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The meconium poll

Poll Results: Did your baby pass meconium?

This is a multiple choice poll
  • 16% (49)
    The baby was overdue and had mec.
  • 10% (31)
    The baby was on time and had mec.
  • 1% (3)
    The baby was premature and had mec.
  • 20% (59)
    The baby was overdue and did not have mec.
  • 23% (68)
    The baby was on time and did not have mec.
  • 3% (10)
    The baby was premature and did not have mec.
  • 9% (29)
    I used castor oil to induce labor.
  • 13% (38)
    I had pit during or to induce labor.
  • 1% (5)
    I had an enema during or to induce labor.
292 Total Votes  
post #1 of 68
Thread Starter 
This is in response to hearing yet again how castor oil causes babies to poop as well. When I rebutted that on the ground that it doesn't make sense, is contrary to research I've read and that there aren't actual studies showing that it does someone posted a link to a abstract of a self-reporting study that found that women who used co were more likely to have mec than those who didn't. Enemas and other things did not have this effect. Now of course my question would be what factors did they account for? IE overdue women are both more likely to use CO and have babies that have mec while some hospitals may give all women enemas. Anyway I pointed out that wasn't actually a study but was just a big anecdotal survey and that I could probably do the same here and not find a correlation. So this is a multiple choice survey so please choose all that apply.
post #2 of 68
No poll yet, but all the evidence I've found has been correlative, not causative. IE: Women who were overdue were more likely to have mec and they were the same group more likely to use castor oil.
post #3 of 68
Even if there is a correlation between mec and castor oil, what difference does it make? The issue is really the anoxia leading to an in utero gasp in the first place, and the mec that can be inhaled that way. We don't even suction on the perineum anymore, because the evidence is that the small amount of mec in the trachea isn't enough to create MAS. So if the castor oil does make babies poop, but does not cause anoxia, my response would probably be why does it matter?

I'm not being flip; I genuinely don't understand why the isolated *presence* of mec matters, particularly in a post-dates pregnancy. It can be a red flag, but usually isn't. It's the anoxia it can signal that is really the problem, because without anoxia there won't be fetal gasping (as opposed to breathing) in utero and thus no MAS.
post #4 of 68
I voted on-time and no mec. BUT according to most OBs she was overdue (41 weeks 2 days)

No attempts at induction of any sort.

-Angela
post #5 of 68
Thread Starter 
I definitely agree with you both but people throw it out there as a reason not to use CO (you know go with pit instead!). The abstract also noted that meconium was correlated with higher incidence of c-section and apgars of 1. Which again has more to do with handling of the labor and birth than the mec itself.

I've realized I've probably messed up the poll so that it won't be possible to know if the time you had mec was a time you used castor oil or not. For instance I had four births, 1 with mec, 2 with pit (the mec birth was a pit birth) and 2 with CO and no mec. Ah well we can just discuss I guess.
post #6 of 68
My ds was born at 40+11. I did have a sweep but no other attempots at induction. I know a baby who died as a direct result of his mother using castor oil to induce labour. I would never do it.
post #7 of 68

The baby was on time and did not have mec.

I've never used castor oil and never would, to me the fact the castor oil may or may not be proven to cause baby to pass meconium is niether here or there i've heard storys where its happened is enough for me to know i would never want to risk it. i've also heard of babies comeing out covered in the stuff and been so slippy they were dropped. also as causes sisckness and diareah can also cause severe dehydration in mum and then not even work anyway.
the idea of been able to $h!t through the eye of a needle whille in labour doesn't seem like a very nice prospect either
post #8 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by wasabi View Post
I definitely agree with you both but people throw it out there as a reason not to use CO (you know go with pit instead!).
Right, because pit use can't cause distress. Do people really say this? I've never heard that reasoning.

IMO, the issue is not whether meconium is present so much as what caused the meconium. In other words, is something causing distress to the baby? Taking castor oil (per Susun Weed's instructions) made me so incredibly ill. I wouldn't want to take the chance of any of it getting through to the baby for just that reason. I realize not everyone has that experience with castor oil and that most castor oil babies do fine at birth, but it's just not a variable I'm comfortable inserting into the equation, considering that for me induction was completely unnecessary anyway.
post #9 of 68
I wish there had been an other. My baby passed mec at 38 weeks due to an ECV. I don't think it would have happened had that not occurred.
post #10 of 68
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by fourlittlebirds View Post
Right, because pit use can't cause distress. Do people really say this? I've never heard that reasoning.
That was my exact point that I woud totally believe it if they linked pit to mec because we know it gets to the baby while CO passes through the intestines.

Roxy in what way did the baby die "as a direct result" of the mother using CO? Did she induce early and the baby wasn't able to live because otherwise I'm really curious about what this direct link was.

I really don't see how it could possibly get into your uterus to make the baby come out slippery. That's just not how our bodies work I mean if I drink a whole lot of chocolate syrup and then my water breaks my baby is not going to come out covered in chocolate syrup. There is no way for the actual oil to get into the amnion to make the baby slippery. Certainly there are pros and cons to using co and everyone has to make that choice themselves but the oil somehow going directly from your mouth into your bag of waters? I just don't think that's based in reality.
post #11 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by wasabi View Post
That was my exact point that I woud totally believe it if they linked pit to mec because we know it gets to the baby while CO passes through the intestines.

