birth, which is not something you can find on most web forums.
I think the evidence is often very cherry-picked on MDC (as it is pretty much everywhere) so I cringe a bit at the evidence-based phrase. I know I cherry-pick because I'm a lay person not investing weeks of research, or because someone has a really good summary. Hopefully if we all are willing to put a bit of time in the whole will be better than the sum of the parts.
I also think that stats are helpful but as someone who lived through losing my daughter (and watching her have seizures and be on morphine and poked and prodded during her short life), I also think that in our culture we gloss over what those stats really mean and these threads are an opportunity to stop doing that.
We just don't deal with death much or well - and death is not the only negative outcome in birth where brain damage is involved. We initially thought my daughter would live but be very, very handicapped (not able to swallow own saliva, hear, speak, or see).
These are rare outcomes, truly. But in absolute honesty in my case that was a fifteen minute difference
. A c-section fifteen minutes earlier would have corrected the earlier mistake. And the on the other end, another five minutes
and she probably would have been stillborn and we might not have asked as many questions although the outcome would have still be somewhat the same (although I do, weirdly, treasure those days.)
I have come to believe -- just as I believe in the cascade of interventions -- that one good way to look at risk is not just to look at the stats for each thing, but to consider how the pieces fit together too and what you can live with as failure points.
In order to do that you kind of have to understand how the pieces fit together, which is hard to do until you've been through it. That's why people's stories - biased and flawed as they are - are so important. They are more holistic in that way.
The downside is - normally, speaking for many women who experience perinatal loss - we just don't talk about it. The first response of many, many people -- and not just on the internet, trust me -- is to try to distance themselves from that experience and why it would never happen to them. I could tell you brutal stories.
When a woman reports a "good" birth here (even if there were, in fact, complications) it's "yay! for you!" - of course because we all revel in the joy of that child. And if that woman chooses that moment to share her personal truth in an advocacy way, it's acceptable.
But when it's a bad birth, suddenly the stats get trotted out and all kinds of accusations get levelled about fearmongering. IMO, it's not right.
It's just not. If natural birth advocacy is about reality, then make room for that too. Everyone on this forum can understand that I personally will be insane about fetal monitoring and someone else will be biased about home birth - but our points of view, though from the minority (thank goodness) are just as valid as someone who had a really bad hospital experience. There is room for that.
The OP's question seemed very honest to me. Are there cases where in any birthing situation a different situation would result in a better outcome? Yes, totally.