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Started Taking EPO... - Page 2

post #21 of 22
Originally Posted by eilonwy
Jenny, I think I've figured out what's going on here... you're the only person who could possibly know what's going on with anyone's body, isn't that it?
Well, *that's* a positive comment. I'm glad to see some jumping on me for not being nice for, you know, discussing the facts about some things. Yeah, I get fed up with the whole "it's natural, so it's ok" argument, because that argument is ignorant and just plain wrong. And I"ll stand by that, because I actually care about people possibly hurting themselves by either not being informed, or being deliberately mis-informed by whatever entity- whether a formula company, OB, midwife, suppliment company, whatever.

If you want to get a c/s to just not have to go through labor- be my guest. If you want to induce because your OB is going to be on vacation, have a great time. This discussion was not about what is going on with any particular person's body- it was about the safety of EPO and the reasoning behind using it when it's not indicated for any reason, including deciding, out of the blue, that 36 weeks is term although most of us do not give birth at that time. I think that's a totally valid argument and important to discuss, and it's sad that instead of discussing something like this in a useful way, you get snippy/defensive and leave little useless messages like the one above.

If the theory behind EPO is that it stimulates prostaglandins, and that kind of gentle ripening is being used to bring forth a more gentle induction process (which I believe the original poster was describing), well, then why not use a very low dose of a vaginal prostaglandin gel? That is meant for vaginal use, where you know the exact dose and can control it, and perhaps ramp it up over time? The fact that her fluid was low- if it's because it's leaking- really, REALLY means that putting something on the cervix that's not intended for vaginal use, and isn't sterile, could be a big issue!

I"d be really interested in knowing if anyone has heard of this type of more "gentle" induction process, and if it could help someone facing a more standard type of induction. I also wonder about the rates of pitocin use, in terms of how quickly they ramp it up for people.. is that standardized? Is there a way to buy more time to have it happen much more slowly? I wonder how much this has ever been looked into. I'm guessing not so much, but I don't know the history of it at all. Of course some people have to face the induction process out of medical necessity.. it would be nice if they could tailor that to the particular situation, and give someone more time if possible!
post #22 of 22
The point that I was trying to make is that your posts here come across as seriously antagonistic 90% of the time (if not more). If you're trying to impart information, you can do it without being nasty and inflamatory. I know it's possible, because I do it all the freaking time, even with the internet changing the way that things come across to people. It's not what you're saying (though your "understanding" about the way that EPO works versus a vaginal prostoglandin gel is lacking, imo) but the way that you're saying it ("you're fooling yourselves," etc).

In your opinion, being "sick of being pregnant" is no reason to try to induce labor before your personal idea of term. Well, before you go spewing misinformation and anger (and I think that most women who are 9 months pregnant get enough of that without reading it online) at these women who just "don't care" about starting a cascade of interventions, you might want to take into account that you don't really know more about what's going on inside of, for example, my vagina than I do. You *can't*. You can say, "In many cases, when babies are born before the mother goes into labor spontaneously on her own, the babies have problems because they needed to be in longer." You can say, "As far as I know, the safety and efficacy of evening primrose oil inserted vaginally next to the cervix for the purpose or ripening it during late pregnancy has not been thoroughly established; I'd do some more research before I did anything like that." You don't have to tell people that they're essentially trying to hurt their babies, because that's just not true of anyone here. You don't have to say "if you want to plan a c/s because you think it's cute/funny/easier/whatever, be my guest," nor imply that anyone who would do such a thing is foolish/selfish/abusive/etc.

So now I will write something helpful: There is a huge difference between the actions of vaginal prostoglandin gel and evening primrose oil. EPO cannot ripen a cervix that isn't already ready for labor. By "ripen" I mean "allow to become soft and relaxed." EPO's purpose in late pregnancy is to help the cervix to soften, but many other things have to be in place for that to happen. If your body isn't ready for your cervix to soften (i.e. you're not actually term and you don't have an "incompotent" cervix or a history of seriously preterm births), absolutely nothing will happen when you use vaginally inserted EPO except for a big stain on your panties when you wake up. This isn't the case with vaginal prostoglandin gel, which works via a different mechanism. VPG can actually *cause* not only cervical ripening but shortening & dilation of the cervix as well as (in fewer cases) actual contractions in women for whom even pitocin would be ineffective. (Yes, there are *many* cases where pitocin, a synthetic version of the natural hormone oxytocin, will not induce labor-- not only do you have to have it in your system, but your uterine receptors for the hormone must be plentiful enough to stimulate labor, and they're generally not before 37+ weeks.)

I'll say it again: no matter how much you use, no matter how hard you try, if your body isn't ready, your cervix will not change under the influence of EPO unless there's something wrong. I used EPO vaginally for the last week of my pregnancy with BooBah (week 38, until my water broke), but when she was born my cervix was still 4.5 cm long and locked up tighter than Fort Knox, despite the facts that a) I'd had a vaginal delivery only 19 months earlier and b) it's much more common for a woman's cervix to stay partly open after a vaginal delivery, or to open late in pregnancy when there's a whole person sitting on your cervix than it is for the cervix to remain so tightly closed that the word "fingertip" is a very generous estimation of dilation.

One more thing: as to the idea of dates "being assigned incorrectly," that assumes a great many things, and lots of them aren't true for lots of us. Please don't assume that you know how any of us came to our "due dates;" you don't.
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