Roxy in what way did the baby die "as a direct result" of the mother using CO? Did she induce early and the baby wasn't able to live because otherwise I'm really curious about what this direct link was.
I really don't see how it could possibly get into your uterus to make the baby come out slippery. That's just not how our bodies work I mean if I drink a whole lot of chocolate syrup and then my water breaks my baby is not going to come out covered in chocolate syrup. There is no way for the actual oil to get into the amnion to make the baby slippery. Certainly there are pros and cons to using co and everyone has to make that choice themselves but the oil somehow going directly from your mouth into your bag of waters? I just don't think that's based in reality.
She took the castor oil on her due date. Within 2 hours she was having really strong contractions - the baby started to kick really strongly in her stomach and she sensed something was wrong. She went to the hospital - they performed an emergency caserean but the baby was stillborn. It had passed a lot of meconium. They said it was as a result of her taking the castor oil.
It is not a chance I would take.
post #12 of 68
I voted "overdue, no mec", however my living children were born "on time", just not on their due dates. No inductions.
post #13 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by wasabi View Post
I really don't see how it could possibly get into your uterus to make the baby come out slippery. That's just not how our bodies work I mean if I drink a whole lot of chocolate syrup and then my water breaks my baby is not going to come out covered in chocolate syrup. There is no way for the actual oil to get into the amnion to make the baby slippery. Certainly there are pros and cons to using co and everyone has to make that choice themselves but the oil somehow going directly from your mouth into your bag of waters? I just don't think that's based in reality.
i was just going by what i read on another site and the mw knew she had taken it cause of the coating of oil on the babies skin, and they were lucky they had just changed the bed so baby fell on a pile of sheets rather than on to the floor.
as for how it would get to baby, would it not pass to baby the same way everyone else we eat or drink does, the same way if a pregnant drank alcohol or took painkillers
post #14 of 68
DD was right on time. Ds was late and had meconium. He did not have the nicest birth.
post #15 of 68
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by beckyand3littlemonsters View Post

as for how it would get to baby, would it not pass to baby the same way everyone else we eat or drink does, the same way if a pregnant drank alcohol or took painkillers
From my understanding 1)no castor oil is not absorbed by the intestines but instead passes straight through which is what makes you poop. 2)For the actual oil itself to get into your water is not like how alcohol or anything else we eat or drink does. It would be like if you ate a hamburger and then gave birth and there was hamburger on the baby. Or you drank orange juice and there was orange juice in the water. You're not talking about the essence of what you ate reaching the baby; you're talking about the actual thing, the oil itself, somehow reaching the baby through some direct pipeline from your mouth to the sac of water and that's not how the umbilical cord works to the best of my understanding. It would certainly make castor oil the only thing that actually works that way. Babies are slippery when they are born. They have amniotic fluid on them and they have vernix on them which is cheesey and slippery. I just don't see how on earth castor oil could possibly get from the mother's mouth into the sac of water to get on the baby's body. Does not seem at all possible though I'd love to see or hear anything that might explain how a food that was consumed would somehow get to the baby without being changed from the form it was consumed in.
post #16 of 68
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by roxyrox View Post
She took the castor oil on her due date. Within 2 hours she was having really strong contractions - the baby started to kick really strongly in her stomach and she sensed something was wrong. She went to the hospital - they performed an emergency caserean but the baby was stillborn. It had passed a lot of meconium. They said it was as a result of her taking the castor oil.
It is not a chance I would take.
I absolutely understand not taking the chance.

But I do see that this is an assumption that the baby did not have meconium prior to her taking the castor oil which may or may not be true. There is no direct link which would be a finding that x compound from the castor oil caused the baby to die or if they could somehow know the baby didn't have mec prior to the co but did after she took it. Direct result is a very strong phrasing that for me only applies in very strict circumstances like "I had a near fatal hemmorhage as a direct result of the OB pulling on the cord" or "My baby was very sluggish as a direct result of the stadol I had during labor." With my only mec birth water was broken early in my labor with my second birth. Things had been going fine. I was laboring and walking around etc. Got to the hospital and they checked me and gave me an enema and shortly after broke my water and there was mec in it. What caused it? Who knows? Didn't have it with my natural births where I labored at home up until the end and did use castor oil. :
post #17 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by roxyrox View Post
She took the castor oil on her due date. Within 2 hours she was having really strong contractions - the baby started to kick really strongly in her stomach and she sensed something was wrong. She went to the hospital - they performed an emergency caserean but the baby was stillborn. It had passed a lot of meconium. They said it was as a result of her taking the castor oil.
It is not a chance I would take.
It's a sad story, but it's a temporal association, not a cause. Mec is extremely common, and as I mentioned above, it's the associated anoxia that presents the risk, not the mec. Particularly for a stillbirth, since the only thing mec can cause is meconium aspiration syndrome, which is a severe chemical pneumonia and so clearly not the issue for a baby who hasn't breathed.
post #18 of 68
Had dd on time with no castor oil and there was mec, ds week over with mec no castor oil.
post #19 of 68
I agree that meconium is not an issue without nonreassuring fetal heart tones.
post #20 of 68
I had only one baby with meconiuim. She was just a few days "early". It was quite heavy and had been there for a while, since the bag of water was stained brown. Thank goodness she was born unassisted. She had no breathing trouble whatsoever, and we did not suction at all. The worst part was cleaning it out of her hair (she had quite a bit). I did not use castor oil. I wouldn't do it for two reasons. One, because I believe my babies will come when it's time. Two, because I have heard stories of horrible labors as a result of castor oil. I have never heard the castor oil=meconium association. And the slippery baby thing makes no sense to me at all.
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